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February 27, 2005

This Month's Quotes

EMAIL ABSURDITY … “To say you can send an e-mail out to your student body and any nonresponse you get means there’s no interest is absurd. A lot of those e-mails won’t even be opened.” … Neena Chaudhry, senior counsel at the National Women’s Law Center. expressing her acute displeasure that the DOE’s recent guideline change that will allow email surveys to help determine whether colleges are satisfying Title IX requirements. … insidehighered.com, 3-23

ROLLIE’S RETURNING? … "I miss it. I miss the practices and the players." … Rollie Massimino, ex Villanova (and UNLV, and Cleveland State) men’s basketball coach, commenting about the possibility of a return to coaching. Massimino, 70, is being seriously considered to become coach of Northwood University, an NAIA school in West Palm Beach, Florida. … Palm Beach (FL) Post, 3-23-05

A PIECE OF THE PIE … "There aren't any residuals for these kids. You keep selling them and selling them and selling them, and they've got nothing, nothing, nothing.” … Sonny Vacarro, of Reebok’s grassroots organization, admonishing NCAA president Myles Brand for exploiting college student-athletes. The remarks were made during an ESPN Town Hall discussion on whether college athletes should be paid. … Chicago Daily Herald, 3-16-05

TEMPERS FLARE … "Don't tell me what to do. I'm not Bob Knight and you're not my president." … John Thompson, former Georgetown men's basketball coach, during an argument with NCAA president Myles Brand during an ESPN Town Hall discussion on whether college athletes should be paid. … Chicago Daily Herald, 3-16-05

CHOICES … "If a student worked really hard, he'd have a better chance of making it into medical school than the NBA." … James Earl Davis, professor at Temple University, decrying the pervasive limitation of role models for young black males. … The Temple (University) News, 3-15-05

NCAA: CAPITALISM / STUDENT-ATHLETES: SOCIALISM … "Everybody's making money except the athletes. ... We're talking about a very large capital enterprise. But when we start talking about the athletes, all of a sudden we get to be socialists." … Todd Boyd, a professor of critical studies at the University of Southern California, commenting on the exploitation of student-athletes in “amateur” college athletics. … Daily Herald (Ill.), 3-16-05

STEROID ROLE MODEL … “But Barry Bonds does it.” … 19-year old college football player Efrain Marrero, when confronted by his parents about his steroid use. Marrero promised to quit, and he did. Less than a month later he killed himself. … New York Times (front page), 3-10-05

PIZZA ADDICT … “When it comes to pizza, I just can’t eat a little bit.” … Adam Lucci, defensive tackle for Robert Morris U., formerly 360 pounds, on his way to becoming more of a “big lean” rather than a “big fat” player. … USA Today, 3-6-05

THE SMOKING GUN … "I'm not a friend of Neuheisel's, and I am not a fan, but whatever I think of him, I don't think this is fair or the appropriate approach to this." … part of an email message from one NCAA enforcement officer, accusing one of his colleagues as being out to get Washington football coach Rick Neuheisel. The NCAA and UW offered to pay Neuheisel the equivalent of $4.5 million (a $3-million settlement and a $1.5 million loan forgiveness) to settle a lawsuit he brought against them for interference with his contract and wrongful termination. … Chronicle of Higher Education, 3-8-05

WOMEN AS STEAKS … “It's pretty difficult to deny women have been served up like steaks on the football training table.” … columnist Mark Kiszla, referring to scandalous sex for recruits activities by the University of Colorado football team. Kiszla’s column was a running rant against president Elizabeth Hoffman, of whose stewardship Kiszla is unsparing in his disparagement. Hoffman announced her resignation one day after his column. Cause and effect? … Denver Post, 3-6-05

SHAME SHAME … “If the NCAA meant to generalize and accuse, it waved a fully loaded AK-47 of shame.” … columnist Dennis Dodd, commenting on the substandard academic performances of a wide swath of D1 schools (as indicated by the NCAA's new APR methodology). … SportsLine.com, 2-28-05

BIG, BIG STICK … "It doesn't do us any good to create any structure of reform without incentives and disincentives. Our assumption was that you had to have some kind of way to get a 2-by-4 and hit them between the eyes to tell them the NCAA stands for the student and the athlete." … University of Kansas chancellor Robert Hemenway, a member of the NCAA management council, on the need to communicate that the NCAA wanted to REALLY get serious about academics. … NCAA News, 2-28-05

DISAGREES WITH DISINCENTIVES … "I'm afraid that these new rules will create panic and weak majors, and that's what I'm opposed to. And the fact is that Miles Brand will be long gone when all of this plays out." … Gerald Gurney, University of Oklahoma Associate AD for academic affairs, voicing his displeasure with the NCAA’s new APR academic initiatives. … NCAA News, 2-28-05

BOYCOTT AUBURN … "When people look at a football game or a basketball game on television, they get the impression there are lots of blacks working at Auburn, and that's not the case." … State Rep. Alvin Holmes, offering rationale on why the Alabama Legislature's Black Caucus has asked black athletes to refuse to attend Auburn University until the school agrees to rehire two black administrators fired in a reorganization of the athletic department. … AP, 2-24-05

PRIORITIES … "I think we live in a world where a 1200 SAT will do you more good than running 4.4 in the 40." … Michael Adams, president of the University of Georgia, on the occasion of the formation of the Southeastern Conference Academic Consortium in an effort to enhance the academic missions for intercollegiate student-athletes. … Chronicle of Higher Education, 2-24-05

COLLEGE SPORTS: ANTITHESIS OF CHARACTER BUILDING? … "(College athletics) no more gives one a stronger character than does a good biology class. Often there is intense, unthinking pressure to win at all costs. And coaches, the people who are most supposed to be building character, often exhibit the worst example. Witness the terrible things a certain Indiana basketball coach would say to his players at halftime - horrible insults and abuse. It's a kind of behavior that is the antithesis of character building." ... Arizona State U. philosophy professor Peter French, author of a new book, Ethics and College Sports, in which he takes a particularly tough look at the argument that college athletics builds character.

COACH CHANEY BEHAVING BADLY … "I'm sending a message. I'm going to send in what we used to do years ago, send in the goon." … Temple basketball coach John Chaney, describing his rationale for sending in a seldom-used, 6-8, 250-pound “goon” in response to what he thought were illegal screens by opponent St. Joe’s. The “goon” fouled out in four minutes. The next day Chaney announced that he would suspend himself for one game. ... Associated Press, 2-23-05

POSTER BOY OF ACADEMIC FREEDOM … “(The American populace is) . . . "a willfully ignorant, self-deceiving public that celebrates the obliteration and carnage of others because they devalue them to the point of being not human." … University of Colorado professor Ward Churchill, who called victims of the 9-11 terrorist attacks "little Eichmanns," and has thus become the nation's foremost example of a leftist professoriate run amok. What makes America great is a one-of-a-kind tolerance for all opinions. … The Chronicle of Higher Education, 2-24-05

Other gems from Professor Churchill:

"White is a state of mind. It's not a gene code, by the way. You've got to choose to act white in order to be white."

• (The United States) "has never had 15 minutes of its history when it was not butchering some people for its perceived interests somewhere. ... This most peace-loving country has never experienced peace."

