Wayback Machine: 1971 Article on Football

H/T to @mac78251 who linked to this on his page.

/via @UTSAYesterday

The following is the article transcribed for readability.

By Karl O ‘Quinn

No football for UTSA in its early years, perhaps not in this decade.

The timetable is not his, but the rest of the forecast is from Dr. Arleigh Templeton, and he should know.

Templeton is president of the embryonic University of Texas at San Antonio, which is slated at the present time for a 1973 opening.

The new school will strive for major status as quickly as possible in basketball, track, tennis and golf, Templeton added, but football is just too expensive.

“We don’t want to play junior college football our first few years,” he said. “We don’t want to do anything half-way. When we do begin playing football we will be playing the best competition available. We’ll do it the way the University of Houston did it — schedule teams such as Alabama and Mississippi as soon and as often as we can until we have a major schedule.”

Buy UTSA will no have a stadium, and there’s the rub.

“You can’t spend state funds on a stadium,” Templeton pointed out.

This means UTSA will either have to use Alamo Stadium, along with the eight high schools of the San Antonio Independent School District and Trinity, or wait for the city or county to build a suitable plant.

It is the latter alternative that inspires the theory UTSA will not hit the gridiron in the 1970’s.

“Football must be self-supporting.” Templeton said, “and football programs at schools such as the University of Texas at Austin are expensive.”

His quoted figure was off the record but it is common knowledge the cost of the programs at Texas, Ohio State and other major schools run into the millions of dollars –per school.

Other sports are a different matter, however. They are less expensive, require fewer playing facilities will be avail- athletes and coaches, and able to the school (sic)

A gymnasium, baseball diamonds, tennis courts and quarter-mile tracks were prominent in the artists’ drawing of the proposed university complex. The golf team could play on the city’s existing courses, as other teams do.

Templeton said he was still undecided about baseball, however, because of scheduling difficulties. “We played the Southwest Conference schools while I was at Sam Houston State,” he said, “until we started beating them. Then they dropped us from their schedules.”

Templeton is obviously very interested in athletics, which should please local sports fans hungry for better things in college athletics. He was an all-around athlete at New Waverly High School and played three sports at Sam Houston State. He later became president of his alma mater and encouraged the growth of athletics at Sam Houston.

“I’ve been involved with athletics all my life,” he said. “I’ve never been a loser. We had good teams at Sam Houston and we’ll have good teams at UTSA.”

But not in football, for a few years at least.

I chuckled when I read the familiar refrains about facilities and cash. Times have changed but circumstances haven’t — at least not much. This article highlights the incredible importance the Alamodome has in the city. It saved the Spurs and perhaps birthed the UTSA football team.

It certainly is helping the program get looks in conference realignment talks, as well.

Also, I’m glad it isn’t 1971 anymore.

Go Runners!

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