I started donating in 1977 right out of college. I used to deal with Wilson Matthews, who Frank put in charge. I know the program was patterned after someone else(Texas maybe)? Anyway, just curious if some old timer remembered what year seat donations began…1973 or so??? From one old timer to another, thanks in advance!
Foundation website just says in the “early 1970s”. 1973 sounds about right.
It was after the creation of Pleasant Valley Country Club in Little Rock. I’m told that Frank decided it was time to raise money to expand facilities. He had Wilson put together a meeting of 205 prominent Little Rock men. They were all asked to donate to a new membership (probably the start of the foundation). There were 203 who wrote a check that night. The other two mailed in a check within one week. So it was 100 percent participation. Things progressed from there.
Razorback Clubs existed before then, but individual memberships to the foundation did not exist until that point.
Wilson Matthews would get you a prime parking spot at WMS in the mid to late 60’s for a very small donation to the LR Razorback Club or Foundation, I thought the Razorback Foundation started in the 60’s but that’s a long time ago, not sure, but am sure about the parking.
I thought I read somewhere a few years ago that the initial discussions with most fans met with a lot of negative feedback. Many were content to keep what they had in seat locations, and didn’t like the idea of suddenly having to pay a surcharge on top of the ticket price just to keep your seat locations. I remember reading the article, and it talking about Wilson Matthews having rather unpleasant exchanges with some of the ticket holders when he called them to solicit the donations. When he would get rejected he would angrily tell them “I guess you want us to play in the AIC”. Clemson was the first university to really get scholarship foundations started, they are proud to be in IPTAY. It’s changed to much higher levels these days, but that used to stand for I Pay Ten A Year.
I was a do are the 1st year seat selection was based on donation and that was 1972
The donation (priority seating) was started by Dr. Lon Farrell in 1974. I was a donor from 1974 through 2016. Dr. Farrell was in charge of the program until he took his own life in the late 70ths.
I also think it was pattern after Tx.
Dr Farrell pass1986
The Longhorn Foundation wasn’t started until 1986. I seem to remember our program was loosely based on Clemson’s IPTAY, which was actually started in 1934.
I looked through some newspaper archives trying to find an answer. As best I can tell, the scholarship fund began in 1972. It wasn’t named the Razorback Foundation at that time — it doesn’t appear it really had a formal name at all — so it’s difficult to say exactly when.
The roots were that invitation only meeting at Pleasant Valley CC. I believe it was in the spring of 1972. I vaguely recall my dad going and coming home saying that Frank had raised a huge amount of money in one hour. Wilson Matthews set up the meeting with the help of some Little Rock business men. Probably Jack Stephens.
In reading some of Dr. Lon Farrell’s biography & his impact on Razorback athletics, he was a great one who was dedicated, generous, & effective in looking out for the best interests of the UofA. Arkansas was fortunate to have him, & we need more like him in the program.
Thanks so much for all the information. This board is an amazing source of information. The info lines up with what I remember of the early days. I have donated and bought season tickets continually since 1977, so I go back to near the beginning of the scholarship program. I have experienced a lot of great moments with my friends and family and look forward to many more. Bad times OR good times don’t last forever(they only seem to). When things get good again it’s gonna be really GOOD. I can’t wait for coach Pittman to get us there🤞…Go Hogs!!
My first donation to the RAZORBACK CLUB was in 75. I left Fayetteville in 74. I think it was $20. The Foundation per did not happen until some years later when the Ark Democrat started to try to find out who was donating and how much. They could do it since it was part of the University so a “private” Foundation started. I don’t recall when that was.
I have Plaque where I donated in 1974. I gave $500.00 to foundation that year.
The Donation program was put in 1972.I was a student at the UA then and my Dad wouldn’t give because our family hired 30 or so players for summer jobs and we would buy 30 or 40 tickets a game just to help them out.When I got out in 1974 we started giving and I’ve had the same 8 tickets from then until now.Wilson was the one tasked with calling everyone and explaining how the program worked.
I’m no longer a donor, my ID # was788?. Was my # higher than yours?
Giving to the Razorback program started after the Second World War. George Cole went to major company executives and other wealthy people and raised what, for those days, were large donations. In those days, the player even knew the man that donated his scholarship. Most donors also gave that player a summer job as well. Before the creation of the Foundation, they had different levels of giving. The Wild Hog class was the top level of giving. A lot has changed since those days, but there was a organized giving program long before the Razorback foundation was formed.
I am sure you’re right. I know my dad was a season ticket holder & donor of some sort in the mid-60’s, but I have no idea how much he gave. He’s no longer with us, so I can’t ask.
I know there was some sort of change that began in the early 70’s that I’m sure began with the meeting Clay mentioned. I began donating on my own sometime in the late 70’s, but it wasn’t much. As I recall it wasn’t called the Razorback Foundation then, but I don’t remember what it was called. They still had different levels of donor called things like Big Red, Big Hog, Tush Hog, Wild Hog or something along those lines. Can’t recall the hierarchy.
This topic was automatically closed after 30 days. New replies are no longer allowed.