• If the University of Colorado tries to boot him of campus, Mr. Churchill defiantly said he would fight for his job: "If they try to deep-six my ass, I'm going to butcher them in court."

"I never set out to be a poster boy of academic freedom. They selected me. And I'm going to stand on the principle. I'm going to stand on the issue because to give an inch is to give away something that we cannot afford to lose, and when I say 'we,' I mean all of us in the academy. Whatever your interest is in the academy, if you let this one go down you've lost it all."


LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION … "Having programs to reduce binge drinking on college campuses in the absence of broad-based community interventions to do likewise may be a bit like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic." … Tim Naimi, of the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, making the point that a college's location plays a large role in the drinking habits of its students, according to a study that found that the rate of heavy drinking among college students was lower in states with four or more laws discouraging high-volume alcohol sales than in states that did not have such laws. … The Chronicle of Higher Education, 2-23-05

GOD ON HER SIDE … "This is God's battle." … Marilou Braswell, a 12-year cheerleading coach at the Univ. of Georgia, fired after a Jewish cheerleader claimed the coach had discriminated against her because non-Christian squad members did not participate in pre-game prayers and Bible studies. [Ed.-This reminds us of the “We’re on a mission from God” line from the Blue Brothers movie.] … AP, 2-15-05

ONCE A BEAVER, ALWAYS A BEAVER … "I'm disappointed, I'm hurt. But I'm still a Beaver.” … Lynn Lashbrook, sports management professor at Oregon State (and is also a sports agent), as he declined to sign an agreement saying he would not sign players in his class. He said his history of ethical behavior should make him trustworthy, and therefore there would be no conflict of interest difficulties. … The Oregonian, 2-19-05

NOVEL IDEA ON ACADEMICS … “Which came first - the chicken or the eggheads?” … columnist Pat Dooley, decrying the emphasis on graduation rather than on showing up for classes in the first place. Dooley proposes a rule requiring a minimum number of hours of studying. Why not? There’s a 20-hour max rule for student-athletes to spend on athletics. … Gainesville Sun, 2-19-05

A CLASS EXIT? … "The school is more important than me or the people who fired me.” … Savannah State coach Ed Daniels, who was dismissed after his Tigers went 0-28. The school of about 2500 students had moved from D2 to D1 recently, largely to raise its national profile (which it did, but unfortunately in a negative way). … AP, 2-17-05

PENALTIES DON’T FIT THE CRIME … "The penalties are not strong enough. First offense, 10 days? Five times? You'd have to be awful stupid.” ... former baseball slugger Frank Robinson, manager for the new Washington Nationals team, commenting on the leniency of MLB’s new policy on drugs, which stipulates that first-time offenders will be suspended 10 days, with incremental increases for each subsequent offense. A fourth-time offender is suspended for a year, while a fifth-time offender is subject to the whims of the commissioner. … Washington Times, 2-19-05

90+ STEROID SLUGGERS TO HIT 54,000 DINGERS? … "Before I take my last breath, I'm probably going to be about 99th on the list. I'm afraid people are going to say, 'Frank who?'” … former baseball slugger Frank Robinson, manager for the new Washington Nationals team, commenting that his 586 career homers--which formerly put him 4th on the all-time list (until passed by Barry Bonds)—will be surpassed by one steroid-jacked player after another. … Washington Times, 2-19-05

SIMPLE, PROFOUND, SPOT-ON … "The reality has always been that the perception is that players win and coaches lose. It's lonely." … Paul Westphal, Pepperdine basketball coach, commenting on the pervasive blame-the-coach firings that have become the norm for pro (and college) coaching. … Los Angeles Times, 2-11-05

TRAVELIN’ MAN … "It was just an ongoing pressure-cooker. You were always either traveling, preparing for games, or getting over games. The only way I could tell it was Sunday was when there was a fat paper in front of the door." … Jerry Reynolds, former Sacramento Kings coach, commenting on the fast pace of NBA coaching. … Los Angeles Times, 2-11-05

NO MORE TRAVELIN’ MAN … "There goes another one—and I'm not on it." … Paul Westphal, to his wife, while sitting on his patio in Manhattan Beach and seeing planes departing from LAX. Westpahl had recently been fired by the Seattle SuperSonics. … Los Angeles Times, 2-11-05

TOO LAID BACK? … “Maybe if you're not choking a kid or throwing chairs up against lockers, then you're seen as laid back." … Steve Lavin, who endured seven turbulent seasons as “the UCLA coach who was not John Wooden.” Lavin was criticized for supposedly being too laid back in his approach. … The Press Enterprise (Riverside, CA), 2-12-05

NO SUBTLETY INTENDED … “Basketball's muscled-up, minimally skilled dunker is the equivalent of baseball's steroid-fueled home-run slugger or the guided-missile N.F.L. linebacker, his helmet aimed at anything that moves.” … Michael Sokolove, identifying the dunk and the three-point shot as the main culprits in the degeneration of the game of basketball. … New York Times Magazine, 2-13-05

QUACK LIKE A PRO … "We already have seat licenses; now we're going to have suites. We're starting to look and smell and quack like a pro (organization)." … Michigan season ticket holder, upon learning that a $200 million renovation is being proposed for Michigan Stadium (AKA: The Big House), which would include 79 new luxury suites priced at up to $80,000 per year. … Detroit News, 2-13-05


FROM “Clang,” by Michael Sokolove in the New York Times Magazine of 2-13-05, in which the author makes a compelling case that an over-reliance on dunks and three-point shots have led to a degeneration of basketball:

“The dunk is a declaration of power and dominance, of machismo. In a team game, an ensemble of five players a side, it is an expression of self. In a sport devoted to selling sneakers, the dunk is a marketing tour de force, the money shot at the end of every worthy basketball sequence.”

• “The entire area between dunking range and the three-point line, what used to be prime real estate for scoring, is now a virtual dead zone.”

• “If you had just watched the games in Athens and knew nothing of basketball history, it would have been reasonable to conclude that the sport had been invented and popularized in, say, Argentina or Italy -- and was just starting to catch on in the US.”

• ''Announcers sometimes call (the three-pointer) . . . as if it were the shock-and-awe of the hardwood, a weapon that brings opposing players to their knees. The three-pointer is a corruption of the sport, a perversion of a century of basketball wisdom that held that the whole point of the game was to advance the ball closer to the basket. If its intent was to increase scoring, the three-point shot definitely has not done that, and if it was to make the game more wide open and exciting, it hasn't accomplished that either.”

In the modern NBA, a half-dozen or more assistant coaches are needed to help fill in the gaps for young players. In essence, they teach remedial basketball for millionaires.”


