And The Great Stupid Figures Out How To Feed Itself: The NCAA’s Brilliant Plan


I saw this coming. Didn’t you see this coming? Once colleges were told that they could and should treat college athletes as professional athletes, any effort to ensure that they might leave college able to do anything but run, throw, and dunk was on the way out. And so it is.

Last week, an NCAA task force recommended that incoming freshmen in Division I and II sports should no longer be required to meet minimum scores on standardized tests for initial eligibility.

Do you realize how ignorant you have to be to fail to meet the minimum scores?

The recommendation was made by the NCAA Standardized Test Score Task Force, was formed as part of the NCAA’s eight-point plan to advance racial equity. Yes, one sure way to advance racial equity is to let student athletes remain as dumb as marmots.

The Division I Committee on Academics and Division II Academic Requirements Committee will consider the recommendation at their next scheduled meetings in February. “This work reflects the NCAA’s commitment to continually reviewing our academic standards based on the best available data and other relevant information,” task force chairman David Wilson, president at Morgan State, said in a press release. “We are observing a national trend in NCAA member schools moving away from requiring standardized test scores for admissions purposes and this recommendation for athletics eligibility aligns directly with that movement.”

Everybody’s doing it! Now there’s a good reason for abandoning higher education for athletes! The ball started rolling in July 2020, when the National Association of Basketball Coaches called for the NCAA to permanently eliminate standardized test scores from eligibility requirements. Naturally, the main concern of basketball coaches is the educational achievements of student players.

“The days of colleges requiring the SAT or ACT are passing rapidly: more than half of all four-year colleges and universities will not require these tests for admissions in 2021, and more are dropping the requirement every week,” the NABC said in a statement at the time. “These tests should no longer be required in the initial-eligibility standards. The tests are again being recognized as forces of institutional racism, which is consistent with their history, and they should be jettisoned for that reason alone; moreover, pragmatics also support this change.”

Writes education blogger Joanne Jacobs, “So the plan is to admit unprepared students who will play football or basketball and leave college without a degree.”

Exactly. After all, a thuggish Minnesota cop accidentally killed a lifetime black hood without any racial motive, so this is a perfect response. And I am Marie of Romania.

The disgusted Ms Jacobs appended a relevant literary reference to her report…

“In University Days, James Thurber recalls an Ohio State classmate, a star tackle on the team, who while “not dumber than an ox he was not any smarter.” Bolenciecwcz had to pass economics to stay eligible for the upcoming game.

“One day when we were on the subject of transportation and distribution, it came Bolenciecwcz’s turn to answer a question.

“’Name one means of transportation,’ the professor said to him. No light came into the big tackle’s eyes.

“. . . ‘You may choose among steam, horse-drawn, or electrically propelled vehicles,’ said the instructor. ‘I might suggest the one which we commonly take in making long journeys across land.'”

“There was a profound silence in which everybody stirred uneasily, including Bolenciecwcz and Mr. Bassum. Mr. Bassum abruptly broke this silence in an amazing manner. ‘Choo-choo-choo,’ he said, in a low voice, and turned instantly scarlet. He glanced appealingly around the room. All of us, of course, shared Mr. Bassum’s desire that Bolenciecwcz should stay abreast of the class in economics, for the Illinois game, one of the hardest and most important of the season, was only a week off.

“’Toot, toot, too-tooooooot!’ some student with a deep voice moaned, and we all looked encouragingly at Bolenciecwcz. Somebody else gave a fine imitation of a locomotive letting off steam. Mr. Bassum himself rounded off the little show. ‘Ding, dong, ding, dong,” he said, hopefully. Bolenciecwcz was staring at the floor now, trying to think, his great brow furrowed, his huge hands rubbing together, his face red.

“How did you come to college this year, Mr. Bolenciecwcz?’ asked the professor. ‘Chufh chuffa, chufh chuffa.’

“’M’father sent me,’ said the football player.

“’What on?’ asked Bassum.

“’I git an ‘lowance,’ said the tackle, in a low, husky voice, obviously embarrassed.

“’No, no,’ said Bassum. ‘Name a means of transportation. What did you ride here on?’

“’Train,’ said Bolenciecwcz.

“’Quite right,’ said the professor. “Now, Mr. Nugent, will you tell us —”


Relate this to David Wilson, quoted above.

What are the odds he says, “I don’t get it!”?

24 thoughts on “And The Great Stupid Figures Out How To Feed Itself: The NCAA’s Brilliant Plan

  1. “Once colelges were told that they could and should treat college athletes as professional athletes”

    This typo reminds me of the Covfefe tweet. Sorry, mainly just pointing out the typo – now back to reading the post.

  2. He’ll get it. He’ll just point out the stereotypical speech of the kid with the clearly Eastern European name as being evidence of systemic racism in Thurber’s writing.

    It’s all he can understand.

  3. I still say stop making kids who play for big college sports enterprises impersonate students. Make all these outfits minor league teams for their respective professional leagues and pay the players. Simply affiliate the university’s name with the team. For example, Notre Dame could hire a bunch of players and coaches and executives and have the players wear ND uniforms and play at ND stadium but they’d just be football players. They’d have nothing else to do with the school. Everything else could proceed as per normal, ND could still get all its TV money, but the players wouldn’t have to continue the charade they were students trying to get degrees. They’d just play for the ND Football Club, LLC. Problem solved.

