Comments for: Cosgrove, Abbott discuss UMaine’s football future; coach’s contract extension still on hold

Posted Nov. 29, 2012, at 7:33 p.m.
Last modified Nov. 29, 2012, at 8:21 p.m.

ORONO | After 21 seasons as the head football coach, Jack Cosgrove is well aware University of Maine teams have some financial and geographic challenges not faced by most of their competitors. Cosgrove’s contract expires in June, but before he agrees to an extension, he is curious whether the …

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  • Anonymous

    Cosgrove has been a very good coach for a long time at UMaine (on the field). He has put many players in the NFL and put together many winning teams over the years despite the inherent disadvantages of recruiting and playing in Orono Maine. With that said, it is hard to justify even the existence of a division 1AA scholarship program in this state and I am a fan. Given the economic realities in this state I do not see how the University of Maine trustees can ask taxpayers to continue funding this program with the amount of money it loses every year.

    • Anonymous

      I regretfully agree. Unfortunately, football may be the sacrificial lamb in order to enhance ice hockey and basketball……..really those are the 2 programs that could/should be UMaine’s bread and butter. Sure seems like Cosgrove sees the writing on the wall. And the way things are going with conference realignment…….it’s a good time to get one’s house in order and adapt to the changing landscape of collegiate athletics.

      • Well if they axe the football program (hypothetically) please let me know which female sports you would end as well to counter the loss of 50+ scholarships.. because you know.. there’s that pesky little thing called title IX…

        • Anonymous

          Correct. Eliminating football scholarships would trigger a parallel reduction in women’s scholarships, resulting in the loss of more than one women’s program. As a consequence, UMaine would have too few sports to continue in Division I.

  • Anonymous

    And I’m curious to know if UMaine is ever going to have a winning football team.

    • did you miss last season or……

    • Anonymous

      Four NCAA playoff appearances in the past twelve years isn’t a winning program? A combined 77-55 record in those twelve years as well?

  • These issues don’t come to the fore all of a sudden. Potentially, this is Abbott’s way of letting Cosgrove go easily, after 21 seasons. Steve doesn’t play around, and he doesn’t waste time, as we already saw regarding Cindy Blodgett. We need someone who can upgrade these programs and Steve may be the person to do so but the jury is still out on that one. Remember also that Cosgrove wanted to be AD himself, so potentially that may also be a factor.

    • To compare Jack Cosgrove to Cindy Blodgett is positively laughable. Maybe they should look hard at Woodward’s contract before they let Cosgrove go. I guess all the Maine fans have short memories, because one year ago at this time we marched in to Appalachian State and walked out with a playoff victory, and advanced further into the playoffs than any other CAA team.

  • Anonymous

    Jack Cosgrove is a man of complete integrity who is respected by just about everyone at UMaine. Certainly he faces challenges in recruiting quality players from far away. But for many faculty and staff at Orono, the familiar complaint that the athletic facilities just aren’t sufficient and that more money needs to be invested in, in this case, a program that loses between one and two million annually, doesn’t get much sympathy. Moving football to a lower division, as has been suggested endless times, would be one solution. But that will never happen. Better to keep reducing the number of faculty and to allow buildings like centerpiece Stevens Hall to deteriorate. That remains “the way life should be” at UMaine.

    • “Moving football to a lower division, as has been suggested endless times, would be one solution. But that will never happen.”

      You’re right about that… it is impossible to have a sub division 1 football program AND keep your division 1 hoops status. Now they could drop all sports to Division 2 or 3 and keep hockey in Division 1 like Union College but that would be silly for a state university the size of UMaine.

      • Anonymous

        Thanks. Many fans do not realize that simply dropping the football program to D-2 or D-3 is not allowed by the NCAA, The other unlikely scenarios are to follow BU, Northeastern and (long ago) Vermont and just drop the football program … or to move up to the D-1 bowl level as did UConn and UMass which would involve substantially more funding.

  • David

    The Athletic Director needs to put UMaine in two “pay” games a year, rather than one or none. Many of the CAA teams play 2 FBS (the old upper Division I, the BCS guys) teams each year. When Florida State bought out the ‘pay’ game trip a couple years ago, UMaine suffered a huge loss of revenue, having to instead bring UND (Div II at the time) over to play an extra home game. Of course, Florida State got the “return karma” when West Virginia backed out this year, and they were stuck playing Savannah State, and Murray State. This should have been UMaine’s AD jumping in offering to play Florida State to “get the game back”.
    I”m sure with Blake James back at Miami, that we could get a ‘pay’ game out of them. How about Central Florida, also? They’re in Orlando, and also on an Allegiant nonstop, so UMaine fans could actually enjoy the trip. Auburn’s AD is probably looking for something better than Alabama A&M, and Alabama’s AD is probably looking to upgrade from Western Carolina, both subpar FCS teams.
    Games in the deep South will have the side benefit of serving as ‘recruiting trips’ of the type Cosgrove needs into football-fertile areas.

    • Anonymous

      Maine will play two FBS games next year at Massachusetts (Gillette) and Northwestern. This is because of the 12 game schedule next year and in 2014.

      • David

        Note I said “pay” games. UMass isn’t going to pay big bucks to offset Maine’s expenses, or add to the bottom line. And Northwestern is no Nebraska or Michigan. The issue isn’t playing FBS teams, it’s playing “FBS TEAMS THAT PAY 1 MILLION TO FCS opponents so that they can get an easy home game”. And it’s playing them against ACC and SEC opponents who are in recruiting-rich territory. Playing UMass and Northwestern isn’t going to bring recruits from the football-rich Sunbelt and Southern U.S.

  • nostrajimus

    over/under on the attendance for the UMO vs UMASS game at Gillette Stadium is set at 69 :)

  • Anonymous

    Here it comes… The football haters out in force. The UMaine football program does well despite the logistical hurdles and recruiting challenges. They continually field competitive teams year after year. I think coach Cosgrove does a very good job overall and he’s brought stability to what was once a revolving door for “stepping stone” coaches. Something that should not be overlooked when negotiating his possible extension.
    A giant issue is drawing more fans. As the only D1 school in Maine, the place should be banged out every Saturday. I know that Steve has this on his mind. I only get to one or two games a year but I live in So.ME. They need to put everything on the table to make this a true game day experience, including allowing tailgating, selling better food, engaging students to attend, have the cameras face the Alfond Stadium side of the field, televise more games all over the state, including using the opponents tv feed on away games if necessary. It’s time to MARKET the football team.

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