College Sports INC.: The Athletic Department VS. the University

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``We are not the enemy,'' said Michigan football coach Bo Schembechler addressing a meeting of academics, but the contention of Sperber, an associate professor of English at Indiana University and a former sportswriter, is that the college sports establishment is precisely that. He demonstrates that at fewer than 5% of colleges do the sports programs operate in the black, including schools that participate in big-time football and basketball, supposedly the large money-makers. Deficits, he maintains, are made up by excessive student activity fees, donations from local boosters (alumni rarely contribute to sports programs), absurdly high ticket prices and, in the case of public colleges, state subsidies. Athletic departments, Sperber charges, are like corporations, with vastly overpaid executives and employees--i.e. students--whom they fire at will by canceling their scholarships. The differences are that sports departments are managed inefficiently and, when they show a loss, the colleges pick up the tab. This startling, depressing study should be read by every college faculty member and, ideally, by every taxpayer. (Sept.)
Library Journal
Sperber (English and American studies, Indiana Univ.) examines in full detail the entire system of athletics within American schools of higher education and finds it wanting in nearly every aspect. His conclusion is that intercollegiate sports have become a ``huge commercial entertainment conglomerate'' (i.e., ``College Sports Inc.'') divorced from the educational aims of the schools. By tracking the money trail, he exposes widespread abuses, from misappropriation of funds to illegal perks to shadowy ``booster'' payments. The focus throughout is less on personalities than on the system. He recommends radical corrective measures, the first being higher education's recognition that any connection between today's athletic department and its school's educational mission is purely coincidental. An important contribution to the continuing debate over the role of the student-athlete and a timely purchase for public as well as academic libraries.-- William H. Hoffman, Ft. Myers-Lee Cty. P.L., Fla.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805014457
  • Publisher: Holt, Henry & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 8/15/1990
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Pages: 382

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