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@John at MrSEC @BonzaiBWhere I "disagree", but would not "argue" the point with you, is that somehow academics might be underpaid at universities. Since there is no right answer, your opinion is as valid as mine, I was just giving the site my take on that. If that came across as argumentative, I'll just say I perhaps let my bias out too strongly. Not that that changes anything, its still my opinion and certainly not going to tell you that you on wrong on the point.
Your response to CDarwin, "People were dismayed when Alabama offered Nick Saban $4 million per year, but he's brought in enough money to easily cover his salary. An expanded stadium (with more people putting more money in school coffers for every home game), BCS championships (creating exposure for the school and driving up applications), etc." is what I concluded with, basically.
And, the mark of a good peice in my mind is one that brings out different takes on an issue, and if I did not think your article was thought provoking, I would not have taken the time to shovel (use that metafor however you would like) my opinion into the mix.
Great site, very good set of articles this week. Been breaking my football withdrawl shakes for the last month. Again, this site is first on more stuff than any other site I read, and well worth taking hits from your keyboard every now and then.
1 week, 6 days ago on Which League Has Biggest Gap Between Football Salaries And Teaching Salaries? The SEC
@viciousdawg I think so too. The Toads are doing much better than I would have thought, the Hogs will have three years to rebuild with the new coach. Now, if the Frogs can smack down Texas or Oklahoma a couple of more times before the series, that game could be a real spoiler.
1 week, 6 days ago on Hogs Line-Up Home-And-Home Series With TCU
A slightly different take on that. I taught at the University of Connecticut for 4 years (College of Liberal Arts if that makes a difference), and I will humbly disagree with the comment that professors have more value to society, than say coaches. Coaches have a tremendous impact on academic institutions, and therefore society. As a general rule, from my experience, professors don't get the short end of the stick on salaries.
Liberal Arts professors MAKE WAY MORE than as a general rule they could make with their skill sets on the outside. Once they start teaching, within 3 to 5 years, they are pretty much on auto pilot for course material. At 10 years, they are tenured. GUARANTEED a job with a PHENOMINAL retirement benefits to salary ratio. Coaches make a bunch, but they generate revenue, they spend many more hours at the work site per week than most profs, they work much more closely with, and have a greater impact on the future of their students, than the average LA professor, are in a career field that is highly risky, etc. And it goes on, and on.
Now, professors in genetics, bio mechanical engineering, (heck, engineering in general), medicine, and more, I'd agree with you. I can tell you, we could do away with 50% of the education professors and 90% of the journalism profs, and we would still generate twice as many in each of those disciplines we as a society could hire. Not much value in that. Philosophy majors? History, political science and the like are place holders for "I think I may want to be a lawyer if I don't have to study much harder than this crowd." And yeah, I have a degree in history.
Understand the sentiment behind the statement, but my experience tells me professors make plenty. Not at first, 'cause universities have 10 times more applications for starting profs than they want. But believe me, professors are more than compensated after tenure. If it was not such a great gig for the skill set and work output, you would not have the astounding numbers of people per job applying. Loved my English Lit class, but the best English Lit professors in the country do not have much of an impact in the big scheme of things.
Most universities realize this. Most know they do not have to offer more than they pay academics to get a very high quality person at the lecturn. The reason is: its a very, very good gig. Academics want more pay, all the time. But drive through an academic town (start with Gainesville if you want). Look at where the tenured profs live. Look at the cars they drive. They do fine.
The test is the "how much professors enhance the value of the degree." Individually, not much. In some cases, a lot, but those profs are few and far in between at any given university. Now, how much in donations to the University of Alabama does Nick Saban's success generate for academics? Millions. UF alumni, Auburn, USC, etc, throw a lot of money at their schools. What binds them to their alma mater? Sports is the number one answer. Not academics, because most colleges and universities have a "factory" approach to degrees in most disciplines, and most universities produce exactly the same quality of undergrad as the next. There are exceptions, but as a general rule, you can't tell the difference in the educational skills of a grad from one state uni to the next. In contrast, Nick Saban generates a tremendous long term donation stream that dwarfs his salary in the long run, which helps the universities get things they really want.
Universities spend millions and millions a year on sports for a reason. They get healther every year they do it. Sports makes you famous, and famous helps you hire better and better big name profs, and helps in the end fund that.
Smart move for the Hogs. Their program, much like OU and OSU, depends on getting recruits from Texas. With A&M in the conference, it gets harder, but certainly not impossible. Arkansas now has two games scheduled in the near term for the DFW metroplex, and at least one game each year for a long while (JerryWorld against A&M). Dallas is much easier to get to for Hog fans outside of the state of Arkansas. It makes sense to try for Tech also, but TCU is an up and coming program. JerryWorld would be a good "neutral site" venue for them, the SWC Classic is a very good money maker for the Hogs, but not sure if they can swing games in that venue since the A&M match up will be held there also.
