Below is a post I put on the NCAA Double A Zone in response to NCAA staffer Greg johnson. There has been much said about Jeremy Tyler leaving high school to go play in Europe and earn a ton of money instead of staying in high school and being forced to play college ball for one year allegedly to get an “education.” Greg states that someone needs to explain to him why going to college for a year is the worst thing that can happen (in fact these kids rarely stay much past the first term, and saying they are actually going to college is debatable).
Greg–please. It is not a prison sentence and Sonny has never even alluded to that. He is saying what is obvious to anyone out there, even to those who purport to think this one and done is some educational panacea. Simply put Greg–for those of us who were or are in the trenches, this rule is simply a way to control the athlete, keep a free farm system, keep the money for the members of the association and the highly paid coaches, and limit someones right to earn a living when their skills are most marketable. There is no education about it when a kid is shepherded through courses to pass those “tough six hours” only to see them drop out after the national tournament once those millions have been earned for others. What’s the rush–you only have so much time to market athletic skills. Who are you to say he can’t do it when he is 17?? Continue reading
I was struck by a comment by my good friend Bob Boland at the College Sports Research Institute Conference in Chapel Hill, NC last week. I moderated a panel that included Craig Esherick, the former head men’s basketball coach at Georgetown, Boland, a former collegiate administrator, lawyer, sports agent, and now professor at NYU, Matt Denhart, an Ohio University undergrad representing the Center for College Affordability and Accountability, and Dr. Kadie Otto of Western Carolina, the current Executive Director of The Drake Group.
Bob made a comment regarding coaching salaries and athletic budgets in these tough economic times. He stated that he did not have a problem with coaches earning as much as they can because it is a free market. Bob is one of the smartest people I know and I certainly understand his rationale, and currently without an anti trust exemption coaches salaries cannot be capped. In a perfect capitalistic economic system this makes sense–but in my opinion intercollegiate athletics (primarily at the D One level) does not exist in a logical economic system given that the generators of the income do not share equitably, or in many cases not at all, in the profits of the enterprise that create the market salaries for coaches. Continue reading
I was deeply saddened to hear that Dr. Brand has pancreatic cancer and that the prognosis is not good. While Dr. Brand and I have disagreed vociferously on many issues in college athletics, it purpose, and certainly on the reform effort–let there be no doubt that there is no single person, including Walter Byers, who has had such a profound impact on the Association in making it better and aligning it with its true purpose. Dr. Brand’s passion for the athlete and fairness has made an archaic waiver process better and more athlete friendly, his push for academic reform has brought to the table discussions that were never spoken before, and his continued work with organizations like COIA and the Knight Commission on improving college athletics is commendable and laudable.
While Dr. Brand and I may disagree on the process to reforming college sports, at the end of the day we want the same thing and that is actual college students playing college sports. I do not believe there has ever been a President of the NCAA who wants it more, and who is willing to risk the political points to get it done.
I am not here to write an obituary of a great man who has given his life’s work to higher education and the betterment of it because he is still very much alive. We are all pulling for Myles to beat this and he certainly needs our thoughts and prayers. While he does need time, much more time, to be part of this world, his legacy is secure and his work with the NCAA will never be forgotten. Here’s hoping we have several more years of critical work done on the reform front and continued debate with Myles Brand on the subject, because I am convinced that without him–we would not even be having the discussion.
God Bless and Good Luck Myles–The Ohio University Community and so many others are pulling for you!!!