A PROPOSAL FOR REFORM OF

INTERCOLLEGIATE ATHLETICS AT THE

UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO AT BOULDER

            Submitted by the Special Committee on Athletics Reform

Boulder Faculty Assembly

May 6, 2004

E. Scott Adler, Associate Professor of Political Science, Chair

Elizabeth Bradley, Professor and Chair of Computer Science

Theodore P. Snow, Professor of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences

Barbara Bintliff, Nicholas Rosenbaum Professor of Law and BFA Chair,

member ex officio


Preamble

The faculty of the University of Colorado at Boulder recognizes that intercollegiate athletics can play an important and beneficial role in a vibrant educational community.  For this to happen, the campus must have an athletic department that advances the mission of the University and shares the faculty’s values and priorities for higher education.  Unfortunately, intercollegiate athletics has come to operate almost independently of the academic enterprise, and has become dismissive of the primary mission of the institution.  This is an intolerable situation.  Athletics must be restored to its role as a component of, and not separate from, the academic mission of the university.  It is the obligation of the faculty and administration of this university, life-long educators and leaders in academe, to use the recent events highlighting problems within the Athletic Department as an impetus to meaningful and lasting reforms in the management and oversight of intercollegiate athletics.  This document is our proposal for such reforms.

By offering this document, we do not pass judgment on the personnel of the UCB Athletic Department or take a position about the allegations made against the department or certain student-athletes.  We recognize the underlying problems that have arisen through the allocation of resources and efforts expended to develop a major intercollegiate sports program.  We are proposing a new model for oversight of the intercollegiate athletics programs that will integrate the Athletic Department and the student-athletes more fully into the academic life of the campus, while establishing safeguards and controls that will help avoid predicaments such as those we face currently from arising in the future.

The Role of Athletics at the University

The mission of CU-Boulder is:

to advance and impart knowledge across a comprehensive range of disciplines to benefit the people of Colorado, the nation, and the world by educating undergraduate and graduate students in the accumulated knowledge of humankind, discovering new knowledge through research and creative work, and fostering critical thought, artistic creativity, professional competence, and responsible citizenship.

This mission is primarily carried out through the academic programs of the university, which are and must remain paramount among the many activities and initiatives in which the institution engages.

Participation in athletics can teach teamwork and cooperation; reinforce the importance of self-discipline as learned through practice and repetition; require memorization, and synthesis and analysis of complex information; demand quick decision-making and clear communication; and give focus and structure to the participants’ lives.  The knowledge and skills learned through participation on an athletic team translate directly to the academic sphere, and are valuable components of a complete education.  Athletics can also be a highly visible outreach program for the university, and can build a sense of community among students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the public. 

However, the lessons learned through athletics can only fit within the campus mission and complement academic lessons when the Athletics Department operates like all other campus departments, in a supporting role to the academic endeavor.  Any other arrangement will subvert the educational experience of the student-athletes and create the kind of autonomous Athletics Department found at UCB today.  The student-athletes will be exploited for their physical abilities and their education will become a subsidiary activity.  The welfare of UCB’s student-athletes is a matter of great concern to the faculty.  We are deeply committed to providing the best educational experience for all our students.

Moreover, what should not be forgotten is that a winning football or basketball program has never and will never boost the academic reputation of a university.  To the contrary, it has been proven time and again that excessive emphasis on big-time college athletics may result in misplaced priorities and unethical and even illegal behavior that cause embarrassment, comprise the integrity of often respectable and talented educators, waste untold sums of money, and unnecessarily tarnish the overall reputation of what is otherwise a world-class teaching and research institution.

Dispelling the Myths about College Athletics

The challenges the CU Athletic Department and the University are facing currently are not unique to our program nor are they exclusively confined to athletics.  The problems result from a combination of causes, including an over-dependence of athletics on commercial interests and influences, a win-at-all-costs atmosphere, a perceived need to participate in the “arms race” of better facilities and higher coaching salaries as a means of staying competitive, the recruitment of athletes who do not meet the normal academic standards of the institution, and insufficient oversight by the university administration and faculty.  All of these issues face nearly every NCAA Division I university. 

