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March 24, 2021


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Doug Richmond

The wasteful salary buyouts are the obligations of Kansas Athletics, Inc., which, while operating under the university's administrative jurisdiction, is a separate entity. So, while I agree that KU in general is mucking up several things simultaneously, the financial situations of the Press and the athletic department can't be connected.

Steve L.

Thanks for the comment, Doug. While I appreciate that university athletic departments set up multiple entities, I do not think that absolves the university from responsibility for the way athletic department-related money is distributed.

But even if I am wrong, the irony remains. Many universities devote far more energy and resources to athletics than to scholarly publishing.


Lubet is spot on on this issue. University athletic departments should be operated by private leagues; this "big business" -- especially football -- has overtaken its once acceptable place in the university structure. (These leagues would, of course, pay revenue to the Universities for licensing, leasing, etc.) Student athletes should be granted zero special privileges when it comes to academics.

If the schools can't compete for athletes on that basis, then the profit making motive of all this is exposed. Let it operate as a private business and pay the players.

As it stands now, corporate shell games may appeal to some in the corporate world, but, for the rest of humanity, and especially those who think schools are schools for education not professional sporting leagues, these ruses are perceived to be just what they are: sham transactions to shelter greedy operators from accountability and distance the schools from the shady shenanigans played by the sports departments.


Athletic departments with few exceptions are not money makers. Football, and men's basketball at the Power 5 conferences make money but this is more than offset by the costs of subsidizing every other team. For those outraged that an athletic program loses money that could better be spent supporting academic presses, organize a campaign on your campus to shut down women's basketball as that is the biggest money loser at almost every major college. You'll also have to do something about Title IX but the power of organized academics should be able to overcome that little matter.


Not sure how you define "losing money" Paul, but a University should not be run like it is making widgets. Does the U make a profit educating philosophy students?

If the answer is that it is great to sell tickets, beer and hot dogs to make a profit to subsidize everything else, I guess your point is: this doesn't work.

But, of course, most people realize that how these programs calculate "making money" rivals the way a movie studio calculates "net profits."

"And speaking of "cost efficiency," the University of Kansas has recently fired its football coach and will now pay him $2 million for not coaching. The athletic director was also fired, but his buyout is a mere $1.375 million."

Where does this money come from, Paul?

I'm no expert, but, correct me if I am wrong: this is KANSAS, and Kansas isn't a "Big 10" school. Are you claiming Kansas is a rare money maker and that other more highly ranked programs make even less "profit"?

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