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October 2, 2008



Varsity football: a lure that colleges just can't resist

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Because of the manpower requirements and the costs of equipment, facilities, travel, and insurance, fielding a varsity football team takes a huge chunk out of any university's athletics budget. As a result, some have dropped the sport in recent years – among them Boston University, Mansfield University, the University of Vermont, and the University of the Pacific. Others, however, have chosen to bring back football after a long hiatus or to assemble teams for the first time. In fact, 34 colleges have incorporated it into their programs since 2000 – eight of them this year alone, even though they probably can't hope to make money from it. Perhaps the main reason: Having a team to cheer for on crisp Saturday afternoons in the fall can be irresistible for students and alumni alike and a way to keep them engaged in life on campus. The eight colleges that are fielding new teams this year, with their locations:

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