TSU will learn plenty of

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 5, 2001

lessons in Division I-A


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Jan. 4, 2000 10 PM

I have mixed feelings about Troy State University’s move to Division I-A. On one hand I think that it will be good for the enrollment at Troy State, but on the other hand, it is almost humorous to me.

I’ve watched a few of the bowl games this year. When I watched the Sugar Bowl Tuesday night and University of Miami’s schedule flashed on the screen I saw Troy State listed as their third game of the 2001 season. It made me chuckle.

I tried to imagine Troy State playing powerhouses like Miami, Florida, Florida State, Auburn, etc. I hesitate to say the University of Alabama because I’m sure TSU could have been victorious over them this year.

I tried to look into the future of the Troy State University program and tried to picture the Trojans being successful in Division I-A. I had to look way into the future. But this is what I saw, and these are my predictions for TSU football in Division I-A.

The first few years will be devastating, but will be a learning experience for TSU. Nebraska and Miami will slaughter the Trojans, but the Trojans will learn something from this. They will learn to play football on a larger scale against bigger and better teams.

It will take a lot of lessons to get the Trojans to the status of these other teams, if they ever get it. But hopefully, one day the TSU Trojans will become one of the earlier mentioned powerhouses.

But in order for Troy State to get the respect of these other schools, TSU will have to make a lot of changes.

Although the school seems to be rich in tradition, it, like the football team, will have to move to another level.

Over the last few years, Troy State has been preparing itself for the big move. There has been tremendous growth as far as renovations and new construction, and we are sure to see more as the school enters Division I-A.

Some of the biggest things TSU needs is increased enrollment and to work with the city of Troy and Pike County to find a way to keep students here on weekends and through holidays.

Without increased enrollment, TSU will cease to see the growth it has seen in the past. To ensure more students come to Troy State and stay here once they get here two things need to be done.

First, Troy State needs to increase the number of students from outside the state of Alabama. Bringing students to Troy from outside the state will ensure more students stay here on the weekend. Additional students in Troy on the weekends and during short breaks will not only bring additional spirit and family-like relationship to the school, but it will also increase the economy in the city of Troy and Pike County.

There are many on-campus activities, like sports events, movies, plays and other things to keep any student busy. A game room and food court in the newly remodeled Adams Center is another thing the students have in which to be proud. A college experience is something not everyone, but Troy State has tried to make its college life as enjoyable as possible for the students.

But there has to be more. There has to be more for the students to do outside of the campus to make Troy really feel like home to them. Granted Troy has some to offer college students like a movie theater, a few local pubs and a Wal-Mart Super Center, but is that enough? It is only a short drive to larger cities like Dothan and Montgomery, and it is only a short drive to the beach, but again, is that enough? If that were enough Troy State would not still be considered a suitcase college. The students would look forward to staying in Troy over the weekends because there is so much to do here.

It is our responsibility to look for ways to make Troy State, Pike County and Troy a place the students can’t and don’t want to be away from.

If more students stay in Troy because they just can’t get enough of it, it will give Troy State and the area that surrounds it tradition as rich as schools like those they will be playing in Division I-A.

Amy Lansdon is news editor of The Messenger. She may be reached at amy.lansdon@troymessenger.com or by calling 670-6311.  

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