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How Big-Time Sports Ate College Life

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by YankeeFan, Jan 21, 2012.

  1. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    From today's New York Times:

    I'm not going to lie. When choosing a college, Catholic schools were a priority. Only two played 1-A football. I went to BC.

    Sports (and the participation in) can and should be a large part of the college experience.

    But, schools need to be careful, and they shouldn't necessarily have the same priorities as wide-eyed 18-year-olds.
  2. TheSportsPredictor

    TheSportsPredictor Well-Known Member

  3. jr/shotglass

    jr/shotglass Well-Known Member

    Very good piece, YF.

    That should be scary, even to sports professionals.

    The troubling part of this is that, as one professor said in this story, you may not be able to put the toothpaste back in the tube. The public's appetite for big-time college sports dwarfs the few voices in the darkness which understand this is not entirely what college life should be about.

    At this point, I even wonder if you could take the people who UNDERSTAND priorities are out of whack, and they would make up the majority. I'm afraid the majority now consists of people who think it would be wrong to prioritize academics.
  4. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    That is a very good story. The doof from Ohio State with the "what are you going to remember, that English paper you blew off or DUUUUUUKE?!?!?!" was the perfect example. Also a smart idea to set it at Ohio State since outside of the SEC that's the school that probably cares the absolute least about its academic reputation.

    At the same time, I think this story could have been written in just about every decade since the 1900s. TV has exacerbated the problem, but the idea of the jocks as kings of the school is not new.
  5. jr/shotglass

    jr/shotglass Well-Known Member

    I fully understand that I'm in that uncomfortable position of seeing the problem ... and liking the result of the problem.

    But what's incorrect about what he said there? What WILL he remember more? What WILL be a larger part of his college experience?

    I went to a D-II school, and I have stronger memories outside the classroom than I had inside it.
  6. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    You are right. I guess what I should have said is that's what shows the ass-backward priorities. But I know that is not unique to Ohio State.
  7. heyabbott

    heyabbott Well-Known Member

    If Universities have a wall between athletics and academics what does it matter? Ohio State was never going to take the money they used to re-carpet the coaches lounges and weight rooms and pay for an English Prof to go to Edinburgh Scotland for a lit festival. And so much of the athletic budget is total bull shit. They add the cost of an athlete's scholarship to the athletic budget. Most of the that is strictly accounting with no out of pocket expenses.
  8. jr/shotglass

    jr/shotglass Well-Known Member

    Well, I think that's part of the problem. Maybe Ohio State should be taking X dollars to send the English prof to Scotland instead of re-carpeting the coaches' lounges and weight rooms.
  9. Michael_ Gee

    Michael_ Gee Well-Known Member

    The answer, of course, is that athletic department revenues exist in a separate world from the school's revenues. Which is why the former should be subject to taxation. But the U.S. and state governments would prefer to close down the school parts of colleges than tax the football teams.
  10. jr/shotglass

    jr/shotglass Well-Known Member

    Well beyond my knowledge. I'll assuredly take your word for it.
  11. I Should Coco

    I Should Coco Well-Known Member

    Besides the separate budgets, I'd be interested to know how much the worlds of BCS football and basketball athletes cross over into the "normal" areas of campus life. Athletes usually have their own dorm, they eat at "training tables" instead of with the rest of the students, and when they travel a lot, they learn via tutors.

    It wouldn't take much to have the athletic departments (and the players who fund them) be completely separate entities from the college names they wear on their jerseys.
  12. Jake_Taylor

    Jake_Taylor Well-Known Member

    The story touched on it, but for better or worse there is a reason the academics that become college presidents allow this to happen. At many schools, some tremendous academic institutions, the athletic department is the most effective PR and fund raising tool.

    The mentioned that people didn't know Mizzou was the University of Missouri until it started having even modest success in football. My wife chose Virginia over Ivy League schools in part because it played in the ACC. Potential students become aware of your school when they turn on ESPN and see the football, basketball, baseball, lacrosse, etc. teams. It also gets (rich) alumni to come back to campus on weekends and stay invested in the school decades after they graduate.
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