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(Slate)   Soon to be most hated man in America calls for the banning of college football. Fark: He actually makes a valid point   (slate.com) divider line 194
    More: Scary, Malcolm Gladwell, Intelligence Squared, college football, shoot out tournament, Tyler Cowen, economic power, CTE, best-selling author  
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5658 clicks; posted to Sports » on 01 May 2012 at 10:50 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-05-01 12:41:17 PM

Doc Daneeka: I'd support getting rid of it.

If the NFL and NBA want developmental leagues for their prospects, they should do what baseball and hockey have done. Establish a system of professional minor and/or junior leagues where prospects can be developed and paid fairly at the same time.

The current system isn't really fair to so-called "student-athletes," and it's a corrupting influence on universities as institutions of learning and research. In many places, it seems that the main purpose of the university is to host its football program, and that's just messed up.


THIS THIS THIS THIS THIS
 
2012-05-01 12:42:38 PM

Cythraul: Give me a long, well thought-out argument on the benefits collegiate sports have on our culture.


It gives me something to gamble on year round.
 
2012-05-01 12:42:45 PM

Carth: I agree with you MMA is nowhere near the popularity of the NFL, MLB or even PGA. My point was only that its popularly is growing rapidly despite the obvious risks of brain injury to the point it now has millions of viewers every week and is shown on both broadcast and cable networks.


My point - you're missing it.

It's a minor sport - and while it may grow in popularity, it will never be a top tier sport in the US if its athletes are guaranteed CTE.
 
2012-05-01 12:44:34 PM

Babwa Wawa: Carth: I agree with you MMA is nowhere near the popularity of the NFL, MLB or even PGA. My point was only that its popularly is growing rapidly despite the obvious risks of brain injury to the point it now has millions of viewers every week and is shown on both broadcast and cable networks.

My point - you're missing it.

It's a minor sport - and while it may grow in popularity, it will never be a top tier sport in the US if its athletes are guaranteed CTE.


That was my original question. What do you define as a minor sport? Anything smaller than the NFL, BCS or MLB?
 
2012-05-01 12:45:20 PM

Slaves2Darkness: HZS9PK: So the College's make the athletes sign a waiver in order for them to play. Big deal.

Waivers won't cut it. I'm surprised ex-college players have not filed a lawsuit against their schools like ex-NFL players have against the NFL, but maybe it is just a matter of seeing how the class action suit against the NFL shakes out.

I'm betting the NFL is going to settle to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars if not a billion or more.


College athletes are volunteers and are not compensated legally. That's why they don't get a stipend. Ths scholarships create a huge loophole that the NCAA runs through.
 
2012-05-01 12:46:23 PM

Doc Daneeka: In many places, it seems that the main purpose of the university is to host its football program, and that's just messed up.


The University of Florida getting rid of its computer sciences program in order to save $1.7 million, then turning around to spend $2 million more on its athletics department is one glaring, throbbing example.

/and the University of Chicago (one of the charter members of the Big 10) dumping its athletics department in the 1930s sure hasn't hurt its academics.
 
kab
2012-05-01 12:46:37 PM
No sport should be banned where there are completely willing participants.

The costs of college football, and where the profits go for successful teams, is probably something that should be looked at however.
 
2012-05-01 01:01:15 PM

germ78: The University of Florida getting rid of its computer sciences program in order to save $1.7 million, then turning around to spend $2 million more on its athletics department is one glaring, throbbing example.


Though a disingenuous one (as are pretty much all cases where money disappears from somewhere and other money appears somewhere else).

The state of Florida opened a new university dedicated pretty much to computer science and technology. Shortlly thereafter, Florida cut its computer sciences program. Why should the state of Florida double pay for computer science programming? Athletic funding typically comes from completely different income sources - UF Athletics makes a lot of money from TV contracts, ticket sales, donations specifically to the athletic department. If you want to make a difference in where money gets spent, donate money to the department of your choosing.

At my school, a new humanities building is being built. It's costing about $300 million, and was donated specifically for that cause (there hasn't been a new humanities building since before my parents were born). What do people say when they find out about how much money was raised for it? "That money could've gone toward (insert name of project they wanted done)!"
 
