by MARK HENDRICKS
The Athletic Administration Annex at Texas State University has been named in honor of Texas State alumnus and benefactor Darren Casey.
The Texas State University System Board of Regents, meeting in Beaumont Thursday and Friday, Feb. 21 and 22, approved renaming the building the Darren Casey Athletics Administration Complex.
University officials last week announced Casey’s $1.3 million to Texas State, with $1 million to be used to advance Texas State’s athletic program and $300,000 to support the Darren Casey Endowed Professorship in the Emmett and Miriam McCoy College of Business Administration at Texas State.
Casey is a 1981 graduate of Texas State and head of Darren Casey Interests, Inc., a diversified real estate development company based in San Antonio. The regents also approved an increase in the fee students pay to support the intercollegiate athletic program at Texas State.
The measure allows the university to increase the student athletic fee by $2 per semester credit hour beginning in the fall semester of 2009. The fee will continue to increase $2 per semester credit hour per year through 2013. By that time, students will be paying more than $10 million per year to support Bobcat athletics.
Texas State students gave their overwhelming support of the incremental increase in athletic fees during a student referendum held Feb. 12 and 13. The proposal passed 4,738-1,214.
The Athletics Strategic Planning Committee, appointed by Texas State President Denise M. Trauth in May 2007 and chaired by Frost Bank Senior Vice President John Schott, made several specific recommendations regarding athletics at Texas State. Those recommendations include maintaining academic success, facilities improvements, establishing competitive success in all programs, increasing attendance at athletic events and eventually moving the university’s football program from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision to the higher Football Bowl Subdivision. The NCAA currently has a temporary moratorium on schools moving within football subdivisions.
Increased funding for athletics is seen as a key to implement the recommendations of the committee.