Category Archives: Political Wankery

“… Some guys are upset about it, but it’s above our pay grade…”

I think many of you missed the point I was trying to make when I posted something about the Missouri legislative proposal that’s a knee jerk reaction to the threat of a players’ strike.

First off, as Dennis Dodd noted, it’s not about taxpayer money.

It should be noted scholarships at Missouri are paid for by donors and other sources. Public money is not used.

#ConcernedStudent1950 pitched tents in the middle of campus to bring awareness to their issue. They were joined at times by faculty who supported their cause.

Of course, you could always try to argue they weren’t serious about what they were doing.  I mean, you could.

Nobody would accuse Brattin of acting out, right?

More importantly, think about what one of Brattin’s cohorts is implying when he says,

“Those football players were way out of line,” Basye said. “They had a responsibility to the university and to the football program to play.”

Can you say J-O-B?  I thought you could.  Put it this way:

We here at the blog were curious what this sort of legislation — were it to pass — would mean for the structure of the NCAA as we know it.

If athletes are truly “student-athletes” as the NCAA stresses, would they not also have the right to protest without having their funds revoked, just like any other student?

Missouri’s athletic department has not responded to requests for comment. The NCAA, through a spokesperson, said it “will not have a comment.”

I’m sure the NCAA is thrilled.

Even more bluntly,

“… This is a public institution. We continually say that college athletes are students when, in fact, we treat them like employees. The reason why athletes may eventually be defined as employees is by situations like this. No other student at the University of Missouri — I can guarantee it — would have lost any type of financial aid had they stood up and protested this. Whether somebody agrees with it or not, that’s not a rule in America. People have a constitutional right. You have that right as a student.

“I was just stunned that, as a veteran and a congressman in a leadership position, it was not a smart move to do. I just found it one of the more ridiculous thing, that you’d actually take away a school reward — because that’s what it is. It’s supposed to be about education — and you’re essentially saying ‘you’re an employee and, if you don’t do what we say, we’re going to take away your pay.’ Congratulations to this buffoon. He has now just, again, put another nail in the ‘student-athlete’ coffin by trying to do this…”

Eh, I have faith in Rep. Brattin’s ability to propose a law for that, too.  Smaller government, for the win!

(h/t Bill Connelly)


UPDATE:  A quote from the other sponsor of the bill may do an even better job of getting my point across.

According to the Kansas City Star, Bahr said: “If they have a contract to perform certain duties, and they violate that contract … then it’s not an issue of the First Amendment. It’s an issue of contract law. They failed to uphold that contract.”

Contract, eh?  If it walks like a job and talks like a job, then…


UPDATE #2:  Minor details are a bitch, y’all.


UPDATE #3:  Per the AP,

A Missouri lawmaker has withdrawn a bill that sought to strip scholarships from college athletes who go on strike or refuse to play for reasons unrelated to health.

Republican state Rep. Rick Brattin dropped the 5-day-old legislation Wednesday. He says he introduced the measure last Friday merely to entice dialogue about what he considers “an extremely important topic.”

Uh huh.


Filed under Political Wankery

Shut up and play.

A bill has been introduced in the Missouri legislature that “Provides that any college athlete on scholarship who refuses to play for a reason unrelated to health shall have his or her scholarship revoked”.

Because, freedom.

(h/t Bill Connelly)




UPDATE #2:  The bill’s author has it in for Gary Pinkel, too.

The bill, which as of Monday night had yet to be posted in full, would also fine a head coach for siding with the players in such a situation. Brattin criticized Pinkel for aligning with his players. Shortly after doing so, Pinkel retired due to health reasons.

“Whenever they go and refuse to play and hold our school and our organization hostage by refusal, it’s completely ridiculous,” Brattin said. “I shouldn’t even have to be sponsoring a bill like this.

“What a disgrace to Missouri.”

He continued: “I think it falls squarely upon the coach who gave the anointed blessing to this type of behavior. If they want to engage in this type of behavior, do it on their own time.”


