Re: College football | Letters to the Editor | Indy Week
Pin It

Re: College football 

Thad Williamson's article ["Tar Heels under fire," Aug. 22] provides a worthwhile historical and trans-college context for examining the current embarrassment over sports and academics at UNC. But I take issue with his conclusion that college sports cannot be radically reformed.

Athletics and academics could become independent enterprises, both operating on college campuses. The magnificent facilities already built for revenue sports could be rented to professional sports organizations who could field teams without having to worry about academic eligibility of their players. Revenue from the media and ticket sales would pay the rent that could sustain non-revenue sports on the campuses, as well as allow players to be paid a fair wage for their efforts with plenty left over to pay coaching staffs. There is no reason to think that attendance or team loyalty for fans would decline if, for example, the Tar Heels were a professional football team.

With athletic eligibility not dependent on academic eligibility, athletes could take courses part-time or full-time at the host college or nearby community colleges to the extent that it was feasible given their heavy athletic workload. Their choice of courses would not be limited by thoughts of maintaining athletic eligibility.

With the spotlight now shining on UNC, one could hope that this institution would begin a nationwide movement to dismantle the NCAA, which is the major impediment to reform along the lines that I propose. Sports on college campuses should follow the lead of the Olympics, where professionalization has allowed athletes to devote full attention to their athletic development for a certain period of their lives with no deleterious effect on fan interest.

Richard Cramer
Chapel Hill

The college football problems outlined in the interesting ACC history in your Aug. 22 issue are of concern but are not universal. Consider Navy football, which plays to packed houses in Annapolis and elsewhere. Every year Navy plays Notre Dame, Air Force and Army. Navy has played in 17 bowl games, 9 in the past 16 years, against Missouri, Utah, Wake Forest, Boston College, California, Texas and the like.

Every single Navy football player must take physics, calculus, electrical engineering and a foreign language. The graduation rate is close to 100 percent and all graduates are commissioned in the Navy or Marine Corps. Nearly all were in the top 10 percent of their high school classes, and they practice 1.5 hours a day.

It works in Annapolis. Why not elsewhere?

James B Craven III

  • It works in Annapolis. Why not elsewhere?

Latest in Letters to the Editor


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Letters to the Editor

Twitter Activity


Thank you cleverweist1 and Cristel Gutshchenritter Orrand for the opportunity to stand up for what I believe in as a …

by half full on A Massive Scar (Letters to the Editor)

Mr Pollock makes some good points .
Noam Chomsky and Ron Paul have similar views on wars we have waged …

by CHHS Tiger on History you won't like either (Letters to the Editor)

Most Read

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation