Big-Time Sports in American Universities

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Overview

For almost a century, big-time college sports has been a wildly popular but consistently problematic part of American higher education. The challenges it poses to traditional academic values have been recognized from the start, but they have grown more ominous in recent decades, as cable television has become ubiquitous, commercial opportunities have proliferated, and athletic budgets have ballooned. Drawing on new research findings, this book takes a fresh look at the role of commercial sports in American universities. It shows that, rather than being the inconsequential student activity that universities often imply that it is, big-time sports has become a core function of the universities that engage in it. For this reason, the book takes this function seriously and presents evidence necessary for a constructive perspective about its value. Although big-time sports surely creates worrying conflicts in values, it also brings with it some surprising positive consequences.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Charles Clotfelter's book, Big-Time Sports in American Universities, is a masterpiece. It is the seminal work on this topic and a splendid piece of work." - Robert Atwell, President Emeritus of the American Council on Education
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781107004344
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/7/2011
  • Pages: 342
  • Sales rank: 384,000
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles Clotfelter is Z. Smith Reynolds Professor of Public Policy and Professor of Economics and Law at Duke University and a research associate in the National Bureau of Economic Research. His research has covered the economics of education, public finance and state lotteries; tax policy and charitable behavior; and policies related to the nonprofit sector. His previous books on higher education are Buying the Best: Cost Escalation in Elite Higher Education (1996) and (with Ronald Ehrenberg, Malcolm Getz and John Siegfried) Economic Challenges in Higher Education (1991). His most recent book is After Brown: The Rise and Retreat of School Desegregation (2004) and he is the editor of the volumes American Universities in a Global Market (2010) and (with Michael Rothschild) Studies of Supply and Demand in Higher Education (1993). He is also the author of Federal Tax Policy and Charitable Giving (1985) and (with Philip Cook) Selling Hope: State Lotteries in America (1989). Professor Clotfelter has taught at the University of Maryland and spent one year at the U.S. Treasury's Office of Tax Analysis. At Duke he has been a faculty member in the Institute of Policy Sciences and Public Affairs, now the Sanford School of Public Policy; the economics department; and the law school. He has served as Vice Provost for Academic Policy and Planning, Vice Chancellor and Vice Provost for Academic Programs.

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Table of Contents

Part I. Commercial Sports as a University Function: 1. Strange bedfellows; 2. Priorities; 3. The bigness of 'big time'; Part II. The Uses of Big-Time College Sports: 4. Consumer product, mass obsession; 5. Commercial enterprise; 6. Institution builder; 7. Beacon for campus culture; Part III. Reckoning: 8. Ends and means; 9. Prospects for reform; Appendices.

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