Filed under Look For The Union Label, Political Wankery

You think Mark Richt has burned up good will before?

I can’t think of a more guaranteed way to tarnish a legacy than to do this.


Filed under Political Wankery

The Lord giveth.

Remember this minor kerfuffle over Richt’s brother-in-law?  A real threat to the Republic, that was.

Welp, Casey Cagle’s using it to raise money to run for governor.

You see, Cagle has apparently begun organizing his 2018 campaign for governor. Around saving religion and college football. At the same time.

Here’s the headline of the fundraising letter that’s hitting mail boxes in his name: “Don’t Let Atheists Ban Georgia’s Football Chaplains.” The text includes these paragraphs (emphasis in the original):

An out-of-state group, “The Freedom from Religion Foundation,” has sent threatening letters to several Georgia universities demanding the schools dismiss their football team chaplains.

‘Murica, people!

Although if it works, maybe McGarity ought to look into using it to raise a few more bucks for the reserve fund.


Filed under Georgia Football, Political Wankery

PAWWWLLL, Jeb ain’t played Alabama.

It always amuses me when politicians think they can get away with stuff like this.


Filed under Political Wankery, SEC Football

Be careful what you wish for, coaches.

My theory about how coaches feel about the issues roiling the NCAA and schools right now – primarily amateurism and unionization – is that the coaches don’t oppose the players’ interests out of a lack of sympathy (Dabo Swinney’s “they’re lucky to be here” attitude notwithstanding), so much as they don’t relish the potential threat to their control resolution of these issues might pose.

So that, plus what’s probably a lack of general understanding or attention to the issues, is probably why you don’t hear coaches dismiss the need for an antitrust exemption for college sports.  Judging from a comment from Wisconsin chancellor Rebecca Blank, maybe they should brush up on the issue.

Blank, chancellor since 2013, has given the issue of coaches’ salaries a good deal of thought — and she offers a radical fix.

“Coaches are being paid, especially in a couple of big sports, increasingly like professional leagues,” she says. “It immediately raises the question of, ‘Why aren’t your athletes being paid similarly?’ If I could redo this, I would try to get some sort of antitrust exemption here and say, ‘We run a college sports program — and college sports programs are different. And we do have the right to cap salaries, given the salary levels that exist elsewhere around the university.’

“And the expectation is that these students are students, as well as athletes, meaning it is not a for-profit program. People who want to make those kinds of salaries need to be in professional sports. I’m a losing voice on that right now. … I don’t think anyone believes it’s going to happen.”

Although she expresses an attitude that’s been expressed before by college administrators, Cheek isn’t exactly a tyro when it comes to economic issues.  She was acting secretary of commerce in the Obama administration and holds a doctorate in economics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Coaches aren’t the only people who like control, you know.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Political Wankery

Monday morning buffet

Don’t tell me you’re full.

  • Damn, people.  I know your mammas raised you better than this.
  • The commissioners don’t like fantasy football, so they’ve decided to do… something “The federal government has determined, for the moment, that it’s not gambling,” Scott said. “But the NCAA has taken a position that we can set the rules and we don’t support it. So that’s where we’ve drawn the line.”  Line drawing, for the win!
  • Jeb! comes to Athens Saturday night, boldly predicts Georgia will win the SEC East.  I’d say he might have lost the South Carolina vote there, but after the way the evening went for the ‘Cocks, I doubt those folks would argue with him now.
  • Here’s a look at how reporters across the SEC feel they’re treated when it comes to being granted access.  Georgia comes off pretty decently, at least in context.
  • It’s never good when people start writing open letters, Gamecocks.
  • Amateurism – it’s not just for revenue sports.
  • Amateurism – when not paying some of the help frees up more money to pay the other help.
  • One check down away from perfection.


Filed under 'Cock Envy, Georgia Football, Political Wankery, SEC Football, The NCAA