May 14, 2017

(STATS) - Administrators and leaders at FCS schools and conferences often express concern that programs making the jump to the FBS face a difficult future on the field, and perhaps even more trouble financially.

Schools that have been successful with the move tend to be outweighed by the schools who become anonymous on the higher level of Division I college football.

While speaking Saturday at Liberty University's commencement address, President Trump weighed in on the Flames' impending move to FBS independence in 2018 - wishing the outgoing Big South Conference member good luck with a dose of caution to Jerry Falwell Jr., the president of the evangelical school in Virginia.

"At Liberty, your leaders knew from the very beginning that a strong athletic program would help this campus grow so that this school might transform more lives," Trump said. "That is why a crucial part of Reverend Falwell's vision for making Liberty a world-class institution was having a world-class football team, much like the great teams of Notre Dame - great school, great place."

Trump went on to read some future opponents on Liberty schedules, a list headlined by Auburn, Brigham Young, Ole Miss and Virginia Tech.

"I'm a little worried. I don't wanna look at some of those scores here. Jerry, you sure you know what you're doing here?" Trump said.

"Jerry, Auburn? I don't know about that, Jerry. This could be trouble, Jerry."

The commander-in-chief joked with the crowd that he wouldn't know who to root for if he were to attend the future game between Liberty and Army.

Liberty, under coach Turner Gill, will play its final season in the FCS this year, including a matchup at Baylor. The Flames' first FBS home game will be against Old Dominion on Sept. 1, 2018.

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