Jack Swarbrick, Notre Dame’s AD, is making waaaay too much sense here:
“You’ve got to stay grounded in this analogy to other students,” Swarbrick told CBSSports.com. “There are students on campus making a lot of money because they’ve launched a business. A classic example: Students are making great money in some internship, and I’m telling my football players they can’t leave for the summer. Where’s the equity there?”
“If we could get ourselves more grounded in the notion we wouldn’t have these problems,” Swarbrick said during a panel. “If we’re going to do something different than for the normal student, the bar for doing that ought to be really high. If we had that in place, we never would have had a limitation on the cost of attendance because a merit scholar doesn’t have that limitation. We did that for athletic reasons.
“But if our standard had been what’s the rule for other students, capturing name, image and likeness outside team activity, the musician at school doesn’t have that limitation. I’m not sure why the student-athlete should, either. I don’t find it inconsistent at all to say we need to get ourselves grounded back in that. I think it would contribute to reducing so many of the problems we have which really spring from this situation we created when we say they’re not going to be the same as other students.”
Not that he’s expecting a groundswell of support from his peers.
When asked whether other administrators in college sports feel the way he does, Swarbrick laughed and replied, “Probably not.”
All he had to do was listen to his fellow speakers to get that impression.
As college sports faces an uncertain future due to ongoing litigation and interest from Congress, numerous athletic directors paraded onto a podium Wednesday at the IMG Intercollegiate Athletics Forum to talk about their worries.
They fretted about college sports becoming pro or semipro. They got frustrated that they’re communicating their positive story well enough. They bemoaned Congress, the courts and the media for getting into their business.
“Any time everybody gets in your business, you’ve got a crisis,” Vanderbilt athletic director David Williams said.
Hey, David? Maybe you ought to consider acting in a way that doesn’t invite them in.