Daily Archives: March 2, 2015

Mike Slive on freshman ineligibility

It sounds like Jim Delany’s got some convincing to do.

Hard to argue with any of that.  But if the Big Ten thinks it knows best, I’m sure Slive won’t object to that conference going its own way on the matter.



Filed under Academics? Academics., SEC Football, The NCAA

The defense’s next step

Something from Ed Aschoff’s post today on SEC spring preview questions:

8. Are any teams in the SEC really pegged for a national championship run?
The SEC has a handful of contenders, but none of them are polished to this point. Two favorites to watch? How about Auburn and Georgia? The Bulldogs still need to find a quarterback but might be the most complete SEC [sic] otherwise. Running back Nick Chubb seems willing to carry the offense, while the defense should fill its current holes nicely this spring.

That’s quite an assumption, isn’t it?

I mean, Pruitt did a good job last season masking the deficiencies in the secondary.  As mentioned earlier today, he’s got some real talent to work with at outside linebacker.  I’m also a believer in second-year improvements.  But he’s got a monumental job replacing a lot of experience on the defensive line.  He’s also got to replace two inside linebackers who, despite their flaws, were mainstays for the defense.

At least he’s got experienced players to plug the gaps created with the departures of Herrera and Wilson.  On the defensive line, though, he’s got to find some freshmen who can, if not start, at least shore up the two-deep significantly.  How realistic do you think Aschoff is being here?


Filed under Georgia Football

In loco parentis

An Arkansas player is charged with DWI and Bert takes away his driving privileges.

Maybe next time, he’ll be grounded, too.


Filed under Bert... uh... Bret Bielema, Crime and Punishment

Oh, so now you care about “legal responsibility”.

Kinda funny to hear that sort of defense from the NCAA after Mark Emmert moved heaven and earth to penalize Penn State.

Maybe freshman ineligibility will fix this.

1 Comment

Filed under Academics? Academics., See You In Court, The NCAA

Why it’s hard to take Jim Delany at face value.

Andy Staples tries to be fair-minded about Delany’s stance on freshman ineligibility, but here’s where the buck stops:

… Unfortunately for Delany, reality has shifted since 1966. Back then, college sports were a business but not a multibillion-dollar business. Coaches, athletic directors and conference commissioners in the most powerful leagues made decent enough wages by the standard of the day, but nowhere near the megabucks they make now. No commissioner would have envisioned that he’d be the de facto head of a cable television network.

But that’s what Delany is now. He has made millions off college athletics. He created the Big Ten Network. He will be the one watching as ESPN and FOX trip over one another to throw money at the Big Ten when its first-tier media rights become available next year. In fact, it’s easy to argue no one is more responsible for turning college sports into the cutthroat business it is today than Delany. It also doesn’t help that Delany and his fellow commissioners needed a host of federal lawsuits to convince them to give the football and basketball players whose efforts produce all of the money their first raise—if you can call the cost-of-attendance stipends coming down the pipe a raise—since the 1940s. When an administrator suggests anything that appears to take something away from the athletes upon whom the business is built, he will be accused of having ulterior motives.

Particularly when said administrator has a track record of overstating his case.  And when his latest stand is conveniently limited to the two sports which generate the main part of college athletics revenue, that doesn’t help.

Another thing Staples touches on that deserves more attention is what the end game of returning to a model where freshman football and men’s basketball student-athletes couldn’t see the field would look like.

… The idea is that players would have fewer responsibilities as freshmen and would have more time to acclimate to college life and college classes. The most pie-in-the-sky model would severely limit the amount of time the athletic programs could require of their freshmen. Yet the truth is no matter what the rules say coaches would still force players to do everything except play in the games. So, realistically, the players would miss out on the most fun part of being an athlete and only get a few hours back in return. That’s hardly a fair trade. Plus, most coaches would want to field freshman teams that would then play one another. That’s what happened before 1972, and it would probably happen again.

Given that we live in a world of “voluntary” summer practices and 20-hour per week limitations that are conveniently worked around, I think that’s spot on.  Most of these kids aren’t enrolling at State U for the chance to become Rhodes Scholars, and their coaches aren’t expecting that either. They need those kids preparing for their sophomore years on the field.  If all ineligibility boils down to is these kids having a few extra hours on their hands on a few Saturday afternoons in the fall, it’s hard to see how that magically translates into full-blown scholarhood.  But maybe those of you who think Delany’s on to something here can explain how it would help more.


Filed under Academics? Academics., The NCAA

An embarrassment of riches

Georgia is so deep at outside linebacker that Pruitt in essence is going to have to create a new spot to get as many of the OLBs on the field at the same time as he can.

This, too.


Filed under Georgia Football

What goes up, keeps going up.

Here’s a look at what SEC schools paid their head coaches in 2006 and what they’re paying today.  It’s pretty frickin’ jarring to see the comparison.

And that doesn’t include the money these schools have paid to their fired coaches.