CLAIMS AND DENIALS … "I'll stand by my reporting. That's my response." … New York columnist Ian O'Connor, responding to Sebastian Telfair’s denial of information in O’Connor’s book, “The Jump.” O’Connor wrote that an anonymous source said an unnamed booster claiming to represent Georgia Tech offered $250,000 for New York City high school basketball star Sebastian Telfair to attend the school. Meanwhile, Clips stands by O’Connor. … Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 2-10-05

ELIMINATING STEROID BLUTOS … “Out of credibility concerns, and social duty, the N.F.L. has worked hard to eliminate inflatable Blutos and manufactured Popeyes.” … columnist Selena Roberts, high priestess of tongue-in-cheek sports journalism, commenting on the PR sensitivity that drives the NFL’s new—and stringent—drug testing policy. … New York Times, 2-6-05

STEROIDS EQUAL BULK FICTION … “The action figures on the field for Super Bowl XXXIX have passed the NFL’s white-glove test for clean bloodstreams in an anti-doping program devised to eradicate bulk fiction.” … columnist Selena Roberts, high priestess of tongue-in-cheek sports journalism, commenting on the quality of the NFL’s drug testing policy. … New York Times, 2-6-05

TOUGH CHOICES FOR STUDENT-ATHLETES … “So many messages - and some beyond sports. In a quick-fix American society of Botox and extreme makeovers, of implants and supplements, how is a kid to know what's real?” … columnist Selena Roberts, commenting on the sophistication of designer performance-enhancing drugs. … New York Times, 2-6-05

ROLE MODELS INFLUENCE BEHAVIOR … “The juxtaposition of the Super Bowl and the steroid story out of Texas [nine high school football players busted for steroid use] serves to underscore the importance of making sure elite athletes are free of drugs." … Dr. Gary Wadler, a clinical associate professor at New York University and an expert on performance-enhancing drugs. … New York Times, 2-6-05

NFL GETS SERIOUS … "They are as close to the gold standard as any league." … Dr. Gary Wadler, preeminent authority on performance-enhancing drugs, referring to the quality of the NFL’s drug testing policy (which tests year-round, in competition and out of competition, with notice and without notice.) Nonetheless, many think that the NFL—and other leagues—should have their drug-testing activities handled by the World Anti-Doping Agency, which handles the Olympics. … New York Times, 2-6-05

DISCONNECT WITH REALITY … "Wanted: Head football coach at Big Ten university. Must be willing to accept below market salary. Goals are to produce a winning team, fill 100,000-seat stadium, graduate high percentage of athletes. Those interested in seven-figure salaries need not apply. Send resume to Pennsylvania State University." … columnist Ron Bracken, in response to Penn State president Graham Spanier’s statement that the school cannot pay a million dollar salary to bring a big-time coach to turn the PSU program around after Joe Paterno retires. … Centre Daily (State College, PA), 1-30-05

ROSTER MANAGEMENT … "The irony is that we have a law that says you cannot discriminate on the basis of gender, and roster management is right now legal because of proportionality. So you can discriminate against someone on the basis of gender and you're covered because you're complying with Title IX. That's the way the judges have looked at it." … Eric Pearson, executive director of the College Sports Council, accuses the GAO of falsely inflating gains in college sports for both men and women. … NCAA News, 1-31-05

TRUTH IN NUMBERS … “We want to stand for a little bit more, for stronger integrity.” … Dean Lee, AD for Arkansas State U., which has admirably admitted to inflating attendance figures for men’s basketball games, and claims it will do so no more. … Jonesboro (Ark.) Sun, 1-29-05

QUANTUM LEAP … "The John Birch Society was really strong there and they thought (we) were in the process of integrating Idaho. They thought we somehow were connected with the federal government." … Oklahoma State basketball coach Eddie Sutton, describing his first year of college coaching at Southern Idaho Junior College in 1966. Sutton's four black players doubled the African-American population of Twin Falls. … Denver Post, 1-30-05

CAMPUS PROHIBITION? … “The vast majority of us [presidents and chancellors] don't believe you ought to be serving alcohol at the contest itself. There are many buildings, many parts of the university, where we don't permit alcohol consumption. And I don't think we should be hesitant to apply that to athletic contests." … Kansas Chancellor Robert Hemenway, chairman of the D1 Board of Directors, regarding initiatives to ban stadium and arena beer sales on campuses. More than a quarter of I-A schools have said they allow sales at their own events. Of those, well more than half permitted sales at an on-campus venue. … USA Today, 1-26-05

COACH TO MAN GRILL … "We'll do something--if we have burgers on a grill in my back yard--we'll do something." … Ceal Barry, Colorado women’s basketball coach, commenting on the enforced austerity measures imposed at CU to mitigate a deficit that might exceed $3 million. Barry cut the team’s senior banquet to save money. … AP, 1-25-05

BRAND’S MANAGEMENT … "I'd hesitate to tell you if he was doing a lousy job. But I'll be honest. I think it's kind of been a virtuoso performance." … Kansas Chancellor Robert Hemenway, who heads the NCAA's top rules-making body, the Division I board of directors, offering his opinion of the effectiveness of NCAA president Myles Brand’s first two years in office. … Kansas City Star, 1-23-05

BINGE DRINKING: SOMEWHERE ELSE ... “Everyone is going to get loaded at their dorm, or off campus, or in their car. They’re going to drink more, and they’ll drink faster, so that their buzz lasts. I don’t see how this (policy) is keeping anyone safer. It’s just moving the binge drinking somewhere else.” … a fraternity president describing the effect of on-campus drinking bans. ... New York Times Magazine, 1-9-05

UNRULY HORMONES … “Women have been hearing for eons that their lack of achievement, in the arts as well as the sciences, is the result of, variously, their weaker constitutions, their smaller brains, their delicate uteruses, and/or their unruly hormones.” … columnist Eileen McNamara, commenting on Harvard president Lawrence Summers’ controversial remarks about the supposed “natural ability” of males over females in science and engineering. … Boston Globe, 1-19-05

MATH GENE … “Maybe there is a ‘math gene’ that girls lack, although that sounds suspiciously like ‘math block,’ the less-than-scientific label that was slapped on girls of a certain age who struggled through algebra and, defeated, abandoned math well before calculus.” … columnist Eileen McNamara, commenting on Harvard president Lawrence Summers’ controversial remarks about the supposed “natural ability” of males over females in science and engineering. … Boston Globe, 1-19-05

SHORT ROPE FOR COACHES … "Demands have increased, expectations have increased, your exposure has increased and patience has decreased." … Tennessee football coach Phil Fulmer—who owns the nation's best winning percentage among coaches with 10 years on the job—expressing his displeasure with the volatility associated with college coaching. … The Courier-Journal (Louisville, KY), 1-11-05

A CASE FOR TOUGHER ACADEMICS … "The alphabet test, to me, is kind of confusing. I don't think anybody's asked Mr. Taylor to say the alphabet since fourth grade." … the attorney for Washington Redskins’ rookie Sean Taylor, who struggled to recite the alphabet from E to O when pulled over for drunken driving. The attorney said that Taylor—who completed three years at the University of Miami—did not major in alphabet at UM, and that trick questions have no place in field sobriety tests. … Palm Beach (FL) Post, 1-16-05

BIG TALK … “Vanderbilt is clearly the leader in pursuing academic credibility in athletics.” … a Vanderbilt senior administrator touting the academic prowess of Vandy’s student-athletes. However, his brash claim of being number one might well meet with serious disagreement from the folks at Stanford, Cal-Berkeley, Northwestern, Rice, Williams and Tulane, all of whom have exemplary academics among student-athletes (like Vandy), but also have competitive teams (unlike Vandy). ... Vanderbilt Hustler, 1-12-05

