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October 25, 2007

Facility Wants to Destroy Athletic Department: Due to Michigan's Atrocious Economy

An article was written in the Michigan Daily and can be seen on this website: http://media.www.michigandaily.com/media/storage/paper851/news/2007/10/23/UAdministration/Assembly.Calls.For.Athletic.Reforms-3049805.shtml

With the Michigan economy in one of the worst financial situations in recent times, the University of Michigan has been thinking of ways to resolve the problems of rising tuition costs. One of their ideas is to reform the athletic department, which means that the athletic department would have to give more money to the University. The Michigan athletic department attributes it success to the fact that it was the first athletic program to be separated from the universities budget. Since the athletic department is separate, all the revenue that is made in the athlete department can stay within the department. Bill Martin, the athletic director, says that the athletic department donates a generous portion of the profits back to the school; however, the Senate Assembly wants the athletic department to be a sub-group of the university, so it can benefit from the athletic departments profits. The Senate Assembly (composed of facility members) points out Vanderbilt as a school that has done this recently and also has been relatively successful. The fact is Michigan has a strong tradition of being the “Leaders and Best,� while Vanderbilt is consistently at the bottom of the South-Eastern Conference in the majority of sports.
I strongly disagree with what the facility members have proposed. The athletic and academic money should remain separate. I believe if we combined the two our tradition of being a powerhouse athletic university would suffer. The reasons why 110,000 students come to the Big House on Saturdays stems from the fact that the athletic department became independent of the University many decades ago.

Posted by shaunpw at 01:19 PM | Comments (0)

October 22, 2007

Historic Title IX Problems Turns Out To Be The Beginning For Swimming

When it comes down to an athletic director making a decision on which men’s team to cut funding solely because of Title IX issues, it becomes a problem reflecting the exact theme Title IX was amended for in the first place—sex discrimination in reverse fashion. Nowhere in the legal document does it say that in order to create the opportunities for women, funding and managing an athletic team, a men’s team must be dropped because of Title IX budget and scholarship problems. Probably one of the most historic cases occurred 13 years ago at the University of California Los Angeles when the athletic department decided to scrap the men’s swimming and diving team. UCLA wasn’t just an average college swimming program; it had a strong tradition, which boasted a National Championship in 1982, 41 Individual National Titles, and 16 Olympians. For the previous ten years, the Bruins finished in the top 10 every year, so when the athletic community witnessed the loss of a prestigious program in 1994 everyone was stunned. UC Irvine diving coach Curtis Wilson exclaimed, “Colleges are taking the easy way out to drop men’s programs. It’s an abuse of what Title IX set out to do.� At around the same time, UCLA also dropped another prestigious program, men’s gymnastics, which set a tone around the intercollegiate community that addition by subtraction is not a good thing for any university (Swimming: Left Behind).

UCLA is the biggest name program to be scrapped from college swimming, but over the past few years many other teams have been dropped. Last year alone, two Big East swim teams, Rutgers and Syracuse, were phased out. For Rutgers the swim team was just one of six sports to be cut during that season. The five other sports included men’s fencing, men’s heavyweight crew, men’s lightweight crew, men’s tennis, and women’s fencing. In Rutgers case the athletic department was losing millions of dollars, so the fact that they got rid of some sports is just, but five out six of the teams were men’s teams (Rutgers Men's Swimming In Jeopardy).

Posted by shaunpw at 08:13 PM | Comments (0)

October 02, 2007

Current Events and Issues In Collegiate Sports

Welcome to my blog. Throughout this semester I will be review and discussing key events and issues that have occurred in the NCAA and if it applies I will look closely at current athletic issues at the University of Michigan I hope that my blogs will show my strong opinion, while also being informative.

Posted by shaunpw at 11:58 AM