2012-05-01 01:01:46 PM

Carth: What do you define as a minor sport? Anything smaller than the NFL, BCS or MLB?


I see it as basically four tiers. On the first you have NFL, BCS, MLB. Second you have NBA, NASCAR, NHL. Third you have PGA, NCAAB, and the various forms of soccer. There's a gaggle of shiat lower than that - tennis, bowling, boxing, etc.

I'm not sure where the UFC lies. I think that relying on TV ratings exclusively can be misleading - especially for sports like MLB and NHL which de-emphasize TV, and don't rely on it for much revenue. I think a far more accurate measure would be how much people spend on the sports (either in time or money).

Ultimately, it's irrelevant where the UFC lies. My argument is that if CTE is unavoidable in some football positions and cannot be fixed, you'll end up with the NFL somewhere on the third tier, with some other sport moving up. I can't imagine soccer in its current form replacing it.
 
2012-05-01 01:08:36 PM

Babwa Wawa: IAmRight: Too many Barbaros, then?

/this hippie sh*t is getting kind of annoying
//the more you eliminate relatively safe "dangerous" activities, the more people will turn to far more dangerous activities (like some of the examples with people drinking rubbing alcohol or huffing paint or sh*t like that).
///honestly, I'd probably enjoy watching flag football anyway. Still better than soccer.

I'm not advocating for banning the NFL or anything. I'm a pretty big fan.

I can like football and still believe that colleges are exploiting their players. I can like football and still be worried that its popularity will suffer if CTE is unavoidable.


No no no!!! Everything is black and white, ya hear!? As soon as you add nuance to a debate, one side usually has to close up shop.

/loves football
//expect it to be dead within 30 years
 
2012-05-01 01:13:34 PM
I am right

You essentially just said that the UofF is ok for giving more money to athletics and taking it away from education.

Yet you argue that college players shouldn't be paid.
 
rka
2012-05-01 01:14:54 PM

Carth: Babwa Wawa: Carth: Babwa Wawa: IAmRight: I assume that it didn't stop being popular due to head trauma. Rise of NASCAR? Gambling restrictions? IndyCar used to be relatively important, too. I think it's silly to say that there's one reason for any sport to decline in popularity. There has to be multiple problems.

Horse racing, dog fighting, cock fighting, and boxing are all formerly popular pastimes in which the athlete cannot avoid injury. It's hard not to notice the common thread.

as someone else pointed out MMA is actually rapidly increasing in popularity despite the risks of traumatic brain injury.

That would be a valid point if the MMA were a mainstream sport.

It is on network television with more viewers than the NHL. How do you define "mainstream" if that isn't one?


When a segment of the population that isn't defined by Ed Hardy or Tapout T-Shirts lets their kids play it in Middle School. When the majority of the participants have life choices beyond "Join the Army", "Work Construction" or "Get Punched in the Head".
 
2012-05-01 01:20:44 PM
"Why should the state of Florida double pay for computer education".


You're right, computers and technology are things of the past. The USA will just start exporting football players.
 
2012-05-01 01:23:58 PM

steamingpile: No, he doesnt subby, he just makes a point you agree with so that makes it a good point to you.


Hey, I love football and I hope they keep playing it so I can watch it. For that matter I played it for free (when hitting with your head was supposedly a good thing worthy of praise from your coaches) and enjoyed the experience immensely. But he did make a valid point.
 
2012-05-01 01:25:02 PM

kidgenius: Debeo Summa Credo: Also, legal liability issues, like mentioned in TFA could end the game altogether. IMO, that's an indication that our legal system is messed up, rather than football.

I don't see how it's messed up really.

If I am an insurance company and it costs me money to provide liability insurance I have two options. Stop providing coverage or raise my rates. The universities can then pay the higher rates (which could be too high for them to pay) or cover the liability themselves. There are maybe 20 programs in the country that could afford to take liability themselves, and only a dozen that probably would do it.


