“No one in their right mind should have a football player’s schedule, and go to school.”

Josh Rosen, speaking truth to power:

B/R: Look at the bright side: You got a chance to heal, maybe catch up on school.

Rosen: Don’t get me started. I love school, but it’s hard. It’s cool because we’re learning more applicable stuff in my major (Economics)—not just the prerequisite stuff that’s designed to filter out people. But football really dents my ability to take some classes that I need. There are a bunch of classes that are only offered one time. There was a class this spring I had to take, but there was a conflict with spring football, so…

B/R: So football wins out?

Rosen: Well, you can say that.

B/R: So that’s reality for student-athletes playing at a major university?

Rosen: I didn’t say that, you did. (Laughs.) Look, football and school don’t go together. They just don’t. Trying to do both is like trying to do two full-time jobs. There are guys who have no business being in school, but they’re here because this is the path to the NFL. There’s no other way. Then there’s the other side that says raise the SAT eligibility requirements. OK, raise the SAT requirement at Alabama and see what kind of team they have. You lose athletes and then the product on the field suffers.

I’m shocked, shocked that someone who plays the game would suggest that.  I’d be honestly shocked, though, if any school had a thoughtful rebuttal to this:

Any time any player puts into school will take away from the time they could put into football. They don’t realize that they’re getting screwed until it’s too late. You have a bunch of people at the universities who are supposed to help you out, and they’re more interested in helping you stay eligible. At some point, universities have to do more to prepare players for university life and help them succeed beyond football. There’s so much money being made in this sport. It’s a crime to not do everything you can to help the people who are making it for those who are spending it.

Note he’s not asking for a paycheck, just an honest effort to avoid exploiting the help.  Good luck with that… hey, look!  Waterfalls and shiny lockers!

The truly sad thing about the piece is the number of NFL folks who are freaked about a kid who is open like that.

One scout says Rosen doesn’t have a love for the game—that he lacks a certain fire and passion.

“I don’t love the game? Really?” Rosen says. “If I didn’t love the game, I wouldn’t be out here getting my ass kicked.”

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60 Comments

Filed under College Football

60 responses to ““No one in their right mind should have a football player’s schedule, and go to school.”

  1. Greg

    Well, I guess he could give up football and his scholarship & focus on academics….or he could just complain.

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    • 3rdandGrantham

      Did you not read the article?

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      • Greg

        YES….I….did. Mr. Dreamland:

        “Dreamland actually is a UGA thing – the founder is a UGA alum who donates quite a bit to the university.”:

        3rdandGrantham, 8/8/17

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          Ok..I’m not sure how this is germane whatsoever. Obviously you didn’t read it, otherwise you wouldn’t have said what you said.

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          • Greg

            Played a season and a half in college before having to quit (injuries). Worked full time & went to school full time to finish…. I had no help. My wife had a scholarship (soccer) at a 4 year university and will tell you that she was lucky….so would her parents.

            I now have one daughter in a 4 year university and another to start in a couple of years. College ain’t cheap….& if you have a free ride, my thinking is you should show more appreciation rather than complaining about the roadblocks….adapt and overcome…or just give up your scholly and work to send your way through, let Mom & Dad do it, or quit. The world is full of complainers…some just do not know how good they have it.

            A little more information than I wanted to give up on here….but I just wanted to let you know that I read it.

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            • Oh give me a break. You owe everything to your “white privilege”. You didn’t have to earn a thing, it was all given to you.

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            • But you’re missing the entire point of Rosen’s argument. He;s saying the fight to keep a kid eligible just so they can play, and not attain knowledge/skills thereby makes the “degree” a meaningless piece of paper. The kid isn’t complaining, he’s making a point. There’s a major difference between the two that, for whatever reason, you’ve (spectacularly) failed to see.

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              • Greg

                No, I get it….still sounds like he is complaining:

                “Look, football and school don’t go together. They just don’t. Trying to do both is like trying to do two full-time jobs”. ….Sounds like he is complaining. He knew what he was getting into when he accepted the scholarship.

