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From Jim's Desk...

Jim Baker talks CPC, baseball and softball, and more in his first UTA newsletter.
 
Jim Baker talks CPC, baseball and softball, and more in his first UTA newsletter.
 

April 24, 2012

I've been on the job now as Athletics Director for about 10 weeks and I'm settling into my new home at UT Arlington. Today's newsletter is the first of regular updates we'll share with you about your athletic department here at UTA.

The first day with the opening of the College Park Center was great. It was the culmination of several years of a lot of people working towards that day and I was lucky enough to be part of it. The icing on the cake was that we won both the men's and women's basketball games. The energy in the building and the whole presentation was a first-class collegiate experience. You couldn't have scripted that entire day any better. 

What we want to do as UT Arlington connects with our community is replicate what we saw that first day and try to take that into next year by having people excited to be there, having students fired up and having people coming back to campus who haven't been here for years. Now what we have with College Park is a reason for them to come back and be proud of the teams we're putting out there. What we need to do is make the CPC the place to be when we have home games, whether it's men's or women's basketball or volleyball. We must build on that and become Arlington's home team.

We've set the bar high at College Park, and now it's time to take that level of excellence to upgrade our baseball and softball facilities. It's imperative we take care of those facilities now. That's why those two facilities are next on our hit list. We're moving to a bigger conference and being able to recruit the kinds of athletes we need to compete in the WAC to win at the next level. 

UTA coaches and student-athletes deserve first-class facilities across the board for all of our sports. This all gets back to recruiting and maintaining success across all programs. We have to give our coaches the ability to bring potential recruits in here, and when they see our facilities, they know UTA is serious about athletics and that UTA is looking out for my best interests as a student-athlete.

We're in the midst of studying what we can do with our baseball and softball programs over the next few years. We plan to announce a three-year campaign later this summer with specific information on how our UTA Mavericks family can become involved. We'll continue to keep everyone informed, so stay tuned to this space for more details. 

I'd also like to congratulate men's basketball head coach Scott Cross for the success our team enjoyed this season as the Southland Conference champions. Scott agreed to a four-year contract extension. We're extremely excited to have Scott on board as we head into the WAC and continue the momentum we've built up in the CPC. You can read more about Scott's extension here.

Until next time,

Jim

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