by Matt Kupec
March 11, 2019
I attended the Missouri Valley Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament for the first time this past weekend. I was there to watch the Southern Illinois Saluki’s compete for the MVC Championship in hopes of coming away with three consecutive wins and the prize of a berth into the NCAA Men’s Tournament Championship.
Unfortunately, SIU came up short and lost a tight contest to the University of Northern Iowa Panthers on a last second bucket by UNI. A very disappointing loss in a season that began with high hopes and ended in the resignation of Head Basketball Coach Barry Vinson.
I have attended many Atlantic Coast Conference Championships over the years when I was the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s vice chancellor for development & university relations. I had seen many great games with Tar Heel victories and some disappointing losses as well. During my twenty-one years at UNC, the Tar Heels won five ACC Tournament titles.
As I watching SIU compete Friday night, I began comparing the Missouri Valley Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference basketball tournaments, thinking about the similarities and differences. Here is my assessment….
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About the Author
Matt Kupec is a fundraising professional with 32 years of significant higher education development experience. He has directed three major university fundraising campaigns and nearly $5 billion has been raised under his leadership. He has led the fundraising programs at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Hofstra University, Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute and HelpMeSee, a New York City based non-profit. He is currently serving as Senior In-House Fundraising Counsel for Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.
Matt is a former record-breaking four year starting quarterback for the UNC Tar Heels. During his career he set 19 season and career passing records. Two of which still stand — most consecutive games with a TD pass and most wins as a starting QB. Matt also set the ACC record for TD passes his senior year at UNC. Matt was named MVP of the 1977 Liberty Bowl and the 1979 Gator Bowl becoming the 1st player in Atlantic Coast Conference history to be named MVP of two bowl games.