By Ken Reed
Allen Sack, director of the Institute for Sport Management at the University of New Haven and president of the Drake Group, a faculty consortium fighting for academic integrity in the face of big-time college sports, said Penn State, while deserving severe punishment, is a scapegoat for a college sports system that’s out of control.
“There was a heinous crime … Not only did they have this pedophile running amok — that could happen anywhere … (but) much more disturbing to me is that … it’s leadership tried to cover that up,” said Sack. “That is a major problem … endemic of a nationwide problem of big-time college sports swamping basic academic integrity. Penn State University threw its academic standards, its academic morality, its academic values, under the bus. Why? Because of big-time college sports, that’s why.”
Sack wants a Congressional hearing to examine the tax-exempt status that highly commercialized big-time sports receive under the umbrella of their universities.
“Disclosure is the key thing,” said Sack. “What we have now is a veil of silence that has fallen down over big-time college sports … Let’s look at big-time college sports today and the inordinate role and influence and power of (those) sports in effecting university academic policy.”
If the Penn State corruption could happen at “one of the finest schools in the country, then what’s happening at the other schools?” wondered Sack.
Sack believes the recent conference realignment frenzy, done solely for commercial reasons, shows no concern for the athletes.
“Can you imagine how that (conference realignment) improves the education of college athletes?” asks Sack.
The NCAA’s stated purpose is to maintain athletes as an integral part of the student body and to retain a clear line of demarcation between collegiate and professional sports.
“On both of those particular issues, the NCAA has failed miserably,” said Sack.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
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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.
Episode #20 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Coaching Youth and High School Sports Based On What’s Best for the Athlete’s Holistic Development – We chat with long-time youth, high school and college basketball coach Jim Huber.
Episode #19 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Capturing the Spirit of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League with Anika Orrock – We discuss the hoops AAGPFL women had to jump through to play the game they loved as well as the long-term impact and legacy they have in advancing sports opportunities for girls and women.
Episode #18 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking about the 50th Anniversary of Title IX and the Lia Thomas Controversy with Nancy Hogshead-Makar – Hogshead-Makar is a triple gold medalist in swimming, a civil rights attorney and CEO of Champion Women.
Episode #17 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports With Legendary New York Times Sports Columnist Robert Lipsyte – We chat about Lipsyte’s amazing career and some of the athletes he covered.
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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