We’ve made it through all the excitement to witness Ohio become the champions of a historic college football season. The Buckeyes came out on top in the first ever college football playoff. This playoff, slightly modeled after the march madness basketball tournament, was the resolution to a former system that wasn’t efficient enough to determine the school with the best football team. Did they finally get it right?
Apparently so. The New Year’s Day semi final games were the most watched events in the history of cable television. Woah. Here’s what amazes me most. A worthy group of professionals, including former U.S. Secretary and educator Condoleezza Rice, were called upon to act as a selection committee for a cause the NCAA rabidly charges as only a secondary priority. As the hypocrisy grows, how does their “student-athlete” propaganda continue unchallenged? The supposed first priority, studies, is becoming no priority at all.
This was found evident in the recent discovery of an 18-year paper class scandal at North Carolina. Athletes and students were recieving credit for an instructor-less course they never had to show up for. All that was required was a single paper at the end of the semester that was graded ‘A.’ regarless of quality. How could this exist for so long on a campus devoted to higher education? The money-generating, but of course uncompensated, athletes for these schools should at least have secured a valuable education. It’s supposedly why they are there in the first place, right? Not to get all philosophical on you, but the greek Aristotle said once that “those who train their children in athletics to the exclusion of other necessities, make their children truly vulgar.”
The culture on college campuses that big time athletics co-created with Greek organizations have interrupted the more important necessities. It’s no wonder why the biggest stories out of colleges last year were cases of hazing, rape or sexual abuse, cheating, and all kinds of misconduct and vulgar behavior from both students and athletes.
So while the playoff and the coming march madness is fun and entertaining, it’s a critical time on the planet right now and I believe the key to all the rising social issues is a revaluing of education. Where’s a committee at to make all of this right?