Provided by the Dalton State (Ga.) Athletic Department
DALTON, Ga. - Most first year programs generate excitement, but the enthusiasm surrounding the Dalton State men's basketball program is setting new standards in the college basketball world.
Derek Waugh, Dalton State's director of intercollegiate athletics, reports that more than 750 season tickets have been sold to watch the Roadrunners compete in their first NAIA campaign.
Waugh said 904 season tickets have been allocated. That, he said, takes into account tickets reserved for alumni events, charitable endeavors and home team allotments.
"Having spent the last 20 years in the Southeast at the Division I basketball level, I can make an extremely educated guess that we are selling more season tickets than 75% of the schools in leagues like the Atlantic Sun and the Southern Conference," said Waugh.
"I think you would be hard pressed to find any other NAIA program that has been as prolific," he added. "The support of this community as well as many members of the Dalton State community has been mind blowing and quite a blessing."
The athletic director also credits coach Tony Ingle for the excitement. "His gravitas in the area and also the fact that we are playing in a true 'arena' at the Trade Center," Waugh said. "I hope and think we will also have a great campus community following and I want the games to be enjoyable, win or lose."
While Waugh expects Coach Ingle's team to be competitive, he also is quick to temper expectations.
"From what I know and have seen, Coach Ingle has put together a great group of guys who should be very competitive, but everyone must remember they are a first year program. Most first year programs win one or two games. I don't foresee that, but at the same time, great things take time to build."