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Vanderbilt: no athletic department, pretty good athletics

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Johnny Dangerously, Mar 24, 2007.

  1. Johnny Dangerously

    Johnny Dangerously Well-Known Member

    It's been a few years since Gordon Gee became a laughingstock in the SEC by eliminating the athletics department structure -- and the A.D. -- at Vanderbilt. The Commodores came within two points of the men's Elite Eight last night. The baseball team has been ranked No. 1 for much of the season. The football team with Jay Cutler and others was pretty good in 2005.

    Was Gee's move an empty gesture that looks good to academic types but has misleading appearances, or is it time to call it brilliant on multiple levels? Too soon to tell? Are the sports teams still reaping benefits, soon to evaporate, from the days of a regular athletics department?

    I'm not close enough to the situation to know, but the whole thing fascinates me.
  2. HoopsMcCann

    HoopsMcCann Active Member

    from my friends who have worked in the not athletic department at vandy, they say it's a disaster

    buddy of mine left to go to a mac school. just saying
  3. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    Why do your Vandy friends say it's a disaster?
  4. spnited

    spnited Active Member

    An interesting read on the Vandy situation:

  5. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Good story - does not seem like a "disaster" to me. Succesful teams and kids graduate. seems like what you want.
  6. PhilaYank36

    PhilaYank36 Guest

    Can something like this even have the slightest chance at working at a school with a longer, more well-established tradition, like Kansas or Louisville (just picked those names off the top of my head)? Another question to ask: are some of the infrastructure in athletic departments actually necessary to help student-athletes get through college? We hear enough about the football/basketball factories coasting their players, but what about soccer, softball, baseball, lacrosse, etc.? At my school, which is a D-1 mid-major with some basketball history, a lot of the S-As who weren't in basketball (and some who were) busted their asses with their classes, utilized some of the resources that the Athletic Department had and participated in other clubs, as well. What say ye?
  7. Moland Spring

    Moland Spring Member

    This one was good, too:

  8. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    I think when Bobby Johnson has to go to the intramural office to schedule spring practice dates, then yeah there's an issue.

    (I just made that up.)
  9. Cadet

    Cadet Guest

    I am very, very excited for Vandy's success. I thought this was an innovative move when Gee made it, and if I lived closer I would support their programs.

    However, there are very few schools in the country where this could be done: Stanford, Purdue, Northwestern, Boston College, the Ivys. I also think the only reason this "reform" line of thinking is able to exist is because Myles Brand is head of the NCAA.

    For the academic perspective instead of the USA Today perspective, check out Gee's article in the Phi Kappa Phi Forum, Fall 2005. It's available through Lexis Nexis, which I don't have access to. That whole issue is dedicated to college athletics and is a good academic read.
  10. Cadet

    Cadet Guest

    One other thing, because I was curious and just looked it up:

    It's not as if Vandy is operating with a bare-bones athletic staff. They have full departments in media relations, sports medicine, equipment, facilities, compliance, two video coordinators, an Olympic sports recruiting coordinator, even a Director of Athletic Dining who oversees training tables. It seems the only position that was eliminated was the Athletic Director, which was replaced by three "Directors of Sport Operations".
  11. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    Necessary in the circumstance that many of those kids shouldn't be at Division I colleges academically in the first place, yes.

    Necessary as in essential? Not even close. But when you're admitting kids who can't write at a sixth-grade English level and expecting them to survive in college, then you have to spend even more money on "infrastructure" to keep them afloat.

    Gordon Gee is right: He couldn't have tried this at Columbus or Ann Arbor or Gainesville or Tallahassee or Austin ... although it could work there, if the right support systems aligned and, more importantly, stayed committed to the so-called "reform."

    The problem is a) mentality; and b) money. Nobody wants to admit things could be better, and nobody wants to be the first to commit to changing the system.
  12. Hammer Pants

    Hammer Pants Active Member

    They have as many fans per game as really big intramural games at Tennessee, so from that standpoint, it makes perfect sense.

    Good for Vandy's players that they're successful, but fuckabuncha Gee. Pretentious, elitist, bow-tie-wearing peckerhead.
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