December 30, 2008, - 1:55 pm

Gee, Thanks for the Tip: Study Finds College Basketball, Football Players Are Stupid, Unqualified

By Debbie Schlussel
If there’s anything the bad economy brings, I hope it’s forcing universities to cut professors’ salaries and make them work more hours–and lay a lot of them off. And I hope it also results in colleges being forced to cut their sports-industrial complexes, which are tax-funded farm teams for billionaires and future millionaires. Here’s more evidence why colleges shouldn’t have sports teams.
File it under Notes From the “Duh!” Department.
Not sure why this should be news. It’s more like confirmation of age-old truth. What is news–and predictable–is that the liberal mainstream media claims this is evidence that college athletes are the “exploited,” rather than what they really are, “the exploiters.” Oh, and they’re claiming this is evidence of racism:


Football and men’s basketball players on the nation’s big-time college teams averaged hundreds of points lower on their SATs than their classmates, and some of the gaps are so large they call into question the lengths to which schools will go to win.
The biggest gap between football players and students as a whole occurred at the University of Florida, where players scored 346 points lower than the school’s overall student body. That’s larger than the difference in scores between typical students at the University of Georgia and Harvard University.
Nationwide, football players average 220 points lower on the SAT than their classmates – and men’s basketball players average seven points less than football players.
Those figures come from an Atlanta Journal-Constitution study of 54 public universities, including the members of the six major Bowl Championship Series conferences and other schools whose teams finished the 2007-08 season ranked among the football or men’s basketball top 25.
While it’s commonly known that admission standards are different for athletes, the AJC study quantifies how wide the gap is between athletes and the general student body at major universities.
Georgia Tech’s football players had the nation’s best average SAT score, 1028 of a possible 1600, and best average high school GPA, 3.39 of a possible 4.0 in the core curriculum. But Tech’s football players still scored 315 SAT points lower on average than their classmates.
At the University of Georgia, the average football SAT was 949, which is 239 points behind the average for an undergraduate student at Georgia – and 79 points behind Tech’s football average. The Bulldogs’ average high school GPA was 2.77, or 45th out of 53 teams for which football GPAs were available. Their SAT average ranked them 22nd.
Nationwide, coaches who would never offer a scholarship to a player who was 6 inches shorter or half a second slower than other prospects routinely recruit players whose standardized test scores suggest they’re at a competitive disadvantage in the classroom. . . .
“The problem is there’s a huge world of Mickey Mouse courses and special curriculums that athletes are steered into,” said Murray Sperber, a visiting professor in the University of California’s graduate school of education and the author of four books about college athletics and college life. “The problem is there are many athletes graduating from schools who are semiliterate.”
Who gets hurt? Former Princeton University President William Bowen points to the students the colleges would have admitted if they hadn’t enrolled less qualified athletes.
“There are grounds for concern,” Bowen said. “Places at a lot of these schools are precious things. To have them allocated this way raises troubling questions about fairness, about taking advantage of educational opportunity.”

Like I said, it’s not news. But in this new economy, I hope it will lead taxpayers to say no to continuing to fund this crap. It’s a myth that sports programs, or even the revenue producers in football and men’s basketball, make money for the schools. Most college football and basketball programs are in the red and spend way more than they take in with locker rooms that look like the spas of billionaires. That’s even when you subtract the Title IX boring sports for women, which men’s sports subsidize, from the equation.
Plus, college basketball and football players are six times more likely to commit violent crimes on campus (against students who actually deserved to get in). Is that really worth any extra money they might garner for the school, but usually don’t?
I’ve written about this more times than I can count. It reminds me of the Sports Illustrated story in which a professor recounted how he asked Voshon Lenard why George Washington was considered a founding father. “George Washington . . . Name sounds familiar. Can you give me a hint?” was Lenard’s response. You have to wonder what kind of college course even asks such a basic question I learned the answer to in elementary school (I think in first grade).
Read “The Real March Madness” for more scintillating such examples.
As a former tutor for the University of Wisconsin Athletics Department, I can tell you that the athletes I tutored were mostly dumber than rocks. This spanned the races, and the exceptions spanned the races, too: the four smartest athletes I tutored–all football players, two of whom went on to the NFL–were two White guys (Tarek Saleh and Pete Monty) and two Black guys (Azree Commander and Josh Dickerson). They were the exceptions to the rule of dumb athletes and didn’t really need my help.

9 Responses

I just love it when you zing the liberals with
the truth ! Forget about being “sensitive’ Let
them have it !!!!

Hawkins on December 30, 2008 at 2:30 pm

The article gives me another reason to hate Florida and their slimey head coach Urban Meyer. If I have to watch one more awards show extolling student-athletes someone should read them this AJC article. Way to go Debbie, keep hitting the hypocritical liberal professors.

swede on December 30, 2008 at 3:57 pm

Most of those guys are there for sports, period. And if it’s a NCAA division I school most aren’t that much interested in getting a degree as being drafted into the pros. Sad but true.

