Monday, January 29, 2007

One Can Only Marvel...

Would Alberto Gonzales be a good choice to sit on the Supreme Court and make decisions about the Constitution?

Would Don Rumsfeld be a good choice to sit on a panel investigating abuses at Abu Ghraib or Guantanamo?

Would OurLeader be a good NCAA board of directors member to oversee the athletics policies for Division I schools?

[One could also ask: Would a MedSchoolDean be a good Pepsi board member, but that has already been discussed.]

Mr. Bonzo thinks not on all counts.

Nevertheless, the Daily reports

January 29, 2007

Bruininks joins NCAA board
The board of directors sets the athletics policies for Division I schools.

The board, comprised of 18 presidents and chancellors from universities that compete in Division I athletics, is the final authority on athletic policies for schools in the division.

Richard Weinberg, a faculty representative to the athletics department and a former member of a number of regional and national collegiate athletic committees, said he thinks Bruininks was appointed because of the value he places on athletics and academics.

"I think that the fact that Bob Bruininks was selected among the presidents of the Big Ten indicates their appreciation of his ability to carry the torch for what intercollegiate athletics is and what it should be about," he said.

[ Ah, excuse me sir. “Meanwhile, as the Star Tribune reported last fall, academics among the Gophers football team under Mason were at the bottom in the Big Ten, with more at-risk students admitted into the Minnesota program than just about any Big Ten school, and with graduation rates the lowest in the conference, especially among African-American athletes.” link ]

Bruininks said he looks forward to addressing a number of issues facing student-athletes, universities and their athletics departments.

"One of my key concerns will be the academic issues related to student learning, academic progress and graduation," he said. "We need to do a much better job in ensuring that our students actually graduate when they come as Division I student-athletes."

Bruininks said the high and rising costs of maintaining intercollegiate athletics programs also worry him.

"We ought to be able to compete athletically without paying somebody $3 (million) to $4 million a year to coach a football or basketball team," he said. "This is sort of an arms race in athletics."

He said the multimillion dollar price tag for recent shake-ups in the athletics department at the University was large, but he doesn't see it as uncommon.

[And is this desirable? And what does he intend to do about it?]

"No one really likes to pay excessively high salaries and no one really likes to buy out long-term contracts, but that is pretty typical of what is happening nationally," Bruininks said. "What has happened here is not excessive in relationship to these national trends."

[Ah, I’m afraid that it is excessive, and someone - OurLeader ? - is going to have to do something about it. Bruininks finds himself paying more than $3 million to one coach, Glen Mason, to leave, while needing to pay another coach probably more than $1 million to direct a football program that has shown it can't succeed in the Big Ten. Bruininks is fending off state legislators who wonder why he's paying millions for sports matters out of one pocket while seeking funding for academic programs for his other pocket. It's all the same pair of maroon-and-gold pants, of course.”
(link) Mr. Bonzo has written earlier about the salary of the new coach and his assistants.]

Perhaps the NCAA should appoint, instead of OurLeader, some BigTen university president whose athletic graduation rates for minority students are not so shameful. Northwestern or Penn State, anyone? Doesn't OurLeader have enough to do in getting our own athletic house in order and other ambitious aspirations without trying to do a job in which his credibility is already suspect?

Trying to be cheerful in the midst of craziness, I remain,

Your faithful servant,

Mr. Bonzo

1 comment:

Mr. B. said...

Mr. Bonzo is having spam problems.
He will stomp them as time permits.
Real comments are always welcome.