PennStateHoops.com Discussion Forum

Eliminate ALL college scholarships


#1

Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is calling for the elimination of college athletic scholarships, saying the move is necessary to “de-professionalize” college athletes…

Ralph Nader: Replace scholarships


#2

I could see going the partial scholarship route for all sports. But completely eliminating them is not a good idea. Just my $0.02


#3

While I disagree with his point…he isn’t saying eliminate college scholarships. He’s saying eliminate the athletic-based scholarships, going for just need-based.

Of course, we all know this means every player would have some sort of “need”, and in the end nothing would change.


#4

I agree with Tom. At least the way it is now some very poor kids have a real reason to work on their academics in high school. Many times the football and hoops players are the first ones in their family to ever go to college.

One of the real problems is what happens to them once they get there. The one and done in hoops today is a joke. I like the baseball rules on early entry.


#5

I wouldn’t say I disagree with his point, but his reasoning. I like Milton Friedman’s take on it, from the college perspective, not the HS student.

This from a Rutgers prof, quoting Friedman.

Confessions of a Spoilsport
My Life and Hard Times Fighting Sports Corruption at an Old Eastern University

William C. Dowling

“Universities exist to transmit understanding and ideals and values to students . . . not to provide entertainment for spectators or employment for athletes. . . . When I entered a much smaller Rutgers sixty years ago, athletics were an important but strictly minor aspect of Rutgers education. I trust that today’s much larger Rutgers will honor this tradition from which I benefitted so much.”

Milton Friedman, Rutgers '32
Nobel Prize in Economics, 1976

In 1998, Milton Friedman’s statement drew national attention to Rutgers 1000, a campaign in which students, faculty, and alumni were resisting the takeover of their university by commercialized Division IA athletics. Subsequently, the movement received extensive coverage in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Sports Illustrated, and other publications.

Today, “big time” college athletics remains a hotly-debated issue at Rutgers. Why did an old eastern university that had long competed against such institutions as Colgate, Lafayette, Princeton and Columbia choose, by joining the Big East conference in 1994, to plunge into the world of TV-revenue-driven extravaganzas like “March Madness” and the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl? What is the moral for universities where big time college sports have already become the primary–and often the only–source of institutional identity?

Confessions of a Spoilsport is the story of an English professor who, having seen the University of New Mexico go downhill academically in the era of a major basketball scandal, was galvanized into action when Rutgers joined the Big East. It is also the story of the Rutgers 1000 students and alumni who set out to resist the decline of their university–eviscerated academic programs, cancellation of minor sports, loss of the “best and brightest” in-state students to the nearby College of New Jersey–while tens of millions of dollars were being lavished on Div IA athletics. Ultimately, however, the story of Rutgers 1000 is what the New York Times called it when Milton Friedman issued his ringing statement: a struggle for the soul of a major university.

William C. Dowling is University Distinguished Professor of English and American Literature at Rutgers University.

The entire link: http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~wcd/catweb.html


#6

This is one of the issues that has me deeply conflicted. I support the PSU FB and MBB programs wholeheartedly and derive a lot of personal enjoyment from them.

However, I also realize that major college athletics has no relationship to the primary mission of the universities and has taken on a life of its own as a powerful ‘for profit’ industry. While schools like PSU have been able to keep their athletic programs self-sufficient from a funding perspective, a lot of other schools in the North East lose money and draw from the general budget. How can you justify using tax payer and student tuition funds for what is essentially entertainment?

And when the identity of a university is tied to its success in the athletic arena, is it any wonder why some schools look the other way when their coaches cheat? What kind of example does that set for future generations?

There is an article in ESPN about University of Nebraska - Omaha choosing to move to the Div 1 level. The main reason they are giving is that they need Div 1 level revenue to be able to maintain the athletic program. A nice “Chicken & Egg” situation, isn’t it?


#7

It’s hard to rationalize big time college athletics beyond, “but they’re so much dang fun.”

I think the scholarship issue was a concession to the fact that needs-based programs were corrupted. The Ivies have suffered from that perception over the years, but that may be in part because their endowments are so big that they literally can give every student with needs all that he or she needs. Most other institutions are helping as many as they can with as much as they can, not making up the difference for everybody. Once you’re in that situation, you get corrupt pretty fast.

I was very impressed when about a decade ago, Penn State released a self-study on academics that included an analysis of what are known as “special admits” (that’s not the term that PSU uses, I don’t think)- students who excel in music or the arts or athletics who don’t meet the minimum standards in terms of grades and board scores (not to be confused with the higher standards normally needed to gain admission). There were only like two or three athletes in that bunch that was dozens of kids. I was cynical enough about “success with honor” to expect that group to be flooded with athletes.


#8

This thread seems to be complaining about athletics (and rightfully so…). However, I’d like to point out JoePa’s big capital campaign after the 82 football championship and the good that did for acedemics. I also think about Bucknell’s upset of Kansas a few years ago and the positive effect that has had on the university’s recognition beyond the NE/Mid atlantic region. There’s been a measureable jump in the admissions there since that happened.

So, sports can be a source of good, if done “with honor” so to speak…


#9

I just wonder why the Division 1 schools allow themselves to tolerate operating as minor leagues for the NFL and NBA. At least in baseball, the big-league club has the good sense to pay salaries for the farm teams. Most D-1 schools operate at a loss.

In my perfect world, there would be a separate minor league for NFL and NBA, where kids who don’t want, or don’t deserve, to be in college, can play and prep for the NBA/NFL.

Then, the remaining kids in NCAA would resemble something like NCAA baseball, where guys stick around but yes, still have a chance for the pros when its done. Yes, there would presumably be lesser talent, but I have always thought that if all you cared about was winning/talent/whatever, just root for a pro team in the first place since that’s what you’re paying for.

But what I think isn’t worth a single peso. It’s profitable for TV networks, so it’ll stay the same.


#10

[quote=“PSUClassof2011, post:9, topic:2252”]I just wonder why the Division 1 schools allow themselves to tolerate operating as minor leagues for the NFL and NBA. At least in baseball, the big-league club has the good sense to pay salaries for the farm teams. Most D-1 schools operate at a loss.

In my perfect world, there would be a separate minor league for NFL and NBA, where kids who don’t want, or don’t deserve, to be in college, can play and prep for the NBA/NFL.

Then, the remaining kids in NCAA would resemble something like NCAA baseball, where guys stick around but yes, still have a chance for the pros when its done. Yes, there would presumably be lesser talent, but I have always thought that if all you cared about was winning/talent/whatever, just root for a pro team in the first place since that’s what you’re paying for.

But what I think isn’t worth a single peso. It’s profitable for TV networks, so it’ll stay the same.[/quote]

Agree on all counts, including your last one, unfortunately.


#11

What people are forgetting is there are a lot of other scholarship sports than just football and basketball. And the large majority of them either want to be or know they have to be in college.