Morning Five: 05.03.13 Edition
Posted by nvr1983 on May 3rd, 2013
- Yesterday was not a good day if you like to defend the NCAA as it released its annual financial statement (sort of like a corporation) and it showed that the NCAA had a record $71 million profit in 2012. As you would expect this figure brought out quite a few comments asking how the NCAA could justify not sharing the profits with the student-athletes. We believe that paying student-athletes (and the economics behind it) are far more complex than most writers have made it out to be, but the numbers are pretty impressive. Our favorite part of what has been released from the report is their analysis of their current legal cases: “The NCAA and its legal counsel are defending against lawsuits and claims arising in the normal course of its day-to-day activities. The NCAA does not believe the ultimate resolution of these matters will result in material losses or have a material adverse effect on the consolidated financial position, change in net assets or cash flows of the NCAA.” We have a feeling that we could be recycling this quote if the Ed O’Bannon case goes against them.
- It was about a year and a half ago that Taylor Branch published his epic piece on the NCAA and its curious mission in The Atlantic. The latest piece in The Atlantic about the NCAA will not generate the same interest, but it probably might lead to an equal level of disgust from readers as Meghan Walsh examines the (lack of) healthcare coverage provided by schools for its student-athletes. We tend to take many of these anecdotes with a grain of salt since they are only one side of the story since the schools often decline to say anything of any substance on the allegations, but they should make recruits and fans think a little bit more about the schools and programs that they commit to or choose to root for in the future.
- One of the many criticisms of the NCAA is that they tend to move at a glacial pace and yesterday’s decision to suspend the previously accepted chances to recruiting communications only reaffirms that. This suspension will not affect basketball because the rules have already been in place for nearly a year (and why would the organization have similar rules for all of its sports?) so we may not see much of a change. The actual decision to at least temporarily hold on the rules change is not that remarkable, but the fact that they can pass a rule (at least temporarily) that such a large percentage of its member institutions oppose is always alarming.
- Last month, Jerry Tarkanian was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame and it appears to have set in motion a chain of events that are bringing increasing notoriety to Tarkanian’s impressive and underappreciated career. The latest such tribute is a statue of Tarkanian that was unveiled as part of UNLV‘s Jerry Tarkanian Project. The school plans on not only placing a bronze statue of Tarkanian (complete with a towel in his mouth) outside the Thomas & Mack Center, but also establishing a scholarship fund in his name. The project is still in the fundraising stages and they are soliciting donations now so it may take a while before it is complete (we have no idea how much it will take or how far away they are), but it should help reestablish a sense of tradition in a program that is just returning to national relevance after nearly two decades in the shadows.
- Joining the ranks of the Big Ten and Texas among others, the SEC is set to launch its own 24-hour network. The network, which will be run with ESPN, will debut in August 2014 and is part of a 20-year deal. The key to this deal is clearly SEC football, but it will mean more than 100 extra SEC basketball games broadcast nationally, which could be good or bad depending on which games they show, but it will also provide additional exposure for many of the programs on a national level. We are not sure how much it will do for the football programs as their level of play should be enough to entice any recruit, but it could help basketball programs particularly the lower-tier ones attract talent on a more nation-wide level than they are used to.