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Ohio Sports Administration Night breaks Southern Ohio Copperheads attendance record

Monday, July 18 2016 12:00am

2,017 fans attended the Copperheads’ Ohio Sports Administration Night to celebrate 50 years of sports administration program excellence.

By Brianna Wilson 

When you’re celebrating 50 years of being the first sports administration program in the world, it’s not just a one-time event; it’s a year-long affair. The celebration kicked off at the annual Masters in Sports Administration Alumni Symposium in May, with the Copperheads baseball game as the second of many celebrations.

Prior to the game, program affiliates gathered for a catered meal. “We had a great turnout,” said Grant Canning, ’17 MBA/MSA dual-degree student and general manager of the Copperheads. “We were blown away by the support of online students, residential students, and alumni who attended.”

Dr. Andy Kreutzer, founder of the Copperheads, and previous director of the sports administration program, threw the first pitch. His previous administrative assistant, Teresa Tedrow, caught the pitch.

“It’s a joke that Teresa is always catching Dr. K’s mistakes, if you will, and that was the irony behind her catching his pitch,” said Canning.

Although the Copperheads ultimately fell 4-2 to the Lima Locos, this game is one for the record books in more ways than one. Besides commemorating 50 years of excellence in sports administration, the event garnered 2,017 fans—breaking the Copperheads attendance record—and concluded with a fireworks display.

About the Copperheads 

Founded in spring 2002, The Southern Ohio Copperheads are a minor league collegiate baseball team based in Athens, Ohio. A non-profit organization, the team is run by undergraduate and graduate students at Ohio University.

“Nationwide, we’re the only organization that is 100 percent student run, with the exception of Annie [Brackley, vice president] and Dave [Palmer, president],” said Canning. “That’s a pride point for us.”

How does it work? As general manager, Canning spearheads sponsorship relationships and oversees 10 undergraduate student directors, each responsible for their own department, ranging from ballpark operations to communications to concessions. He also oversees general staffers, who bring ideas to fruition on game days. 

“For the [undergraduate] students, it’s a learning lab. Once they’re comfortable in a role, we switch them to another so they can find out what aspects of sport management they like—and what they don’t like,” said Canning. “It’s a great applied learning experience. We’re giving undergraduate students the opportunity to run entire departments and running a successful organization at the same time.”

Learn more about the organization online at copperheadbaseball.com.