FALLING ON THE SWORD … “He told me if he didn't win the next game, he was going to quit. I told him, 'Dick, you have a contract. Let me fire you.' " … Peter Likins, current Univ. of Arizona president, former Lehigh University president, describing the exit plans for Dick Tomey after 14 seasons at Arizona. … Dallas Morning News, 1-10-05

APPLES AND ORANGES? … "In America, anybody can sue anybody about anything." ... David Walker, Comptroller General of the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the federal agency that prepares hundreds of reports on scores of subjects each year at the bequest of the US Congress. A GAO report on Title IX team cuts found that men's and women's college sports teams both increased from 1981 to 1999. However, the College Sports Council is suing because it says the GAO examined 134 more schools in 1999; thus, the alleged apples and oranges. This is the first time the GAO has been sued over the contents of a report. … Washington Post, 1-10-05

DOUBLE STANDARD … “While coaches shamelessly break contracts and conferences shamelessly steal schools from each other, players are held to a higher standard. Urban Meyer won't have to sit out a year at Florida; no, he gets to earn his $14 million right away. Any Ute who wants to follow Meyer to Gainesville had better be prepared to spend some quality time—in street clothes—on the bench.” … sports columnist Ian O’Connor, deriding the near meaningless contracts that college football coaches are able to wriggle free of. … USA Today, 1-3-05

WIFE HOARDS FORTUNE … "I still can't imagine ($25 million). (My wife) Sally handles the money. I don't get to see it.” … Mack Brown, Texas football coach, regarding his new 10 year, $25 million contract. … Inside Texas.com, 12-30-04

KEPT MEN? … “Coaches at public universities may seem like state employees, but unofficially they are the kept men of the private donors, particularly of those who give up to seven figures a year to the programs. Some contributors are more than boosters; they are powerful trustees who mistake their gifts for entitlement.” … sports columnist Selena Roberts, decrying the emergence of Forbes-list executives who have become a seemingly bottomless money pit for cash-hungry athletics programs. … New York Times, 1-2-05

ÜBER BOOSTERS ARE THE SUGAR DADDIES OF COLLEGE ATHLETICS … “This is the era of the über-booster” … sports columnist Selena Roberts, decrying the emergence of Forbes-list executives who have become a seemingly bottomless money pit for cash-hungry athletics programs. … New York Times, 1-2-05

THE APPEAL OF TARGETED GIVING … “Why give to a university's general fund if you don't care a lick about how many cadavers the science labs have? Why pay for orchestra flutes when you can help develop the next Doug Flutie? Incorporating the booster clubs as fund-raising arms for athletics provided friends of the program a tax break, as well as ticket priorities, parking passes and foam index fingers that indicate ‘We're No. 1.’ " … sports columnist Selena Roberts, articulately capsulizing the attraction of athletics giving to well-heeled alumni. … New York Times, 1-2-05

THUMBS DOWN FOR BCS … “With the BCS also having failed for two straight years to achieve its stated primary goal of determining a clear-cut national champion, its uselessness is evident.” … sports columnist John Eisenberg, as part of his spirited criticism of the BCS system. He favors the vagueness and fuzziness of the pre-BCS days. … Baltimore Sun, 1-1-05

#1 NO BIG DEAL? … “College football is different from other major sports in this country. It's the one place where regionalism is more important than nationalism. Fans of the Texas Longhorns don't care as much about winning a national title as they do about beating Oklahoma. Same with the fans of, say, Mississippi State, who mainly want to beat Ole Miss; or the fans of Cal, who want to beat Stanford.” … sports columnist John Eisenberg, arguing for a return to the olden (pre-BCS) days. … Baltimore Sun, 1-1-05

BCS IS ANTI-TRADITION … “Tradition is just as important as regionalism in college football, and many traditions have died. Farm-boy linemen throughout the Midwest used to spend their summers bulking up with dreams of playing in the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day. But the BCS now sends teams all over the place. Texas is in the Rose Bowl this year, for crying out loud.” ... sports columnist John Eisenberg, waxing rhapsodically for a return to the olden (pre-BCS) days. … Baltimore Sun, 1-1-05

SPLENDID IMPERFECTION … “College football is one of sports' last splendidly imperfect places, having avoided being digitized into soulless, calculated perfection. The fuzzier, the better.” … sports columnist John Eisenberg, waxing rhapsodically for a return to the olden (pre-BCS) days. … Baltimore Sun, 1-1-05

BCS IS ROBIN HOOD? … “Come on guys, feed the world. Prove that the BCS is not the sewer of corruption it seems to be, a vote-swapping, kickbacking, cash-grabbing scheme devised by a bunch of guys in blazers standing around ice sculptures in the buffet line. Show us where your values really are, and demonstrate that the system has a single redeeming quality. . . . . take all that ill-gotten Bowl Championship Series money, $14.3 million each, and send it to Phuket.” … columnist Sally Jenkins, lambasting big time college football programs for not sharing the wealth. Total revenue from the BCS games is projected to be $93 million. … Washington Post, 12-29-04

CARPETBAGGER’S BOWL .. “A coach who already has one foot out the door . . . (is) becoming the game's newest status symbol. Utah, for example, plays Pitt on New Year's Day in what should be called the Carpetbagger's Bowl instead of the Fiesta. That's because the Utes' coach, Urban Meyer, has already signed on at Florida next season and his counterpart, Panthers coach Walt Harris, has already signed on at Stanford. Imagine the sincerity dripping from that pregame handshake.” … sports columnist Jim Litke, weighing in on the new order of coach shuffling. Sarcasm intended. … AP, 12-30-04

NO CHEERS FOR NOTRE DAME … “Notre Dame represents the bad guys now, a school that should dress its players in Al Davis' silver and black, a program that has reduced itself to another just-win-baby factory blowing toxic smoke off the littered turnpike of big-time college sports.” … writer Ian O’Connor, an Irish Catholic who doesn’t want to believe that Notre Dame has surrendered its moral authority for keeps. … The Journal News (White Plains NY), 12-14-04

DANCE AND DUNK, BUT DON’T COACH … "The message is abundantly clear: send your black child to Illinois to run, jump, dance and dunk but don't expect to use your degree or playing experience to administer and lead athletics, for that is a province solely reserved for whites." … Eric Rouse, one of 62 former black and white former Illini players who wrote a letter to AD Ron Guenther offering a list of qualified minority candidates for the open head football coach position. The group complained that Illinois made a sham of the hiring “process,” and wanted to hire Ron Zook from the get-go. … New York Times, 12-18-04

LIPOSUCTION YES, STEROIDS NO … “Turn on a football game, and you’ll see cheerleaders with seam-popping breast implants, aging sportscasters with suspiciously tenacious hairlines and commercials for pills that promise Olympian erections.” … writer James Poniewozik, whose commentary in Time magazine--“This Is Your Nation On Steroids”--bemoans the double standard of condemning performance-enhanced athletes while simultaneously embracing performance-enhanced society. … Time Magazine, 12-20-04

PHARMA ATHLETES? … “Should we be surprised if the day comes when pharmaceutical companies equally tout their abilities to cure cancer and produce sprint records?” … SI writer Richard Hoffer, asking a rhetorical “why not?” with regard to performance enhancement drugs. … Sports Illustrated, 12-13-04

