A.D. Report Feb. 17 - 110% Beavers!

Feb. 17, 2010

We're a few weeks into the annual fund drive that raises resources to support our student-athletes, and I'm encouraged with the results so far. Launched February 1, this year's Beaver Athletic Student Fund (BASF) campaign is serving as our springboard to double our donor base by 2012.

You've heard it from me before. We've begun an all-out effort to grow our donor base from roughly 6,000-where it's hovered for the last several years-to 12,000. Our 'Expanding Beaver Nation---12,000 Strong by 2012' campaign is officially under way with volunteers making calls for renewals and new donors.

Although it's still early in this two-month effort, I can see that many in Beaver Nation are hearing the message and responding. Momentum is on the rise. Last year at this time, we had 2,100 donors. This year our numbers already tally 2,300 at the same point. Additionally, our stats show that we have gained 170 new donors in the early stages of this year's fund-raising drive.

But what's even more impressive are the numbers of new donors who are stepping off the sidelines and current donors who have stepped up to the challenge we're asking them to consider this year. Specifically, we're inviting donors to become '110% Beavers' by giving an extra 10 percent of their donation - just like our student-athletes do every day. The other challenge option is to become a 'Next Level Beaver' by raising your donation to the next level. For example, a $100 Beaver Nation donor could become a $200 Beaver Backer. We're offering incentives to join each challenge such as drawings for a 'VIP Football Experience', trips to away games, and bumper parking for next season. So far, 35 percent of renewing donors have opted into one of the challenges.

During the past few years, I've stressed that we're working to expand the motivation of our donors beyond what is required for a certain seat and parking space to include the opportunity these funds provide and the young people whose lives are changed forever because of the BASF. Donations to the BASF truly buy so much more than seats and parking, and they should be seen as more philanthropic and less transactional. Your donations are a direct investment in all of our student-athletes, and these 'Everyday Champions' are providing a great return on your investment with their achievements on the field, in the classroom, and in the community.

Here are some examples of the return on investment our Everyday Champion student-athletes are providing BASF donors, who provide them with opportunities.

  • Football and men's soccer finished second in the Pac-10, and next year's football squad is already getting Top 25 mentions; women's soccer advanced to the Sweet 16; and baseball, men's golf, wrestling and gymnastics all have current national rankings.
  • Thirteen of 18 programs have an OSU GPA greater than 3.0 with an overall program GPA of 2.95.
  • Last year, student-athletes from every sport completed more than 4,200 hours of community service. This year, 120 student-athletes worked with former Beaver football standout Yvenson Bernard to secure and ship 24,000 pounds of clothing and personal items for the Haiti relief effort.
  • Former soccer player Ashley Wood, a pre-med student, is in South Africa on a medical internship.
  • Volleyball, men's and women's basketball, softball, track and gymnastics have all participated in cancer awareness events with the gymnastics 'Pink Out' attracting 6,200 fans to the meet and 200 to a 'Pink Out' breakfast that raised $9,400 for Project H.E.R.
  • Last year, OSU football had the second most picks in the NFL Draft. Of the seven young men drafted, five graduated prior to Draft day, and the other two never redshirted and are less than two quarters from graduation.
  • Former football player Taylor Kavanaugh was introduced at the Sugar Bowl for being one of 11 Football Bowl Subdivision student-athletes named to the American Football Coaches Association 'Good Works' Team for his work in the community, including building homes in Guatemala this past year.

In addition to making a difference in a student-athlete's life, consider this: our current donor base ranks eighth in the Pac-10 in terms of numbers. Compared to Oregon, which has the second largest donor base in the conference, we have a long way to go. By reaching our goal of 12,000, we'd catapult to the top of the Pac-10 in just a few short years. Imagine what that could do for our 17 sports programs and our student-athletes.

Before signing off, I want to clarify and expand on a few points in my last A.D. Report. Some people have wondered why we're not going to be requiring a donation for the newly named 'Valley View' seats on the north and south ends of the east side-especially when we're intent on expanding our donor base. We believe by offering more options and enabling more people-such as young families and recent alumni-to experience our great game-day atmosphere, we'll develop a relationship that may ultimately help us grow our donor base. We're in this for the long haul and are hopeful that when more people have an opportunity to enjoy fantastic football and good times, they may want to engage with our program on a more committed level and become one of the 12,000.

Additionally, in the last report I noted that we reduced the BASF per- seat donation in some sections on the east side. I wanted to share some further details on this:

  • Eastside sections 111, 112, 120, 121 BASF per-seat donation reduced-uncovered $250 to $200/covered $500 to $400
  • Eastside sections 212, 213, 214, 224, 225, 226 rows 1-7 BASF per-seat donation reduced--$300 to $200 Click here for more information.
  • New BASF Benefit Level of $500 includes program recognition, season ticket priority, entrance to 'Tailgate at Truax', and men's basketball pre-game events Click here for more information.

Clearly, our growth strategy is comprehensive and involves several different solutions that will come together to help us reach our ultimate goal. Thanks to all of you who have already renewed your donations or accepted one of our challenges. Thanks to our newest donors who have chosen to become one of the 12,000. If you haven't climbed on board, there's still plenty of time. Just call 1-800-GO-BEAVS or donate online here. Becoming 12,000 Strong by 2012 is really pretty simple. If all of our current donors recruited one new $100-a-year donor, we'd reach our goal. It's that easy. Go Beavs!

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