Rutgers Ice Hockey - NCAA Update... It's time to #FreezeTheGarden
Jun 18, 2016 — Ice Knight Nation,
On behalf of the players, coaches and staff, thank you for your tremendous and unwavering support of Rutgers Men’s Ice Hockey during the 2015 – 2016 season! There have been many exciting changes and improvements to our program over the past year, and things continue to look up for the future!
The purpose of this message is to discuss just that…the FUTURE of Rutgers Ice Hockey. Since our online petition to bring Big Ten NCAA Ice Hockey to Rutgers made the rounds last summer, many of you have been very eager to know what progress has been made on our mission and what you can do to help Rutgers Ice Hockey become the nation’s 61st NCAA men’s hockey program. We are extremely grateful for the outpouring of support and have been completely humbled by the exuberance shown to us by the NJ Hockey community. Hockey people continue to be the best!
Without further ado, here is your much awaited update…
Near the end of March, just before the NCAA Frozen Four was about to commence in Tampa, we met directly with new Rutgers Athletic Director Pat Hobbs and Senior Athletic Director Sarah Baumgartner, to discuss how ice hockey fits in with their vision for the future of Rutgers Athletics. The GOOD NEWS is they are both extremely bright and passionate about RU, and will never turn away an idea that would have a positive impact on the athletics department or the school. With that, both are big hockey fans and know just how HUGE the impact of a Big Ten NCAA Ice Hockey program would have on Rutgers and the state of New Jersey. In short, we are all in agreement that adding a varsity hockey program at Rutgers is a great idea, in theory.
Here’s the rub… At the moment, as most of you are well aware, Rutgers Athletics is busy digging itself out of a deep hole, both financially and in the facilities arms race that now looms large over the world of college athletics. This will most likely be the case until at least 2021, when RU becomes a full-share member of the Big Ten and begins receiving a full portion of the annual Big Ten revenue. We had a positive meeting with Pat and Sarah, and look forward to continued discussions as they develop a strategic plan for the department over the next 6 months. As we’ve known all along, this means that the endowment of a varsity ice hockey program at Rutgers will need to be privately funded. However, now that they are aware of our goal, we are starting the process of speaking with those who we hope will help get this B1G idea off the ground!
Two ways YOU can help:
1. Go “All-In” with Rutgers Athletics and AD Pat Hobbs on the ‘R Big Ten Build’ campaign! The bottom line is the faster we help RU Athletics accomplish their current fundraising goal of $100 million, the faster Pat can move on to other projects, such as adding new sports…like ICE HOCKEY! As of June 1st we’re already up to $55 million, so this is the time to jump on the bandwagon!! We know many of you associated with Rutgers Hockey have felt disenfranchised by RU Athletics in the past, but be assured - Pat, Sarah and this administration do not believe in the “RU Screw”. They have shown RU Hockey the respect that no other AD has prior and it’s time we do the same in return!
To help push these efforts towards the finish line, and show that RU Hockey stands together in solidarity with RU Athletics, I have personally made a 5-year pledge of $20/month and signed on to be a “captain” of the R B1G Build. My goal as a captain is to establish a team of 25+ donors who are also interested in making a 5-year pledge, for as little as $10/month. Please take the time to educate yourselves on the R Big Ten Build campaign & captains program at www.rutgersbigtenbuild.com, as well as reading AD Pat Hobbs' Full Message - http://tinyurl.com/PatHobbs.
When you’re ready, make your gift to the R Big Ten Build by clicking 'DONATE NOW' at the top-right of the R B1G Build website and then NOTIFY ME via email so that I can add you to my team – firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Go through your Rolodex of Rutgers supporters, passionate members of the NJ hockey community, etc… and introduce us to any of those connections you feel may be interested in contributing to the endowment of the Rutgers NCAA Ice Hockey program. To do so, please reach out to us at: email@example.com.
To help get the conversation started with potential supporters, and to quickly demonstrate just how enormous the potential is for Big Ten NCAA Ice Hockey at Rutgers, please direct them to the info-graphics and press coverage we have posted on our website - http://www.rutgershockey.com/ncaa. Additionally, this great article was just published on Thursday, 6/16 - http://www.onthebanks.com/2016/6/16/11859110/rutgers-hockey-fundraising-big-ten-ncaa-hockey.
The time has come to #FreezeTheGarden!!
General Manager / Recruiting Director
Rutgers University Ice Hockey