KSU Football Has Positive Impact
By Robyn Horton
KSU News Service
Twelve years ago Kansas State University was cited as "Futility U,"
in a Sports Illustrated article. But this year,
the university had the last laugh as it was listed as one of the top 10 "trendiest schools in the nation" by
Kaplan/Newsweekís 2001 Guidance Counselor Survey. According to K-State administrators, the successful
football program has made a positive impact on the university as a whole.
"We have generations of students now who donít view themselves as part
of a losing program, and donít carry
the moniker of ĎFutility Uí or are even aware that article was ever written," said Bob Krause, vice president for
institutional advancement. "What football has done in terms of uplifting the spirit and pride has been incredible.
"You donít get that type of following whether itís to the Cotton Bowl,
the Fiesta Bowl, or to Arrowhead a few
weekends ago without that outstanding pride and spirit," he said. "Itís everywhere anytime you see a vehicle
with a vanity plate with a Powercat on it."
According to Krause, right or wrong, athletics becomes a window through
which many people view the university
and get to know it. He says, it has obviously gained K-State a national reputation, but offers several other
"The first benefit is a football program that allows us to continue
to have a major conference affiliation," Krause
said. "It has also generated the revenue that has allowed us to elevate other programs within the athletic
department, improve the marching band to where itís a top 10 program and provide scholarships to students.
"Also, itís important in that itís given us a venue to establish a national
reputation for our academic excellence,"
he said. "Not only do people know about our successful football team, but they know about the academic
achievements of our students in terms of national prominence and being the No. 1 public university in the
production of Rhodes, Truman, Marshall, Goldwater and Udall scholars."
"It has been a positive showcase of student life and services at K-State,"
said Pat Bosco associate vice president
for institutional advancement and dean of student life. "It communicates a scope of progress to audiences where
they can see the other good things about K-State, such as the nationally recognized yearbook and student
newspaper, and the award-winning livestock and debate teams.
"It has increased the number of inquiries from out-of-state students
across the nation, although the number of
students enrolled has not dramatically changed," he said. "The spirit, pride of purple and Powercats are
The enthusiastic atmosphere created by a winning football team has encouraged
students, faculty and staff to
strive harder, said Krause. It will lead to a future of other university achievements and successes.
"At some point I really think itís given all of our programs an opportunity
to be successful," Krause said. "If the
population in this area continues to grow, and as the university continues to establish world-class programs and
venues whether itís an equestrian center, a research center, a well-respected art museum, as it grows, so grows
the following ... then weíre able to utilize that, and leverage it as a symbol of excellence in a place that has
excitement, and is alive."