Dr. James Duderstadt, former president of the University of Michigan and an authority on big-time college athletics, very much supports the belief that the issues and problems plaguing intercollegiate athletics have become extremely damaging to the mission of higher education.  He wrote in the new epilogue to his book, Intercollegiate Athletics and the American University:

my growing conviction [is] that big-time college sports do far more damage to the university, to its students and faculty, its leadership, its reputation and credibility, than most realize—or at least are willing to admit.... Far too many of our athletics programs exploit young people, recruiting them with the promise of a college education—or a lucrative professional career—only to have the majority of Division 1-A football and basketball players achieve neither.  Scandals in intercollegiate athletics have damaged the reputations of many of our colleges and universities.  Big time college football and basketball have put inappropriate pressure on university governance, as boosters, politicians, and the media attempt to influence governing boards and university leadership. The impact of intercollegiate athletics on university culture and values has been damaging, with inappropriate behavior of both athletes and coaches, all too frequently tolerated and excused.  So too, the commercial culture of the entertainment industry that characterizes college football and basketball is not only orthogonal to academic values, but it was corrosive and corruptive to the academic enterprise.”

It is our conviction that the financial pressures, the lure of nationwide exposure, the extraordinary support of ardent boosters, and the perquisites and status of a winning athletic program have, over the years, eroded the once-clear standing of academics as the fundamental purpose of the university and allowed the pursuit of athletic fame to overshadow educational programs.

The fact is that several widely accepted beliefs about the advantages of big-time college sports simply do not comport with reality:

Myth No. 1: Athletic Departments make money for universities.

This is very rarely the case and has never been true at the University of Colorado.  At almost every Division I university (and at every university in Divisions II and III), the Athletic Department spends more money that it raises.  Only in rare and short-lived instances have major college athletic programs run in the black, and to get there it often requires fancy accounting (i.e., shifting certain athletics-related expenses over to the university's general budget, etc.).  It is almost always the case that Athletic Departments require significant annual infusions of funds from either the general budget of the university, student fees, or a direct state allocation.

At CU, the Athletic Department receives close to $1million annually from the Chancellor's budget, over $400,000 from the University president, and over $1.3 million from student fees, accounting for 7 to 10 percent of the Athletic Department's budget.  And this does not include other subsidies that athletics receives in the form of licensing fees, infrastructure support such as buildings, campus physical space, and various other services that are not charged back to athletics.

Myth No. 2: Winning athletic programs result in financial contributions to universities.

There is no reliable statistical evidence that demonstrates this is true.  In fact, to the contrary, there are a number of studies that show this relationship does not exist at all and that losing programs do not experience any appreciable loss in contributions to the university's general fund (see, for example, Unpaid Professionals, by Andrew Zimbalist – an economics professor at Smith College).  There are isolated instances where winning football and basketball programs have resulted in temporary increases in giving specifically to the athletic departments, but that does not benefit the academic mission of the university.

Moreover, an important cost to the university is often overlooked in fundraising around college athletics – namely the "opportunity costs."  For every donation that is earmarked for athletics, a potential donor to other programs is removed from the pool.  In some instances, when campaigns for athletic fund-raising are directed at alumni who normally give to the general fund of their alma mater, increases in contributions to the Athletic Department actually coincide with decreases in giving to university’s general funds.

Myth No. 3: A good athletic department helps the reputation of the university.

While there is some anecdotal evidence that shows that winning athletic programs can increase applications for admissions, this benefit is short-lived, and normally accrues to schools whose athletics reputations were weak prior to some singular success in sports that created increased visibility.  Statistical studies have shown that in general, winning sports programs rarely result in a greater number of applications; do not result in any higher quality of applicant; and do not improve the admissions yield (the percent of admitted students who end up enrolling).  Most importantly, athletic programs that encounter scandal and NCAA sanctions could very well experience severely damaged reputations, along with decreases in contributions to the academic general fund. We already know of one instance where a unit of CU-Boulder may be missing out on a major donation by a corporation that does not want its reputation tarnished by the football recruiting allegations. (For more complete information, see Zimbalist 2001 or the NCAA’s report, “The Empirical Effects of Collegiate Athletics: An Interim Report.”)

Proposals for Reform of the CU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics

For a reform effort to work, it must be initiated and guided by the highest levels of authority at CU — the Chancellor, the President, and the Regents.  The faculty agrees with President Hoffman and Chancellor Byyny that UCB’s athletic reforms should serve as a national model and see the recent football recruiting changes as a step in that direction.  When asked how those reforms would affect CU’s competitiveness on the playing field, the President and the Chancellor responded that there were higher principles than simply competing for star athletes.  We are in agreement with this statement, too.  This is precisely the viewpoint that should guide decisions for revamping the Athletic Department.  However, meaningful reorganization of athletics at CU requires a wholesale transformation in how we think of the Athletic Department — the way it serves students, its fiscal relationship with the rest of the campus, and its place in fulfilling the educational mission of the university.