IMMODESTY … "I feel like I'm the best player in college basketball." … Julius Hodge, North Carolina State guard, straightforwardly declaring his roundball greatness. Although Hodge has quite a bit of a mouth, he also has game: he’s the first NC State player in history to reach 1,600 points, 600 rebounds and 300 assists. ... AP, 12-17-04

THE MOST IMPORTANT GAME IS THE NEXT GAME … "Am I aware Notre Dame is on the schedule? I am, but that will not be the focus. With the years of experience I have in this game, I know the most important game is the next game. We open with Air Force." … newly hired Washington coach Tyrone Willingham, who was unceremoniously dumped by Notre Dame. Revenge can be sweet. … New York Times, 12-14-04

SURE BARRY … “I believe (Barry) Bonds should go straight to the Hall of Fame, even though I know that he’s a cheater and that the second half of his career was as phony as Cheez Wiz.” … SI’s amazing Rick Reilly, as one of a series of skeptical hyperboles in which he raises the unbelievability of what’s being passed off as truth in the BALCO steroids mess. … Sports Illustrated, 12-13-04

SURE MARION … “I believe track star Marion Jones when she insists she never took a steroid, even though (BALCO’s) Victor Conte has said that he hooked her up with everything but liquid Drano and saw her inject human growth hormones into her quad.” … SI’s Rick Reilly, as one of a string of skeptical observances in which he raises a figurative eyebrow at what’s being passed off as truth in the BALCO steroids mess. … Sports Illustrated, 12-13-04

NOT ENOUGH MESSIAHS TO GO AROUND … "There was also the phenomenon of the messiah coach. This year I think there are 14 [Division I-A] positions that are changing. There are probably three people that are on the messiah list, which means 11 programs have no messiah." ... Rev. Edward A. Malloy, the departing president of Notre Dame, referencing the inability of the Irish to land “messiah” coach Urban Meyer, and the “embarrassment” of firing Tyrone Willingham after only three years. … The Chronicle of Higher Education, 12-10-04

NCAA DROPS THE BALL WITH BASKETBALL … “When it comes to getting attention in November and December, college hoops struggles to stand out in the sports crowd. This year it's particularly difficult. The news and the sports talk shows are filled with talk about the Bowl Championship Series, steroids and NBA fisticuffs.” … sports columnist Wendell Barnhouse, bemoaning the NCAA’s adoption of legislation that that has severely limited the number of types of early season events that once produced attention. … Knight Ridder, 12-11-04

MERIT, NOT RACE … "If you're an athletic director at a D1 school and actually hired somebody who is African American, and you're in the process of letting them go, and get criticism on the issue of race--is it going to make other athletic directors worried about doing the same thing?" … Richard E. Lapchick, head of the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida, commenting on the fact that Tyrone Willingham’s race became too much of an issue after his dismissal from Notre Dame. … Philadelphia Inquirer, 12-7-04

TITLE IX IN THE BALANCE? … “In many places girls are still relegated to chewed-up baseball diamonds, late-night pool practices or lousy coaches. Unless individuals can force redress, these inequities will persist, and a landmark law will wither to a meaningless statement of good intentions.” … the sign-off paragraph of a 12-3-04 Los Angeles Times editorial—entitled “A Most Uneven Playing Field”—referring to the Title IX case currently being deliberated by the US Supreme Court. (see 'Seven Old Men and Two Ladies Will Rule on Title IX Case' excerpt posted recently on College Athletics Clips)

KEEPING UP WITH THE JONESES … “There is a level playing field out there. It just isn’t the playing field you thought it was.” … Charlie Francis, former coach of disgraced Olympic sprinter Ben Johnson, alleging that steroid use is rampant in pro sports. Francis admitted facilitating Johnson’s steroid use before the ’88 Olympics on a Canadian documentary this year. … New York Times, 12-4-04

IT’S ONLY NATURAL … “Everybody’s doing it; it’s like sex in high school.” … Kip Perlson, 30, a Yankees fan, when asked about the unfolding steroid debacle, with the Yankees’ Jason Giambi thick in the midst of it. … New York Times, 12-4-04

SQUARE PEG, ROUND HOLE … “The Southern Baptist coach did not convert to blend in with the Regis Philbin boosters or morph into John Deere lingo to please the Corn Belt base or recite ‘Rudy’ lines to fit in with the Touchdown Jesus faithful.” … columnist Selena Roberts, on the firing of Notre Dame football coach Tyrone Willingham (who is black) after only three years. The firing reduces the number of black D1-A head coaches to two (there were five at the start of the season). … New York Times, 12-1-04

HARD TIMES FOR IRISH … “Grown-up marketeers and mythologists are far more fascinated with Notre Dame football than are the blue-chip recruits who keep signing up with schools Grantland Rice never covered. That's why Notre Dame's postseason plans are packaged with stories about the Continental Tire Bowl, the GMAC Bowl, the New Orleans Bowl and every other Poulan WeedEater wannabe that gobbles up the likes of North Texas and Southern Mississippi.” … columnist extraordinaire (and Irishman) Ian O’Connor, lamenting the woes of once mighty Notre Dame football, which hasn't won a bowl game in 10 years and hasn't won the national title in 16. The 6-5 Irish are headed to the tradition-steeped Insight Bowl this post-season. … USA Today, 11-29-04

FEWER OPPS … “What happened to Willingham was more reflective of the standing of black men, in particular, in this country. By and large, according to government and private studies, we get fewer opportunities than our white peers and less time in which to make good on those chances. That was the hand Willingham was dealt.” … columnist Kevin Blackistone, on the firing of Notre Dame football coach Tyrone Willingham (who is black) after only three years. The firing reduces the number of black D1-A head coaches to two (there were five at the start of the season). … The Dallas Morning News, 11-30-04

NEBRASKA, IT FELL … "Great empires, they fall. Great leaders, they fall. And great college football teams, they fall." … Nebraska quarterback Joe Dailey, after the Cornhuskers' loss to Colorado on Friday left them with their first losing season in 43 years. … St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11-27-04

MEDIOCRITY ACCEPTED? ... "It's one game today, it's one season. I never look back." … first year coach Bill Callahan, after Nebraska’s sixth loss sealed its first non-bowl season in decades. Last year coach Frank Solich was fired after a 9-3 regular season, when AD Steve Pederson said he “would not accept mediocrity.” Ahem. ... AP, 11-27-04

TOO MUCH DRINKING … "The biggest problem is when too many people drink too much." ... Pittsburgh police Commander Ed Kelly, offering his learned opinion on one of the leading causes of fan misbehavior. Kelly cited pre-game tailgating parties at Heinz Field during Pitt games as being a problem, even though alcohol is not sold during the games. … Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, 11-25-04

SPURRIER IS HALLE BERRY? … "It's like being married to J-Lo, and you dump her and then you marry Halle Berry." … South Carolina offensive lineman Na'shan Goddard, about the Gamecocks' coaching job being handed from Lou Holtz to Steve Spurrier. … USA Today, 11-22-04

CREDIBLITY ISSUES … "The Clarett kid has got issues." ... Big 10 commish Jim Delany, criticizing ESPN's reporting of former OSU running back Maurice Clarett's allegations. … Cleveland Plain Dealer, 11-21-04