I think there is a marketing component to this. Stoops as a head coach in a league cannot say, no matter what the question from a reporter, that his team is not in the toughest conference out there. Coaches in the B1G, Pac 12, and some even in the ACC, will all twist the answer in a way to champion their conferences' accomplishments. If Stoops had said, "Hell yes, the SEC is the best conference," how could he then walk into Texas to compete for players against other outside of Texas recruiters? He has Arkansas, LSU, Alabama, Oklahoma State, Kansas, et al to compete with for the 4 and 5 star Texas recruit who is willing to go out of state. Anyone counted the number of Texas players on OU's roster? And now there is A&M in the SEC? Stoops fan base is not happy with him right now. Getting stomped in post season play by the SEC has to be spun as an annomaly. Stoops is on borrowed time if he does not pull something spectacular out of the hat. And with the recruiting year he just had, that is not likely. His one saving grace, Texas still has Mack Brown as their head coach, so he may be able to tear them up enough again to hold the dogs at bay.
1 week, 6 days ago on Sooners’ Stoops: What’s The Bottom Of The SEC Done?
@alamoaggie08 I'm not sure that is the issue any more. College Station is going to have a problem in the short term figuring out how to handle the 8,000 or so extra hotel rooms needed to handle the 16-20,000 people. That said, I've watched the promo video, and it is apparent the vision is not to be the biggest, its to be the most imposing for recruits and big pocket donors. I've been to Texas's Memorial (or Royal) stadium, and its well maintained, but its just a stadium, much like the Swamp at UF is. Both of those are imposing, but they do not project the "center of the universe" feel Kyle looks like it wants to project, with a planned neighborhood (parks, purpose built tailgating, museum, food courts, etc). So, if Texas decides to increase its size to 103,000, not sure that will do anything for recruiting. Kyle is a quantum leap for A&M (and the SEC in a sort of tangental way), and anything less than a major league expenditure of funds to upgrade their stadium won't do it in the keeping up with the Jones' department for Texas, or the rest of us. No university in the nation right now could justify that kind of expenditure. I do not think we will see this kind of expenditure at the collegiate level on facility upgrades for the next decade, or more.
2 weeks, 2 days ago on A&M’s Kyle Field To Be The Biggest Stadium In The SEC (And Texas)
@buddha22 You got a 94% on the test.....
2 weeks, 5 days ago on The SEC Network Is A Go, But Don’t Expect Accurate Financial Numbers Right Away (Plus Links)
@John at MrSEC @BonzaiB Actually, I am amazed you were able to figure out exactly what I wanted to know. I could not figure out how to seperate all the pieces in my head. I just wanted to know I was not going to be part of the price for piggy backing the LHN as part of my subscription to the SECN.
I re-read your article, and you are the only site that explains just how complicated this is. The more I read your stuff, the more I am convinced the SECN will be a national network, but that it will take 2 - 5 years to get the distibution to the point we are all not complaining about it. Price aside.
So, if I understand this, and my question will show I don't, then if another sports network (you mentioned the Longhorn Network above, so lets stick with that one) owned by ESPN could not easily be added the SECN package without making the cost higher?
The reason I ask is, with the announcement of SECN, a bunch of comments on other sites by Longhorn fans led me to believe they thought the SEC Network, owned by ESPN, would be logically dovetailed as an option to the carrier(s) of SECN, meaning the LHN would become much more profitable because whoever carried SECN would be offered incentives to carry the LHN.
I found that logic a little counter intuitive, and my initial impulse would be that I would be much less happy about getting SECN if my dollars ended up supporting a Big XII cash cow. I mean, I just don't watch Big XII football, much less any other sport.
If I am reading your take correctly, that is not likely to happen, but the LHN might get more traction as an add on to ESPN through AT&TU, eventually.
" Each of them won 11 or more games last season." Hmmm. This is kind of a contrast to some of the trash talk the good coach was spewing when he first got the gig.
Welcome to the SEC baby, in your first third of the season you face coaches who won a combined 46 games last year, one national championship, one SEC championship, beat the crap out of the Big XII champion in a bowl game, and some other pretty impressive stuff that would take a while to mention.
Lets see how much trash talk you have in you around the second week of October.
2 weeks, 6 days ago on Hogs’ Bielema Talks SEC Hype
@I4Bama Should have read, 100 pounds lighter than you from behind.
