A Letter from A.D. John Currie - December 1, 2015

Dear K-State Nation,

Happy December!  Time sure flies when you are having fun, and it definitely put a smile on my face to see the reactions of our volleyball student-athletes when the K-State name came up on the NCAA volleyball tournament selection show on Sunday night.  Congratulations to Coach Suzie Fritz and our Wildcat volleyball team on earning their fourth NCAA Tournament bid in the last five seasons!  Without a senior on the roster the team battled some early injuries and adversity and put together a late six-match Big 12 winning streak to eventually capture fourth place in the Big 12.  The Cats will make the short drive up to Lincoln, Nebraska, to face Wichita State in the first round at 4:30 p.m. Friday with the winner advancing to face either Nebraska or Harvard in the second round on Saturday.  For ticket information please click here.

Time also flies when you are hard at work, and thanks to K-State donors as well as the hustle of our Ahearn Fund staff we have a big announcement today on our Bill Snyder Family Stadium Master Plan!

Phase IIIB Northeast Corner Project to Begin, Groundbreaking Ceremony Set for Saturday!
We are grateful for the generosity and leadership of K-Staters world-wide which today enables us to announce that we are officially moving forward and breaking ground on Phase IIIB of the Bill Snyder Family Stadium Master Plan prior to Saturday’s football game! All K-State fans are welcome to attend the ceremonial shovel turning at noon on the northeast side of the stadium. Completing the bowl will not only enhance the World-Class Student-Athlete Experience for our students-athletes but also further impact our goal of providing the Best Fan Experience in the Big 12. Starting the project now will enable the “northeast connector” to be completed by the 2016 season and with philanthropic commitments closing in on $11 million of our $15 million project goal and a number of promising conversations ongoing, we are confident this is the appropriate fiscally responsible step. By the 2016 home football opener on September 17, the generosity of the K-State Nation will have enabled the completion of three full phases of the Bill Snyder Family Stadium Master Plan totaling $180 million as part of $210 million in overall athletics facility infrastructure improvements over the last several years! Of course these totals are completely privately generated and include zero state tax, tuition or student fee dollars. Click here for our full announcement. Let’s finish!

Also, we would like to remind all of our Ahearn Fund members that our staff is available to assist you as you make December gifts. Click here for information about office hours over the holidays and steps you can take to ensure your December gift is receipted in calendar year 2015 for tax purposes. As always the Ahearn staff is available by phone at (785) 532-5282. Gifts of all levels are critical to the K-State Vision of a Model Intercollegiate Athletics Program, and together we have made tremendous progress on each of our five goals. Recently, I updated all University faculty and staff on Goal No. 2 -- Value to our University, Community and State -- and you can read that update by clicking here. Your support is goes well beyond just our student-athletes and athletics program!

Football Pushing to Finish Strong on Senior Day with Bowl Eligibility on the Line, Bowl Ticket Pre-Orders Available
Speaking of fun, congratulations are in order to Coach Snyder and the football program for our seventh straight victory over the Jayhawks this past Saturday. This coming weekend will not only be a special with our groundbreaking ceremony but also for our 18 seniors who will be playing their final home football game as Wildcats when we host West Virginia at 3:30 p.m. on FOX Sports 1. We know that Bill Snyder Family Stadium will be rocking for our 27th consecutive sellout as our team looks to become bowl eligible for the sixth straight year with a win. Be sure to be in your seats early for our Senior Day recognition, and click here for bowl information. The deadline for bowl pre-orders to be included in priority seating is Friday.

Women Host UTA Thursday to Kick Off Busy Hoops Weekend
We have had an exciting start to basketball season as Coach Mittie’s women’s team is off to a 4-1 start with the lone loss to No. 1-ranked and perennial power UCONN, while the men’s team is 5-1 following a positive showing at the CBE Classic in Kansas City against Mizzou and No. 9 North Carolina and Sunday’s win over South Carolina State. The women will be at Bramlage Thursday night at 7 p.m. against Texas-Arlington (which can be seen live on FCS Central and K-StateHD.TV) before heading to Chicago State this weekend, while the men’s team travels to Georgia (SEC Network) Friday night before hosting Coppin State (FOX Sports KC and K-StateHD.TV) on December 9. You can also listen live to the K-State Sports Network on k-statesports.com or via the K-State Gameday App.

Remember to “Tell John” at kstatead@kstatesports.com
When I was named K-State Athletics Director on May 18, 2009 we launched the “Tell John” feature on www.kstatesports.com which enables our fans (and sometimes others!) to email me with thoughts, suggestions and questions on how we can work together to improve K-State Athletics. Over the last six and a half years I have read and responded to thousands and thousands of fan emails, many of which have provided very helpful suggestions which we have implemented to improve K-State Athletics and our fan experience. I continue to read those emails personally and make every effort to respond to each one, even though it sometimes takes me little while to do so. So whenever you want to share your thoughts about K-State Athletics you can click on the link or just use kstatead@kstatesports.com.

Finally, I would like to close by thanking nearly 300 former student-athletes and their families for returning to Manhattan for the Iowa State game as we celebrated our inaugural Varsity K Club weekend. It was great seeing so many former athletes back, and I appreciate Matt Giller from our Ahearn Fund staff for his hard work in pulling it all together. For more information on the Varsity K Club, click here.

We will see you Thursday night in Bramlage and then in Bill Snyder Family Stadium Saturday!

Go Cats!