You may think it’s insane, but it’s actually rational.  The increasing amount of money flowing in isn’t going to the labor force, but it has to go somewhere, and if you’re competitive, that means coaching salaries and facilities.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

“What people do know there is a lot of money [available] through athletics.”

I was going to make this the subject of an Envy and Jealousy post, but it’s so damned good on the merits that it deserves to be taken for what it says even more than how it’s written.

Start with this:

Apologists for the NCAA cartel tend to assume that they’re advocating for athletes being treated like other students. But this is completely untrue. What they’re defending is in fact a set of unique and extraordinary burdens being placed on athletes. Virtually no other students are banned from receiving compensation from voluntary third parties, and this is because it won’t make a lick of sense. Why on earth shouldn’t a music student be able to take a paying gig or a journalism student sell a story? Similarly, we don’t claim that scholarship students working as RAs or in the bookstore can’t be compensated, or that staff and faculty who get tuition vouchers for family members don’t need to be additionally compensated for their work. These rules aren’t about ensuring that athletes are “really” students or whatever; they’re about attempting to preserve competitive balance. And this isn’t a good reason to allow athletes to be exploited, even before we get to the fact that the NCAA doesn’t have anything remotely resembling competitive balance even with these rules.
[Emphasis added.]

If anything, the NCAA’s amateurism protocol exacerbates that.  The money that rolls in to the P5 schools is spent on coaches and facilities in a way that mid-major schools can’t match.  If the money flow were spent directly on student-athlete compensation, at least some mid-major programs might stand a better chance of attracting good athletes – no, they couldn’t match the depth of an SEC program, for instance, but they could offer a viable option for kids who might otherwise be facing a more marginal career at an SEC program.

And that’s why Dennis Dodd’s cheerleading for the schools’ pending burst of generosity (“The average oboe player on a music scholarship doesn’t have a $60,000 insurance premium available through the NCAA Student Assistance Fund. Jameis Winston did.”) misses the mark.  That oboe player isn’t prevented from getting paid by third parties.  Winston was.  And like it or not, what Winston could have gotten for himself in an open marketplace exceeds that $60,000 premium payment by a helluva lot.

Then there’s this rebuttal to Morgan Burke’s “What’s changed?” bullshit:

Finally, defenses of the NCAA tend to be rife with a rhetorical technique we’ve discussed recently: someone with an indefensible position changing the subject to an allegedly superior alternative that isn’t actually on offer. The obvious problem for NCAA apologists that Paul’s post raises is why athletes should be forbidden cash compensation — not only by universities but by third parties — because of the Noble Ideals of Amateurism and the Sanctity of the Groves of Academe while everybody else involved with the NCAA is allowed to fill up wheelbarrows full of cash and deposit them in university-provided cars and drive off to get a university-provided oil change. One answer is to say that all of the other NCAA-related profit-taking should be stopped. The obvious problem is that it’s not going to be, and in the meantime we have to treat athletes based on the system as it is. If coaches start getting paid like associate professors of English and the NCAA gives its games to networks for free while banning advertising and ticket prices are capped at $10, we can talk about whether scholarships are adequate compensation. (We still don’t need to talk about bans on third party compensation, because these are just terrible policy under any possible system of college athletics.) Until then, players should not be forbidden from getting any compensation they’re able to negotiate.

Of course, first they have to be allowed to negotiate, but put that aside.  The players are treated like amateurs, but they’re the only parties in the game that are.  And with each passing day, it’s harder and harder to see the justification for that.

Not that the schools won’t try.  As Burke himself can attest, letting the players have more of the revenue stream they help generate is something of a zero-sum game.  And schools would rather not slice that pie up any more than they have to.


UPDATE:  Andy Schwarz has a little more on the Purdue “expense” transfer.


Filed under The NCAA

A career path to watch

I mentioned before that (aside from Mike Bobo, of course), there were three offseason head coaching hires I found particularly intriguing.  One of those is Buffalo’s Lance Leipold, who amassed a ridiculous 106-6 record as the head coach at Division III Wisconsin-Whitewater.

Matt Melton posts that Leipold’s career suggests that the move will be a success, and not just because of that gaudy win-loss mark.

How does he measure up based on the three variables? Well, he spent eight years at Wisconsin Whitewater which is a solid run and makes him about average experience wise when compared to the lower-division hires examined in the study. His winning percentage of nearly 95% is tops by a healthy margin (Paul Johnson won 86% of his games in five seasons at Georgia Southern) and his games above .500 is twenty more than Brian Kelly accumulated in 13 seasons at Grand Valley State. If you are hiring a lower-division coach to lead your program, they don’t come much better than Lance Leipold. Add in the fact that Buffalo was probably a little better than their record indicated last year, and it’s easy to foresee a return to the postseason for the Bulls. As always, nothing guaranteed, but Buffalo appears to have made a great hire, even if he is likely at worst to double his number of career losses by the time he leaves upstate New York.

If he clicks, that will likely be a short time.


Filed under Stats Geek!

The hits keep rolling in.

Visits at GTP in January and February managed to reach the million mark.  That is amazing to me.

Thanks to all of you for the attention.


Filed under GTP Stuff