3 weeks ago on If High-5′ing Hill Was Caught Beating A Man On Video He Should Be 86′d By LSU
@I4Bama Correct-o-mundo. I will add, you have to be one mean spirited, cowardly low life to hit a man who is over 100 pounds lighter than you, when you already have him 2-1. Hill is a POS and if others out there cannot see it, it does not change that fact.
Kyle is kind of a magnificent dump. An odd stadium built in stages on top of a 1920 ish baseline. Friends who went to the stadium for the UF-A&M game said it was really bad on concessions, has a problem with bats, bathrooms are not up to par, etc. On the other hand, the Ags seem to have made a shrine out of the place, and pack a campus full of students into it.
Looking at pictures of it, it is the most vertical stadium I have ever seen, and its open at one end. If the Ags are smart, they will take a page from the Ducks stadium and fix it so the noise is funneled back onto the field. At any rate, its good news to see modernization of this caliber occur in the SEC. If the Ags can fill it (and adding 16 - 20,000 more butts in any stadium is a major league challenge these days), it will be impressive. Now, if they will JUST lower their ticket prices and give visiting fans better seats.....
3 weeks ago on Report: A&M To Expand Kyle Field To 102,000
@SJSPEED There is a problem with UC, and not that the teams are not getting better. Its a cultural thing. SEC schools tend to be very Southern in their outlook, very regional fan base that is quite protective of their football heritage. While UC would bring more tv sets in, there is already a significant amount of grumbling (justified I think) over the loss of inter divisional play with the move to 14 teams. If Mizzou were to leave (and they are not, period) because they had a rough year in football, they'd catch holy hell from coast to coast from their fan base, which is still pretty optimistic about the move. Vandy is actually quite proud of their position in the conference. A small private institution that stands up to the gigantic state schools and puts up a very good fight. They are not going anywhere, because they would gain nothing from moving, period.
A&M was a good fit, because they are nuts, polite, passionate, small town cowboy boot / hat wearing sports wierdo's who don't need a Google translator to talk to us. Mizzou is a little harder fit, being from a slightly more liberal background, but Missouri has a lot of Southern cultural ties, they think they are much better than they are (and that makes them fit in nicely in a strange sort of way) and they really want to beat the hell out of some of us to prove they belong. And while we discount them a bit in capability, they are all in, raising money for sports facility expansion, the whole nine yards.
Bottom line, the fans in the SEC don't want more expansion as a rule. And if we do, the fans want a bunch of questions answered (not that leadership will consider that, but we still are going to tell them), about protecting our cross divisional rivalries (and expanding the number of games between divisions BACK to where they were in the first place).
As a group we tend to want to pound on Alabama more often than we want someone from a metropolitan area we have no real desire to go to. I want more, not fewer, opportunities to play Ole Miss, Arkansas, Mississippi State, Auburn, A&M and LSU. That means no more SEC teams and a 9 game conference schedule. The front office may or may not be listening, but this is why I would be strongly opposed to UC. You don't fit from a practical and cultural standpoint. Quality of teams? Not really the biggest stumbling block for us as fans when it comes to UC.
4 weeks ago on Sources: The Big Ten Did Expansion “Homework” On Vanderbilt, Kansas & Oklahoma
Iw must say, you are bang on with respect to A&M and Mizzou rappers. As a person of WASP decent, the attempts by A&M students in particular were just.... embarrassing. Insert shudder here. Not a fan of rap or country, but this version is much better than the Ags attempts. That is to say, you can actually listen to this without feeling the immutable urge to lose your breakfast in the nearest porcelien container.
4 weeks, 1 day ago on New AU Novelty Song Better Than Most… Well, At Least The Video Is Better Than Most
There are a few cracks in the "armor" of SEC attendance, but those cracks seem to permeate college number attendance. Some of the bowl attendance numbers were way down (UF's bowl numbers were horrible), but I think that has to do with a very repetitious and tiring alignment for bowl games. Fans want to go someplace new sometimes. The SEC got a big boost this year with a bit of excitemenet from two new teams, both of whom's fan base turned out to support the transition. Overall, the SEC is better off today for attendance numbers than last year. Mizzou's small stadium sort of brings the average down, but the percentage of fill per seat probably went up this year (or at least maintained from the previous year).
Be interesing to look at the numbers for next year in comparison for this year. I suspect attendance nationwide will continue to slip by fractions. Especially in the bowls.
1 month ago on Final SEC Spring Game Attendance Numbers Are Out
@5LittlePiggies As one who had to wait over a year to "win" the lottery at UF to get a ticket, I share your pain. However, as an alumni, there are two things that influence this at opposite ends of the spectrum.
