A former B-Mer is returning to Athens.
Josh Brooks is returning to Georgia for a high-level job in the athletic department.
Two and a half years after leaving the school, Brooks is on the way back to become executive associate athletic director and chief operating officer. He has resigned as deputy athletic director at Louisiana-Monroe to take the UGA position, according to the Monroe News Star and NBC10news.net.
He brings with him an interesting entry on his updated resume.
He was hired away from Georgia to become athletic director at Division III Millsaps College in Jackson, Miss., where he drew attention to the school by adding a beer garden and kids’ zone to home football games.
What’s that… “beer garden”, you say? Hmmm. My first thought is that nobody’s gonna care. Then again, if McGarity can hit up contributors for the cost of the improvements like he has the IPF and baseball stadium, what’s the downside to picking up a new revenue stream with no upfront expense? And that’s before you even get into the bidding for naming rights…
Just thought I’d mention it.
What really sells that picture are the beers being stacked up in front of a funnel cake stand.
Though, now that I think about it, that’s only a little more than three beers per fan in attendance. I guess the kids will have to drink less.
Here’s something you wouldn’t have heard ten years ago.
New Belgium Brewing has given the school $4.3 million towards the construction of an on-campus football stadium. Both New Belgium and Colorado State are located in Fort Collins, Colorado.
“We’re delighted to expand our partnership with New Belgium Brewing – and to honor the innovative, entrepreneurial spirit of our community by highlighting a tremendously successful, home-grown brand at the new stadium,” CSU president Tony Frank said in a statement.
As part of the gift, New Belgium gets north end zone hospitality naming rights.
A school “in partnership” with a brewery… what’s the world coming to?
And think of the naming possibilities at Georgia. Greg McGarity’s mouth is probably watering just thinking about it: “Marjorie, get Don Leebern on the phone for me, please.”
The future of beer sales at college venues, in two quotes:
One: “We all saw it,” Lyons said. “You see it in pro sports. They control it. People are staying at home, watching on TV, having a cold beer. Now you’re hearing, ‘I want to come [to the game] and have a cold beer.'”
And two: “We’re not talking about life-changing money,” said Kristi Dosh, a sports business contributor to Forbes. “But expenses have gone up.”
Per SB Nation’s Ohio State website, “After an evidently successful pilot program selling beer on only the suite level of Ohio Stadium, Ohio State stadium operations and athletics announced Wednesday that beer would be available stadium wide at fall football games during the 2016 season.”
Here’s the neat trick.
One can only imagine Jimmy Williamson’s reaction if they ever tried that in Sanford Stadium.
If you’re looking for another tell regarding beer sales at Sanford Stadium, check out this coy answer from Greg McGarity.
Will Georgia raise a glass for the sale of chardonnay or local craft-beer like Terrapin or Creature Comforts while fans cheer on the Bulldogs?
Not right now, but athletic director Greg McGarity didn’t rule out what could happen in say five or ten years.
“Who knows?” he said. “There’s a risk and reward in all of that. It’s just something that has not been an issue for us right now. We have not gone down that route. Who knows what will happen as far as revenue opportunities?” [Emphasis added.]
Actually, we all know what happens as far as revenue opportunities go, Greg. You’re just waiting for the right amount of cover against the inevitable clucking. Sooner or later, I know you’ll find the right moment.