Yeah, the liability insurance would/will go up because of legal concerns and the fears of excessive judgments, which is why I think the legal system is messed up. Playing a sport of which you know the risks should preclude you from collecting excessive damages later for injuries related to those risks. But my concern is that existing liability could potentially bankrupt football.
 
2012-05-01 01:25:16 PM
What happens in college is irrelevant, and there is too much big big money involved at the high-end of college football for severe changes to happen there.

It's irrelevant because of studies like this - Football findings suggest concussions caused by series of hits carried out in High School.

This particular study, using instrumented helmets, fMRI, and cognitive tests, showed that over a 2 year period, 6 players on one high school team had diagnosed concussions, but 17 players without concussions had measurable brain function changes, due to the repetitive contact.

This type of research is going to get noticed, and going to be considered 'sexy science' by university med schools and BME schools, and is going to be repeated and expanded. Once high school and junior high parents become generally aware of the previously unconsidered risks, high school football will pretty much stop.

Even if some parents disregard the warnings and make the family commitment that their kid is going to be a star, in high school football that kid isn't going to be a star without a cast of cannon fodder supporting him, and that cannon fodder won't get permission slips signed any more. Those sports family stars will grow up playing tennis, or golf, or swimming, and first high-school and then college football will wither away naturally.
 
2012-05-01 01:27:05 PM
Universities are supposed to be about education. If you're justifying cutting the education budget to fund athletics, you're essentially saying schools should be about sports first, education second.


Then you wonder why this country keeps regressing in math and science.


Priorities are in the wrong place.
 
2012-05-01 01:28:48 PM

WSUCanuck: You essentially just said that the UofF is ok for giving more money to athletics and taking it away from education.


No, I said that the two expenses are completely unrelated, and attempts to put the two together are stupid, just like ESPN dragging LeBron into the "random Nike employee makes a joke about Derrick Rose on Twitter" story.

The people making that leap are ignoring the actual reason for the cuts - there is now an entire UNIVERSITY rather than just a department devoted to teaching those things in Florida. Why have the University of Florida have a program when the students' needs are better met by attending that university?

It's not like the University just went out and said "well, hell, we're putting extra money into the football team, let's cut the CompSci department to create the funds. That's not how universities work. That's not how state government works. That's not how athletic departments work. And I take issue with ignorant people insinuating that's the case.
 
2012-05-01 01:31:32 PM

rka: Carth: Babwa Wawa: Carth: Babwa Wawa: IAmRight: I assume that it didn't stop being popular due to head trauma. Rise of NASCAR? Gambling restrictions? IndyCar used to be relatively important, too. I think it's silly to say that there's one reason for any sport to decline in popularity. There has to be multiple problems.

Horse racing, dog fighting, cock fighting, and boxing are all formerly popular pastimes in which the athlete cannot avoid injury. It's hard not to notice the common thread.

as someone else pointed out MMA is actually rapidly increasing in popularity despite the risks of traumatic brain injury.

That would be a valid point if the MMA were a mainstream sport.

It is on network television with more viewers than the NHL. How do you define "mainstream" if that isn't one?

When a segment of the population that isn't defined by Ed Hardy or Tapout T-Shirts lets their kids play it in Middle School. When the majority of the participants have life choices beyond "Join the Army", "Work Construction" or "Get Punched in the Head".


The worst part of any sport are the fans. Martial arts classes are pretty popular for middle class kids. What other career choices do you think most NBA players have?
 
2012-05-01 01:34:24 PM
The University should have a program BECAUSE THAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A UNIVERSITY. TO EDUCATE. Not to have a football team. It is not called the "Florida Football Academy". It is the University of Florida. The expenses are not unrelated because the money that they put into the athletic department ONCE WENT TO EDUCATION.


An "even" trade would be cutting the CompSci department to fund the "exclusive computer science university" you brought up and NOTHING ELSE. Instead of re-allocating the extra money they had back into other departments, they decided to help fund their already-profitable athletics department even further.

ONce again, athletics are not the main functions of Universities.
 
