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Why College Football Should Be Banned
WSJ ^ | 04 May 2012 | BUZZ BISSINGER

Posted on 05/04/2012 4:02:16 PM PDT by Theoria

In more than 20 years I've spent studying the issue, I have yet to hear a convincing argument that college football has anything do with what is presumably the primary purpose of higher education: academics.

That's because college football has no academic purpose. Which is why it needs to be banned. A radical solution, yes. But necessary in today's times.

Football only provides the thickest layer of distraction in an atmosphere in which colleges and universities these days are all about distraction, nursing an obsession with the social well-being of students as opposed to the obsession that they are there for the vital and single purpose of learning as much as they can to compete in the brutal realities of the global economy.

Who truly benefits from college football? Alumni who absurdly judge the quality of their alma mater based on the quality of the football team. Coaches such as Nick Saban of the University of Alabama and Bob Stoops of Oklahoma University who make obscene millions. The players themselves don't benefit, exploited by a system in which they don't receive a dime of compensation. The average student doesn't benefit, particularly when football programs remain sacrosanct while tuition costs show no signs of abating as many governors are slashing budgets to the bone.

If the vast majority of major college football programs made money, the argument to ban football might be a more precarious one. But too many of them don't—to the detriment of academic budgets at all too many schools. According to the NCAA, 43% of the 120 schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision lost money on their programs. This is the tier of schools that includes such examples as that great titan of football excellence, the University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers, who went 3-and-9 last season.

(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: Education; Society; Sports
KEYWORDS: college; editorial; football; ncaa; nfl; sports
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"If you want to establish a minor league system that the National Football League pays for—which they should—that is fine."
1 posted on 05/04/2012 4:02:29 PM PDT by Theoria
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To: Theoria

College football brings money into the University. Plain and simple. Ever been to a University football game? Lots of fans, alumni and students... all cheering for their team and paying ticket prices/food/soda etc... Now, let’s be fair. If you want to eliminate college football, then eliminate basketball, lacrosse, golf, volleyball, softball, baseball, and every other sport that offers full or partial scholarships. It won’t happen because football and basketball pays for the other sports. Ever been to a college softball game? Plenty of seats available...


2 posted on 05/04/2012 4:08:48 PM PDT by momtothree
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To: Theoria

Couldn’t make the team, huh Buzzie old boy?


3 posted on 05/04/2012 4:09:52 PM PDT by chooseascreennamepat (The response to 1984 is 1776.)
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To: Theoria

FUBUZZ!!


4 posted on 05/04/2012 4:10:07 PM PDT by goseminoles
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To: Theoria

I think college football should be banned because the only school my alma mater can beat is Iowa.


5 posted on 05/04/2012 4:11:38 PM PDT by Colonel_Flagg (Obama vs. Romney: Zero x Zero = Zero.)
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To: Theoria

And exactly who is it that the author thinks should assume the authority to ban football?


6 posted on 05/04/2012 4:11:43 PM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: Theoria

And exactly who is it that the author thinks should assume the authority to ban football?


7 posted on 05/04/2012 4:11:58 PM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: Theoria

Ban college football?

The man must be clinically insane....

College football is uniquely American...


8 posted on 05/04/2012 4:12:11 PM PDT by Popman (America is squandering its wealth on riotous living, war, and welfare.)
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To: goseminoles

From your name, I think that you would probably support a ban on UF football. ;-)


9 posted on 05/04/2012 4:13:01 PM PDT by Bryanw92 (Sic semper tyrannis)
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To: Theoria

Eliminating college football won’t do anything to increase attendance at women’s sporting events.


10 posted on 05/04/2012 4:13:21 PM PDT by fso301
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To: Theoria

Laughable. Eliminate college football and see how much revenue is lost by each college/university. It would be staggering.


11 posted on 05/04/2012 4:16:45 PM PDT by richmwill
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To: Theoria

I am also going to call you on the opinion that college football doesn’t have to do with academics. Division 1 (i.e. the super schools like Alabama, LSU etc...) may have lower GPA requirements but do some research on Division 2 and 3 before jumping to conclusions. Check out just how amazingly high a GPA and SAT score has to be before the boy’s tapes are even reviewed. I have personally known several kids who got Division 1A, and Division 2 scholarships (full and partial). Intelligent, hard working kids with great GPA’s... that were given the opportunity to go to college. Believe me, they work for their paid tuition... everyday.


