Maybe college athletics should be blown up.
Burn it to the ground and reduce it to rubble.
Then rebuild it in its proper place.
This summer, we have had headlines about the Ohio State head football coach suspended for covering up a domestic violence case and a Maryland football player dying due to heat stroke. Don’t forget the pedestrian issue of academic fraud at the University of North Carolina, and the list could go on and on and on.
It seems every week there is a case of an athlete arrested for something, whether it’s domestic violence or public drunkenness.
Coaches and administrators are no better, and in fact are worse because they are in positions of authority overseeing coaches.
We entrust all of these people to take care of our kids when we send them off to college, and we shouldn’t.
Penn State and Michigan State — let’s make the Big 10 proud — have both been involved in sex scandals in which student-athletes were victims of sexual assault by a coach and athletic trainer.
We are supposed to believe not one person at these universities knew the assaults were happening even though they went on for years.
College athletics has gotten too big.
The term student-athlete is almost comical.
Sure, a majority of kids go to college to get an education and play sports, but there are too many who use college as a stepping stone for a professional contract.
Coaches are paid millions to win games because the most successful teams bring millions into the coffers of the university.
Yes, money helps finance other sports that don’t produce revenue.
Yes, successful teams help lure other students to universities who are seeking an education only.
Yes, sports has its place at colleges and universities.
But sports has become an out-of-control monster, devouring morals and ethics in order to produce wins.
Because of all these reasons and more, it might be time to gut the whole thing.
Let’s send our kids to college to get an education, to learn a skill that becomes a career.
There could still be sports, but the games would not be the main reason, and for some the only reason, kids go to college.
Take away the millions of money spent on athletic programs and put it into academics, other activities and upgrading the facilities and equipment needed to educate students.
Coaches should not be the highest paid employee in the state.
Players should not expect anything but an education.
Fans should stop thinking their universities exist solely for the purpose of success in athletics.
None of this is going to happen. We’re too far down the rabbit hole to ever see the light of day again.
Big-time athletics is a runaway train, off its rails, and no one will do anything to stop it.
The scandal at Ohio State and the horrific pain and suffering at Maryland, Penn State and Michigan State will pop up again, maybe at these universities, maybe at others. But there will be more victims.
There will be apologies, some will lose their jobs, and some will end up in prison, but no lessons will be learned, nothing will change.
We will wring our hands and say it must stop, but on game day we will forget about the students who have died, been raped and assaulted, and root, root, root for the home team.