A mind is a terrible thing to concuss.

But at least there’s a humongous new movie all about what our college football players experience in school, and then experience again when they graduate to the pros.

As you watch the trailer, think of all the university (hell, high school) coaches we’ve covered on this blog who let their players continue playing while they’re still reeling from a hit.

A local writer puts down some fine Waco prose.

A Texas sports journalist puts the rape scandal at Baylor in perspective for us. (UD‘s comments appear in brackets.)

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So am I calling Art [Briles, Baylor football coach,] a liar?

Yes, I’m calling him a big-time college head football coach in the same classification as Urban Meyer, Nick Saban, Bob Stoops, Jimbo Fisher, etc. [These are all the biggies, plus etc. – i.e., pretty much everyone else.]

Check their rosters. [Plenty of scary people on them. But c’mon on: The Steelers just signed Michael Vick.] These are coaches who will always gamble on talent over character, and when that talent brings trouble to campus, the talent will be protected and coddled. These coaches just don’t care, and they are powerful enough they don’t have to care.

Art doesn’t have to care at Baylor. And it’s paid off big time for him and the school.

Well, it was paying off. Except now, all hell has broken loose.

Briles, however, won’t stop gambling on bad actors, even now, unless at some point, he’s ordered to stop. But who exactly gives that order in Waco? [Baylor president] Ken Starr?

On that leave ’em laughing note, we know heads will roll over all this. And we know Art will be watching from a Waco safe place, high above it all. [Hilarious to think that the official head of a football factory has any power. The God who stands above it all directing and watching is the coach. UD read somewhere – can’t find the link – that a sacrificial woman from somewhere in the administration has been selected to suffer for her Art.] [Good one, UD.]

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Remember: This guy is writing about a place that was founded as a university.

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Oh. And here’s a great blast from the past. In a recent tussle with his league over their team ranking system (it placed Texas Christian, the place Briles found Baylor’s most famous rapist, over Baylor), Briles said

[The league is] obligated to us because we’re helping the Big 12’s image in the nation.

Totally, Art, and keep up the good work.

UD Loves Temporality, University Football-Style.

The arrest is the first for an Arkansas player since defensive end Tevin Beanum was arrested in late February for DWI.

Yeah, this here’s a real shocker. Why, I can barely ‘member last time someone on that team got himself arrested… Was it… way back in April? Nah. Even farther back than that… I know! No wonder I had such trouble ‘membering. It was February!

Bravo. This is just the sort of guerrilla warfare rape-friendly schools deserve…

… and their incoming students need. Before the University of Montana administration took them down, the following signs greeted this fall’s students:

Montana Hunting Season OPEN. Female Students The Prey.

Get Drunk. Get Raped. The Players Are Ready.

Next Rapee, C’MON DOWN!!

Baylor University… will [eventually] deliver a big check to a woman raped by one of its scholarship football players.

And along with a check, you get a book!

It’s not quite Nixon’s Saturday Night Massacre, but heads are rolling real fast…

… at the University of Illinois, where one after another, in the space of a few days, the chancellor, the provost, and now the football coach have all been fired or resigned. People are calling for the school to fire the athletic director.

Predictably, the coach thingie is about how twisted big-time American university football is. UD can’t get enough of the fact that the high-profile normal people on campus (football players, frat boys, coaches) almost always, when the shit hits the fan, turn out to be absolute pervs next to whom the weirdo humanities types are the actual mainstream. It’s the players who are often enduring a sick masochistic family relationship with their sadistic coach daddy.

Before the Illinois athletic director could no longer deny the sadism going on in his program, he dismissed player complaints about the coach by saying this:

“The feedback I get from players and our players’ families is that our coaches genuinely care for them and treat them like their own children,” Thomas said May 11.

How to unpack all the ugly in this statement? Since when do you treat adult males like children? But of course dominating and infantilizing and then intimidating players is the name of the game in much college football coaching. Like the sickest father ever, you embrace them and then scare the shit out of them if they disobey you. Daddy Dearest. Coach would make his own son play injured; he’d terrify his kid by telling him he’s gonna lose his scholarship if he doesn’t do what he tells him to do. He’s verbally abusive.

I mean, sure. There are fathers like this. It’s called child abuse.

This coach had already been accused of abuse.