1. Debt on one side. Non-student tickets normally are much more expensive (therefore lucrative) to the university, and almost every college football team in the country is in debt up to its eyeballs. Yeah, they rake in money, but they also spend like drunken sailors. Urban Myer won us a national championship. He was guaranteed a $5 million bonus. His coaching staff got huge bumps as well. That was not scheduled in the budget and UF did not have lottery insurance (that was an attempt at humor). Our ticket prices went thru the roof after that, and they are still a lot less expensive than Texas A&M's this year, and they just won a non-BCS bowl. I just went to a web site to lookup some ticket prices to justify my argument here. LIST prices for the Texas A&M vs Alabama game are BETWEEN $438 and $1082. Read that last number again. There are NO decimal points in that, that's the price for a COLLEGE football game. No coincidence the Aggies are starting to do a $450 MILLION dollar upgrade to Kyle Field. Folks, this is close to insanity. The point here is, for every seat the Aggies give up to a student from these "at large" tickets, they lose money they really need. And there is no guarantee in two years they will be able to get this kind of money. And I thought UF's pricers were bad. Not even close.
2. Keeping students in the game, how important is that? The wider the differential between what you can get from a student ticket (a SINGLE ticket at A&M for a student is $200, or you can get a season ticket for students at $350), so there is a differential between the AVERAGE single ticket price for the Alabama game and a student SEASON ticket is over $200. A&M is picked again for this diatribe because their student section is over 31,000, the largest in college football. Every wonder why A&M has the largest student section in college ball with a stadium that seats about 20,000 less than the standard setters (the Swamp, Death Valley, BDS)? Might be the reason. The Aggies charge INSANE prices for student and non-student tickets. To get that kind of money into your pockets, you have to take it from ANYBODY who will pay it. The Aggies decided to keep their student section huge. Aggie student wants a ticket? No problem. Just pay for it. It is a lot of money, but you get a ticket. Right now, the Aggie students are willing to pay that price.
At UF, if we could not get a ticket to a game, the best beaches in the US are just 3 hours away. In College Station, there must not be much else to do on a Saturday.
Holy crap. My brother and I were just complaining last month about the rise in nose bleed tickets in the Swamp to the high double digits.....
1 month ago on Do Freshmen Students Have Football Ticket Rights? Louisiana Legislator Wants To Make It Law
Well, all of our Aggie posters seem to think the singular feature of Leach is that he's an ass. Hmmmm. Think I'll temper his "educated remarks" with that fact. If Nick Saban, Les Miles, Muschamp, Sumlin, Franklin, Richt, et al said something to that effect, I might buy it.
1 month ago on WSU’s Leach Thinks The Only Advantage The SEC Has Is On The D-Line
@alamoaggie08 That might be an inside Texas kind of thing, I mean, its not like the amount of publicity the Spurs gets is something the rest of us think about. But I am very happy (don't know why, just am) that Johny Football does not hang out with the team of that reprobate Cuban. Surprised you Texans have not run him out of Texas on a rail.
I am an unabashed Tebow fan. Gator, can't help it. Manzeil is the closest thing in buzz and hype in college ball to Tebow I've seen. They are very different in both playing style and how they are handling all of this (about as different as you can get). Tebow's was the safer route, and he still got slammed. JFF is going to get hammered this next year, assuming he has a good one, by everybody. There are chinks in all of our armor, so some dirt is going to come out, real or imagined. Bet on it.
Gator Nation went through that as fans, but in the end, its just a game and heres to hoping two things. 1, that JFF has a successful career in college that ends well, and 2, we don't have to play him again.
1 month ago on A&M Compliance Keeping Tabs On Manziel’s Travels, Sumlin Keeping Tabs On His Ego
@KellyJones2 @BonzaiB Thats the word I got when I was scheduling a visit to A&M a little over a year ago. I wanted to see the yell leaders, etc, so I called the office that supports the yell leaders (yeah, the Aggies have a whole staff of folks who coordinate public appearances for the yell leaders, their travel, etc). Anyway, I asked the woman who schedules their events, and there were a couple going on, and she mentioned Reveille would be at one of them. Asked her about the dog, and she gave me a wonderful half hour history, the personalities of the different dogs. I was blown away. All I wanted was a date and time, but she found out I was from UF, and it was like we had been pals for life. I asked if the dog went to all their games, and she said very firmly, "No." And then explained that Lubbock was strickly prohibited (she did not mention any others, but I assumed there were). Interestingly, Austin was not mentioned. Apparently, the Longhorns and the Ags can agree on something.
1 month ago on New Texas Tech Coach Kingsbury “Was Never An Aggie”