In November of 1992 the Regents of the University of Colorado adopted a resolution endorsing the principles of the first Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics.  Among those principles were calls for: improved progress toward degree and higher graduation rates of students on athletic scholarships; greater fiscal control of Athletic Departments; and a general increase in institutional authority and accountability over athletic programs.  As far as we can tell, very little has actually been done at CU to advance these principles. We cannot simply wait for system-wide rules changes to trickle down from the Big 12 or NCAA before the university reasserts its authority over the athletic program.  The NCAA is an aggregation of its members and thus long-standing and meaningful change must bubble up from the bottom. 

Like many other campuses around the country, diffusion of and confusion about duties has led to miscommunications about who is responsible for supervising the behavior of student-athletes and coaches.  The result is that those with oversight cannot maintain adequate control, and often are not aware of the specific details of athletics management.

Adhering to academic values will allow UCB to regain control of its athletics program and serve as a model for the nation. Any university can be a leader in athletic reform; most won’t because of a lack of will and fear of public reprisals.  We at UCB have no choice; we must lead or be judged a failure in the eyes of the entire nation.  Therefore, we submit the following proposals for athletic reform.

We propose a two-tiered set of reforms.  One tier describes changes that should be made on campus as quickly as possible.  The other tier is aimed at a national audience and, to be effective, will require the participation of many other universities, major athletic conferences, and the NCAA.  Some of the proposals reinforce many of the positive things already occurring in the CU Athletic Department.  Others are meant to reverse negative and disturbing trends.

Tier I Reforms:

Proposals for Immediate Changes

1. Ensure the well-being of all UCB student-athletes.

We must not forget that the students who come to UCB on athletic scholarships are, first and foremost, students.  Our purpose is to make sure that the young men and women who enroll at the University of Colorado, athletes or not, attend class and study in a safe environment and leave with the knowledge and skills to prepare them for advanced degrees and/or the competitive work world.  We must not bring students here who are not prepared to succeed, and we cannot set them up for failure when they arrive.  UCB must do everything it can to ensure that the students who participate in intercollegiate athletics here are as qualified for admissions as all other students, and are able to keep pace with the demanding curriculum and educational requirements of a major research university.  We must insist on a safe campus, where each student is respected and mechanisms are provided for peaceful dispute resolution.  Student-athletes must be integrated fully into the campus life, to enhance their social and emotional development, which is crucial to a complete education.  To this end, we propose the following:

            a.  Require that student-athletes meet the same admissions standards as other students.  While the Athletic Department does a very good job most of the time of recruiting students who are able to succeed in the rigorous academic environment of CU, this is not universally the case. Certain teams recruit an excessive number of students who barely meet the minimum standards for admission – these are students who are admitted through the “window.” Whereas only about 10-15 percent of the entering class at CU is admitted in such fashion, “window” admits may consist of more than 75 percent of some athletic teams.    This would not be of concern in and of itself if we had evidence that these students were consistently performing and graduating at rates equivalent to the student body as a whole.  However, they are not. Therefore, the use of the admissions “window” for athletes must be severely limited to those who have compelling, non-athletic-based qualifications.  Students recruited and admitted to UCB with athletic scholarships should reflect the profile of the student body as a whole; that is, athletes should be admitted “through the window” in approximately the same proportion as the entire entering class.  This should be calculated by team, not across the entire Athletic Department.

