Tag Archives: gmu

Another Reason to Hate the BCS

I'm going to keep this simple: I hate big-tim college football's BCS.  There are many reasons for my hatred, not the least of which is that because of the BCS the national "champion" in football is determined in the same fashion that figure skaters and diving champions are crowned in the Olympics.  If you need more reasons than that to hate the BCS then all you need to do is read this Sports Illustrated article.  Here's a highlight for you academics out there:

Of the 120 athletic departments that play I-A football, 106 lost money in 2009, according to an NCAA report. Budget shortfalls forced the University of California in September to cut five sports. Virginia hit up students for $11.9 million in fees for the 2008–09 school year to offset athletic department operating expenses. Cincinnati reached two consecutive BCS bowls and still found itself $24 million in debt. All over the country, schools are turning to student fees, academic funds and taxpayer support to balance the athletic department's books, which helps explain the uptick in so-called pay games (Hey, LSU, good luck this Saturday against Louisiana-Monroe!), conference realignments and expansion of the men's basketball tournament.

Really, you need to read the article to see how bad this really is.

Personal aside: when I was at George Mason U back in the 80s the school was considering adding an intercollegiate football program, but eventually decided on building a Fine Arts Center.  Many students were aghast because we wanted a football team.  I mean, seriously, homecoming basketball games just don't do the trick.  If memory serves the school's president argued that the expense just wasn't worth it, though we students suspected that he'd used some inflated numbers since everyone knew he preferred the Fine Arts Center.  In retrospect I think he may have been right if they were looking at adding a D-1 program, but I'm still not convinced that a 1-AA program wouldn't have worked. Well, I'm proud to say that students at my alma mater didn't wait for the school's administration to put a team together.  In 1993 they started a club football team and it seems to be going pretty strong in the Seaboard Conference.  I have a lot of admiration for students who will go to that level of effort to play a game they truly love; to me they're true student-athletes.