Monday, September 19, 2011

FIRESPAZ.ORG: THE PHILANTHROPIC APPROACH



For the last few years, the big thing has been the "Fire[Coach].com" website. It's an interesting idea, but I'd have no idea what to do with one. What do you do? Post videos of running to the left hash mark on third down along with the words, FIRE [COACH]. That's old, it's played out...and it doesn't really demonstrate the support.

That being said, we here at H&L are like the legions of BC fans across the country who can't stomach watching our football team right now. For the last decade, BC football has brought people together - whether as students in the end zone corner, alums around the country gathering for game watches or even tailgates that bring older alumni together again in Chestnut Hill. We get to talk about more than the product on the field, we get excited about being together, we get excited about the positive recognition for our school.

That's all gone right now with the painful losses of this season, and a single "NO" of IsSpazStillCoaching.com isn't going to bring that back right now. So, instead of continuing to piss vinegar, instead of griping and whining about the need for change, I want to take a different approach.

I think it's time to do something positive about it, which is what brings us to FireSpaz.org.

BC isn't known for its football boosters, but I promise they exist. The faithful talk with their wallets and their support, just like any school - you just don't hear about it because it doesn't involve massive gifts or briefcases of cash handed to the fathers of quarterback recruits. There are those who travel, who give to the program for a tailgate spot, who buy out gear in the bookstore. Add up the tickets, the travel, the tailgate spreads, the donations - you quickly can run a pretty severe bill for supporting this team.

While I can't get a refund on my season tickets or booked plane tickets, I do have a lot fewer expenses for the remainder of the season since I've cancelled road trip plans or am planning for a smaller crowd at tailgates. It's a sad reality, but it's the truth. Still, I've planned those budget lines, and now I want to put my money where my mouth is and use that money to continue support BC...just in a very different way.

To show what happens for programs that make us proud as BC supporters, let's take that money we would spend on BC football and give it to one of the other student groups on campus that involves so many people, inspires long-term connections and gives us reasons to brag about our school. Let's put the power of the pocketbook behind our disastisfaction with what happened in Alumni Stadium - but do it in a way to further the efforts of other students.

My proposal: let's come together to support one of the biggest philanthropic groups on campus: the Appalachia Volunteers.


The alternative spring break program involves more than 600 students each spring, and through roommates, classmates and other connections, touches nearly every corner of campus. It costs about $300,000 each year for groups of these students to travel to more than 30 different sites across the Appalachian region, where they give back in the form of helping those communities with building, manual labor or chipping in one way or another for these really small towns. That money comes from whatever small money and friendly donations these students can gather up, along with their own personal investments of what they would spend on a spring break in Cancun or San Juan.

Let's help them, and I'll start.

For this weekend's game, we're not even going to bother planning a massive-style tailgate in advance of the UMass game. So few of my out-of-area friends are making the trip, and even local friends are only going to show up for a little. I stand to save about $50 on foodstuffs, beer, supplies and the whatnot with the lowkey tailgate - so I sent that money through the BC Fund to be earmarked for Appalachia. The confirmation is right here:


Are you in? Is there a tank of gas you're saving by not driving to a game? Skipping out on getting an extra ticket for a friend for Wake Forest or NC State? Saving the money from a bus ticket up from New York City? Are you eating lunch at home instead of chowing down and drinking a cash bar at your city's game watch? Take that cash, send it in, mark it for Appalachia. Let's help those kids out - all while demonstrating what we commit every year to our football team at the same time.

If you wouldn't mind - leave a comment so I can track it, and I'll start building a telethon scoreboard. I know a lot of people would rather make donations anonymous (if I wasn't writing this post, probably how I'd be, too), so feel free to comment anonymously if you'd like.

Not sure how the response will be initially, so here's the early benchmark. If we raise $5,000 by the Maryland game, which is right before Halloween, I'll spend the day in College Park with a mustache, dressed as Spaz - but in Jorts. That's the same amount of money that would have been spent on a Mod Lot pass. If we pass that mark, I'm more than open to discussing new incentives.

Let's take this negative energy and give it back to the other students of whom we know we can be proud. You know what, worst case scenario is that things don't change, and we have a bigger amount of income to decide what to do with in the offseason. Best case scenario is that we're heard, that people recognize that we want to support our students - and then next spring, we'll want to support both student organizations and the athletic programs.

5 comments:

  1. While I'd like to see a change in coaching, I'm not feeling very good about GDF making another hire.

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  2. Just made mine $125 for myself and my wife skipping the Miami Game.
    http://flic.kr/p/aozJhL

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  3. Nice win today but I blame you for one of the UMass scores. Take a pee break at half time! Show the team some support! #FireSpaz

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  4. maybe the problem isn't the coach? maybe the problem goes higher then that just like with the Red Sox but the coach is the one who gets fired. In my opinion the guy who has to go is GDF and fast

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  5. Money meet mouth

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