NO SCHOLARSHIPS FOR MEDIOCRITY … "What's amazing is that all of us could be mediocre enough not to get a scholarship. You'd think one of us would step it up and save our parents some money. But we're just not that good." … Chris Spitler, one of four brothers who have made four D1 basketball teams as walk-ons. … USA TODAY, 11-15-04

KOACH KUMBAYA … “He is so happy with this year's team, he just loves them and he's just ready for everybody to embrace them." … Debbie Krzyzewski Savarino, Duke’s External Relations Director—and daughter of Coach K, getting a little carried away in describing her father’s state of mind in the buildup to Duke’s 6th Man Night, which consists of students (i.e.- the 6th Man) being invited to watch the team scrimmage, then to nosh on free pizza and soda and view hoops videos. … CollegeSports.com, 11-17-04

PLEA FOR PERSPECTIVE … “Paterno gives you all of Bob Knight's pluses without almost all of Bob Knight's minuses.” … columnist Ian O’Connor, eloquently calling for a slackening on the rush to judgment regarding JoePa … USA Today, 11-17-04

TARK THE SHARK SPEAKS … “I love transfers because their cars are already paid for.” … Jerry Tarkanian, maestro recruiter of fast, strong and tall transfers for the UNLV and Fresno State basketball teams. … Chicago Tribune, 11-13-04

NO CALL LIST … “I would feel much better if a school went on probation for, say, giving athletes telemarketing jobs that didn't involve talking on the telephone. If you're going to cheat, help make the world a nicer place.” … columnist Rick Morrissey, reacting to the recent Maurice Clarett accusations of fake jobs for athletes. … Chicago Tribune, 11-13-04

FOOTBALL PROGRAM IS ‘RAT HOLE’ … “At this point I don't know what it would take for people to actually look at the facts. It's fatalistic and makes the faculty much less willing to accept other cuts. Year after year, decade after decade, we continue to pour more money down this rat hole.” … James Brent, former chair of the academic senate at San Jose State University, testily stating his firm opposition to the continued existence of the SJSU football team, which has gone 14-30 over the past four seasons and is estimated to lose $1.2 million dollars this season. … Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, 11-12-04

NO PLANS TO QUIT … "There's only one big event left after you retire." .. Florida State’s 75 year old Bobby Bowden, major college football's winningest coach with 349 victories. His father, Bob Bowden, retired at 64 and died a year later, and his coaching idol, Alabama's Paul "Bear" Bryant, died a few weeks after retiring, also in his mid-60s. … USA Today, 11-8-04

DAVIDSON-BASHING … “So who's cheating? Every school that beats the one you attended. If a school has championship trophies, obnoxious fans, risqué bands or ugly uniforms, it cheats. In other words, every school cheats but your school and, well, Davidson.” … columnist Tom Sorensen, as part of his articulate rant about college athletics cheating. … Charlotte Observer, 11-10-04

WHO KNOWS? … "Before we know, we have to admit that we don't know." … Peter Orszag of The Brookings Institution, during a Knight Commission discussion on the arms race. … NCAA News, 11-8-04

POPULARITY CONTEST … “In a way, the new BCS formula is like a junior high school class election. Everyone knows who is going to win before a ballot is cast.” … columnist Pete Thamel, weighing in on the uphill battle facing Wisconsin and Auburn in the popularity contest that is the BCS. They both might finish the season undefeated, but they still may not play in the Orange Bowl for the national title. … New York Times, 11-8-04

CHEERLEADER PURIST … "It's a beauty pageant now. We were there for enthusiasm, we understood the game." … Miriam "Mim-Mi" Cholewczynski, one of the original 10 cheerleaders of the Baltimore Colts in the 50s, recalling that her sideline job 50 years ago was extremely different from today's NFL cheerleaders. … Baltimore Sun, 11-6-04

BRAND THINKS SKY IS FALLING … “Any time NCAA president Myles Brand makes a speech, talks to the media, or pretty much opens his mouth at all for anything other than brushing his teeth . . . he tries to be Bud Abbott to college athletics' Lou Costello. Brand wants to be the reasonable Marx Brother, but never quite pulls off either one.” … columnist Ben Cook, reacting to President Brand’s recent speech about college athletics finances. … Birmingham Post-Herald, 11-6-04

BRAND THINKS SKY IS FALLING 2 … “Brand does not always have bad ideas, but the means to which he tries to accomplish the end never seems to work. He comes off sounding like Chicken Little trying to warn us about a falling sky.” Birmingham Post-Herald, 11-6-04

MEDIOCRE STUDENTS NEED NOT APPLY … “What is the NCAA ideal? If it is to have the highest possible graduation rate, we can all just write a rule that restricts college sports participation to geniuses and go home.” … columnist Rich Hofmann, ranting (but eloquently) about the NCAA’s overemphasis on improving graduation rates when several sub-groups of athletes graduate better than the general student population. … phila.com, 11-2-04

HOT TEA SIPPERS … “The high-falutin' Knight Commission, an egghead think tank spreading elitist poison, recommended a 50 percent ‘graduation rate’ be the cutoff for schools getting punished. Fortunately, the NCAA didn't accept the suggestion, leaving the Knight Commission to go back to what it does best: sip hot tea.” … columnist Gregg Doyel, subtly expressing his disrespect for the Knight Commission. … CBSportsLine.com, 11-3-04

OOPS … "It's mind boggling." … Miami coach Larry Coker after his team was shocked by North Carolina. UNC had never previously beaten a team ranked in the top four (which Miami was), and their lifetime record versus top four teams was an inauspicious 0-31-1. Mind boggling indeed. … USA Today, 11-1-04

COACH AVAILABLE … "I'm willing to listen to anybody." … Rick Neuheisel, ex-Washington coach, who was exonerated of gambling charges by the NCAA 504 days after being charged. … The Sporting News, 10-26-04

ACADEMIC CRIES FOUL … "Coaches have offices that make the offices of university presidents look like those of English professors. One coach I've known had a fish tank larger than the offices of some English professors.” … Michael Granoff, a University of Texas professor speaking to the Knight Commission about amenities and perks for coaches that are unheard of in other divisions of the university. … Indianapolis Star, 10-28-04

HYPERBOLE? … "Nowadays, any victory [is big] whether the press thinks it is big or not. In your eyes, the win over [Boston College] is big, but in our eyes the victories over Furman, Temple, Rutgers as well as Ohio is just as big." … Pitt coach Walt Harris, trying to defend his team’s record despite the lack of quality of the competition. He would have been more believable had he not mentioned Temple, which many say is even worse than its 1-7 record. … Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 10-26-04

BIRD KILLER … "I'll neither confirm it nor deny it." … Boise State AD Gene Bleymaier’s stock, tongue-in-cheek, response when asked about the persistent legend that confused water fowl mistake blue-turfed Bronco Stadium for the nearby Boise River, and kamikaze to their deaths by the dozens. … Honolulu Advertiser, 10-26-04

DAMAGED GOODS … "There's no way of calculating the residual effect of something like this. The phone's not ringing off the hook." … Rick Neuheisel, ex-Washington coach, who was exonerated of gambling charges by the NCAA 504 days after being charged. … The Sporting News, 10-26-04

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY … "Candidates of color have a better chance to be a general in the US Army than they have of being named a head football coach, and that is not right." … Floyd Keith, BCA executive director, putting a sharp point on the issue. Keith cited a statistic showing that 8.3% of generals are minorities (versus the less than 4% that black football coaches comprise of all Division I-A coaches). … San Francisco Chronicle, 10-20-04

