Friday, January 9, 2015

Academics First, Then Athletics

The Chronicle of Higher Education
January 5th, 2015

The Division I-A football bowl season has begun and will culminate with the first national-championship game. Conferences have been realigned to accommodate media markets, Division I governance rests in the hands of a few conferences, and soon legal decisions will determine whether these athletes are employees and eligible for a range of institutional benefits. Intercollegiate athletics has entered a new era.
Notably absent from these decisions, though, is how the changes, over time, will affect the primary academic mission of higher education and the role of college athletics. Absent a real connection with the academic mission, institutions risk underwriting an athletics establishment that at its highest competitive level is a fully commercialized enterprise. Economic power will become the dominant force in predicting athletics success.

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