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April 16, 1982 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily, 1982-04-16

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The Michigan Daily-Friday, April 16, 1982-Page 9

Should athletics share its wealth?

By RICHARD DEMAK
As the University's financial outlook becomes in-
reasingly bleak, some students are asking why the
ool's athletic department, which continually has
budget surpluses, cannot share its wealth.
When the University stands to lose close to another
$6'million this year in state and federal funds, some
students question why the athletic department, with
its $11-million budget, can't rush to the aid of
aicpdemic programs and student financial aid, both of
which are in danger of further cutbacks.
° EJT WHILE many students support this idea - as
eVidenced by the overwhelming success of a
similarly worded student government ballot proposal
bier this month - almost all University ad-
ministrators say they have very pressing reser-
vations.
For one thing, says Athletic Director Don Canham,
18i Ten rules may forbid the student's plan for a tax
0hpfl athletics tickets to pay for financial aid grants.
FWY another, says University President Harold
Shapiro, it may just not be a good idea to start mixing
tub budgets of athletics and academics.
Makinx
ki for his efficiency-only his member a.
priorities. he had not
*Many faculty members complain materialt
that the athletic department is respon- progress of
sible for compromising the University's A large
academic standards. academic
'-.'Colleges often have problems mat- stems fro
ching academic priorities with ath- Board in
letc priorities," said one University Athletics-
professor who wished-as most faculty governing 1
members did - to remain Some fa
anonymous. "The integrity of board has
academic programs is threatened when departme
you make more exceptions than ap- wields tota
propriate," he continued. SAYS E
DECIDING academic eligibility of don't think
athletes is one area where the depar- the athleti
tment is said to be weak. The Univer- A comm
sity declares very few of its athletes faculty me
ineligible for intercollegiate com- Out of C
petition, even when these athletes fall- Athletics.'
below the University's established members f
probation standards. Says for
University rules require that when a "Canham
student athlete falls below a 2.0 grage despot. He
point average he or she must appear on State S
before the Academic Performance ching over
Committee of the Board in Control of THE RE
Intercollegiate Athletics, a 10-member that the U
faculty panel, which then judges the irresponsi
athlete's eligibility. tough, acti
'Not one athlete was placed on Canham
academic probation by the committee criticisma
this school year, according to commit- board's cu
tee iember. and music Prof. John "It's an
Mohler. that they
} IF A STUDENT athlete's grades fall willing an(
below a 1.65 GPA in the sophomore st me if the
year, 1.75 in the junior year, or 1.85 in said.
the senior year, then he or she becomes YET PO
ineligible for competition under. Big opinion ab
Ten conference and NCAA rules. If run.
athletes fall below these guidelines, "When I
'their cases do not come up before the
committee because they become in-
stantly ineligible.
Some say the committee is too lax
and that concerned members of the
committee cannot get enough infor-
mation about the academic performan-
ce of the athletes to judge their
eligibility...
grown and engineering Prof. Brymer
Williams, a committee member, both
said some academic records can be dif-
ficult to obtain, but refused to be more
Specific.
RICHARD Corpron, a committee

The way the budgets are set up now, explained
Shapiro, the University gets no profits from the
athletic department when sports team do well., But,
at the same time, if sports teams do poorly, and ticket
sales slump, the Univerity is not obligated to share its
budget to keep athletics afloat.
AS SOON AS the University accepts money from
the athletic department, it will be bound to bail out
the athletic department if gate receipts drop off in the
future. Right now, the University is simply not.
willing to make that commitment, says Shapiro and
othertop University administrators.
"In general, it is a mistake to tie academics and
athletics,"said Shapiro. "There's enough pressure to
win anyway without having academic success
depend on it."
"I have some reservations about support of the
academic program from the athletic program,"
Shapiro sdid in an earlier interview. "Who knows, if
the football team doesn't do well, we might lose a
position in the English department."
ALTHOUGH THERE is often vague talk of dipping
into athletic department coffers to finance academic

programs, the only written plan for mixing the
budgets is one currently being pushed by the
Michigan Student Assembly.
According to student government leaders, the
University could impose a 50-cent tax on every ticket
sold for a campus sporting event and use the money
to extend financial aid to more students. Former
.MSA President Jon Feiger, who is a strong advocate
of the plan, said such a tax would generate about $4.5
million annually for financial aid programs.
But prospects for actually implementing the plan
don't look good. Any such ticket tax would have to be
approved by the Board in Control of Intercollegiate
Athletics. And Athletic Director Canham who sits at
.the helm of the board, has said he is opposed to the
idea and insists that it violates Big Ten conference
rules anyway.
STUDENT LEADERS, however, have said they will
keep pushing for the plan, despite Canham's and
Shapiro's opposition.
Amy Moore, who replaced Feiger as MSA
president earlier this week, said that though she too has
See SHARING, Page 11

g a business of 'U' athletics

rnd dentistry professor, said
t had problems with getting
to monitor the academic
f athletes.
part of the concern with the
performance committee
rm problems involving the
Control of Intercollegiate
-the athletic department's
body.
aculty members claim the
no control over the athletic
nt. Instead, Don Canham
1 control, they say. -
DUCATION Prof. Barritt: "I
the board is 'in control' of
c department."
non joke circulating among
embers refers to the "Board
.ontrol of Intercollegiate
But few concerned faculty
ind this humorous.
mer board member Potter:
right now is a complete
has his little fiefdom down
treet. There is no one wat-
him, except Don Canham."
ASON for this, Brown said, is
University faculty has been
ble for not putting enough
ve members on the board.
,however, said he views this
as a slap in the face of the
rrent faculty members.
insult to the faculty senate
don't appoint people who are
d tough enough to vote again-
ey think I'm wrong," Canham
UTTER had a very decided
out how board meetings were
was on the board it was this

way," Potter said "Canham would in-
troduce an agenda item, say that he
was dead against it, and that was it. I
don't know of a single issue on which
Canham got beat for the two years I
was there."
The board determines athletic depar-
tment policy on items such as ticket
prices, construction, and monitors
various other financial operations.
Head football coach Bo Schem-
bechler was quick to point out that the
most important aspect of the Univer-
Find
Insight
Into
the
Future
with 01, he Ba
Horoscope!
ON THE
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sity's athletic department was its
faculty control.
"College athletics," said Schem-
bechler, "must be faculty controlled.
That's the key. When that no longer
happens, then you're dealing with a
situation that's more of a pro-oriented
thing."
This article is the third in a four-
part series. Tomorrow's in-
vestigation examines how athletes
make it through their years at the
University.
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