Daily Archives: March 12, 2017

The Rutgers Way

Meet the Bizarro Butts-Mehre.

All of which brings us to the athletic department’s 2016 financial report to the N.C.A.A. The Star-Ledger obtained this document recently; it showed a blood-red deficit of $28.6 million. The 64-page report had a one-line notation: “Other Operating Revenue: $10,495,912.”

It turned out that the university bank quietly lent $10.5 million to the athletic department to keep it afloat and pay severance costs for expensive and failed coaches. That loan came weighted with an interest rate of 5.75 percent; the cost of repaying it will run north of $18 million, according to university documents.

Rutgers also diverted $11 million in student fees and $17.1 million from its general fund to cover the athletic shortfall. The average undergraduate now pays more than $300 in activities fees exclusively for the university’s N.C.A.A. teams…

Late last month, I requested an interview with the athletic director, Patrick Hobbs. A day later, I also asked to speak with the president, Robert Barchi. These requests were met with silence.

On Thursday, I asked again, and a spokeswoman offered an off-the-record interview with Hobbs. I declined. An email statement soon arrived, saying in part, “Rutgers Athletics will be in a position to generate a positive cash flow for the university after we receive our full share of Big Ten revenues in 2021.”

Let me translate: That the athletic department has been run with no regard for sound financial practice is a trifle. Soon enough, piles of dough from the Big Ten’s billion-dollar-plus television contract will be deposited on the front steps of the athletic department. Its take could amount to $40 million.

This is like handing Jesse James the keys to Fort Knox.

Yeah, Jim Delany sure can pick ’em.

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Filed under Big Ten Football, It's Just Bidness

Just when you thought it was safe to come out of the dorm room…

Athens-Clarke County’s finest strike again.

Georgia receiver Riley Ridley was arrested Saturday night on a charge of possessing less than an ounce of marijuana, according to the Athens-Clarke County jail web site.

Ridley was arrested at 10:05 p.m. on Saturday, and bailed out on $1,000 bond at 12:32 a.m. on Sunday. The Athens-Clarke County Police Department is listed as the arresting agency.

A rising sophomore, Ridley had 12 catches for 238 yards and two touchdowns last season. He is expected to compete for a starting position this year.

A marijuana arrest that is a misdemeanor usually brings a one-game suspension, per UGA’s student-athlete handbook. Georgia opens the season against Appalachian State.

I feel safer already.

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UPDATE:  And lest we forget…

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football