College Football is a Microcosm of our Society

Who is at Fault for the Transfer Portal Debacle: Colleges, or Athletes, or?

Welcome to my first post in 2024. Hope the upcoming year is rewarding to you.

I acknowledge I’m a fossil. I’m so old that I can remember when: 1) colleges took pride in having quality curriculums, and 2) a large factor in college athletes’ decision on which school to attend, was the academic value that they would get.

Yes, colleges made money on certain sports (football and basketball) but lost money on most others. The deal was that a scholarship football player received:  a) a free quality education [tuition, room, food, etc.], b) free expert training to maximize their skill set, c) free exposure so that if they were good, they could go on further, d) lots of interested girls, e) etc.

But as yet another indication of how bad the entitlement mentality has set in, this wasn’t enough. For example, these privileged students feel they should also get paid. But they already ARE getting paid. The benefits that football players are getting from major schools are easily equal to $100,000 per year (i.e., $400,000 in total)! Plus (to those who have the skills) they are effectively in a farm team for a professional career for REALLY big money.

Another entitlement mentality example is that these pampered students now feel they should be able to switch “teams” (i.e., colleges) essentially at will. In other words, they should have free agency to go to the highest bidder. This is now called going into the “transfer portal.” The current NCAA rules are that there is no penalty to the student for doing this! How many football students are ditching their former college? Last year there were over THREE THOUSAND. This year there is expected to be more.

One of many predictable adverse consequences of this absurdity is that teams who worked all year to get into a prestigious end-of-season bowl game, now show up at the game with a team that is nothing like they had all year! Here is a good list of all 2023 football bowl teams, and the regular players who will not be playing. For example, FSU won the championship of a major conference, and had beaten several top 20 teams during its undefeated season. However, FSU had at least eighteen players who chose not to play in their bowl game (and almost all were in the transfer portal). FSU got blown out 63 to 3!

Whatever happened to such virtues as loyalty or appreciation? Part of the answer is to look at the other side of the coin: the colleges. Some arguments that the schools are mostly responsible for this fiasco:

  1. They set a bad example by changing Conferences. For example, my alma mater (Boston College) was doing fine as an active member of the Big East Conference. However, the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) had negotiated better TV deals, etc. (i.e., more money to each of its members), so BC (and others) switched to the ACC. No loyalty there. Greed continues as this year SMU, Stanford, and Cal will join the ACC. Those schools were extracted from another Conference. (FYI, as another indication of our collective decline in general intelligence, apparently no one noticed that SMU, Stanford, and Cal are not remotely near the Atlantic Coast. Who cares, since, there is big money at stake.)
  2. One of the primary enticements for student-athletes, is that no matter what happened sport-wise, they would get a quality education. However, over the last few decades, college educational offerings have become severely diluted. The simplest assessment here is that: a) Critical Thinking is the most important skill that a graduate can obtain, and b) it is generally NOT being taught in colleges.
  3. Colleges have had no compunction about throwing students under the bus. The best recent example of this is what happened with COVID. These “higher education” institutions should be bastions of real Science. In other words, they have the ammunition (degreed experts, the labs, the research facilities, etc.) to be able to quickly squash political science (e.g., COVID mask and treatment policies pushed by government politicians and agencies). However, instead of defending Science, they capitulated to political pressure. Again, a poor example to students.
  4. Colleges have allowed themselves to become Left-wing breeding grounds due to the huge numbers of Left-wing professors they hired. They are now indoctrinating students with Woke ideology. This includes instilling in them not only a victim mentality (e.g., reparations), but also no loyalty or respect (e.g., distorting Science, American history, etc.). Who would have guessed that they would take these out on the very institutions that instilled it in them? Poetic justice?

There is plenty of blame to go around here. For my money, the adults in the room (colleges) are the primary culprits (see above). Although some people are writing about this calamity — like here — few of them are examining the underlying problems that have led to this mess.

The Bottom Line

This issue is a microcosm of what is happening in society in general. We have departed from the Judeo-Christian standards America was founded on, and are instead emphasizing secular standards like relativism. This philosophy is a breeding ground for entitlement mentalities, every man person for themself, the end justifies the means, etc.

Maybe seeing the horrific consequences of what is going on in “higher education” — and sports academics in particular — might jar us awake before it’s too late to change course?

Here are other materials by this scientist that you might find interesting:

Check out the Archives of this Critical Thinking substack.

WiseEnergy.orgdiscusses the Science (or lack thereof) behind our energy options.

C19Science.infocovers the lack of genuine Science behind our COVID-19 policies.

Election-Integrity.infomultiple major reports on the election integrity issue.

Media Balance Newsletter: a free, twice-a-month newsletter that covers what the mainstream media does not do, on issues from COVID to climate, elections to education, renewables to religion, etc. Here are the Newsletter’s 2023 Archives. Please send me an email to get your free copy. When emailing me, please make sure to include your full name and the state where you live. (Of course, you can cancel the Media Balance Newsletter at any time – but why would you?

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