In addition, we recommend a review of the policies governing the use of continuing education courses to maintain athletic eligibility, and suggest that the review be in the context of a more comprehensive evaluation of the use of continuing education courses for matriculated students.

            b.  Involve faculty more actively in student-athlete recruitment.  As admissions requirements are strengthened for athletes, faculty must assist in the recruitment process to help prospective students understand the challenges of university study and to assist the campus in its admissions decisions.  We propose a formal collaboration between the Athletics Department, the Admissions Office, and the Boulder Faculty Assembly, in which faculty from each department will participate in the process of recruiting student-athletes.  Faculty members will work with head coaches on a regular basis, to arrange meetings with athletic recruits and their parents (in person or by phone) to discuss academic programs, graduation requirements, and other aspects of the educational program.

            c.  Restrict the number of athletic scholarships and post-season play for teams with poor academic performance and graduation rates. In conjunction with the raising of admission standards for athletic teams, we propose the requirements that individual athletes make appropriate progress toward degree each year and teams graduate their athletes at rates consistent with that of the student body as a whole.  Inability to meet these academic standards will result in loss of scholarships and/or ineligibility for post-season play.  The NCAA Division I Board of Directors has just adopted a package of reforms that includes these very changes, we urge CU to be out in front on academic reforms by instituting them immediately and unilaterally.

            d.  Include student-athlete academic performance as a component of coaches’ performance evaluations. One of the best ways to encourage strong academic performance by student-athletes, and discourage abuse of them, is to make clear to the coaches the consequences of academic failure. Coaches’ yearly performance evaluations should include measurable goals and objectives tied to their teams’ academic performance.  Minimal standards will be set by the new Athletics Governing Board (see recommendations below) that will be based on the NCAA’s new guidelines for evaluating graduation rates and progress toward degree.

            e.  Require every intercollegiate athletics coach attend one or more specialized academic support programs each year.  Coaches have a strong and continuing relationship with the student-athletes in their sports, and are in a position to influence student behavior and attitudes.  Coaches engage in teaching activities, both on and off the field, and often can spot a student experiencing academic difficulty before others would notice the problems.  They can help the student-athlete to work through issues or encourage him or her to seek help earlier than other professionals.  The coaches should be provided with on-going training, possibly through the Boulder Campus Faculty Teaching Excellence Program, in academic support topics.  This training would also reinforce in the coaches their unique role in the educational process of student-athletes.

f.  Create a handbook for coaches and athletic department personnel.  A resource book should be developed for all for coaches and athletic department personnel that: provides information on how to monitor the academic progress of students; lists resources to which students in need can be referred; covers sexual harassment and sexual assault awareness and details responsibilities of campus personnel in reporting suspected cases; describes the organization of the campus and gives contact information for the various departments; and includes other relevant and necessary information. This should improve communications between coaches and student-athletes, and can make the Department more responsive to the needs of its students.

         g.  Review and revise all student-athlete handbooks. 

A thorough review and revision should be undertaken of all student-athlete handbooks for every sport.  Content should be standardized for those topics that apply to all student-athletes.  In particular, standardized information should be provided that: lists services for students in need of academic, health, or emotional assistance; covers sexual harassment and sexual assault awareness, including listing policies and reporting requirements; describes the organization of the Athletic Department and campus and gives contact information for offices and personnel; explains class attendance policies, and requirements for requesting excused absences for competitions; and includes other relevant and necessary information.

2. Clarify institutional control and accountability

            a.  Consolidate all responsibility for Boulder Campus intercollegiate athletics in the Office of the Chancellor.  The University’s Board of Regents’ Intercollegiate Athletics Policy 13-C (June 27, 1996) gives oversight responsibility of the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics to the Boulder Chancellor, but delegates representational, media, and public relations functions to the Office of the President.  This should be changed.  It is confusing, and blurs normal channels of reporting and supervision.  It undermines the ability of the Boulder Campus to create and maintain a unified and integrated program of activities that enhance its educational mission.  It obscures the role of athletics as that of supporting academics and provides the Athletic Department with an excuse to claim a special status, apart from other campus functions. 

         b.  Integrate academic department administrative functions into general campus administrative procedures. The integration of the Athletic Department's Academic Support Services into the campus Office of Student Affairs has been largely successful.  It should serve as a model for the similar incorporation of the Athletic Department's financial services and administration into pre-existing campus structures.  We strongly recommend that there be a comprehensive review of all Athletic's Academic Support Services functions, including the use of tutors and other services offered student-athletes, to ensure comparability with the services offered all students.

                        i.  Financial Services.  The relationship between the Athletic Department financial and business affairs and the campus must be formalized.  We propose that the Senior Associate Athletic Director for Facilities, Development and Business Affairs be subject to the same reporting requirements as all other department budget officers.  Effectively, he should become an agent of the Campus’ Senior Vice Chancellor/CFO.  All aspects of the Athletics Department budget should be subject to the same oversight as the budgets of other departments.