2012-05-01 01:36:41 PM

IAmRight: The people making that leap are ignoring the actual reason for the cuts - there is now an entire UNIVERSITY rather than just a department devoted to teaching those things in Florida. Why have the University of Florida have a program when the students' needs are better met by attending that university?


Wow - way off topic here. I find the decision interesting and a bit alarming. A computer science degree is far less useful as a standalone degree than it is in conjunction with another degree. In fact, CS should be a minor for 99% of the people who get a CS degree. For example, if I'm hiring someone to code electronic health care systems, I'm going to want someone with a medical background who can code. If I'm hiring someone to code automotive systems, I want a mechanical engineer first, CS degree is optional.
 
2012-05-01 01:40:26 PM

kidgenius: Debeo Summa Credo: Also, legal liability issues, like mentioned in TFA could end the game altogether. IMO, that's an indication that our legal system is messed up, rather than football.

I don't see how it's messed up really.

If I am an insurance company and it costs me money to provide liability insurance I have two options. Stop providing coverage or raise my rates. The universities can then pay the higher rates (which could be too high for them to pay) or cover the liability themselves. There are maybe 20 programs in the country that could afford to take liability themselves, and only a dozen that probably would do it.


The third path is just to have the universities retain the risk. Hell, their current policies already include multi-million dollar deductibles. It's not that much different than a company like AT&T providing Work Comp. Do they shiat their pants about the billions in exposure? No, they just up the deductible to save themselves money on the front end. Most of the big time programs/conferences can provide a self-insured fund to deal with this. So we might lose Austin Peay or Northwestern, not exactly a wailing and gnashing of teeth moment.
 
2012-05-01 01:46:53 PM
His main problem with college football is that the players are not compensated for what they do.

I agree with the premise of what he says. It's wrong that universities are making money hand over fist, and the players risking their health and well-being to make that happen are left out of the loop.
 
2012-05-01 01:47:02 PM

Babwa Wawa: I find the decision interesting and a bit alarming. A computer science degree is far less useful as a standalone degree than it is in conjunction with another degree.


Well, in fairness, it is supposedly to be more of a general science/technology campus, so CS could be a minor for something else. I'm not entirely sure. But the point is that the athletic budget and the rest of the university budget are typically two different pots of money, and there isn't typically dipping into one to pay the other. The $2 million increase to athletics and the $1.7 million department cut have nothing to do with each other except that the numbers look somewhat similar.

The creation of a university, also run by the state, that will take care of teaching the same information for those interested, has much more to do with the elimination of the department from the University of Florida. The state runs 12 universities - it's not feasible or beneficial to try to have every program at every university, especially when there's a constant pressure to basically spend no money and create jobs for everyone that attends.
 
2012-05-01 01:48:42 PM

Sliding Carp: This particular study, using instrumented helmets, fMRI, and cognitive tests, showed that over a 2 year period, 6 players on one high school team had diagnosed concussions, but 17 players without concussions had measurable brain function changes, due to the repetitive contact.


I've been saying that in fark football threads for close to three years but no one cares. Everyone rails against the flavor of the minute bad guy in the nfl and talks about concussions and big hits but they are missing the point. Concussions are important but they're just a piece of the pie. What causes these guys to be suicidal slobbering idiots at 50 isn't concussions so much as it is just playing football. One need not have a single concussion to get brain damage from playing football and no helmet on earth will reduce the brain trauma from repeatedly sloshing your brain around. You don't even have to hit your head at all.
 
2012-05-01 01:49:08 PM

tortilla burger: It's wrong that universities are making money hand over fist, and the players risking their health and well-being to make that happen are left out of the loop.


The problem is that the alternative is to eliminate the 90%+ of all programs that don't make money hand over fist. And then, of course, we'll be pissed off that we're spending money on things which aren't making money. Because the goal of educational institutions is apparently supposed to be to make money.
 
2012-05-01 01:53:03 PM

JohnBigBootay: steamingpile: No, he doesnt subby, he just makes a point you agree with so that makes it a good point to you.

Hey, I love football and I hope they keep playing it so I can watch it. For that matter I played it for free (when hitting with your head was supposedly a good thing worthy of praise from your coaches) and enjoyed the experience immensely. But he did make a valid point.


