As a former chem tutor at a rather sport-mad university, I can’t be surprised by anything schools do for (or rather to) student athletes. The kids look like they’re getting away with something, but in reality they’re just being screwed by the school. The schools make a heap of money on the backs of these kids, and if the kids don’t make pro they get what? Mostly nothing.
What makes me angry is how is hurts the degrees of all the people who went to the University of Georgia. A large school graduates thousands of people every year. I hate the fact that a small group of athletes will hurt the credibility of many students who went to school for 4 years, worked hard, and earned their degrees.
My degrees are from Florida State University. I’m a football fan, but I hate how my degree has been cheapened by the football team.
This is when I feel good about my alma mater’s basketball team winning only 5 games in the four years I was there. At least then everyone knows it wasn’t worth doing anything unethical to recruit those guys.
True that–I’ve worked at UGA for about a decade now and I can honestly say that President Adams (or King Mike as we call him) is personally responsible for every single freakin controversy we’ve had here–and we’ve been averaging about 1 every six months or so–since the Regents were moronic enough to put him in charge. Everyone hates the guy except the Regents so, unfortunately, he’s in no danger of being fired. Anyway, Adams personally hired Harrick and should bear the brunt of this travesty, not the rest of UGA. Hell, we’d have a great school here if we could just can a few key administrators.
I want college recruiters to descend on high schools, and instead of going to the gym to watch the jocks, I want them to go to the guidance office and pore over the grades of the kids taking AP classes.
I want the pimply faced girl who didn’t go to the prom but aced her chem final and won the state English competition to be wined, dined, and fawned over. I want the universities to fight over who can give her the best scholarship.
I want the universities to not only acknowledge that the football team won the Sugar Bowl, but to tout the fact that the biology majors found a cure for cancer.
I want the nerds and geeks to get the same accolades as the Heisman trophy winners.
Far be it from me to defend UGA–the nemesis of my alma mater–but I don’t think UGA automatically loses to an Ivy in a toss-up. Kids down in Georgia can go to the state schools for FREE if they maintain a B average. If I had a choice between going to a pretty good state school for free (while still staying close to home) and an uppercrust Ivy that–even with a scholarship–still costs a grip, then I’d probably go with the free state school. Then again, I’m not a school snob.
I doubt that this thing has ruined UGA’s reputation. I don’t know why this should tarnish the other departments. So UGA has some dumb jocks and even dumber atheletic coaches. This is earth-shattering news? Gimme a break.
Well, it’s just the latest in a string of problems that our idiotic ‘leader’ (i.e. Pres. Adams) has caused so I do think UGA’s rep is taking a series of hits. The guy needs to go–the sooner the better.
This is where I tend to disagree. They can trade their athleticism for something very meaningful. Most of us are willing to pay tens of thousands of dollars for what these people are getting for fee.
Look at it this way. The schools really want that athlete to play for them so the school can make lots of money. That can be used to a great deal of leverage by the athlete. The fact that the athletes aren’t taking advantage of that position of power is their own fault, not the schools.
The college I attended had a number of soccer players from (IIRC) Mexico. I was talking with one of them once (after getting past the “nerd/jock” stereotype we had each bought into) and found out that he had absolutely no interest in playing soccer professionally, but was just using his skill at it to get a decent education. I can’t remember what he planned on doing after college, but he was quite serious about his classwork and was doing rather well academically.
As a former UGA alumnus I must say: no, you don’t. The culture of football worship at UGA runs deep. Just canning a few admins won’t do it, you need a complete wipe of the athletic dept., can King Mike, get a new Board of Regents and change the leadership of the Alumni Assn. then you might get somewhere. But that is not going to happen.
I like King Kaufman’s idea: acknowledge that student athletes are moneymakers for the university, pay them big salaries, let them hire their own whores, etc.
Where I tutored, these athletes missed class all the time because of their sports’ schedules. Take a class that only meets twice a week, and then miss one class a week. How successful is that student likely to be? And if that student isn’t super-qualified to be in that class (or that school) in the first place, how successful are they going to be?
I tutored some smart kids, and some very determined kids. But I also tutored some kids who were way way over their heads–not necessarily because they lacked brains, but because they lacked pretty much any student skills. This was a private school, and a highly selective one. The reason these athletes were in the school had nothing to do with their ability to compete as intellectuals. They didn’t already have the tools they needed to succeed as students, and the school knew it. (Non-athletes didn’t have the same opportunities to receive tutoring.)