Friday, April 30, 1999

Softball, and the Big Picture

Earlier this week, the softball team ran its nation’s-best winning streak to 24 games with a double-header victory over UVa. The team’s record now stands at an awesome 50-12, and after reporting their scores to the NFCA (see Tuesday’s News and Notes), the team is finally receiving votes in the rankings, coming in at #28 in this week’s poll.

As someone pointed out on the message board recently, it has been a banner year for women’s sports at Tech. Led by Bonnie Henrickson’s basketball team and the softball team, the Tech women have been distinguishing themselves not only by setting new team records, but by performing at a high level on the national scene, as well.

I’m still not sure how good the softball team is as a whole, but I know that with Dobbe and Crowell on the mound, we appear to have a legitimate shot at beating anybody, anywhere. Hopefully, things will go well at the A-10 tournament later this spring, and we’ll get to find out how the Hokie softballers stack up nationally at this year’s NCAA’s.

Also, thanks mostly to the women’s sports, Tech has avoided the embarrassing near-shutout in athletic endeavors against UVa that we suffered through last year.

Last year, if I remember correctly, Tech had one victory over UVa in sports. The Tech baseball team took one game of the three-game set against UVa, and that was it, in men’s and women’s sports put together, for the entire year (someone out there correct me if I’m wrong).

This year, we’ve fared better. We beat them in women’s hoops, swept a doubleheader from them in softball, and beat them in two of the three scheduled baseball games (the third game was postponed and has not been played yet, to my knowledge).

Had we beaten them in football like we should have - geez, it was 29-7 at half time, for crying out loud - it would have been a pretty good year for us against our in-state rivals. There are certain sports in which we can’t hold a candle to UVa, most notably men’s soccer and men’s lacrosse, and men’s basketball is a huge uphill battle, as well. So for a large portion of the athletics out there, we currently don’t stand a chance against them.

Across the entire sports spectrum, though, we seem to be leveling the playing field with them, which is no mean feat, given that when it comes to non-revenue sports, UVa has historically better funding, better tradition, and a better conference - much better, for non-revs.

None of this matters when the football teams tee it up (in October this year - thanks George and Terry), but it does make it a little easier to face your Wahoo office mates if you know down in your heart that at least they’re not beating us at everything.

Now, next year, if we can just take care of business in football, and then rack up more victories in women’s hoops, softball, baseball, and maybe tennis, we’ll feel even better about the sports scene with regard to the Hoos.


Season Ticket Costs

I was looking through my football season ticket folder the other night as I prepared to send in this year's order, and I realized that I had order forms from the last five years.

My first year buying season tickets was 1994. I was the first of my circle of friends to buy season tix, and I was the only one that year. The next year, some other friends of mine jumped on board, and this year, I think the total number of season tickets being purchased by my friends and I numbers well over 20, perhaps close to 25.

Anyway, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at what has happened to ticket prices over the years. Here's a table that compares not only the season ticket costs, but the single-game ticket costs, and the discount that season ticket holders have received over the recent past.

Note that I don't have data for 1994, because I ordered a new season ticket without receiving a form that year. I have renewal forms (and therefore data) for all years from 1995-onward.


Season Ticket Cost

# of Games

Cost Per Game

Single-Game Price*

Season Ticket Discount


















$6 ($1 per game)






$18 ($3 per game)






$18 ($3 per game)

* Single-Game Price denotes what it would cost you to purchase single game tickets for every game of the season

Interesting stuff. The cost of season tickets on a per-game basis has gone up $1.80 over the last five years, for an increase of just 8.5%, or a little over 2% a year (four years of increases). Not bad.

If you buy single-game tickets, however, the cost has gone up from $21.20 per game in 1995 to $26.00 per game in 1999. That's an increase of 22.6%, or over 5% per year.

One reason Tech couldn't sell season tickets for years and years and years was that no discount was offered for buying season tickets. I think it's obvious that those days are over.

Also interesting is the fact that ticket prices across the board held steady this year. The lack of an increase in ticket prices will be offset by (1) a bigger stadium, with the new seats being added in the North end zone, and (2) parking fees of $5 per game per car.


Home Page Undergoing a Mild Revamp

I’m cooking up some ideas for the HokieCentral home page that will eventually lead to a fairly extensive redesign. I have already started the process by eliminating the string of media links that used to be in the left-hand border of the home page, and I have deleted the gobble from the home page (those of you who are really in love with it can download it from the Sights and Sounds page and set it off whenever you feel like it). Both of these changes will make the front page load slightly faster, and much faster for first-time visitors.

Later this spring and summer, I’ll unveil a new home page. Before I shock you with it, I’ll give you a chance to take a look at a prototype design and provide comments. I received some links from HC member "Technically" the other day and really liked one of them, and I’m using it as a model for HC’s new home page.

I know, I know … "Change bad, me no like change." But I’ve got to shake it up for my own sanity, plus it’s fun, and I think you’ll like the new design I’m working on. It will be better looking and will load faster, and hey - you can’t beat that.

Note, however, that the format of the subpages will probably not change. They're not drop-dead gorgeous or cutting-edge, but they're very functional, and likely to keep their current format.  The Links Page, however, will receive a freshening up.


Druckenmiller Trial Set for July

For those of you who missed it, Druck surrendered for his arrest on rape charges on Wednesday, paid his $10,000 bond, plead innocent, and appeared briefly before reporters. From what I can tell, Druck’s lawyers are going to present Druckenmiller’s accuser as an aggressive pursuer that night, and perhaps a bit of a gold-digger. Trial is set for July 19th.


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