Beckman was the subject of a lawsuit, later dismissed on a technicality, alleging the same kind of disregard for player injuries that would get him run out of Champaign.

But no. Oh no. We’re being pussies, aren’t we? Have you noticed how long the pussy list is getting? How many names the bruisers who love bigtime university and professional football now have to keep track of in order to dismiss them with contempt? Most recently there’s the name Chris Borland; and, at Illinois, there’s Simon Cvijanovic, who didn’t appreciate the unrelenting viciousness of the coach. There are many others; and the university officials whose job it is to keep their massively indebted football programs alive will no doubt want to encourage the frat boys and others as they cry pussy.

UD has covered so many of these coaches – highest public salary in the state, private jets, country clubs, worshipped by all, and physically and psychologically beating the shit out of their players.

And do you think a guy like this is going to let the university deprive him of a penny?

He will not receive the $3.1 million remaining on the last two years of his original five-year contract or the $743,000 called for if his contract had been bought out, the university said.

If he doesn’t sue, UD will be astonished.

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Update: Here we go.

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UD thanks Wendy.

‘Michael Stern, the chairman of Auburn’s economics department and a former member of the faculty senate, said athletics is so powerful at Auburn that it operates like a “second university.”’

The question at Auburn is whether there’s a first university. I guess certain parties at Auburn would like to think so; but when one quarter of your trustees played football for the school, and when until very recently the school was run by the legendary Bobby Lowder… And so many academic scandals UD has lost count… I mean… really?

So now there’s this breaking story about the jock major du jour at Auburn – public administration. How legit poli sci professors at the school tried to shut it down, and how the athletics department kept that from happening, in part by offering to pay for the major. The Wall Street Journal seems the main source for the story – they quote from various emails in which athletics personnel worry themselves sick about the intellectual well-being of their players if the major is punted – but it’s all over the place now…

What UD finds moving about Auburn is its tragic endless search for a home – a warm permanent curricular roof over the team’s head. Not long ago, under their legendary chair of sociology, Thomas Petee, a man who, like North Carolina’s legendary Julius Nyang’oro, was able to chair a program, teach regular classes, and teach AT THE SAME TIME hundreds of independent study classes per semester, Auburn athletes en masse took soc. That scam got blown and they reeled over to public administration, which is now also well on its way to oblivion.

What next?

Athletes at Auburn are like passengers on the listing Titanic, grasping desperately at one side of the ship for survival and, water rising, racing desperately to the other side.

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See, what people don’t realize is that when the athletics department chooses a major for the lads it’s not just a matter of looking for gut courses. You need an entire organization – you need please-mister-quarterback-let-me-touch-you professors, downtrodden and manipulable tutors, mercenary administrators (remember: athletics has huge money to spend on selected departments and majors), etc., etc. You have to set up a whole world for this to work, and you have to watch out for people who (cough) might be inclined to leak incriminating emails about what you’re doing. I’m sure that, even as I write, everyone at Auburn – trustees, deans, students, boosters – is working overtime to create this new world.

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UD thanks Derek and Andrew.

“We’re great football players, but we’re shit people.”

The soaring oratory of Maurice Clarett. As UD readers know, UD has long recommended exactly the same thing for the B-School Boys (see her ever-popular category Beware the B-School Boys) — charismatic ex-cons drawn from the same crowd as their audience. Andy “Enron” Fastow is one example, but America’s prisons are packed with ciceronian swindlers.

Together, these two lad-categories (football hero/captain of industry) make up much of our national mythology, and therefore America’s institutions continue to deal gently with them, which is why remarkable numbers of them keep raping women and financial systems.

UD is a big believer in the power of testifying. She thinks Business Ethics courses are bullshit, but she thinks Madoff on the hustings would be marv.

FSU football player Dalvin Cook has been…

… acquitted of a misdemeanor battery charge. A jury quickly agreed that he did not punch a woman as he and teammates were leaving a bar.

“Then, in an act of what can only now be viewed as magical thinking, Notre Dame athletic director Kevin White tore up [football coach Charlie] Weis’s original contract and gave him a new one for ten years, guaranteeing Weis millions of dollars if he was fired.”