                ” No one in their right mind should have a football player’s schedule, and go to school” ….Again, sounds like he is complaining…he knew beforehand what the deal was.

                “What did they get for laying their body on the line play after play while universities make millions upon millions?” …..the implication is there, sure as hell sounds like he is complaining again to me.

                “But certain schools are easier than others”…..is he complaining (“life ain’t fair”)??

                Again, college ain’t cheap….show more appreciation rather than complaining about all the roadblocks. He has it better than a lot of folks. If it is too tough, maybe he should transfer to one of those easier schools he mentions. Life is about choices and what you make of it. Quit complaining about it, adjust and make some decisions….or just complain.

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            • So if a student-athlete has a free ride, there’s no limit on what the school can do?

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            • 3rdandGrantham

              Ok…I don’t know how this is remotely germane to what Rosen said and your response whatsoever.

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    • That’s… one way of looking at it. I guess.

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    • PTC DAWG

      I came here to say just that…nobody is making him play football.

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  2. Hogbody Spradlin

    Raising the SAT requirement wouldn’t hurt Bama. They’d just rig the test scores like everything else.

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    • Tlkdawg

      I had the very same thought when I read that. Nothing will get in the way of Bama football, at least, not while the little general is in charge

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  3. 3rdandGrantham

    Good for him – he’s 100% right. And this is coming from a guy who is at one of the very best public schools in the country, where football plays second fiddle to bball with lukewarm at best passion from the fan base and admin. Imagine the skewed pressure at one of the many football factories instead.

    This is why I’ve always laughed at fans who repeat those absurd NCAA talking points in commercials about all those athletes getting their degree. Getting your Housing, Communications, or Child and Family Dev. degree does absolutely nothing for you in the real world after college. They are BS degrees that require little effort, hence the reason why so many athletes are pushed into these areas.

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  4. Walt

    It was probably Rosen’s cosmopolitan bias that shocked you.

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  5. ASEF

    Agree 100% on better preparing players for the life of a student-athlete. It puts insane pressures on time management and efficient study habits, two skills most 18 and 19 year olds have never had to develop.

    Fun note: the central figure in the UNC scandal got her doctorate from UCLA in sports and ethics.

    I think people miss something important in this argument: the underlying emotional divide between athletics and academics on campuses. A lot of academics, especially the ones at top research institutions, scoff at the athletics enterprise and do nothing to support it. Witness the one class taught at one time. That’s a pretty easy fix if anyone in academics cared to fix it. But too few universities have the sort of buy-in from academics that makes those sorts of accommodations possible.

    That hostility and resentment towards athletics from the Academic side was the driving force behind the UNC scandal.

    And it’s amazing to me how deep it runs. My kid could be earning an associate’s degree in high school for free, giving him two years of college credits coming out of high school. But the community college who offers the program in this county banned high school athletes, forcing them to choose between their sport and the high-school/college hybrid. Why? Too many professors didn’t want to deal with students missing class time for away games. That’s a community college.

    Alabama has kids meet with professors during their recruiting. It’s part of their pitch – the entire University is behind the success of the football program and the players in it. As much as people like to mock the school’s passion for football, it has helped them solve one of the more difficult issues faced by sports programs in college environments.

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    • Otto

      But if you read the blog below where coaches were interviewed, posters here believe Bama is one of the cleaner programs……

      If Auburn committed violations with Cam they were wiped under the rug due equally incriminating dirt on Bama.

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    • The one class taught at one time should be moved around to accommodate one football player?

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      • ASEF

        1 possible solution, but probably screws someone else.

        Teach two sections that semester? Offer it each semester instead of annually? Allow a student to work out an independent studies that satisfies the program requirements in the course? Create a summer school or mini-mester version of the course?

        Grad schools are doing these things all the time if they are chasing a wide enough commuter base — all to accommodate a fraction of students representing UCLA’s athletics programs.