12 posted on 05/04/2012 4:16:58 PM PDT by momtothree
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To: Theoria

“Football only provides the thickest layer of distraction in an atmosphere in which colleges and universities these days are all about distraction, nursing an obsession with the social well-being of students as opposed to the obsession that they are there for the vital and single purpose of learning as much as they can to compete in the brutal realities of the global economy.”

Interesting. If the author really believed this, then we’d ban all student activities that did not contribute to being competitive in the global economy. I wonder how many majors would survive that standard?


13 posted on 05/04/2012 4:18:49 PM PDT by DugwayDuke
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To: Theoria

College football is nothing but an excuse to increase black enrollment in the schools. It’s affirmative action cloaked in sports. That’s all it is.


14 posted on 05/04/2012 4:18:52 PM PDT by GeorgeWashingtonsGhost
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To: Theoria

Get rid of the liberal indoctrination first.


15 posted on 05/04/2012 4:19:22 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: Bryanw92

No. I like the the last game of the year in November. I love college football. Pros? Not so much. I like the heart of college play. They have pride in their schools while earning an education. Our last qb had a masters before he got drafted. Pro football is $$$ and marketing.


16 posted on 05/04/2012 4:19:22 PM PDT by goseminoles
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To: momtothree

I saw a news report where an NFL or NBA player admitted they never cracked a book in college.


17 posted on 05/04/2012 4:21:35 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: Theoria

“Coaches such as Nick Saban of the University of Alabama ......make obscene millions.”

Must be an Allbarn fan.


18 posted on 05/04/2012 4:22:18 PM PDT by logitech (Who's here so vile, that will not love his country? If any speak, for him I have offended)
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To: Theoria

Hey Buzzie, banning college basketball would benefit all mankind. No Niki Riots!


19 posted on 05/04/2012 4:23:03 PM PDT by Red_Devil 232 (VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!)
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To: Popman
College football is uniquely American...

If he gets his way, he will next call for a ban on baseball, then county fairs, hot dogs, fried chicken, corn on the cob, and so on.

20 posted on 05/04/2012 4:23:14 PM PDT by Fiji Hill (Deo Vindice!)
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To: momtothree

Let’s be totally fair. Ban tenure for all so called professors in colleges. Make them actually year to year earn a living.


21 posted on 05/04/2012 4:25:44 PM PDT by RetiredArmy (He has Risen!!! If you do not know Him, this is the perfect week to seek Him out!!!)
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To: momtothree

I admit that I attended a sports nut university, but there are multiple women’s sports at the University of Alabama that draw large crowds or crowds that fill the seats for the particular venues. I don’t think we could get 100K fans to a gymnastics meet, but you never know.


22 posted on 05/04/2012 4:26:00 PM PDT by petitfour
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To: momtothree

Let’s be totally fair. Ban tenure for all so called professors in colleges. Make them actually year to year earn a living.


23 posted on 05/04/2012 4:26:03 PM PDT by RetiredArmy (He has Risen!!! If you do not know Him, this is the perfect week to seek Him out!!!)
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To: fso301

“Eliminating college football won’t do anything to increase attendance at women’s sporting events.”

unless it means more beach volleyball


24 posted on 05/04/2012 4:26:03 PM PDT by ari-freedom
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To: Popman
College football is uniquely American...

Exactly why it should be banned. /s

We should all play soccer. Soccer: The Perfect Socialist Sport

25 posted on 05/04/2012 4:27:53 PM PDT by FatherofFive (Islam is evil and must be eradicated)
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To: Theoria

With a name like Buzz Bissinger, I picture him as the guy in the locker room whose job was to collect dirty jock straps. No wonder he’s carrying a grudge.


26 posted on 05/04/2012 4:28:00 PM PDT by mellow velo (Oxymorons: jumbo shrimp, rap music, liberal think-tank)
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To: Theoria
I am totally against an extended season that takes student athletes out of the classroom and testing schedules simply to suit the cravings of idiot-savants who want a national college play-off system.

