|Article by Limestone Official Published in National Sport Journal|
The Sports Digest has published an article authored by Ernest Meyers, Coordinator of Testing and Assistant Director of Sports Information at Limestone College.
In the article, Meyers details the mission of a small North Carolina town to land an amateur baseball team. Published online quarterly, The Sport Digest has an audience of approximately a quarter of a million people.In "The Flight of the Owl: A Financial Look at an Amateur Baseball Team and Its Community," Meyers opens with the triumphant Forest City Owls "hoisting the franchise's first Petit Cup Trophy after a Coastal Plain League Championship Series" before pivoting quickly into chronicling the team's locale transition from Spartanburg, S.C. to Forest City, N.C.
Meyers, who is on track to earn his Master's of Sports Science in Sports Management from the United States Sports Academy in December, originally wrote the article as an assignment for his Sports Finance course. The result is an easy-to-digest report of the efforts of officials with Forest City (population 7,549) to lure the franchise from the Spartanburg (population: 39,673) , where the team was known as the Spartanburg Stingers. Before the conclusion of the 2007 season, the City of Spartanburg refused to grant the franchise a long-term lease and declined to make much-needed investments in improving the team's Duncan Park home.
Forest City officials were quick to pick up the ball with a commitment to construct a new venue with the primary use of public funds. The proposal gained even more credibility with a $1 million pledge from Robert McNair, a native of Forest City and owner of the National Football League's Houston Texans, to jumpstart the project.
"I think Ernest does a remarkable job of transforming and combining incredibly complex economic decisions based upon a host of variables with his own obvious passion for athletics," said Dr. Enrico Esposito, Editor of The Sport Digest. "What began as a classroom assignment resulted in a fun-to-read narrative about the eventual marriage between a small Southern town and a sports franchise that needed a home."
A native of Middletown, Virginia, Meyers is a U.S. Army veteran, having served as an Apache Helicopter Technician from 1997 to 2004. He earned his Bachelor's of Science in Sports Management and Business Administration from Limestone. As a Limestone student, he was named to Who's Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges; earned the 2007 Excellence in Sports Management Award; and was named to the Alpha Chi National Honor Society (2007). He is married to Dr. Shelly Meyers, Director of Teacher Education at Limestone.
Meyers's article can be found here .