I just dont see that point, I am sure a lot of kids dont feel exploited, for every first rounder there are hundreds that go undrafted but end up making a lot of money off their education. Basically they exploit something like .001% of the players, the rest all end up getting a free education.

I forget where I read that .001% figure at but it was in an SI article I think where they figured out all the players that have been in college vs all the players that go pro, its a shockingly small number and of that small number only a few of the players would be considered superstars.

The guy does not make a farking point, hes blathering on to troll a topic everyone loves just to get attention. Gladwell is well known to cherry pick stats to arrive at his conclusions and usually ignores the big picture just like all the other "pay the players" morons, he is a well known attention whore who does shiat like this just to get attention so any argument he makes is instantly discounted if you judge it by his other books.

There are 254 picks in the draft and most of those wont make it since only 2.4% of college players play in the NFL so to say they are exploiting everyone is farking insane, most people dont realize that they only allow 85 on scholarship but most teams have over 100 on their roster per year listed as walk ons and other slots to fill out. Do we just take all the money and spread it out over all the kids or do only the superstars get paid? What about schools who are already losing money? Do those schools just drop the sport all together? Along with every other sport in their school? In the end you would have about 20 schools that could break even using those rules and most are the schools people hate or in conferences they love to hate.

So Im sorry, the guy is a grade A level troll and suckered all of you in. His point that hes trying to make is made up on fallacies and some out right lies.
 
2012-05-01 01:57:16 PM

tortilla burger: It's wrong that universities are making money hand over fist


That is not true though, look it up.

There is a very small percentage of schools that are profitable, the rest are scraping by, if they pay players you would lose over half the college football teams over night mostly at small schools.
 
2012-05-01 01:57:51 PM

tortilla burger: It's wrong that universities are making money hand over fist


I wonder how many are making money hand over fist? Sure, you have a bunch of elite programs that print money, then you have a bunch that do pretty damn good, but after that I'd imagine there's a lot of break even and money losing programs out there as well. And it's not an intellectually honest exercise unless you include the hypothetical cost of their tuition, room, board, and equipment on the other side of the ledger. Not to say a lot of universities aren't greatly profiting from football. They are. But it's also expensive to run a football program. Be interesting to see some real numbers, which I'm sure are out there. I mean you have Alabama and Ohio State and Nebraska... then you have Hofstra and North Texas and Southeast Missouri State - the spread between some of these schools is not unlike new York Yankees to Portland Beavers.
 
2012-05-01 02:01:38 PM
JohnBigBootay

The Portland Beavers don't exist anymore.


steamingpile

I'll take Gladwell's word over yours. You're claiming he's a huge liar, yet you haven't brought up anything he said specifically. It also doesn't help that you're the sports tab's designated politics-style troll.
 
2012-05-01 02:02:26 PM

JohnBigBootay: the spread between some of these schools is not unlike new York Yankees to Portland Beavers.


The Yankees can afford to give $100 million contracts to everyone and still make money, therefore all teams should have to give their players $100 million contracts!
 
2012-05-01 02:05:54 PM
I would like to point out that I don't disagree with Gladwell on what will be the end of football as we know it. The idea of lawyers and people who think they're entitled to things despite entering their agreements knowing the risks ruining things that people enjoy isn't very farfetched at all. The only thing more destructive to fun is people who say "but think of the kids!" about anything fun...which are also a large contingent in this argument. Football has no chance to survive my lifetime.

/unless I get hit by a bus tomorrow, I suppose
 
2012-05-01 02:07:16 PM
CTE is the second-worst thing to happen to sports, whether it is true or not.

The worst? Other people thinking that just because they want to live a long, uneventful life means that others do, too.
 
2012-05-01 02:14:55 PM
A. Colleges and Universities make a lot of money from football. They are also given a lot of publicity depending on how well their programs perform.