But ban college football? Bunk.
27 posted on 05/04/2012 4:30:31 PM PDT by righttackle44 (I may not be much, but I raised a United States Marine.)
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To: Popman

If a lad plays college football and studies something manly and worthwhile (engineering), he will be among the first kids picked for the good jobs upon graduation. When you play football, you don’t have to prove that you’re a team player, and that you can do difficult things. A spot on a college football team can outweigh being a calculus wiz.

I’ve seen it in my own family with my own eyes. As my son explains — engineering is for jocks who can do math.


28 posted on 05/04/2012 4:31:16 PM PDT by duckworth (Perhaps instant karma's going to get you. Perhaps not.)
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To: mellow velo

As Donald Fagen sang, “Maybe he’s a fairy/You know I’m through with Buzz...”


29 posted on 05/04/2012 4:31:42 PM PDT by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
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To: Theoria

Cool! More time and exposure for Lacrosse!

Mark


30 posted on 05/04/2012 4:34:03 PM PDT by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: chooseascreennamepat
Not only that, his timing is way off. This might have more impact if it were released in August or September.

The author of this piece also wrote the book Friday Night Lights!

31 posted on 05/04/2012 4:35:02 PM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: GeronL

I am going to think it was Division 1. No, Division 1 s athletes don’t attend classes with the other students. They can’t. They would never be left alone. However, they take the classes online and do have tutors available. However, they must remain eligible grade wise to stay eligible. I cannot speak for the power houses of football and what goes on... but I can say 1A, Division 2 and 3 are much different. However, Division 1 schools are the players that you will see in the NFL and NBA.


32 posted on 05/04/2012 4:35:29 PM PDT by momtothree
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To: momtothree

College football brings money to the athletic department of a university. Precious little of that money actually makes it into what should be the “core brands” of a university: the service of knowledge (whether passing on old knowledge, usually called “teaching”, or uncovering new knowledge, usually called “research”, or in the case of land-grant universities which often have the most lavish football programs, spreading practical knowledge among the general populace of the state, usually called “extension”). Oh, yes, a winning season usually brings with it a slight uptick in unrestricted donations, but that is dwarfed by the donations to the athletic program per se. (I know whereof I speak: both my wife and I teach at land grant universities with big football programs — two different ones, in neighboring states — and in both cases my description holds.)

Try proposing a surcharge on athletic tickets, the proceeds of which go to fund the educational (or research) mission of the university and see how far it gets. (Hint: for an analogy, think about suggesting real deregulation of the energy industry in the Obama White House.)


33 posted on 05/04/2012 4:36:44 PM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know. . .)
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To: momtothree

Someone else is probably doing their work in that case.


34 posted on 05/04/2012 4:38:21 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: The_Reader_David

BCS bowl teams are actually losing money on the bowl games.


35 posted on 05/04/2012 4:38:40 PM PDT by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
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To: RetiredArmy

“Ban tenure for all so called professors”.

Know what I would like banned? Ban the mandatory sale of books written or co-authored by the professor so they get $ from the students. Each class has required books... some of those books will have the professors name in it somewhere. Thus, the professor gets paid. Plus, they have this neat trick (told to me by a college professor) that they will change some of the wording/paragraphs and create a “new” edition. New editions have to be purchased as new and not “used” (lower priced). The professor makes $ again.


36 posted on 05/04/2012 4:39:16 PM PDT by momtothree
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To: momtothree

I would actually like to see professors who you can actually understand what they’re saying.


37 posted on 05/04/2012 4:40:14 PM PDT by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
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To: Theoria

People who propose banning college football should be tarred and feathered and then forced to watch non-stop soccer.


38 posted on 05/04/2012 4:40:37 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: Theoria

Much of what happens in ‘higher education’ has nothing to do with academics. I don’t think that athletes should be able to take TV remote control 101 and get a degree, but I do think that athletics and education can coexist in a very synergistic way. Does this guy think that education will get better if there is no football? If so, why? It’s quite possible that alumni donations would go down, and thus for tuition to go up.


