Kick Me Again

Lucye Millerand, president of the [Union of Rutgers Administrators], pointed to the $1.2 million in severance pay Rutgers made to Mike Rice, a former men’s basketball coach, Tim Pernetti, former athletic director, and John Wolf, former interim senior vice president and general counsel, after their departure following a public outcry over a video that showed abusive behavior by Rice toward players on the court.

“Rutgers’ budget seems to have money for crazy priorities,” Millerand said. “That 1.2 million would be about a 1 percent raise for my entire union of 2,300 people. If there is money to reward people that embarrassed the university so badly they had to go, why does management tell us they don’t have that much money to bring an equivalent settlement with Rutgers’ faculty.”

Rutgers’ masochistic relationship with its coaches draws some criticism.

Swiney

Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney on Wednesday reiterated reservations about how schools will implement the oncoming trend of providing “full cost of attendance” to scholarship student-athletes. He said that while he’s all for “modernizing the scholarship,” he opposes “professionalizing college athletics.”

Mr. Swinney’s defense of the amateur-athletics ideal would sound more convincing if he weren’t making $3.3 million this year to coach Clemson on a contract that runs through the 2021 season.

“If there is no fall semester at LSU, would the school be able to field a football team?”

Absolutely. UD has said it for years – in the United States, you don’t need a university to have a university football team. Several American universities already are, for most purposes, football teams. Their presidents are their six million dollar a year coaches. Their trustees are ex-football players or football boosters.

So she’d suggest posing the question about the possible bankruptcy of Louisiana State University like this:

If there is no football team, would the school be able to field a fall semester?

‘“People say, ‘Look at the price of the plane,’ and I say, ‘Look at what we’re paying coaches,’ said House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Brian White, an Anderson Republican who sits on the Joint Bond Review Committee, which will review the request. “It’s the times.”’

There’ll always be a Clemson.

The Madness of King Barchi

It’s a mental process we don’t know too much about yet, but we can sometimes see its tragic effects in the jock school’s chief executive. No one wants to depose the doddering old thing, but as the athletic deficits increase, and his or her tendency to give ever more bizarre public statements about them grows, faculty and students begin a popular revolt.

No one can predict the outcome of this volatile situation. At University Diaries, our obligation is simply to report its phases.

Rutgers University, having bled athletics money at a grotesque rate for some years, and now subsisting under a leader determined to hemorrhage yet more, has entered The Era of High Restlessness. Economics professors in particular, having run the numbers, have begun issuing denunciations (“To try to do any sugarcoating of the magnitude of (this) financial loss is just not being honest … We’re No. 1 in financial losses … by a mile, we lose more money than any other university on athletics.”), and the student newspaper, as in this article, routinely confronts the fond foolish old man with the ruins of his hopes and dreams. It cites such things as comparative loss charts and statistics on ranking (“After investing about $250 million [in athletics] across the last decade, the University fell down 12 spots in college rank, declining from No. 58 to No. 70, according to U.S. News and World Report. Rutgers also fell to No. 177 on Forbes magazine’s Best Colleges list, a collection of 650 liberal arts colleges and universities, a spot that gives the College of New Jersey a nine-rank advantage over the Garden State’s flagship state university.”)

President Robert Barchi has not yet started hiding out from the press (that will come), but his interviews have become strange affairs. Amid a nationwide trend of much higher foreign student enrollment, Barchi insists that the increase at Rutgers is because of the worldwide renown of their football games (“The University’s 40 percent increase in admissions applications from international students can be attributed to greater name recognition from Rutgers’ presence in the Big Ten, Barchi said.” — Hubba Hubba Hubei!). Amid a monumental financial disaster, he says, “If we were to not remain in the Big Ten, we would have a monumental financial disaster on our hands.” And though there’s no indication the alumni give a shit one way or another about belonging to the Big Ten, he says, “Administrators also feel the need to satisfy the University’s alumni base, composed of many who are interested in intercollegiate sports.”

What’s next? After the Era of High Restlessness, we can expect – as I suggest above – the Era of Not Available for Comment.

“An astounding 61 percent of millennials rated the NFL as a sleazy organization on a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being respectable and 10 being sleazy.”

[R]esearch has shown that NFL trust has slipped to a point where the league is comparable to brands such as Malaysia Airlines and Wal-Mart.

No need to worry, universities! I’m sure none of this holds true for college football.

Wanna know why your university football coach is often the highest-paid public employee in the entire state?

Cuz he’s so smart.

“Between this guy, Richie Incognito, Dominic Raiola, Alfonzo Dennard, and probably a lot of others who escape me at the moment, Nebraska sure knows how to keep it classy.”

The heartland! The heartland! It doesn’t get more all-American than Nebraska – a state that, along with Missouri, UD (an evil coastal Jew married to Euro-trash) routinely forgets exists.

My headline quotes a commenter on an article about Lawrence Phillips, the latest proud son of that state’s university’s storied football team. Now that Phillips has murdered his cellmate, the University of Nebraska enjoys the same spate of publicity it did when its beloved Richie Incognito ran into some trouble.

