Posts Tagged ‘college football’

VInce Dooley Says College Football Facing it’s Greatest Crisis Ever

August 6, 2014

Unionization attempts, pay for play, player product endorsements etc. issues are threatening the very existence of college football, he says.   

Retired University of Georgia football coach  and athletic director Vince Dooley, who is now a  consultant for Kennesaw State University’s new football  program,  saved the most controversial part of his talk to the Rotary Club of Columbus until the very end of his  very entertaining talk.  After getting a lot of laughs about his years at Georgia, he made the point that to start paying players would bring about the end of college football.

He said giving the players a full scholarship and adding a cost of attendance payment should be enough.  He also wants a law passed to regulate those payments.  If such a law is not enacted, he said, the colleges would get into bidding wars for the best players, driving the costs so high college football would be dismantled. He also pointed out that if a school pays football players it will have to pay the atheletes in the other programs. 

Well, how about a law regulating what coaches can make?   That would stop bidding wars for the best coaches. While we’re at it, we could regulate pay for professional sports stars and coaches.  Could such regulations be considered a restraint of trade?

It’s really hard to make the case for not paying players who take great physical risks when their coaches are being paid millions of dollars, and the schools are raking in many millions more. 

I suppose we should clarify that by saying “some top-tier school” are raking in those millions. I’ve read where only  the top-tier schools make money on their athletic  programs.  Most  of them lose money on those programs. 

 

 

 

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Yes, College Athletes Should be Paid

September 9, 2013

I’ve been saying it for years.  Now,  Time writer Sean Gregory is saying it to  millions.  I guess the magazine still has a circulation of millions.  It’s just not  fair to pay coaches millions and the players, who take the physical risks, nothing.

Alabama’s Sabin  gets $5.3 million a year.  Just about any  Alabama fan will quickly tell you he is worth it.  That championship team pulled in almost $82 million last year.  Some of that money goes to support sports programs that make nothing. O.K., let’s say he is worth it.  However, those fans didn’t go to see him play. They went to see college kids play.  He didn’t take any physical risks out on that football field.  But, he made a lot of money,  and they made nothing in salary. College athletes at the big schools are getting scholarships, which some college presidents say could come  to  $100 thousand in four years.  That’s $25 thousand a year. Gregory says, according to  the revenue they generate, the players should be getting at least $225,047 a year. And, the stars should get more than that. He’s right.  

There are some really prestigious universities that don’t have athletic scholarships. You know, Ivy League schools like Harvard, Princeton, and Yale.  But, then, football is not their thing, even though college football started at Yale. They still have teams, but football doesn’t pull in millions there, and coaches salaries are quite modest. They don’t need football money.  Harvard, for instance, has a $30 billion endowment. Very valuable degrees are what  they provide.  

 

SENSATIONAL COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEWS!!!

August 26, 2013

Mercer University Cranks up Football Again and Will Play Georgia Tech

Yes, after 72 years, Mercer University goes back into the football  business. College  football is a business, one that makes good money for the coaches and the schools, but not the players, who take the greatest risks by putting their bodies in harm’s way.

When I was attending Mercer, I  heard some tales about how the school decided to drop football after the  University  of Georgia beat the Bears 100 to 0 in Porter Stadium in Macon in 1941.  That tale turned out to be apocryphal.  I checked out the records, and the score was only 81 to 0.   It was Georgia Tech that ran up the biggest score against Mercer,  105 to 0 in 1914;  however, Mercer did beat  Georgia Tech in the first game Tech ever played.  In 1892, Mercer beat Tech 12 to 6.  It never beat  Tech again.  Mercer’s first game was also Georgia’s first game.  Georgia won 50 to 0, and Mercer never beat Georgia over the 49 years that they played. (They didn’t play every year.) And as far as dropping football because of the Georgia score, that’s not  the reason given. Mercer suspended all sports during World War II. It considered restarting  the football program after the war, but decided the $50,000 it would cost was too much.

Georgia Tech has agreed to play a non-conference game with Mercer as its 2016 season opener.  Tech says it is doing it to show  support for college football in Georgia.  That’s why it agreed to also  play Georgia Southern. Mercer will probably lose the game, but the money  should be good since Bobby  Dodd Stadium at Grant  Field holds 55,000 people and the TV money (if this  game is televised)  ain’t chicken feed.  Mercer’s new stadium will seat 10,200.

Mercer will play in the NCAA Division 1 Pioneer League this year.  It’s a non-scholarship league similar to the Ivy League which is also an NCAA Division 1 league.  That’s just for this year. Next season the team will move to  the NCAA Division 1 Southern Conference, which is a football scholarship league.

Mercer’s first game is in Macon Saturday against Reinhardt, which is located at Walesa, Georgia, which is near Alpharetta. .  This year the Bears will be playing schools as far away as California and New York.

The  big question is why the school  decided to do it. President William Underwood is quoted on the Mercer football website as saying, “This kind of college football will enhance our academic reputation by aligning us with other outstanding universities that compete in Division I non-scholarship football and by making Mercer even more competitive in attracting the most sought-after students.”  I suppose that  reasoning will still hold true when the team switches in 2014  to  the Southern Conference, which is an athletic scholarship league.    

 

Alabama is Not Number One

October 16, 2012

The University of Alabama may be number one in football nationally,but academically it’s number 77, according to the U.S. News rankings.  Harvard, whose football coach makes less than $90 thousand a year, and whose professors make an average of $198 thousand, is in first place.  Alabama’s professors make an average of about $130 thousand a year, while the football coach makes more than $5.3 million.

The highest ranking University in Georgia and Alabama is Emory in Atlanta. It’s 20th in the nation. It’s professors average pay is $153,000, and it has no football team.  The second highest ranked university in the two states is Georgia Tech.  It is 36th in the nation. The average pay for a professor at Tech is more than $141 thousand, higher than Alabama, Georgia, or Auburn.  Yes, it does have a famous football team that even beats Georgia every now and then.   

One of the main justifications for paying more than $5 million a year to Alabama coach Saban is that having a winning football team causes alumni to donate big bucks to the school.  The best endowed university in the world is Harvard,  and it offers no athletic scholarships.  Emory, with no football team.  also has huge endowments.  There are people with a lot of money who value academic achievement more than football.

Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy a good college football game and watch some Georgia, Tech, Alabama, and Auburn games on TV, and always want them to win when they aren’t playing each other.  When they are playing each other, I usually pull for the underdog.  My son went to Tech, three great nephews of mine played in the Georgia Redcoat Band, another great-nephew of mine played in the Alabama Million Dollar Band.  

Then there is the Georgia-Auburn game that was played in Columbus until 1958 (I think it was 1958).  I always enjoy that one because it brings back memories when I got to see All-American Charley Trippi play back in the 1946.  I was 15-years-old.  My family sat in the cheap seats in the end zone and were glad to be there. Hey, it’s the best place in the stadium to see touchdowns.  I loved it when the Auburn Band played the Tiger Rag with the tubas waving back and forth when they roared.  Does the band still do that?  And I always got a kick when the Redcoat Band played Glory Glory to Old Georgia. I know they still do that because I heard it at a Dawg Walk before a relatively recent game with Auburn in Athens.  

Yes, I enjoy college football, but I do not value it over academics, and I don’t think coaches should make millions off the hard work and talent of college kids who get paid nothing for their efforts and taking the physical risks inherent in football. No football coach is worth forty times as much as a professor.