TOUGHER THAN FOOTBALL PLAYERS? … “Why didn't we recruit the guy who beat the crap out of our offensive lineman?" … Fred Levin, a U-Florida alumnus for whom the law school is named, asking about the frat brother who broke the nose of Gator guard Steve Rissler during a skirmish. … USA Today, 10-19-04

LITTLE LEAGUE MOM GOES TO COLLEGE … "I know Archie Manning's in there, so let us in there, too.” … the mother of the Tennessee QB competing with Peyton Manning for PT, as she banged on the Vols locker room door during a game day. Peyton’s father, Archie was not in the locker room. … Louisiana Gannett News, 10-17-04

TURNING INTO PUMPKINS … "We're trying to make it a family-friendly event , try to make it not so rowdy an atmosphere." ... Pac 10 spokesman Dave Hirsch, offering the reason for the proposal to move Midnight Madness to 7 PM. … Lexington Herald-Leader, 10-17-04

ANOTHER LAYER … “Colleges are institutions of higher education, not institutions of higher athletics, though too many appear to have forgotten the difference.” … Gregory Farrington, Lehigh University president, during the announcement ceremony of a new ‘Dean of Athletics’ position, which is believed to be the first ever at a D1 school. … Lehigh University press release

BIOSTATISTICIAN SPEAKS … “No matter how you arrange the formula, the BCS remains nothing more than an elaborate seeding system for a two-team tournament.” … Bradley Carlin, a professor of biostatistics at the University of Minnesota, in a studied critique of the new BCS ranking system. Carlin advocates an eight team tournament instead. … New York Times, 10-17-04

DIRTY MONEY? … "I understand the need for money, but when students are bingeing and even dying from alcohol, the money is irrelevant." … Jennifer Mello, candidate for the University of Colorado Board of Regents, in criticizing the school’s six year, $2.1 million advertising contract with the Coors Brewing Company. … Daily Camera (Boulder, CO), 10-16-04

HARD RAIN GONNA FALL … "We are not in a crisis, but we cannot wait for a crisis to arrive. Many are ready to embrace the athletic reform, but few want college sports to change." … NCAA President Myles Brand during a speech at the University of Iowa that drew about 100 people. … Iowa City Press-Citizen, 10-13-04

‘CLUE’ IS THE OPERATIVE WORD … "I watched a lot of college football on Saturday and I just hear some of the comments [from] people wearing a tie behind a desk that really have no, absolutely no clue. And I can say it, because I do have a clue, because that's my job. . . . But their job is they're supposed to have a clue." … Utah football coach Urban Meyer, voicing his unhappiness with the lack of knowledge displayed by TV commentators. … Salt Lake Tribune, 10-12-04

DENIAL … "All is not lost. The great thing about this is we're still in the race." … Nebraska coach Bill Callahan trying to reassure restless Cornhuskers fans after the worst loss in school history. The Cornhuskers were pummeled 70-10 by Texas Tech. … CBS SportsLine.com, 10-12-04

HONEYMOON IS OVER … "You don't go to Nebraska for a honeymoon." … Nebraska coach Bill Callahan, reacting to the public outcry against him after the Cornhuskers got clobbered 70-10 by Texas Tech. It was the worst loss in school history. … CBS SportsLine.com, 10-12-04

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED … "It's a great win for us, a monkey off our back." ... coach Bobby Ross, after Army finally snapped its 19 game losing streak by beating Cincinnati 48-29. West Point cadets swarmed the field and tore down the goal posts. Army's last victory came on Nov. 16, 2002, against Tulane. … AP, 10-10-04

LATEST TITLE IX TWIST … "Women's sports is an 'in' thing right now and it's here to stay.” … Paul Thomas, Cal Poly Pomona women's basketball coach, in support of California Assembly Bill 2404, recently signed into law by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, which mandates that communities must provide equal opportunities for boys and girls, similar to requirements of schools found in Title IX. The bill evolved from three lawsuits brought by the American Civil Liberties Union against Southern California cities - Los Angeles, Montebello and La Puente. … Pasadena Star-News, 10-10-04

THE HOKIE FAITHFUL … "We'll sell out our place and we'll help you sell out your place.” … Virginia Tech football coach Frank Beamer, describing Hokies fans, who are famous for traveling. Virginia Tech supporters could outnumber the home crowd as the Hokies play Wake Forest in their first ACC road game at 31,500-seat Groves Stadium. … Charlotte Observer, 10-7-04

SOUR GRAPES … "Anybody watching this game knows we really dominated the game. We just came up a little short in the score." … Cal QB Aaron Rodgers, after the Golden Bears lost to Southern Cal 23-17. Rodgers completed 29-of-34 passes for 267 yards in a losing effort. … Sports Network, 10-9-04

SoCal vs. NoCal … “Beaches vs. Birkenstocks. Brats vs. Brains.” stereotypical descriptors of the supposed player pedigree differences associated with the Southern Cal-Cal Berkeley football rivalry. … Kelly Whiteside, USA Today, 10-8-04

CLOSE TO THE RIB … “Every single practice we talk about ball security. If the ball comes away from the rib cage of a runner, if you see any space, he’s going to hear about it whether he fumbles or not.” … Cal Berkeley football coach Jeff Tedford, offering some insight on the dramatic improvement from minus-17 in turnover margin the year before he arrived to plus-18 in his first season at Cal. … NBCSports.com, 10-8-04

HOCUS POCUS CARROLL … “(USC) coach Pete Carroll and offensive coordinator Norm Chow usually sit in a laboratory, rubbing their hands together with diabolical glee, as they concoct potions, curses, formulas and schemes designed to vanquish the opponent. They repeat a few chants, burn some incense, then burn the other team.” … writer Michael Ventre, describing the voodoo-like proficiency of USC’s super coach. … NBCSports.com, 10-8-04

BOOS NOW, EMPTY SEATS NEXT … “With fans cupping both hands to boo, it doesn't leave them the ability to write donation checks.” … columnist John Canzano, describing the downward spiraling woes of the Oregon State football team, after a pathetic 49-7 home loss to the Cal Golden Bears. … The Oregonian, 10-3-04

STUDENT-ATHLETES GET NAKED … “If you don’t bring cash, you’re a pervert.” Fliers advertising the annual “Dash for Cash” fundraising event at Swarthmore College. Men’s and women’s club rugby teams streak naked through a hallway while crowds of people gather along the sides, holding out cash for the ruggers to grab. … The Phoenix On Line (Swarthmore College), 10-7-04

EITHER / OR ... "Either we can't do it physically, or we can't do it mentally ... or maybe we just can't do it." … Michigan State coach John Smith, trying to find answers after a 38-16 loss at Iowa and a 2-3 start. … USA Today, 10-3-04

FREEDOM OF SPEECH? … “Hey, you suck.” … the in-their-face lyrics of the 1972 hit "Rock and Roll, Part II," which has been played with zest and vigor at Maryland basketball and football games. The Maryland Sportsmanship Committee recently overturned its ban on use of the song at games. Meanwhile, football coach Ralph Friedgen has repeatedly expressed a dislike for the song, saying it is a form of taunting. … The (U. Maryland) Diamondback, 9-30-04

