Richard Hudson: 'A lot of us were still skeptical it would really happen'

U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson represents North Carolina’s 8th Congressional district. He graduated from UNC Charlotte in 1996.

“From the time I was a student, there’s been talk of, ‘We wish we had a football team.’ My fraternity used to sell T-shirts to raise money that said ‘Undefeated, untied, never scored on.’

“It’s something that’s always been on students’ minds. A lot of us were still skeptical it would really happen. A lot of guys I was in school with are planning on being back for the first game. It’s really exciting.

“A football program can raise awareness for the school, it can generate brand loyalty. Typically not very many programs break even financially, so it’s not necessarily a big boon financially but it certainly enhances the student experience.

“When I was in school, obviously we sort of had basketball season and we’d have tailgating and events around the basketball schedule but in the fall, friends at other universities had the whole tailgating experience and a lot of tradition built around their football team and we didn’t have that. For a lot of us we’d go to games at Chapel Hill or N.C. State or other places and experience it. We lamented that we didn’t have that experience, that UNC Charlotte football experience.”