College sports…are they worth it

This article discusses the recent decision of Spelman College to drop all intercollegiate athletics at the end of the academic year and leaving the NCAA.  The school has a normal fund of $1 million that is normally used to fund varsity athletics, but will now be used to benefit more of their students through wellness programs, exercise programs, nutrition counseling, and intramurals.  When making this decision they realized only 80 out of their 2,100 student body were athletes affected by this choice and none of these 80 were going on to be professional players in their sports.  Whereas, 300 were enjoying the wellness program and PE classes.  This number is above the NCAA average in actuality 1 in 45 students are athletes.  Additionally, in the 2011 school year only 22 of the 227 Division I NCAA schools showed a profit off college sports.  When looking at these numbers and the cost-benefit analysis it makes you wonder if schools should even have any sports these days.

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6 Responses to College sports…are they worth it

  1. tiernon says:

    This is actually a very interesting topic. When Division I football teams participate in large Bowl games, revenue for the team and the school is much higher than one would typically guess. In one way, the marketing of the school and the dollars brought in by athletics benefits the athletic programs and school as a whole by allowing people that may not have the opportunity to gain a college education to attend the well funded schools with athletic programs. However, there are many cases where college athletics deters from the focus on academic performance. In all, athletics in college can be a pro or a con, dependent upon the individual. There is no doubt, however, that major division I sports teams are financially successful and generate a lot of revenue for a number of different stakeholders.

  2. millemic says:

    This is an extremely interesting outlook on athletics. I think it depends on the institutions goals on whether athletics are worth the cost benefit analysis. Athletics are more than sports that are played on a field. They provide an opportunity to individuals that may not had one without athletics, teach time management, work ethic, and develop leadership qualities that are often not taught in the classroom. Also, a successful athletic program can provide the school name recognition, free advertisement, and school pride for students and alumni. A great example would be this years mens NCAA basketball tournament. Florida Golf Cost and La Salle University are two relatively small schools that benefitted enormously from this tourney. The success of these two schools in the tournament increased name recognition and galvanized their communities. It has been proven that teams who are successful in the NCAA tournament receive an increase in applications and book store revenues. About 15 years ago Florida Golf Cost was not even a school, now it is a household name.

  3. Justin Farrell says:

    I find this article really interesting because I was a varsity athlete here and I believe that they really are worth investing in from a school standpoint. Now there are situations where some programs do begin to fail when the do not win and winning is the only thing that rolls in the money. As soon as losing occurs and the cash ceases to come in it is then time to decide whether that program be kept or let go. There are plenty of cases where losing programs are dropped or moved to club levels to make way for the bigger and more winning programs who put fans in the stands, wins in the column, points on the board, and above all cash in the schools pocket. That is a main reason certain coaches are fired because they lack the ability to win games which harms the school in the long run. Winning and money run/rule college sports and go hand in hand.

  4. gainesc says:

    I also found this article very interesting because being a D3 athlete where our sports programs do not bring in money, I still feel like the investment of sports is very worth it. Unfortunately at the D1 level, if a sports team isn’t bringing in money then it will get dropped. One example is Towson University Baseball team. Towson has been struggling to provide money for there baseball and softball teams so recently the school made a decision to drop both teams. Not only is this unfair for the coaching staff but also the players who get scholarships to play for the team and will now loose that scholarship when the program is terminated. Another example is University of Maryland leaving the ACC to join the Big 10 because they will profit an additional 26 million dollars in telemarketing. Sports are a great opportunity for athletes to attend college.

  5. Kevin Leary says:

    I think that it is also important to note that sports can often lead to charitable contributions from alumni. Our own school, a fairly small division 3 school, just recenetly recieved a $6 million dollar donation for the expansion of the current athletic facilities from two Dickinson alumni; Sam Rose and Julie Walters. The new additions provided from the donation will benefit the student athletes and regular students. It will also benefit the college as a whole by making the college seem more a appealing and a desirable school to attend.

  6. kachadud says:

    This is interesting because when you just look at the economic side of it, it seems like cutting the sports may be the best decision for the college but there is a major impact on the athletes. Some may want to transfer colleges to continue their career which can have a major impact on someones life. They also may effect the new classes coming in and consider if cutting the athletics would lower their class size. Just something to think about when considering these types of policies.

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