39 posted on 05/04/2012 4:41:23 PM PDT by pieceofthepuzzle
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To: driftdiver
and then forced to watch non-stop soccer.

You mean forced to watch MLS Soccer......EPL Soccer Rules!

40 posted on 05/04/2012 4:41:42 PM PDT by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
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To: duckworth

You are exactly right...college should prepare you for life, career, your future...football certainly can be a big part of that...

I played Pop Warner up though high school...I certainly learned many of my life lessons on the gridiron...


41 posted on 05/04/2012 4:43:02 PM PDT by Popman (America is squandering its wealth on riotous living, war, and welfare.)
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To: Theoria
I object to the author's assertion that the purpose of a university education is "learning as much as they can to compete in the brutal realities of the global economy. " I'm conservative enough to hold in high regard the view expressed by John Alexander Smith to his students at Oxford in 1914:

Nothing that you will learn in the course of your studies will be of the slightest possible use to you in after life - save only this - if you work hard and diligently you should be able to detect when a man is talking rot, and that, in my view, is the main, if not the sole, purpose of education.

I'd much rather abolish majors that have ceased in any way to teach student how to detect when men are talking rot than abolish those that don't contribute global economic competitiveness.

42 posted on 05/04/2012 4:43:38 PM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know. . .)
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To: The_Reader_David

He echoed what I’ve always said, the purpose of education is for you to develop a “BS Detector.”


43 posted on 05/04/2012 4:44:54 PM PDT by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
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To: Theoria

Please don’t read the articles posted, so you can write your own stupidities contradicting what’s stated there in. Yes sir, college athletics bring money to the universities. Here’s what the article stated:

“According to the NCAA, 43% of the 120 schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision lost money on their programs.”


44 posted on 05/04/2012 4:46:57 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Let us prey!)
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To: Theoria

Nick Saban makes obscene money and the players don’t benefit??? This guy didn’t watch the draft or watch the guys who signed with teams after draft day.


45 posted on 05/04/2012 4:48:50 PM PDT by petitfour
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To: Theoria
Got turned down by a cheerleader again, eh Buzz?

Cheers!

46 posted on 05/04/2012 4:53:41 PM PDT by grey_whiskers (The opinions are solely those of the author and are subject to change without notice.)
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To: RetiredArmy

Moving the boundary markers established by one’s ancestors is not a conservative thing to advocate. Tenure is the guardian of the first freedom of expression Western Civilization ever recognized: academic freedom, the right to speculate within the confines of the university without being charged with heresy, which predates any generally accepted idea of freedom of speech or freedom of the press by a good half a millenium.

Abolish it, and it will be Lindzen and Choi who have no jobs, not the anthropogenic global warming crowd, Christian professors will be sacked simply for their religious beliefs, free market economists will get the axe at most universities, . . . The long march of the left through the academy would be complete.

Tenure protects the established scholar’s right to study what is unpopular in his discipline and come to unpopular conclusions, and at present in most disciplines bearing on society and politic that means conservative conclusions. (Why tenure exists in institutions where the duties of the faculty are solely teaching and not research or scholarship is another question, a such schools or colleges, you could persuade me that abolishing tenure is a good thing, but not at a university which retains anything of the classical character of a university.)


47 posted on 05/04/2012 4:56:18 PM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know. . .)
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To: Theoria
Why College Football Should Be Banned

Are you mad???


48 posted on 05/04/2012 5:00:01 PM PDT by mountn man (Happiness is not a destination, its a way of life.)
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To: pieceofthepuzzle

Look at the other Divisions, 1, 2, etc. Some how they can successfully mix athletics and academics. Just my pov that ‘student athlete’s’[FBS] tend to get more chances than the commons.


49 posted on 05/04/2012 5:01:20 PM PDT by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: petitfour

University of Maryland (my alma mater) has a fantastic woman’s basketball program. Yes... we have attended games. However, many people simply prefer to spend their money watching a sport like football or men’s basketball. (to be completely fair, IMHO women’s basketball is cleaner and has more traditional plays/skill vs the mens. That is just from my eyes). It is a lot of fun!


50 posted on 05/04/2012 5:05:16 PM PDT by momtothree
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