In conjunction with this action, we recommend an immediate and comprehensive review of the entire budget and strategic needs of the Athletics Department.  Special attention should be paid to the dependence of the Department on University support, arrangements with coaches regarding outside compensation, the football stadium expansion and financing, and long-range forecasts and planning for the financial future of athletics.

                        ii.  Athletics Administration.  To promote better communication and ensure that Athletics Department decision-making is consistent with the educational mission of the campus, we propose that the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics report to the Boulder Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor’s Office.  The Provost coordinates the activities of almost all units on campus, and reports directly to the Chancellor; it is appropriate that he or she also directly supervise intercollegiate athletics, coordinating with the Vice Chancellors and the proposed Athletics Governing Board (see below) as appropriate.   The Athletic Director should be involved in campus policy boards, as appropriate, perhaps as a member of the Council of Deans (in a role similar to the Dean of the Libraries or the Dean of Continuing Education) or other group. 

3.  Provide faculty oversight through creation of an Athletics Governing Board

Shared governance is a basic operating principle of the University and the Boulder Campus.  Faculty and administration should share policy-making responsibilities and oversight of intercollegiate athletics, similar to other shared oversight responsibilities (for example, over academic programs, building and construction, information technology, budgets, etc.).  Accordingly, we propose several changes in athletics governance that allow faculty to play a critical role in athletics decision-making and oversight.  These changes coincide very closely with the principles outlined in Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics’ memorandum, “Campus Athletics Governance, the Faculty Role:  Principles, Proposed Rules, and Guidelines” < http://www.math.umd.edu/~jmc/COIA/Gov.html>. 

First, we propose that the duties of the Faculty Athletics Representative (an NCAA-mandated position) conform to principles in the COIA document (currently being considered for adoption by the FAR Association).  In particular, we recommend that the position be filled by a regular faculty member.  The FAR should be provided with the resources and support to ensure his/her independence from the Athletic Department, and to make certain his/her fair representation of the sentiments and priorities of the faculty at the conference and NCAA levels.

Second, we propose the creation of an Athletics Governing Board (“AGB”), which will consist of faculty, academic administrators, athletics department officials, and students; each member will serve a finite term.  The AGB must be composed of a majority of faculty and academic administrators, and should have a membership of 12 to 15 at a maximum.  It should have at least 7 faculty members, at least four of whom shall be appointed by the Boulder Faculty Assembly.  Other members of the AGB will be appointed by the Provost.  The AGB will report to and serve in an advisory capacity to the Provost, overseeing all aspects of Athletics Department policy and operations.  The AGB will not replace the current BFA Committee on Intercollegiate Athletics, which will be maintained as the faculty’s independent advisory body on athletics policies and issues; membership on the AGB and the BFA Committee on Intercollegiate Athletics may overlap.  The AGB will be required to provide informational reports to the BFA at least annually.

The AGB will have specific responsibilities for (among other things): setting admissions standards for student-athletes, which may not conflict with general admissions standards; providing oversight of admissions for all student-athletes, and making recommendations regarding the admission of student-athletes who seek entry through the “window”; conducting recruitment and hiring searches for major Athletic Department personnel, including head coaches of each sport and the Athletic Director, and providing input into yearly job performance evaluations and personnel actions; reviewing all long-range strategic and fiscal plans and policies, and making recommendations to the Provost regarding their approval. The composition and duties of this panel generally follow the guidelines laid out in the COIA document.

Tier II Reforms:

Leading a National Debate on the Role of Athletics in Higher Education

Not all necessary reforms are feasible if implemented unilaterally.  Many changes not only require alterations in NCAA or conference policies and bylaws, but also a transformation of how our culture regards intercollegiate athletics at its highest levels of competition.  We are calling for a national debate on the mission and goals of higher education and how college sports can further those goals; we must have a better perspective on this issue.  Of one thing we can be sure: it is not the place of our nation’s universities and colleges to serve as high-priced athletic entertainment or development programs for major professional sports leagues. 

Moreover, university administrators and governing boards need to take stock of their choices and ask themselves why they are spending millions to build or expand a stadium or bring a high profile coach to campus.  These are not actions that will improve in any way the academics of their institution, and in the long run place an ever-increasing burden on their athletic departments to raise larger and larger sums of money.  Ultimately such choices drain resources away from the teaching and research side of higher education and put their institutions at risk of serious and damaging embarrassment.