SELF-SERVING STUDY? … "I laughed." … Jay Hedlund, manager of the Campaign for Alcohol-Free Sports TV, describing his reaction to the NCAA’s "2004 Safe Celebration Study" in which 93% of the 986 college students surveyed said their behavior is responsible during tailgating. Flaws cited in the study were the funding by Anheuser-Busch and the failure to include students under 21. … Orlando Sentinel, 9-30-04

“SUCKS” IS NOT A FOUR-LETTER WORD … "There's just other issues that are a lot more important than the word 'sucks.' It's a word frequently used on basic television." … Mike Mastrantuono, student member of the Univ. of Maryland Sportsmanship Committee, which overturned its ban on the chanting of the song "Rock and Roll, Part II" at games. The song includes the phrase, “Hey, you suck.” … The (U. Maryland) Diamondback, 9-30-04

SOUL MAN … “As long as you keep trying, you're not failures. You put numbers and records on it, but that doesn't talk about your soul or what kind of man you are." … John Thompson, East Carolina football coach, profoundly postulating his team’s 59-7 annihilation by Louisville. However, the reality of big time college athletics is such that the quality of your soul means little, numbers do. The numbers say that ECU football has been a colossal failure. … east carolina the insiders.com, 10-3-04

NATIONAL CONFUSION ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION … “NCAA regulations tend to provoke rhetorical extremism, demanding Congressional intervention or salaries for football and basketball players. The solutions are at least as absurd as the problems.” … columnist Gwen Knapp, slamming the sometimes Alice in Wonderland stupefaction of rules and regs issued from Indy. … San Francisco Chronicle

IN IT TOGETHER … “This is a we thing, not a me thing.” … Larry Bock, women’s volleyball coach at Juniata College, in reference to his 1000th career victory. … Associated Press

BASICS OF DIVERSITY HIRING … “The first step is to find as diverse a pool as possible. The second step is to hire the best person, without any kind of discrimination in the process of hiring. They are not exclusive of each other.” … Steve Bilsky, University of Pennsylvania AD, expressing his cogent, rational thoughts on diversity in hiring. … The Daily Pennsylvanian

MISS CLASS, MISS GAME … ''You sit in the first three rows and you go to class — period. If they cut class and get caught, they don't play.” … Tennessee women's basketball coach Pat Summitt, summarizing her unambiguous policy for class attendance by her players. Tennessee is considering a policy in which any athlete with four unexcused absences in the same class automatically would be suspended from the next scheduled game. … Tennessean.com, 9-24-04

YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR … "If you aspire to do good things and set your burner high, you have to pay for it." … Robert Krause, VP of institutional advancement at Kansas State, explaining away the $1.58 million annual compensation (salary, media appearances, Nike payments and bonuses) of football coach Bill Snyder. … AP, 9-28-04

ATHLETES AVAILABLE … "We're in the shop window, no doubt about it." … a midfielder for the lame duck Southampton (NY) College soccer team. At the end of this year, financially strapped Southampton will pull the plug on its entire intercollegiate athletics program. Athletes with eligibility remaining after this season are finding themselves being recruited by teams they are currently competing against. Weird. … NY Newsday, 9-21-04

TIP-TOEING HERD … "We're the best 0-3 team I've ever been around." … Marshall football coach Bob Pruett, whose Thundering Herd is 0-3 for the first time in 29 years. … USA Today, 9-19-04

BUYING EDUCATIONS … “Family income significantly determines who goes to college, where they go, and ultimately who graduates. Although our nation has made some progress, we have a long way to go.” … Colleen O’Brien, Director of the Pell Institute, commenting on a first of its kind study, "Indicators of Opportunity in Higher Education,” detailing the ability / inability--mostly inability--of needy students to go to college and graduate. … Press Release, Pell Institute Council For Opportunity in Education, 9-21-04

A LONG SHORTFALL … "In the weeks since we disclosed the unrealized pledges, it has become clear that evolving perceptions about my leadership would make it increasingly difficult to effectively inspire our alumni to support the college now and in the future." ... Brother Craig J. Franz, president of Saint Mary's College of California, in a resignation statement. St. Mary’s faces formidable challenges due to the recent (bombshell) disclosure that $112 million in anticipated pledges will not come to fruition. … AP, 9-21-04

BEER ELITISM ... “This smacks of hypocrisy and elitism and is not consistent with previous institutional goals concerning issues related to campus alcohol consumption.” … University of Iowa Public Safety Director Chuck Green, registering his strong disagreement with the decision to serve alcohol in premium seating areas but not in the rest of Kinnick Stadium. … Iowa Press-Citizen, 9-16-04

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION … "We are who we are because of where we are." … Mississippi Valley State University president Lester Newman, where 95% of students are eligible for Pell Grants. At Valley, where every remedial English class is filled, just 21% of entering freshmen graduate within four years, and 37% graduate within six years. … USA TODAY, 9-19-04

FREEDOM TO HECKLE? … “We spend public money on stadiums for sports teams, we invite fans to come in, we've sort of created a First Amendment free-fire zone for them. The players have to shut their rabbit ears off." .. Howard Wasserman, law professor at Florida International University, regarding the chair throwing incident at the Texas Rangers-Oakland Athletics game. Many colleges are struggling to maintain fans’ First Amendment rights while controlling behavior as well. … Freedom Forum.org, 9-16-04

NCAA: FOX GUARDING THE HEN HOUSE? … "College athletics is a very seductive business that has forced good people to do bad things and bad people to do worse things." … David Ridpath, a Mississippi State sport administration professor, in remarks at a House Judiciary Committee hearing on whether Congress should tell the NCAA how it should investigate and adjudicate violations of association rules. … AP, 9-14-04

BRING YOUR FRIENDS TOO … "Since we have resources within the campus that are of interest to our employees, it was nice to find a way to fully utilize those to thank people for the dedication and commitment." … Illini spokesperson Robin Kaler, regarding the school’s offer of a pair of tickets to all 10,000 of the university’s employees for the upcoming game on Saturday versus Western Michigan. Memorial Stadium seats 69,249 and hasn't been full since 2002. There were plenty of vacant seats for last year’s 1-11 team. … AP, 9-13-04

BACK FROM THE DEAD ... "I'm a 35-year-old guy, I've been turning around this graveyard program, but this could blackball me in this profession." … Saint Peter's College (NJ) football coach, Scott Kochman, who was fired last week. Kochman says the AD was out to get him, and fired him on a trumped up eligibility snafoo. … Chronicle of Higher Education, 9-14-04

PRETZEL LOGIC … "Violations of amateurism laws are among the most serious because amateurism is the principle that separates college sports from professional sports." … Carolayne Henry, chair of the NCAA D1 Student-Athlete Reinstatement Committee, explaining her group's confirmation of Jeremy Bloom's ineligibility for football because he accepted endorsement money for freestyle skiing. The NCAA wants us to believe in amateurism when coaches are paid $2 million a year. Comical. … LA Times, 9-12-04

NO SKIN BASKETBALL … "An athlete should not be asked to choose between engaging in healthy sporting activities and her deeply held religious beliefs." … Council on American-Islamic Relations spokesman, on the wish of Andrea Armstrong, a