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    • Got Cowdog

      ASEF, we have the dual enrollment in our area, and unless I am mistaken that’s how DW graduated in three. I will encourage my youngest to do the same. His older brother does as well, he is a rising senior at UGA. If the kid can handle it it is a great value for the kid and his family. I hate that your CC is so short sighted, but why even mention athletics to them?

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      • ASEF

        The high school on campus is part of the county system. If he attends there, he’s automatically off the teams back at his home high school, even though he would end his day there after spending his mornings taking courses at the early college.

        I’m sure there’s more to it than that, but it looks ridiculous from a short distance.

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  6. Rosen’s comments were a breath of fresh air. I love hearing young people speak with thoughtfulness. And as you pointed out, the part about the rush to keep guys on the field rather than helping them attain skills/knowledge that will help them in life is the biggest issue in major collegiate athletics.

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  7. Hobnail_Boot

    You know what else is like having 2 full time jobs? You know, actually working a full time job while in school. I know I’m not the only one who had to do that.

    Cry me a river on your way to your million, Josh.

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    • Let me make sure I’m following you here. Rosen isn’t asking for money. He’s taking the NCAA at its word; he’s only asking that it be more than lip service.

      And this is a bridge too far for you?

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      • ASEF

        Actually, he’s just asking UCLA. They don’t need NCAA approval to provide their Rosens and Lonzo Balls a better academic experience.

        I’m not being snippy. This is fundamentally a ground-up reform, not a top-down regulatory opportunity. But Rosen is certainly helping to create that groundswell of pressure.

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        • “There are guys who have no business being in school, but they’re here because this is the path to the NFL. There’s no other way. Then there’s the other side that says raise the SAT eligibility requirements. OK, raise the SAT requirement at Alabama and see what kind of team they have. You lose athletes and then the product on the field suffers.”

          I must have missed the UCLA mention there.

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          • ASEF

            The personal problems he describes can be addressed by UCLA for UCLA sports participants. Today.

            And that quote proves my point about it being a ground-up solution. The University of Alabama occupies a very different space than UCLA. UCLA is by definition an exclusive campus within a system of campuses serving a state that could be its own country. Alabama is furiously trying to keep its brightest students in state and recruit the brightest from other states. Alabama football is actually helping those efforts considerably. Raising the minimum SAT score high enough to fix the problem Rosen describes at UCLA would probably exceed Alabama’s student body average.

            And I fundamentally disagree with Rosen over the SAT score thing anyway. I’ve seen kids with SATs and ACTs in the top percentiles washing out of college. My wife, who came from a double-wide and rural high school with an SAT that wouldn’t sniff UCLA, double majored, got an MA in accounting, and now serves as a CFO consultant for some very large medical companies. College and career are 100% an exercise in executive function, not cognitive capacity. That’s where the emphasis on SAT completely misses the mark and why some colleges are starting to ignore it entirely.

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            • Alabama is just a name he picked as an example. He’s criticizing the system as a whole.

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              • ASEF

                I get that. And I get that it’s easier to lob grenades at a school 3000 miles away than, say, his own locker room or the basketball program’s parade of 1-and-dones.

                The problem here is “the NCAA” in that it afflicts just about all of the NCAA’s constituent members – but I don’t see how the NCAA could impose anything that would really solve the problem across the board. UCLA has to want to do better by its athletes. And so too UNC. And so too Georgia….

                But yeah, systemic pressure for a systemic problem. Just pointing out the solutions have to be case by case,

                Like

      • Hobnail_Boot

        On that point, I agree with him. Hold student-athletes to the same academic entrance requirements as other students.

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        • Doggoned

          It would certainly level the playing field, but spectator appeal — and revenue — would suffer greatly.

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          • Macallanlover

            Respectfully disagree, it would not suffer at all. If the game is competitive, fans will be thrilled. The difference would be minimal during the season, biggest change might be on draft nights in the spring.