Ken_K on December 30, 2008 at 5:10 pm

To any of us who have attended a University that has sports this is a real “Duh” study as you point out. I went to a private Christian University. The Science Department allowed one absence per semester. As a result of this policy there was not one athlete enrolled in any science course. I got stuck in a Psychology class with an athlete for a group project. I did the entire thing and never once talked to the other student as he was out of town the entire time. I complained to the instructor and she just shrugged her shoulders.

Azygos on December 30, 2008 at 7:00 pm

And math departments are tax-funded farm teams for billionaires and future millionaire software programmers. The avarage student’s bench press is 220 pounds lower than the avarage athlete. Outageous! Imagine the athletes the colleges would have admitted if they hadn’t enrolled less coordinated weaklings and geeks.

dm60462 on December 30, 2008 at 7:19 pm

Dear Debbie;
A few years ago Jay Leno was doing his “Jay Walking” skit right before New Years Day. He was asking football players simple questions about America. I’m pretty sure he was talking to a Washington State player, who was about to play in the Rose Bowl.
Jay asked him if he knew where the Rose Bowl was. What city, or state. And this guy had no idea. All this guy knew was that he was going to play in the Rose Bowl.
On the other hand, me, and tens of millions of other football fans around the country, don’t really give a damn if these dimwits know what day it is. And neither do the coaches, or fellow students. These “geniuses” didn’t go to college to learn botany. They went to play football. This is what they were bred to do since their first days in Pop Warner. Even their years in high school were a necessary evil.
So on New Years Day I’ll be sitting there watching the games, and thinking, gee, I hope that quarterback knows how to read. Yeah; right! And I’m the frigging Count of Monte Cristo.

EJO on December 30, 2008 at 10:15 pm

Debbie, I would have pretended you were smarter than me so you could tutor me.

Anonymous1 on December 30, 2008 at 10:50 pm

What’s sad is this action does a dis-service to the university, as well as the student. And then the community too. The student was given a great gift to and should take advantage of getting a free education. And in some instances from an excellent institution. Players should realize that a sports career doesn’t have longvity and then’s there’s always the strong possibility of a career ending injury. Even if the athletes makes it a few years and millions. Upon retirement their entire fortune in most incidences is gone by time the player is in their 40’s if not sooner. As for the school, they’re simply using and exploiting a kid with false promises. The majority of these athletes never even make it to the pros…there’s only so many available rooster spots compared to how many are fighting to get a position on a pro team.
Duke University is about the only team that emphasizes for it’s athletes to graduate and they’re force to take what the rest of the student body takes. In fact Duke’s Basketball team has roughly a 81% graduation rate. And coach K does put the players education right up there with the basketball program.
I always wonder when you would hear an athlete being interviewed. And I wondered how he even gotten in to the university in the first place. And was then more preplexed that he made it for 2 years….since most leave early. That was in my University days and a bit naive then. It’s really messed up when we have 2 sets of standards when it comes to this subject matter. I was always told to do well in school, so I could get into a good university. My Dad always conveyed to me, that my primary function was to get good grades and learn something. So, I could have a promising future. Here people like me do it the right way or the way it’s suppose to be done. And then, we have different standards for others because that person can bring revenue to the university. So, they’re treated special. What kind of irresponsible message are our universities sending out to kids today. It’s totatlly wrong. And athletes should be held accountable to what the rest of the student body is. Maybe the govt. should get involved and regulate them too…lol just a joke. Govt. would see these athletes as high tax payers contributing to the system and GDP. More than likely the govt. would lower the standards for the athletes. In the end, the student athlete is being harmed the most. If I was offerred a free education to Duke or another excellent university. I would take full advantage of learning as much as I could. And more importantly graduating, to ensure I have something solid to fall back on, once a career was over with.

Tenn Scholar on December 31, 2008 at 4:16 am

The article is true, there is absolutely no way that a college football or basketball player can be as smart, as a regular college student because their brains are slower. They suffer from retardism. The time required to study is not present, no-matter what they say. In their fields, the groups replace education, with repetitive practice, which impacts other skills, like critical thinking skills. That is blue collar. 5 classes? Don’t think so bud. Exercise is not supposed to replace book work. Football kills brains cells & the country supports it.

Basketball players score lower because of the amount of failures that the game incorporates, which reaches 66%. It makes a person special ed. So, with a failure rate of 66%, the activity becomes mindless. The cities, states and schools support football because they are blue collar workers. I agree, with the article, southerners think that they are just as smart, as northerners but they are not. You could place each one side-by-side and the southerner is going to perform his/her job functions way, way slower, to the point that although the individual has a degree, the person should have failed. I studied many fields and there is absolutely no way that sports athletes can be as intelligent because of the importance of the learned information. For example, a basketball team fly’s in an airplane but can not build it. They would have to change their field entirely & to do that, replace education.

Possible Pts 1600 –
Students 1,188 74%
Georgia Tech 1028 64%
Football SAT 949 59%

They would still fail because of their field of expertise.

Hector on October 25, 2017 at 6:33 pm

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