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Comments about ‘Brad Rock: Decades later, equality still a problem for college sports’

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Published: Thursday, July 17 2014 10:00 p.m. MDT

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eagle
Provo, UT

I wonder if Rock would do an article about how Title IX killed off over 200 college wrestling programs including everyone that existed in Utah (BYU, Utah, SUU, Utah State, Weber State, and Snow College)...

Uncle Rico
Provo, UT

If it brings in money keep it, if it doesn't then get rid of it (regardless of the gender of the athletes).

I am not discriminating against anything except those sports that lose money.

81Ute
Central, UT

The solution is simple, we need another Federal law. This law would mandate that for every football/basketball that YOU watched/listened too/attended would require you to do the same for a womens or 'Olympic sports' event. That would even the playing field.

Yep, Gov't intervention is what we need.

rhappahannock
Washington, DC

Title IX has focused on athletics, without regard to the effects of testosterone. But, what has been totally ignored is the systematic discrimination against men in major universities. Enrollment for females has exceeded males for 30-40 years now for pretty much any major university. This should be a clear violation of Title IX - clearly, men are being discriminated against in large numbers. However, this discrimination is totally ignored. If Title IX is really supposed to be about educational opportunities, why aren't men been selectively subsidized in universities?

Duckhunter
Highland, UT

BYU is the only school in this state that will ever be able to keep up financially with the biggest revenue schools, the question is do they want to or are they willing to? I don't know the answer to that although Tom Holmoe said that BYU is ready and able to do "whatever it takes" to do just that.

I think that BYUtv is the key, BYU is working on ways to increase revenue through their BYUtv broadcasts and I think they'll be able to do it. It is such a huge advantage over other schools that are dependent completely on a 3rd party network for tv coverage and revenue, and especially those that depend on an affiliation with schools much greater than themselves to gain any exposure or money. Some day I think it will come down to who can actually pay their own way and who cannot without riding the coattails of others.

81Ute
Central, UT

@duckhunter

You are a very funny guy, clueless about college athletics, but very funny.

Do you really believe that there are only a handful of university athletic departments that are operationally solvent? Seriously? Do you think that the residents of the states where all these 'in the red' sports programs would tolerate blantant irresponsible behavior? Be serious and stop swallowing the drivel from the echo chamber.

SportsChemistry
ENGLEWOOD, CO

When I was a student, I worked ridiculously hard to maintain my academic scholarship. While I loved the sports aspect of my college life, I couldn’t help but be a little bit ticked that they lavished the athletes with banquets, clothes and new facilities while we used lab equipment that looked like it was from the 80’s. If head coaches of the big money sports make more than the president of the university, can we not appeal to common sense with this issue and realize that academics should be the focus of a university and not the strength of the athletics program?

Duckhunter
Highland, UT

@81ute

You obviously don't know what you are talking about so the irony of you telling me I don't is delicious and amusing.

I never said there are only a handful of these programs that are "operationally solvent" but it is a widely reported fact that only a few of them actually operate in the black. All the rest are subsidized or just losing money. That cannot sustain itself long term although it may be able to continue for a while, several years even.

But eventually it cannot so unless the schools can find a way to consistently operate out of the red many of them will eventually fail. Those schools that can pay for themselves are going to eventually be the ones left standing, those cannot will not make it.

This obviously strikes right at your very core because utah is a huge financial LOSER, but that isn't to say that they cannot eventually be a program that can fund itself, they might, they just haven't shown any evidence that they can do it. We'll see if the lawmakers and taxpayers of the state are patient enough for that to ever happen.

Mormon Ute
Kaysville, UT

Duckhunter,

Even BYU can't keep up with the likes of Texas, Notre Dame, USC, Alabama, Oregon, Ohio State, etc. Their revenues top $100 million and there are a bunch of lesser know schools with budgets double BYU's current estimated athletic budget. A few are even in the $200 million range. No way is BYU going to put $100 million into athletics.

As for BYUtv, the sports programing is a very small part of their overall program and mission. They also have to be very careful how they handle any advertising so they don't lose their non-profit status. At best they might be able to come up with $500,000 a year to help the sports programs at BYU. That just won't help when you are talking hundreds of millions of dollars. Even with the Church subsidizing the programs through facilities and BYUtv, I don't see them coming close to a program like even Louisville who brings in $96 million in revenue annually. Sorry to burst that bubble, but BYU will drop sports before the Church lets them spend that kind of money. They have other priorities, as they should.

Duckhunter
Highland, UT

@Mormon Ute

Wishful thinking on your part and you have nothing to back those assertions up other than your own delusions.

As I said Tom Holmoe has said BYU is willing and able to do what they have to do to keep up. I'm sure back in 1986 when the athletic budget was 5 Mil you would have tried to claim there was "no way" BYU would spend the 50 mil a year they currently spend but guess what?

Also BYU will only seek to keep the non profit status of BYUtv if that is the better option financially. I happen to know that they are looking into ways to monetize it as we speak so the non profit status of it is no sacred cow they are trying to preserve.

But outside of that BYU is already one of the very few schools that actually turns a profit on its athletic program, utah on the otherhand is a huge $ loser. BYU already knows how to get it done on time and on budget so there are no worries there. face it, BYU simply is superior to almost all other schools in these matters.

FatMan86
West Jordan, UT

@Duckhunter,

Where is your proof that the Utes are losing money. Not disagreeing with you (yet), I just need to see the facts.