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            • Doggoned

              I hope that would be the case; the question is how much the talent level could drop and still maintain the TV money and the mega-fan bases. There may be more Aaron Murray types than I’d expect among the top players, but I have to wonder how many kids on the team would even be students at UGA if they had to meet the same entrance standards as your typical high school grad in the state of Georgia.
              My pal, a lifer Tech fan, says a huge difference between recruiting at the two schools is that every Tech recruit has to take two calculus courses during his or her freshman year.
              No way around it, he says. That’s why UGA will always have better athletes on the whole, and why he’s not ashamed at all about the triple option.

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              • Gaskilldawg

                Your Tech fan friend may say that, but it does not mean it’s true. Year’s ago the AJC did a story about the 4 year courseload of a player at UGA and the 4 year courseload of a player at Tech. They used a real player from each.
                The word “calculus” never appeared on the Tech player’s class schedule until senior year, after the season.

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                • Doggoned

                  Yes, I know Tech used to have an Industrial Arts major that included a lot of their then-star athletes. My friend swears they can’t do that anymore. Can anybody, preferably a legitimate bug, shed any light on this? Gotta be some difference in entrance requirements, I would assume.

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                  • Debby Balcer

                    My oldest is a chemE who graduated from Tech in 2006. She took , calc 1, 2 and 3 in high school through joint entollment. There are majors at Tech that do not require calc 2. My youngest is a UGA grad school grad.

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              • Calculus 2 at tech must not have taught Reggie Ball how to count to 4.

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            • Greg

              Agree….I know that I would.

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  8. There was a Facebook back and forth that went viral a year or so ago and I feel like many in this thread are the “uncle” arguing that these young kids are just whiners. Rosen is talking about issues that are real and worth looking into and yet all one side wants to do is dismiss it as whining and move on.

    https://www.someecards.com/news/so-that-happened/millennial-woman-free-stuff/

    Like

  9. W Cobb Dawg

    As a guy who worked in construction all day and paid my way thru night school over almost 7 years, I’m sympathetic to Rosen’s overworking conundrum. But players still have some latitude. They can elect to attend a smaller school, and/or a school that has a higher emphasis on academics, and/or redshirt a year to acclimate. Paying players doesn’t solve this problem, although it don’t hurt.

    Thomas Brown and Aaron Murray had double majors AND graduated early. Say what you will about bama, but plenty of their players graduate earlier than the typical 4 year timeframe.

    I think it comes down to dedication and intestinal fortitude. And that’s what separates most of the guys who make it big from the also-rans.

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    • I’d bet a decent chunk of change Rosen makes it big on and off of the field. I think it says a lot about our society that anytime someone wants to debate big issues a large segment (not you, but others) want to attack the person bringing up the issue rather than discuss the issue itself.

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      • ASEF

        If by “society” you mean any culture with deep roots in the Greek golden age, then sure.

        Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle were making the same complaint 2500 years ago. And they made Socrates drink hemlock. So we’ve come at least a little ways since then 🙂

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      • Doggoned

        Yes, it’s a shame that the academics vs. athletics issue can’t be intelligently and cordially debated. But it’s no surprise, since serious cultural issues such as healthcare, gun control, abortion, gender rights, etc. are never discussed except in yelling matches that help nothing. As a species, we haven’t matured very much.

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    • Greg

      Congrats to you, life ain’t always easy….it is what you make of it.

      Like

  10. Very valid points he raises, and the reaction is to be expected: Whiner, loser, or some one trying to raise some points. I am on the side of valid points-especially the training for life. Then again, “as a species, we have not matured much”-yep and do not see any maturing happening soon.

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  11. 69Dawg

    The guy is just saying what everybody knows, big time college football is a business. The NCAA and all the member schools are hypocrites and most people know it. No organization likes an employee that points out that the Emperor has no clothes and the NFL will handle this upstart for it’s minor league by talking him down as a pro prospect as the colleges all shout Amen.

    Like

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