The article’s a bit vague on the wonderful Nebraska coaching that brought Phillips to that school and kept him there –

Phillips was a superstar running back at Nebraska who was controversially allowed to keep playing for the Cornhuskers even after multiple run-ins with the law.

– but here’s a detail from another source:

[Coach Tom] Osborne reinstated Phillips in the same season the star dragged his girlfriend by the hair down a staircase.

Same sex marriage in Nebraska? Goodness me, no! But drag your girlfriend down the staircase by the hair and … instant football star!

And talk about coacha inconsolata. Get a load of the headline on an article about Osborne:

Lawrence Phillips Tragedy Continues to Haunt Former Nebraska Coach

Wow.

When asked about keeping Phillips on the team, the coach recently said that as a coach

“You take hits.”

Hit me again! That’s it, hit me again! What do I expect? I’m a coach! I can take it…

*************************

UD thanks the many readers who sent her updates about Phillips’ amazing career, and the totally amazing University of Nebraska.

Mr July has a bad April.

But he’s only one of so many glorious characters the University of Florida sports program can boast. Even if he’s otherwise disposed at the moment, there are so many other calendar models.

Tragic Setback for Boise State’s Game

UD, as constant readers know, loves the rhetoric sports writers bring to these, um, unfortunate events.


Boise State Backfield Takes Another Hit with Recruit’s Arrest

The Boise State football team’s gaping hole at tailback grew a little larger Wednesday.

February signee Raymond Sheard was arrested Tuesday at Arlington (Texas) High on drug and gun charges. He won’t join the team, a Boise State official said Wednesday.

The Broncos need to replace the nation’s second-most productive running back in NFL-bound Jay Ajayi. They lost expected contributor Charles Bertoli last week when he decided to pursue other interests.

That leaves sophomore Jeremy McNichols, senior Jack Fields, junior Devan Demas and redshirt freshman Cory Young as the only scholarship running backs in the program. None has rushed for 200 yards in a season.

It’s all about the game! Throw a lot of players’ names and positions at me and drop the whole … what was it? Did our coach recruit a 19-year old about whom the good news is that “[An additional] charge of tampering with an ID number (serial number on gun removed) was dropped”? Poor coacha inconsolata! Can’t expect him to do due diligence… Of course, if the guy hadn’t been caught he’d have brought his special outlook on life here to Boise… You’d think an apology or something from the coach might be in order… An expression of regret…? Nah! “Guys have to step up, and that’s exactly what they did,” he said. Forward march.

Hyuk!

An investigation by this newspaper found that college students at 10 of Ohio’s biggest public universities are paying more than $135 million for intercollegiate athletics through either mandatory fees or university subsidies – and most of the students don’t even know it.

“At what point does a head coach get seven million dollars a year for signing players with known criminal backgrounds who get arrested again for similar behavior?”

Whoops. I’m sorry. Original sentence reads:

At what point does a head coach get held accountable for signing players with known criminal backgrounds who get arrested again for similar behavior?

How Nick Saban Earns Seven Million Dollars a Year.

America’s highest-profile, highest-paid university coach takes guys like this onto his team, guys whose penchant for choking women is so well-documented that even schools like we’ll take anyone who can hit hard Georgia dump them.

He says he’s giving the guy a second chance because he really wants to help straighten him out.

Actually, he’s giving him a third chance (one million out of Saban’s yearly seven is for overlooking trifles like theft by deception arrests) but this just makes Saban and Alabam’ yet greater martyrs. Never give up on these guys! Others might, but we never will! Because we’re not really a sports team! We’re a family! Choke away, lad! We’ve got your back!

And if Saban turns out not to be paid to give him a fourth chance?

“There are a lot of other schools that were recruiting him and would have admitted him,” [Taylor’s attorney] said.

University of Tennessee: I’m lookin’ at you!

“Academics should no longer be treated as a trust fund for the athletics program.”

Econ professor Mark Killingsworth is one of this blog’s heroes. He’s that rare faculty member who takes up arms against his sports-mad school’s arms race. Killingsworth happens to teach at Rutgers, which means he gets to witness both athletic scandals that make his school a national laughingstock and relentless wasting of student and tax dollars on football and basketball. He has now helped lead the Faculty Senate to issue a set of recommendations that you can read here.

Glance at even a few of the recommendations and you’ll see that there’s no way in hell jockshop Rutgers is going to take any of them seriously:

• Rutgers Athletics should design and enforce a five-year plan to eliminate all financial
losses;

• No capital investment (expansion or new construction of Athletics facilities)
should be undertaken until the Athletics deficit is eliminated;

• No allocations from student fees should be used to finance Athletics…

Yadda yadda. The list assumes the Rutgers leadership gives a shit about much beyond ball games. The president will thank the professors for their very interesting thoughts and ignore everything on the list.

And that’s why Killingsworth is a hero. He dreams the impossible dream.

Teamwork in the Heartland

It’s almost impossible to pull this many charges acting alone. It takes a village.

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