WASHINGTON -- Undoing another legacy of its predecessor, the Obama administration today plans to withdraw a 2005 clarification of a federal anti-discrimination law that critics saw as weakening enforcement of gender equity in college athletics.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association announced Thursday that the Division I Men’s Basketball Championship will likely expand from 65 to 68 teams as part of a new 14-year, $10.86-billion broadcasting deal with CBS Sports and the Turner Broadcasting System.
Even if you think the role of college sports in higher education is out of whack, it says something about how much the landscape has changed that when the National Collegiate Athletic Association announced its new leader Tuesday night, it would have been a Butler-almost-winning-the-NCAA-tournament sort of shock if a college president had not been selected.
Faculty leaders at Ohio University are lobbying the administration to significantly reduce the amount of money from the institution’s operating budget used to subsidize its intercollegiate athletics program, arguing that the program’s “unsustainable expenditures” jeopardize the university’s ability to “prioritize academics."
The landscape of college athletics could shift dramatically in the coming weeks, as the Big Ten and Pacific-10 Conferences consider expanding their membership. While the exact shape of the realignment is unclear, it will likely make geography even less meaningful as an organizing principle than it has been since previous rounds of conference expansion in the 1990s and 2000s, and further consolidate power in a small number of conferences. Watchdogs of college sports caution that this is a losing prospect for higher education, both athletically and academically.
It may take a while for the Men of Troy to “fight on” after the crushing blow they received Thursday.
In a long-awaited decision, the National Collegiate Athletic Association severely punished the high-profile football and men’s basketball teams at the University of Southern California for improper commercial dealings involving Heisman Trophy-winning running back Reggie Bush and basketball standout O.J. Mayo.