One of the victims in the growing arms race in big-time college sports is students. With university budgets tight and athletics programs unable to self-fund, schools are increasingly turning to student fees to fund skyrocketing athletics budgets.
For the second consecutive year, Rutgers University topped Bloomberg’s list of universities that provide the biggest subsidies for athletics. Rutgers moved $28.5 million from the university budget and student fees to the athletics department. With the $19.4 million that came specifically from the general budget, Rutgers could’ve hired about 256 assistant professors or 132 full professors, based on salary figures provided by the university.
William Dowling, an English and American Literature professor and long-time activist against big-time sports at Rutgers, recently won the 2012 Robert Maynard Hutchins Award, which is given annually by The Drake Group to someone who has shown courage in standing up for academic integrity in the face of commercialized sport. He recently told League of Fans that the faculty is working hard to stop the commercialized sports machine at Rutgers.
There is “serious alumni, faculty, and student opposition to the way the academic and intellectual values of the university are being prostituted to commercialized Div IA sports,” according to Dowling. (See: “Q&As with Leading Sports Activists: William Dowling)
Recently, the Rutgers faculty voted 174-3 to demand an end to funding the athletics program out of general university funds. As Dowling says, there is hope.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #26 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Fix Youth Sports? – John O’Sullivan is Founder and CEO of Changing the Game Project and author of “Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes and Giving Youth Sports Back to Our Kids.” We discuss overzealous adults in youth sports, the dangers of sport specialization, youth sports entrepreneurs and the profit-at-all-costs mindset, and the growing socio-economic gap in youth sports.
Follow on Facebook: @SportsForumPodcast
Episode #25 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Physical Education Should Be a Critical Component of K-12 School Design – Michael Horn is co-founder of the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation.
Episode #24 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Mental Health and Athletes: Ending the Stigma – Nathan Braaten and Taylor Ricci are the founders of Dam Worth It, a non-profit created to end the stigma around mental health at colleges and universities through sport, storytelling, and community creation.
Episode #23 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Olympian Benita Fitzgerald Mosley Talks Title IX, Youth Sports and the Olympics.
Episode #22 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Rethinking Sports Fandom with Author Craig Calcaterra – We discuss Calcaterra’s new book “Rethinking Fandom: How to Beat the Sports-Industrial Complex at Its Own Game” and explore new ways to be a fan.
Episode #21 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Chatting About a Broken Game With Baseball Writer Pedro Moura – Moura is a national baseball writer for Fox Sports. We discuss how and why the game of baseball is broken, what factors caused it, and offer a few thoughts on how to “fix” a great game.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
- League of Fans Sports Policy Director Ken Reed quoted in Washington Post column titled "What happened to P.E.? It’s losing ground in our push for academic improvement," by Jay Mathews
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
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