We therefore call upon the Board of Regents of the University of Colorado, the University’s President, the Boulder Campus Chancellor, and the Boulder Campus’ Athletic Director to become a force for change in college sports.  We urge them to work within the NCAA and the athletic conferences, the appropriate academic and administrative associations, and with the public to redefine the role of athletics within the setting of higher education and identify necessary changes in the existing system of intercollegiate athletics.  Simultaneously, the faculty will work through the Faculty Athletics Representative and their participation in the Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics to effect these changes. 

To begin the debate, the faculty proposes discussion of the following three topics:

1. Putting Academics First

·        Length of athletic schedules and practice time

Athletic schedules and practice time should not place on an undue burden on the lives and academic needs of students.  Competition seasons for some sports are far too long and too many games are scheduled mid-week, requiring students to spend excessive amounts of time away from campus.  Furthermore, it is quite common for post-season tournaments and championships to run into finals periods, requiring last-minute absences during a crucial time in the academic schedule.  Athletic programs often will increase the length of their football schedules in order to generate the needed revenue to feed their ever-expanding budgets.  All of these choices come at real costs to the students.

·        Improving academic standards

Efforts must be strengthened at all universities to ensure that no compromises are made on admissions, academic standards, and graduation rates for students who participate in intercollegiate athletics – no matter what sport.  While the universities themselves must ultimately be accountable for the quality of their students, the best way to achieve both broad improvements in academics and a level playing field for all schools is to institute more rigorous standards by changing policies at the conference or NCAA level.  One item that should be up for further consideration is returning to a system of ineligibility for freshmen – this is an idea advocated by former University of North Carolina Basketball Coach Dean Smith, among others.

·        Alternative avenues to professional sports careers

Through the NCAA, university administrators and athletic directors should apply pressure on professional sports leagues (particularly the NFL and NBA) to provide more realistic development programs for young men and women who wish to play professional sports but do not wish to attend college.

2. Halting the Athletics “Arms Race”

·        Getting perspective on athletics spending

A sense of perspective needs to be reintroduced into the planning and operations of athletic department budgets.  Schools need to establish active controls over athletics spending such as those proposed above for CU.  Again, this can probably best be achieved by changes in the bylaws of the NCAA requiring universities to take tighter control through incorporation of Athletic Department finances into the general budgetary procedures of the institution.  As part of the fiscal reforms, the NCAA should institute a national standard for athletics accounting similar to the “Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.”  Furthermore, academic administrators and faculty need to discourage the false hope that excessive athletic spending and the building of potentially winning football and basketball programs can somehow propel the academic side of institutions into greatness.  Many more schools will fail in this effort than will succeed.

·        Reconsidering Athletic Scholarships

There needs to be intensified discussion about the policies and process of awarding athletic grant-in-aid scholarships.  This is often one of the major expenditures, if not the largest expenditure, for an athletic program.  There should be serious consideration of a number of reform proposals including: reducing the number of football scholarship athletes; eliminating the ability of coaches to unilaterally “pull” scholarships once they are awarded; and moving to a more need-based system of financial aid for athletes.

·        Coaches salaries

Coaches’ salaries have spiraled out of control.  At some institutions, compensation packages for coaches have gone well beyond the $1 million mark, often making athletic coaches the highest paid university employee.  Such high salaries can place a significant strain on athletic department budgets and send an unfortunate signal that athletic victories are valued well beyond academic achievement.   Individual universities must make realistic assessments about how coaching salaries and compensation packages fit into both athletic department solvency and university priorities and goals.

3. Reining in the Commercialization of College Sports

Perhaps one of the more fundamental problems facing our major universities with respect to intercollegiate athletics is the over-commercialization of high-profile sports (such as football and basketball) and the undue influence of the sports media and television networks.  The fuel that propelled the skyrocketing costs of college athletic programs is the revenue generated from television broadcasts of football and basketball, and the redistribution of revenue from the NCAA for the year-end basketball tournament.

Among the changes that could help in de-emphasizing the commercialization of college sports are: a stronger control by university administrators and faculty on the scheduling of athletic events; tighter limitations on the use of the university name in sports-related commercial endeavors (e.g. summer sports camps, television programs, etc.); a minimization of commercial intrusions in sporting events and venues (with a specific prohibition of alcohol and tobacco advertising); and a prohibition on the use of athletes as vehicles for advertisers.