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… this Tuesday – topic: BAN COLLEGE FOOTBALL – Buzz Bissinger, arguing in favor, begins to make his case. He mentions all the obvious stuff everyone mentions, and drops in a few current yummy examples. Like:

New Mexico State University’s athletic department needed a 70% subsidy in 2009-2010, largely because Aggie football hasn’t gotten to a bowl game in 51 years. Outside of Las Cruces, where New Mexico State is located, how many people even know that the school has a football program? None, except maybe for some savvy contestants on “Jeopardy.” What purpose does it serve on a university campus? None.

All true: It serves no purpose. Yet the question to ask about New Mexico State and other bad schools with expensive football teams is: What purpose does anything serve on that university campus? Wouldn’t eliminating football do away with the only game, as it were, in town? If you banned football, and Auburn and Clemson couldn’t play it anymore, what would be left? People forget that the very scandals schools like these generate are part of their lore, part of the excitement of being a student there. It’s hard to imagine anyone applying to a football school that’s become a shell of its former self. Banning football would ultimately mean closing down dozens of American universities.

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