WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

More evidence: Division I public universities prioritize athletics over education

I'm afraid I'm about to get on my soapbox (again) about the pernicious impact of big-time university competitive athletics on their respective institutions.

USA TODAY has an analysis of the findings from the Delta Cost Project: "Public universities competing in NCAA Division I sports spend as much as six times more per athlete than they spend to educate students, and likely for the first time, per-athlete spending at schools in each of the six highest-profile football conferences topped $100,000 in 2010, an analysis of federal and school data finds.

Between 2005 and 2010, spending by athletic departments rose more than twice as fast as academic spending on a per-student basis..."

Absolutely sad. A cancer on this country.

While foreign students attend our universities for advanced academic programs, often in technical areas (and increasingly eventually return to their respective countries), our young people increasingly get T.A.'s as instructors for their freshmen / sophomore courses. Meanwhile, student tuition costs are skyrocketing, partly because of reductions in state subsidies.

Meanwhile, as USA TODAY further notes: "Most athletic departments are subsidized in part with student fees and state and institutional funds because they do not generate enough revenue to cover all of their costs..."

This sports idolatry is deplorable. And make no mistake: Alumni fuel much of this craziness.

Do you think my idolatry metaphor is a bit extreme? Should I remind you about all the cases where authorities looked the other way as athletes committed sexual assault?

Further - as I've chronicled in this blog before - this sports obsession is putting many of our high schools in straitjackets, including some of the elite private schools. It is a travesty.

Here's that USA TODAY article in full:


Posted at 7:25am on January 17, 2013 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

Thu, Jan 17, 2013 8:43am

If the spending is $100,000 per athlete, the return on investment must be ten times that.

Obviously, college sports is a bigtime business, so if there's a lot of money invested on a student-athlete, the school gets many times its investment back through ticket sales, radio and TV rights.

On the issue of being competitive with other nations, it's interesting to note that we are spending so much money on Pentagon spending, while other countries are spending money on education. We could easily change this by diverting Pentagon money into education.

Allan Loudell
Thu, Jan 17, 2013 8:51am

Maybe you missed the quotation above:

"Most athletic departments are subsidized in part with student fees and state and institutional funds because they do not generate enough revenue to cover all their costs."

And EVEN if the bigtime universities get many times the investment, so what? That, in itself, is amoral. "The ends justify the means." What kind of message are we sending to our young people?

Allan Loudell

Thu, Jan 17, 2013 9:56pm
Teatime: You're crazy! This country needs defense more than ever.

Mon, Jan 21, 2013 8:26am
I'm a lot more concerned about what Democrats are doing to this country than I am about college sports. At least if they're playing basketball or football, they're spending less time in the classroom being indoctrinated with leftist agenda.

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