But he also throws in an interesting nugget that explains some of the motivation behind targeting Rutgers in the first place. Big Ten dictator Jim Delany IS FROM NEW JERSEY, and his obsession with getting the Big Ten exposure in the New York market led him to the mediocre program.
With the announcement that Maryland and Rutgers will be joining the Big Ten, we have yet another example of how tradition and the needs of student athletes no longer matter at all in big time college sports. It’s all about money. In this case, it was all about the Big Ten Network and gaining exposure to large TV markets on the East Coast.
On one level the entire situation is pathetic. Does a weakened Big Ten football conference really need to add a weak Maryland program or a Rutgers program that will struggle to stay competitive in the Big Ten? Adding Nebraska made sense from a football standpoint. But this is all about money and markets. I guess once we all acknowledge that it’s a little easier to accept. There’s an arms race going on and the Big Ten sees these dollars as adding to their muscle for the long term.
Meanwhile we have more stories of academic fraud at North Carolina. Read this article and it will make you sick, especially when you consider that UNC hoops is the darling of the NCAA and the national media. Will the NCAA be just as hard on this basketball program? Will it dare vacate a National Championship for the NCAA Tournament that the NCAA controls? How much has money corrupted the holier-than-thou NCAA? With a whistle blower coming forward at North Carolina the NCAA may be forced to address one of its sacred cows.
If Ohio State, Penn State and USC can get crushed by the NCAA for football violations, then North Carolina should get punished for basketball violations and academic fraud.
But frankly the whole system of punishment sucks. Ohio State had a minor scandal over players getting tattoos, and now they might be shut out of a national championship game against Notre Dame. Maybe the NCAA doesn’t care as the BCS controls football championships, but a matchup between Ohio State and Notre Dame in the National Championship could have been the most watched college football game ever give the huge followings from both schools.
Meanwhile, the NCAA is strong-arming former Miami football players in their investigation of a rogue booster there. What’s worse – some Miami kids getting free steaks and yacht trips or “student-athletes” at North Carolina taking no-show classes where a student adviser wrote their papers?
Finally, ESPN has won the rights to televise the new college football playoff for 12 years for a reported fee of $470 million per year. Does anyone expect things to get better? At least the BCS will get better as we can have four teams fighting it out instead of only two. Hopefully it will expand to eight teams at some point. But the dollars keep getting bigger for what’s supposed to be amateur sports.
LeGrand was wearing a black Rutgers jersey like the rest of the team, and rode his motorized wheelchair, with an axe on his lap — a symbol of coach Greg Schiano’s mantra of “keep chopping.” Junior defensive tackle Scott Vallone and junior linebacker Khaseem Greene — both former roommates of LeGrand’s — were on either side of him, with the rest of the players following behind.
LeGrand led the team to the 50-yard line, turned right and went to the sideline before quickly leaving the field.
Amidst the snowstorm, the half-filled stadium was filled with chants of “52!” — LeGrand’s former number.
Doctors predicted LeGrand would never be able to breathe without a ventilator after the injury, but he is now standing for 40 minutes at a time in therapy, and predicts he will walk again.