Friday, December 9, 2011

Financial Fair Play Comes to the NCAA

[UPDATE: The new proposals are not so popular. Go figure.]

The Chronicle of Higher Education has obtained a document from the NCAA's Resource Allocation Working Group (here in PDF) which has recommended that the NCAA reduce the number of competitions, eliminate foreign tours by athletic teams, reduce the number of allowed athletic scholarships and reduce the size of coaching staffs.  If effect, the recommendations seek to halt some aspects of the professionalization of college athletics.

Here are the rationales for the four recommendations offered in the memo:

On reducing the number of compeitions:
It is important for the student-athlete to have the appropriate number of competitions in place that allow them to be successful as athletes, while maximizing the time available for academic success and campus life pursuits.
On reducing the number of scholarships:
The proposed scholarship numbers allow for continued success of football and women’s basketball programs while providing institutions with the opportunity to reallocate dollars to other initiatives that benefit student-athletes. The proposed scholarship reductions also will allow for athletics talent to be dispersed across more intercollegiate athletics programs.
On eliminating foreign tours by athletic teams:
Institutions feel a growing pressure to provide a foreign tour opportunity to each student-athlete. As a result, providing a foreign tour has become tied to the recruiting process. Student-athletes are encouraged to use institutional study abroad programs that are available during these time periods.
On reducing the size of coaching staffs:
The membership and the Board of Directors have expressed significant concern with the proliferation of non-coaching staff members with sport-specific responsibilities. Dollars spent on these personnel can be allocated to areas that will more directly benefit the student-athlete and better align with enduring values.
Call me a cynic, but I'd guess that these recommendations have about as much chance of being implemented as the University of Colorado does in winning this year's college football national championship.


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