B. Television, Radio, and Internet broadcasters (sites) make a lot of ad revenue from college football.

C. There are scads of rabidly loyal college football fans across the nation.

As long as these 3 points stand, college football will persist unabated. If you are looking to lawsuits to help bring it down, don't hold your breath. The NFL has deep pockets and in America money buys justice.
 
2012-05-01 02:18:57 PM

Generation_D: These are compelling points, but I dispute the linear conclusions -- can you extract boxing's demise to just Ali, when I think from my own memory it was many things happening, the lack of any decent heavyweights being the main one that drove me off. I think the corruption was also a factor.


The lack of decent heavyweights and the systematic corruption is a direct result of the talent pool of boxing drying up. When you have talented athletic kids with parents who understand the consequences to repeatably getting punched in the head, those parents are going to forbid their kid from getting serious in the sport. The parents are going to read over the contract, find and independent lawyer and stop it.

To get to D-1 level of skill, (let alone BCS level) you need to put in an insane amount of practice, travel and money. And dealing with the insane, sadistic man-child of a coach. The kids are sacrificing becoming a well rounded person. When you have a mother and a father who see the child as their responsibility and not a as a meal ticket, they are going to veto it.

The only kids who'll be skilled enough for the NFL/NBA/NHL/MLB D-1 sports are all going to be psychotic Tennis Parents or enabling "Family friends"
 
2012-05-01 02:19:38 PM

Cythraul: Generation_D: Cythraul: Ulgh, I'd be all for banning college sports all together. But I'm sure they have some positive benefits to pure academia I'm not aware of. That, and I know such a ban is a pipe-dream in this culture.

Lets put me in charge, and I can ban everything I don't like that you do like.

You sound like Nick "Sports contributes nothing to culture" Licata. Intellectual asshat. Man partly responsible for killing the Seattle Sonics.

Give me a long, well thought-out argument on the benefits collegiate sports have on our culture.


You honestly believe that we should live in a society where if we don't have long, well thought-out arguments on the societal benefits of something then our default should be an authoritarian ban?
 
2012-05-01 02:21:41 PM

Komplex: The kids are sacrificing becoming a well rounded person.


Not always.

/one of the weird things about these arguments is the more recent idea that participating in sports isn't part of being well-rounded anymore.
 
2012-05-01 02:22:41 PM

meanmutton: Cythraul: Generation_D: Cythraul: Ulgh, I'd be all for banning college sports all together. But I'm sure they have some positive benefits to pure academia I'm not aware of. That, and I know such a ban is a pipe-dream in this culture.

Lets put me in charge, and I can ban everything I don't like that you do like.

You sound like Nick "Sports contributes nothing to culture" Licata. Intellectual asshat. Man partly responsible for killing the Seattle Sonics.

Give me a long, well thought-out argument on the benefits collegiate sports have on our culture.

You honestly believe that we should live in a society where if we don't have long, well thought-out arguments on the societal benefits of something then our default should be an authoritarian ban?


You have that backwards, if you can't have a long, well thought-out argument on the societal benefits, then there should be no authoritarian implementation using public funds.
 
2012-05-01 02:24:33 PM
My big gripe w/ college football is how it is de-facto minor league ball. You can accuse baseball of a lot of things, but the minor league farm system is one of the greatest inventions in the history of anything. But the NFL is too goddamn cheap, sitting on billions of dollars, to actually create a functioning minor league system. I think the NFL minors could actually turn a small profit, especially at the gate.
 
2012-05-01 02:26:34 PM
I could come up with several contributions that collegiate sports make, but all that it's going to result in is people coming up with stupid excuses as to either why they're not enough or how it might be done in an alternate dimension wherein everything is different, or complain that the reason isn't the best way to obtain whatever end goal they might achieve. Because that's how threads work.
 
2012-05-01 02:29:01 PM

JohnBigBootay: tortilla burger: It's wrong that universities are making money hand over fist

I wonder how many are making money hand over fist? Sure, you have a bunch of elite programs that print money, then you have a bunch that do pretty damn good, but after that I'd imagine there's a lot of break even and money losing programs out there as well. And it's not an intellectually honest exercise unless you include the hypothetical cost of their tuition, room, board, and equipment on the other side of the ledger. Not to say a lot of universities aren't greatly profiting from football. They are. But it's also expensive to run a football program. Be interesting to see some real numbers, which I'm sure are out there. I mean you have Alabama and Ohio State and Nebraska... then you have Hofstra and North Texas and Southeast Missouri State - the spread between some of these schools is not unlike new York Yankees to Portland Beavers.


I hate to be that guy but...Hofstra cut their football program a few years back. My friend worked a lot with the football team while he was going there (he's a physical therapist), so he's pissed and refuses to donate. They now have a 15,000-seat stadium that's only used for local high school championships and lacrosse. Though Hofstra lacrosse is really good.

Anyways, even though I'm for the players being paid I realize there's no equitable way to have all the schools do that. But even putting that aside for a second: If it's a Terrelle Pryor type situation where some outside party wants to pay him for his autograph, or someone wants to take a player out to dinner...I honestly don't see why that shouldn't be allowed given the amount of money involved in the game these days.
 
2012-05-01 02:29:58 PM

Sliding Carp: What happens in college is irrelevant, and there is too much big big money involved at the high-end of college football for severe changes to happen there.

It's irrelevant because of studies like this - Football findings suggest concussions caused by series of hits carried out in High School.

This particular study, using instrumented helmets, fMRI, and cognitive tests, showed that over a 2 year period, 6 players on one high school team had diagnosed concussions, but 17 players without concussions had measurable brain function changes, due to the repetitive contact.

This type of research is going to get noticed, and going to be considered 'sexy science' by university med schools and BME schools, and is going to be repeated and expanded. Once high school and junior high parents become generally aware of the previously unconsidered risks, high school football will pretty much stop.

Even if some parents disregard the warnings and make the family commitment that their kid is going to be a star, in high school football that kid isn't going to be a star without a cast of cannon fodder supporting him, and that cannon fodder won't get permission slips signed any more. Those sports family stars will grow up playing tennis, or golf, or swimming, and first high-school and then college football will wither away naturally.


This here is the real reason football will recede to rugby status. It's not the lawsuits and insurance; it's going to be schools, parents, and coaches unwilling to turn an entire generation of athletic children into vegetables.
 
2012-05-01 02:32:32 PM

FreakinB: Not related to the issue in the article, but I'm still stuck on what happened with A.J. Green and Terrelle Pryor. To me, something's wrong when these guys are star attractions in a multi-billion dollar industry and they can't even make a few thousand off of their own stuff. This isn't the 40's anymore, there's big money involved.

And I realize there's no perfectly fair way to go about this and that the non-revenue sports have to be accounted for and all that. But there has to be some way that's better than what they're doing.

And yeah, there's the whole injury issue.

/not a fan of any college team
//went to a school with D-3 sports that nobody cared about


Terrelle Pryor was highly compensated by Ohio State. He received about $75,000 in tuition costs; $30,000 in living expenses; 3 years of fully paid medical insurance; around $35,000 in cash stipends; all expenses paid vacations to Southern California, Arizona, and New Orleans; pretty much all the personal shoes, clothing, etc., he wants from Nike, etc.
 
2012-05-01 02:33:34 PM
So much butthurt in this thread. All Gladwell did was explain a plausible scenario for the decline of football. Next time some of you should break the Prozacs in half.
 
2012-05-01 02:36:16 PM

meanmutton: FreakinB: Not related to the issue in the article, but I'm still stuck on what happened with A.J. Green and Terrelle Pryor. To me, something's wrong when these guys are star attractions in a multi-billion dollar industry and they can't even make a few thousand off of their own stuff. This isn't the 40's anymore, there's big money involved.

And I realize there's no perfectly fair way to go about this and that the non-revenue sports have to be accounted for and all that. But there has to be some way that's better than what they're doing.

And yeah, there's the whole injury issue.

/not a fan of any college team
//went to a school with D-3 sports that nobody cared about

Terrelle Pryor was highly compensated by Ohio State. He received about $75,000 in tuition costs; $30,000 in living expenses; 3 years of fully paid medical insurance; around $35,000 in cash stipends; all expenses paid vacations to Southern California, Arizona, and New Orleans; pretty much all the personal shoes, clothing, etc., he wants from Nike, etc.