  4. “not dumber than an ox he was not any smarter.”

    THAT goes on the November sheet of my blotter; it deserves more’n a mere six (6) weeks of viewing.

    The NABC specifically, and the NCAA generally? Words escape me!

  5. I’m not sure what the point of this would really be. Those athletes who might be pro prospects already are finding a way to the pros, and that is a miniscule percentage of the total athletes in college.

    They are still requiring these folks to graduate from high school, right? Although that is perhaps not a challenging task in places like Baltimore.

    Guess I am just hopelessly old fashioned.

    • DG, the objective is to make it as easy as possible for football and basketball coaches to get the best players they can without the hassle of having to worry a whit about these players’ academic abilities. They might as well be declaring open season on any physically gifted kid out there. Coaches and recruiters have to be licking their chops. “Whoo-hoo! I don’t have to give a rat’s ass about whether these kids can fog an intellectual mirror. All I have to worry about is their time in the forty!” Next they’ll look past any felonies or juvenile records.

  6. Can we then assume that there is no requirement to pass a certain number of units to be eligible to play? I would think that not being qualified to enter as a student would make it almost impossible to do the course work, once in. If that is the case why even require them to attend class?

    I know this actually does go on like this today, and did for many decades leading up to today. Are they going to say this is better since its now sanctioned. Transparency! Woo-hoo.

    • Yeah, that is more to the point of my original post. If there are no entrance qualifications outside of athletic ability, then it is hardly reasonable to impose academic requirements. Again, one has to ask is that really what colleges want? If so, then go with OB’s proposal and just hire a team. Of course, they’ll probably be unionized and fall under OSHA and NLRB standards. Would the football field be considered a hazardous work environment? Could well be. Think of all the safety requirements that could be mandated. The labor negotiations, the strikes ….. But, if that’s what they want……….

  7. I have seen a couple of recent posts now in which you claim to be Marie of Romania. This is patently untrue, but it does rather suggest that you think you are Dorothy Parker.

      • Perhaps you’d prefer to describe yourself as a “friend of Dorothy’s”? Mind you, I’d recommend that you research other uses of that term before deciding whether to do so. “Not that there’s anything wrong with that”.

  8. It is high time for other athletic associations to update their policies, similar to what the NCAA has done for college athletes. At the high school level, for just one example, the group may be small, but there certainly are some high school athletes who could monetize their name, image, and likeness. High schools make money off of athletics, and it clearly is unjust to prevent their athletes from realizing the financial fruit of their labors.
    The National Federation of State High School Associations, which should be taking the lead, denies reality and continues to promote injustice. It says, “The primary reason that an overwhelming majority of high school students play sports is to have fun and spend significant and meaningful time with their peers. The focus is not on self but rather the team.” This quite simply is tyranny of the majority which obviously should not be employed to deny individual rights.
    Once high school athletic associations end their unjust labor policies for high school athletes, states and school districts must adjust their academic policies accordingly. Obviously, academics will continue to be important, but the superior importance of athletics cannot be denied. To penalize athletes simply because they are less proficient in the classroom than they are on the gridiron is a gross injustice that is contrary to the imperatives of diversity, inclusion, and equity.

  9. All these student athletes are eligible for student aid which they use to finance things other than tuition and fees. Many wind up borrowing huge sums which cannot be paid back if they do not obtain a legitimate education and thus an earning potential. The colleges and coaches are acting exactly like the executives at the Oxycontin making facilities. No one says anything until the bill comes due and then we prosecute those we allowed to get rich at the expense of society.

  10. Ah yes, so now measurable intelligence is racist.

    Before too long, someone is going to figure out that making players study a playbook is just a tool of white man’s suppression. Learning plays must be a racist tool that goes back to…oh, I don’t know…1619 or so. Training and drills will be discovered to be little more than ways to control young (mostly black & minority) kids and condition them to behave in ways that make them little more than slaves to a (mostly white) coaching staff, thus honoring the supremacy of the white hierarchy. And even if the kids are white and the coaches are black, the oppression still exists because football is based on a paternal hierarchy put in place by people who were either plantation owners, or who descended from plantation owners, or who wanted to be plantation owners.

    And the cheerleaders – poor things – forced to wear color-coordinated outfits, jump and wiggle the same way as their teammates and say the same things at the same time. Having to smile and look pretty is just the result of dirty white men with suppressed pedophilic fantasies. It’s a hierarchy rooted in evil and someday, it will need to be eradicated as the white-man’s poison that it is.

    Let’s not forget the marching band. Yet another method of forcing young people into the mold of “The Formation”, coercing them to “step here at this time and then there at that time while playing this note, then that note.” At its root, it’s slavery – withholding freedom and subjugating impressionable minds to a form of control that could only come from the minds of racist, white supremacists.

    And the unfortunate fans, forced to walk through a gate and have a ticket to an assigned seat. If that doesn’t have the liver-spotted hand of “whitey” all over it, I’m not sure what does. Hot dogs…they’re racist, too. Why must a fan pay $5 for one, whether it comes with ketchup or not? Who do the concession owners think the fans are, rich white people?

    Sorry, I probably should not have even started this…

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