Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fixing college sports

Fair's fair, okay?

I am the former customer of two big corporations who are prominent in college athletics. One is Michigan State University and the other is the University of Michigan.

Every year around this time I see posts from other people who also used to be customers of those corporations, or other corporations that are essentially indistinguishable from them, cheering on the football teams fielded by those corporations. So why not once again publish my rant about fixing college sports?

A couple of years ago King Coleman posted a story in Salon about the meager efforts to fix college sports, in which he asserted, among other things, that the people who run the NCAA care about education.

I don't get to hang around with the NCAA bureaucrats, but I can't believe King's statement that there are lots of people in the NCAA who care about education, or think education is more important than athletics.

If they did, there are a couple of simple policies they could adopt:

1. No athletic scholarships. This is necessary because history has shown that college sports are hopelessly and irreversibly corrupt.

Okay, they're not going to do that, so . . .

Make the schools invest in academic performance, by:

1. Give coaches tenure and put them on the academic salary scale, with evaluations and compensation based on graduation rate. You object that the best coaches won't stay, and the teams will do worse? Okay. You've just said that athletic performance is more important than academic performance.

2. A scholarship gives the "student-athlete" a full ride until they graduate, even if that takes ten years, or forever.

3. Impose strict limits on the number of athletic scholarships they can award. Once a scholarship is awarded, it is not available to be reissued until the student holding that scholarship graduates, no matter how long that takes.

4. The way schools have need-blind admission policies, adopt athletics-blind admission policies.

They don't want to do these things? They've just told us they don't care about academics.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...



September 12, 2010 3:28 PM  

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