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ETSU officially announces plans to return football

ETSU president Dr. Brian Noland speaks during a Tuesday press conference to announce the reinstatement of the football program, which has been dormant since 2003. ETSU expects to be on the field in varsity play in 2015.
Published: 2:16 PM, 04/04/2013 Last updated: 2:18 PM, 04/04/2013

Author: Seth Butler
Source: The Newport Plain Talk

JOHNSON CITY-After 10 years, East Tennessee State University is ready to hit the field again.

Four days after the Tennessee Board of Regents approved a $125 student athletic fee for ETSU, school president Dr. Brian Noland announced that the school would pursue their plans to place a team on the field in varsity competition by 2015.

ETSU last played in 2003, before the program was cut due to financial reasons. A student vote in April 2007 to reinstate the football program with a $200 fee increase was unsuccessful.

The current fee increase, which was recommended to the Board of Regents by the school’s Student Government Association, is expected to generate $2.5 million in revenue in 2013-14 and approximately $2.9 million in years after.

Noland said that the football is something that will help the school achieve its long-term goals, which were outlined by the ETSU 125 committee in December.

“(Football) is one piece of a broader effort to elevate ETSU,” Noland said after Tuesday’s announcement. “I wholeheartedly agreed with the decision that was made in 2002, but this is a different time and we have the opportunity to build on the work that’s been done in the past and to move forward and do this the right way.”

For more, see the April 4 edition of the Newport Plain Talk.

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