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Football lists first opponents

By Dan Kelly
Sports Editor  

The UNCP 2007 football schedule was revealed to the public on Oct. 4 as well as other information concerning season tickets and seating availability.
           
Chancellor Allen C. Meadors and head coach Pete Shinnick revealed this schedule:

• Sept. 1 at Davidson
• Sept. 8 vs. Greensboro College (home)
• Sept. 15 vs. Wingate (home)
• Sept. 22 at Jacksonville (Fla.)
• Sept. 29 at Chowan
• Oct. 6 vs. Brevard (Homecoming) (home)
• Oct. 13 vs. West Virginia Wesleyan
• Oct. 20 at Edward Waters (Fla.)
• Oct. 27 vs. Faulkner (home)
• Nov. 3 at Concord
• Nov. 10 at North Greenville (SC)

Process           
           
Athletic director Dan Kenney spent nearly six months in discussions with 60 different teams in order to make the completed schedule.
           
“It was difficult because you have to stay with it on a consistent basis,” Kenney said.
           
The 2007 schedule has six Division II opponents, the conference UNCP will play in, two Division I-AA opponents, one Division III team and one NAIA team.
           
“(It’s) as challenging a schedule you can get for a first-year program,” Shinnick said.
           
Though Shinnick jokingly bemoaned the difficulty of the schedule, he appreciated the difficulty in putting one together as he did at his previous job at Azusa Pacific.
           
Key points that Shinnick pointed out was  the first game will be on the road so the team can “work out the kinks” before the Braves’ first home game the next week.
           
Another point was the two back-to-back road trips that will provide an opportunity to see how the team adjusts.
           
“Travel is going to be an exciting thing because we are going to different places. At the same time it will be one of the challenges in putting a schedule together and trying to find as many like opponents as we can,” Shinnick said.
           
The Oct. 27 game will be against another first-year program in Faulkner.
           
The 2008 schedule is nearly set, as 10 of the 11 teams on the 2007 schedule have already confirmed rematches.
           
By 2009, Kenney hopes to have a schedule that would qualify UNCP for possible playoffs by having at least eight Division II teams on the schedule.

Tickets and Seating
           
Earlier in the event, Wendell Staton, director of the office of major and planned gifts, and Kenney detailed the limitations on tickets and seating during the 2007 football season.
           
The amount of permanent seating projected is between 2,500-3,000 people, so a shortage is already being expected and a point system is being developed to handle the purchase of season tickets by different levels of university donors.
           
There will also be temporary seating that will be available for general admission
           
The point system tracks the amount of financial gifts given to the First and Ten Campaign, UNCP athletics and just to the university in general since 1990:
• 2 points for $100 to First and Ten campaign
• 1 point for $100 to UNCP athletics
• 1 point for $500 given for non-athletic gifts.
• 5 points are automatically added to UNCP alumni, current faculty/staff, former student-athlete letter winners, and retired faculty/staff with at least five years of service
           
For the five home games in the 2007 season, season ticket prices will range from $30 for general admission for faculty and staff all the way to $60 for seating between the 45-yard lines and reserved parking.
           
At the end of 2006, the top 100 donors will be given the first opportunity to buy season tickets and the attached reserved parking for the top two levels of season ticket purchase.             

Also, any of the season ticket packages that include reserved parking require membership in the Braves Club athletic fundraising organization that costs $100 to join.
           
The point system is  similar to ones used at Elon College and Coastal Carolina University.

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Updated: Wednesday, December 13, 2006
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