Mormon Ute
Kaysville, UT

Duckhunter,

First, BYU sports is just an afterthought for BYUtv. The Church rolled out BYUtv while BYU was still in the MWC and had no opportunity to broadcast any of the sporting events. Then when the new broadcast facility was finished and Elder Eyring dedicated it, he made no mention of sports programming. Lastly, how many hours of programming each week on BYUtv are sports vs other programming? Less than 10% of the total programming on BYUtv is sports related. So the Church has made it clear BYUtv wasn't created for BYU sports. BYU sports helps fill some programming voids, but the channel was created without BYU sports and will go on even after BYU inevitably drops out of major college sports competition. If you have numbers to prove me wrong, lets see them.

81Ute
Central, UT

@Duckhunter

I guess you will need to give less that 10% so that you can cover the tax increase that will go to the U. The U just won't be able to make enough money to survive and we desperately need your contribution. BTW, solvency is the issue not percieved value. Because the U is a public institution the financial information is readily available (unlike BYU) and easily digested. You are wrong. Anyway, even if the Utes struggle financially it won't be the end just like the 70's and 80's (very tough years) but we will manage.

SLC BYU Fan
Salt Lake City, UT

The debate over athletics at BYU is highly tied to the future of the academic direction of the university. Some of the more powerful LDS Church senior leaders who govern the school don't like the heavy post-graduate emphasis many of the so called "Power-5" schools insist on. More than religious affiliation, this policy is what has kept the Pac-12 from seriously considering BYU over the years. Some of these same leaders would rather see a smaller athletic program at BYU if it continues that could perhaps better the relevance of Utah State University. One serious questions BYU fans have to ask themselves is how well the athletic department could do without the football program since if BYU continues athletics into the next decade it "could" come down to that. My sense over the years is there has been more serious resistance in BYU governance than most fans realize to BYU joining a league like the Big 12, and the WCC relationship is based on the possibility of BYU ultimately at least giving up football.

BU52
Provo, ut

Equality doesn't happen just because its legislated. When the minor sports and the women's sports start drawing paying crowds like football and basketball then and only then will equality be achieved, and good luck with that. By the way the highest paid public employee in Utah (as well as about 44 other states) is the university's football coach. Check Utahrights for confirmation.

DuckOuttaWater
SLC , UT

I grew up in Utah but have spent most of my life in Oregon. Just moved back here and have found these comment boards entertaining. Anyone can look up a public school's athletic budget...it's public record by law. Duckhunter (hate that name haha) is right, most schools are not operating in the black and require subsidy to remain viable (luckily PK has ensured my Ducks don't have to worry about that). However Duck, I highly doubt BYUs athletic budget is 50 million when Utah's hasn't reached that amount with new PAC12 money.

Btw welcome Utes. Not many have really been supportive of Utah & COs inclusion but I'm excited to have Utah in & look forward to seeing what you can do.

Mormon Ute
Kaysville, UT

SLC BYU Fan,

You make some very good points that many BYU fans seem unwilling to consider. Much of my position on this issue is in line with what you say and is based on the same things you point out about the mission of BYU and the Church leader's feelings. Thanks for your comments.

SLC BYU Fan
Salt Lake City, UT

The big financial point @DuckOuttaWater is BYU has substantially higher booster revenue year in and year out than Utah does. Much the way Notre Dame doesn't do as well as Big Ten institutions, BYU negotiated its own deal with ESPN giving them branding value the MWC could never get them up to that point, which means their athletic budget is in the vicinity of $50-60 million (Coaches Hot-Seat database reports Bronco's annual salary to be in the vicinity of $2 million). The big question is how much time does BYU have as a football independent? I for one doubt it's very sustainable long-term and the pressure both internally and externally is mounting on them to possibly rejoin the MWC by 2016 when that league redoes their media deal. BYU has 5 options as I see it;
1-Rejoin the MWC
2-Stay the course until the mid-20's IF they can, but less likely every year.
3-Drop Football and stay in WCC for other sports
4-Drop intercollegiate athletics entirely as has been done at the 2 other LDS Church owned institutions of higher learning.
5-Join the Big 12, the best but least likely of them all.

Duckhunter
Highland, UT

@mormon ute

Uh....what percentage of NBC's, ABC's, CBS's, and FOX's, total programming are sports? Is it 10%? Nope. But how important are those sports to those networks? Very important, in fact the sports they broadcast are what makes them the most profit as a percentage of cost to produce.

Now I never claimed BYUtv was started just to broadcast BYU sports, in fact I know it wasn't, but broadcasting BYU sports was always part of the plan from the beginning and the sports broadcast are the ones that get them most viewers. Yes BYU sports are an extremely important part of the BYUtv network. There are multiple sets and studio's in the BYU broadcast facility dedicated to BYU sports, no other thing BYUtv does has that sort of space and infrastructure at that facility. Then there is a multi million dollar HDtruck dedicated to.....you guessed it....broadcasting BYU sports.

I know these facts hurt you to your core, and you do everything in your power to downplay the importance of BYU sports to the University and the Church but sadly you just don't KNOW anything about any of it. I do.

Duckhunter
Highland, UT

@DuckOutaWater

50 mil is an estimate based on previous figures I know from 4 years ago. At that point BYU's athletic budget was estimated at $43 million per year, since that time their ESPN contract has kicked in and other revenue sources have increased so no I do not know that it is exactly $50 mil, I didn't make that claim anyway, it is in that vicinity, in fact it may be more than that. Also it has been reported by BYU and printed right in those paper that BYU averages about a $5 mil profit each year on its athletic department and is one of only a very few schools that does so. Most of that you can get from googling articles the rest I suppose you'll just have to believe me, or not, either way I don't care but it is the facts.

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