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Nov 18, 2012

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Frank

And why should we trust those same adults to fix the problem, when they were either complicit in, or turned a blind eye to, the cheating? I believe my University has lost its way.

David Wharton

Willingham said about the kind of academic fraud found at Carolina, "That’s everywhere across the country." I doubt there are more than half a dozen Division I schools that don't have a similarly corrupt academic system.

michele

University should be about education, not sports. Period.

Collards

and let's all sit at home and in sports bars on Saturday's in autumn watching High IQ Bowl!

Brian

I think it is okay that there is a mix of university education environments to choose from. It is a market, after all. I chose a college that had prominence in one sport and as a fellow student of some of those athletes, I can tell you that what UNC is going through is not, nor has it ever been, a new problem. For very few, will college athletics in a high-profile program be a vehicle to post-college success. Frankly, we shouldn't close our eyes and think that those student athletes should magically start performing at the same level as their peers. If universities want big-time athletics, they should create distinct learning opportunities (i.e., a separate track - remedial if need be)for those students that are different than the traditional academic program.

formerly gt

"University should be about education, not sports. Period."

there's a lot to university life aside from classes, and i think sports, both varsity and intramural, are valid parts of that experience. what's the argument against it?

and as an NC State grad, i may be biased, but i find several interesting things about what's been exposed at UNC.

one is that after years of cultivating the image of "The Carolina Way" the fans and boosters defense is that "everyone does it". They used to claim they were different from other schools. now they claim they're being unfairly targeted.

another is that UNC's issues go beyond athletes cherry picking courses and finding friendly professors. according to reports they used systematic fraud to help keep athletes eligible.

finally, they kept using the fraudulent classes even after the first NCAA violations were exposed. So, will anything truly change or will they just look for different ways to game the system?

michele
"If universities want big-time athletics, they should create distinct learning opportunities (i.e., a separate track - remedial if need be)for those students that are different than the traditional academic program."

"Remedial" is not college-level. Why would you have a non-college level academic program for a college student? That's nonsense. "Big-time athletics" has nothing to do with education and I don't understand why they're mixed. Athletes who aren't prepared for college-level work, but who can do "big-time athletics" should be playing pro sports. Or maybe there should be sort of junior league pro sports that takes the place of college sports.

Intramural sports are great. And they don't seem to interfere with the classroom experience. But the focus on these huge athletics programs is different. What does it teach young people when our colleges and universities make sports the most important thing, rather than education? What kind of values are they learning from colleges and universities that accept and even validate fraud and lying to maintain their big sports programs? And what about the athletes themselves? There are students who've never read a book or written a paragraph? And the response to that is to do it for them? Why is no one stepping up and helping them LEARN??

Brian

Michele - I agree with you about "remedial" not being college-level, but with the reality being that there is absolutely zero trend towards separating big-time college athletics with the academic institutions they are attached to, the search for a middle ground might be the most realistic. My take is that these institutions shouldn't ignore the level at which these students arrive at the university, and they shouldn't lie or cheat to cover up that student's deficiency as is currently being done. The best thing for that student athlete would be to learn "something" - even if that requires a special program for those students that aren't at the same level as traditional students. It makes no sense to gloss over the issue, nor does it make any sense, in my opinion, to penalize some of these student athletes who have not been properly prepared by whatever school system they came out of. Certainly there needs to be accountability - for the students, the teachers, the universities... and I get the anger at the cover up, but I also think we don't help the problem by making the student athletes the problem.

michele

Agreed. See the last line of my comment above yours.

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