August 27, 2008
Auburn Athletics sharpens focus on five goals
It's here. With kickoff now only a few days away, I know you share in my excitement about the upcoming football season. Each of you help make Auburn's game-day experience one of the absolute best in the country, and I know we can count on you to support our team and show our visitors the hospitality that makes Auburn a truly special place. As we head into a new academic year, I want to share with you our Vision and the five fundamental goals we are working toward to achieve it.
Our Vision is to become the preeminent athletics department in the nation. We will do this with a strategic focus on our five goals: winning, graduating our student-athletes, managing our fiscal affairs, complying with the rules and providing a positive game-day experience.
Since the start of football season is here, allow me to share some of the many ways your Athletics Department is working to provide a positive game-day experience.
- More than $34 million in work has been completed at Jordan-Hare Stadium over the past several years, as we follow a long-range plan to ensure the stadium meets your expectations and keeps us competitive.
- Restoration of the East Elevator Lobby: Repainted and installed flat screen TVs; installed high-speed fan to enhance cooling; purchased a portable cooling system to enhance cooling.
- Renovation and restoration of the 2nd level west and 4th level west: New lighting in all areas; repainting of the concourse and restrooms; new restroom fixtures; waterproofing concrete and deck to significantly reduce water leaking on seats; new signage; renovated concessions and catering areas to enhance service.
- Renovation of the Beckwith Club- Repainted; replaced carpet; new flat screen TV; repainted restrooms and replaced fixtures.
- Adding "Speed" stands around the stadium to expedite service.
- Adding 80 dedicated beverage "hawkers" to concessions workforce at specific sections in the stadium.
- Adding healthier options to the concessions menu, such as fruit smoothies, sugar-free lemonade and sub sandwiches.
- Adding a $2 bottled water option in coolers on the concourses; adding $1 water options at strategic concourse locations for select games.
- Coordinating post-game traffic management with Auburn Police, AU Auxiliary Services, Auburn City Engineer and a traffic consultant.
- Addition of four ATM machines on stadium grounds. The locations are east and west entrances, student section and west gate 12.
- Established four Guests Services booths staffed by Boy Scouts and our customer service team in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
- New and improved Game Day Fan Guide developed to enhance information provided to guests.
- The www.auburn.edu/gameday website will be updated each week to provide timely and accurate information on the week's activities and any changes to originally published information.
- Videoboard graphics package has been updated, along with new videos produced for the team entrance prior to kick-off.
- New Guests Services Program established. Ushers assigned to every section of the stadium. Marketing:
- Game Day Photos - 12 photographers will work the stadium and take shots of fans at the football game. Fans will be given a card directing them to a website to view and purchase photos.
- Game Day Vlog -A weekly video blog will contain important information for fans traveling to Auburn. The vlog will contain information on hotel availability, ticket availability, parking, construction, restaurants, other events taking place on campus and much more. The video can be accessed through Auburntigers.com.
- Working with new ticket-taking and customer service company to improve ticket-taking process.
- Student tickets: Added a mini-2 game pack, in addition to the season and mini-season (4-game).
- Working toward access management (barcodes and scanners) for suiteholders and scholarship donors in 2009.
Suiteholders, Club Level:
- Our suiteholders and club level guests will see a number of improvements this season. To name just a few, they include remodeling of the Beckwith Club, renovations and addition of TVs in the East Elevator Lobby and expanded menu items for suiteholders.
Auburn shines at Olympics
- I know you share my pride in our country and in Auburn University for the outstanding way in which 25 present and former Auburn student-athletes represented us at the Olympics in Beijing. They brought home a record total of 18 medals, showing the world that Auburn is achieving athletic excellence in multiple sports. The exposure Auburn University received in front of a worldwide audience was priceless.
- Our Media Relations department did an outstanding job of promoting Auburn Olympians. To see a recap of Auburn in the Olympics, including a list of all medal winners, visit www.auburntigers.com and click on the "Auburn at the 2008 Olympics" link.
- Letter From Commissioner Slive
- You have probably already read about the Southeastern Conference's long-term television agreement with ESPN. In short, this agreement will greatly expand the reach of SEC sports and strengthen our conference's already powerful brand. A letter to you from SEC Commissioner Mike Slive is attached.
- In closing, I want to urge you to join me in supporting the sportsmanship initiative launched by our student-athletes last year.
- Called Auburn Pride, it focuses on "Competition, Tradition, The Moment, and The Opponent." I am proud of our student-athlete leaders for choosing sportsmanship as a legacy they want to leave behind at Auburn.
Let's do our part to support that effort in the ways we treat visiting teams and fans, and in the positive manner in which we support our own student-athletes.
I look forward to seeing you in Auburn.
God bless, and War Eagle!
Director of Athletics