Which still doesn't equal his value given that he was a star player on a team that generated a whole lot of TV money. And heaven forbid he sells his autograph.
 
2012-05-01 02:37:58 PM

Fubini: Generation_D: To me, being in the military is far worse than being in college sports. But maybe thats why I never considered joining the military, yet wished I could have joined college sports and did play high school sports.

You're totally misunderstanding the point: Gladwell says the problem with college football is that it is exploitative. In both the NFL and military there are certainly undisclosed dangers, but in both the participants are fairly compensated for the risk they assume.

The primary reason that someone plays college football (at least at a big school) is that they want to have a shot at professional football. This is their only compensation, so this means that a lot of young people going into college football will get nothing of substantial value by the end.

There are lots of jobs that expose people to necessary dangers: electricians, construction workers, firemen, etc. Those people accept those risks and are properly compensated. Those risks are considered necessary due to the benefit of society. College football is a totally unnecessary risk, so college football players should be appropriately compensated.


Umm... college football players have a substantially higher compensation than most construction workers...
 
2012-05-01 02:38:52 PM

This Looks Fun: This here is the real reason football will recede to rugby status. It's not the lawsuits and insurance; it's going to be schools, parents, and coaches unwilling to turn an entire generation of athletic children into vegetables.


Why not? Apparently we've turned six or so generations into vegetables with football, which has been more popular as a participation sport than it is now.
 
2012-05-01 02:41:34 PM

Slaves2Darkness: HZS9PK: So the College's make the athletes sign a waiver in order for them to play. Big deal.

Waivers won't cut it. I'm surprised ex-college players have not filed a lawsuit against their schools like ex-NFL players have against the NFL, but maybe it is just a matter of seeing how the class action suit against the NFL shakes out.

I'm betting the NFL is going to settle to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars if not a billion or more.


The difference is that the NFL actively knew about risks that they lied about and concealed from the players. The NCAA never did that.
 
2012-05-01 02:42:44 PM

FreakinB: Which still doesn't equal his value given that he was a star player on a team that generated a whole lot of TV money.


Meh, the team would make money with or without him. He's a replaceable cog. tOSU fans don't buy tickets to watch Terrelle Pryor play. They pay to watch Buckeye football.

FreakinB: And heaven forbid he sells his autograph.


The honest reason the rules are the way they are is because it's a lot easier to enforce a "no tolerance" rule, no matter how stupid it is, than police things like that. What's the limit to how much someone should be able to earn for an autograph? What if a booster paid him $50K?

Also, things like selling memorabilia...look, man, you can sell it...but you have to wait until after college. How hard is it to wait a year to get a tattoo?
 
2012-05-01 02:50:36 PM

IAmRight: FreakinB: Which still doesn't equal his value given that he was a star player on a team that generated a whole lot of TV money.

Meh, the team would make money with or without him. He's a replaceable cog. tOSU fans don't buy tickets to watch Terrelle Pryor play. They pay to watch Buckeye football.

FreakinB: And heaven forbid he sells his autograph.

The honest reason the rules are the way they are is because it's a lot easier to enforce a "no tolerance" rule, no matter how stupid it is, than police things like that. What's the limit to how much someone should be able to earn for an autograph? What if a booster paid him $50K?

Also, things like selling memorabilia...look, man, you can sell it...but you have to wait until after college. How hard is it to wait a year to get a tattoo?


Fair enough on the first point, though I do think that there's a certain degree to which he contributed to the "Buckeye football" brand. Given that, I'd think his value is more than 3 years of tuition, room and board, "vacations" that are really business trips, etc.

To your second point, I honestly don't mind someone giving him that amount of money. It's their choice. Not fair to the backup linebacker at New Mexico State, but that's how it goes. As for the memorabilia, you said it yourself, he's a replaceable cog. Who's to say anyone gives a shiat once he's out? Strike while the iron's hot and all that.
 
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