Corruption Studies, University Sports Division

I can’t decide if the ongoing stories about coaches and administrative salaries (“From the Sideline to the Bottom Line“) are going to have a Lenny Bruce effect– if you repeat something often enough it looses all power to shock– or an “occupy” effect of  driving protest by emphasizing just how profoundly greed shapes what are supposed to be institutions devoted to public service.

It makes me wonder if we ought to be advocating for Corruption Studies as a new form of cultural studies;  here, we would be studying one of its main branches, the University Sports Division. I think that Corruption Studies would begin with a discussion of the history of the ongoing rise of tuition and fees on the one hand, and student debt on the other, over the course of the last three or four decades.

This history would then be contrasted or juxtaposed with the rise of big time university sports programs and, more specifically, the fantastically inflated salaries of coaches.  As the sports programs grow larger– supposedly, at least nominally and at first, as a way to support the universities academic missions– and generate more money, tuition, fees, and debts rise. That’s corruption in a nutshell.

About Ray Watkins

I was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital. I grew up in Houston, as a part of what we only half-jokingly call the Cajun Diaspora. At a certain point during the Regan administration, I had to leave, so I served in the Peace Corps, Philippines, from 1987-89. I didn't want to return to the United States just yet, so I moved to Paris, France, where I lived for three years or so. I then moved back to Austin, Texas, where I had received my Masters Degree, and (eventually) began a Ph.D., which I completed in 1999. I spent a year at Temple University and then accepted a position at Eastern Illinois University where I worked until May of 2006. I now work exclusively on line (although that may change) for Johns Hopkins, the Art Institute Online, and I can be reached most easily via email: raywatkins [that 'at' symbol]

One Thought on “Corruption Studies, University Sports Division

  1. There is a critical shortage of informative atrciles like this.

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