Of course, this is what big-time football brings to the university, house of reason. It brings the adorable primitivism of humanity’s infancy. Like fraternities, to which it is symbiotically attached, it brings “shirtless kids covered in paint, shivering in the November weather as they cheer their team on,” as one pundit excitedly puts it. The same writer goes on to say:

If you want your students to become loyal, giving alumni, you must turn them into members of a tribe. You must make them fall in love with their school, and believe that they and all the other alums are united in a family. Your temple of reason cannot rise to the heavens unless it is grounded in irrational love.

Tribalism: The core of any great university. I think that’s what we’re all after, isn’t it? Students come to us already members of high school cliques and neighborhood gangs; our purpose is to strengthen those cultic tendencies.

But it’s not just tribal, magical thinking we’re after. Let’s say it straight out – it’s ultimately stupidity we want to convey:

[T]wo schools [Kansas and Notre Dame] [are] now paying Weis nearly $23 million not to coach.

‘Was Nick Saban really that much better? Was he worth nearly $6 million more now than he was in 2000; fifty‑four times more than what Robert Bentley, the Alabama governor, was paid; twelve times more than the university’s president, who is responsible for a budget seven times the size of the football budget? I posed the question to Bill Battle, the athletic director at Alabama, who pointed to Saban’s larger effect on the university as a whole. “Nick’s impact on this campus and this program is everywhere,” Battle said. “He has just changed the…

entire culture here.”‘

Of course we’ve been following barking mad University of Tennessee on this blog…

… over many years, so how can we be surprised that not long ago “six football players were named as suspects in sexual assault cases”? The number actually charged was only two, and the trial of one of them starts today.

This trial is not to be confused with the Vanderbilt trials, which are ongoing.

Backing our football team
Faltering never

Starr Investigator on the Case

From Missouri’s unacceptable responses to multiple serious sexual-assault allegations in the last decade to Florida State’s head-in-the-sand approach to Jameis Winston, the go-to move has been to do nothing until the law forces your hand.
… If journalists at “Texas Monthly” had no trouble uncovering Ukwuachu’s past transgressions, a school whose president is former Whitewater prosecutor Ken Starr has no excuse.

“Is it really too much to ask the highest-paid person at a university to consider the safety of the campus community when he puts together his football roster?”

You’ve got it exactly backwards. He’s the highest paid person because he’s got the balls to risk everyone’s safety. That’s what we call Vision. Commitment. Grit. It’s worth millions.

And after all, the job of the fan base, as it well knows, is to sacrifice itself for the team.

Wow. An internal investigation, led by the campus sports rep. Expect great things!

You have to do the hard work of getting inside the culture of schools like Baylor and Louisville (the University of Louisville, a reliable scummy-sports-source on this blog, just recruited a guy — “domestic violence charge involving a gun” — even Texas Christian found too scary).

But it is hard work. Take Baylor. The larger culture of its hometown, Waco, heartland of homicidal Harley honeys, birthplace of branded breastaurant-bred Boss-Hoss boys, is mainly about open carry. That’s the burning social justice issue that fires up so many Baylor/Wacoites — now more than ever:

The day after a deadly confrontation between rival biker gangs in Waco, top Texas lawmakers defended a proposal to loosen the state’s handgun laws [to allow open carry].

What plenty of people in Waco and at Baylor seem to be, uh, shooting for is a campus/town where hotly recruited rapists and criminal biker gangs are placed in an open carry setting…

UD understands that this picture seems unfair to these Texans, whose self-image involves prayer for themselves and for the souls of recruited rapists who shall be redeemed in cleansing local waters. Same as these football programs. And so many others. It’s all about winning football games and redeeming souls.

So you’ve got Baylor’s famous president, Ken Starr, overseeing an internal investigation of his school’s rape-positive policies, and he’s already at a disadvantage, since his experience lies in investigating consensual sex (or, as a commenter at the Chronicle of Higher Education poetically puts it, “President Starr, you went after Bill Clinton for much less. What are you going to do about this ugly mess?”). And you’ve got all the hump-lovin’ folk of this great land, who understand the crucial synergy between sexual and on-field violence, as dramatized so succinctly here.

In this film’s most poignant moment, a father pleads: “Just give it to me straight Doc. Will my boy ever rape again?”

As long as schools like Baylor and Louisville exist, we can answer that question with a resounding Yes.

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