Commitment Issues

Towson University cut some less-profitable sports for some craven, familiar reasons. But this story is bigger than Towson.
Share |

Josh Toribio started his freshman year at Towson University as a soccer player, but eight months later, he’s just a student. This is not by choice. A March decision to cut the men’s soccer program has left Toribio and his returning Towson teammates without a place to play next season. Some may transfer in the coming months, but Toribio plans to stay at Towson, at least for another year, where he will get to keep his partial athletic scholarship.

If you don’t know Josh Toribio, your response may be somewhere on the spectrum of "So what?" and “Who cares?” Depending on your economic perspective, athletic cuts in college sports are a logical manifestation of the system. Kids are tossed off as collateral damage, potentially losing their shots at college educations and the other benefits of intercollegiate athletics, but if there isn’t enough money to go around then there isn't enough money to go around. But the Towson case is not one of these situations.

The initial recommendation to cut men’s soccer at Towson surfaced in October, a few weeks after Toribio moved to campus from New Jersey. “We were told we were going to get a decision mid-November,” Toribio said. “Then November comes and there’s no decision. After that, we’re told we’re going to be given a decision right after winter break.” But when the students returned in January, there was still no word from President Maravene Loeschke or former Athletic Director Mike Waddell, who left Towson on May 20 to become the senior associate athletic director at Arkansas. In fact, it took more than five weeks of the spring semester for those in charge to make the news official: Towson University would cut the men’s soccer and baseball programs and add men’s tennis.

The administration finally contacted coaches and players on March 8 after that prolonged silence. How they communicated the news did not inspire confidence in the athletes. “We get a text at 9am,” Toribio recalled. “The text says, “Mandatory meeting at ten. You must skip class for this.’” Most of the 62 athletes on the soccer and baseball teams arrived at Towson’s field house to find out their fates. There were cops scattered around the building. President Loeschke didn’t waste time announcing the decision.

Toribio describes her speech as perfunctory. “She spoke for maybe three to four minutes, and four is pushing it. She told us we were being discontinued immediately. Everyone’s blown, heads down, we’re done.” As Waddell stepped up to give another speech, all the players walked out of the conference. “We already got the decision. There’s nothing else he could say.”

***

In a press release from the president, the school pointed to “long-term financial stability and affordability; compliance with Federal Title IX requirements; and the ability to be competitive in NCAA Division I athletics,” as an explanation for the decision. All three reasons turned out to be misleading or false.

Not only did Towson add another men’s sport—which would counteract the Title IX defense of equal athletic opportunities for both genders—but in meetings with alumni, athletes, and parents leading up to the decision, Waddell incorrectly counted the number of women’s teams—for example, combining the women’s indoor and outdoor track teams instead of treating them as separate squads—to support the excuse.

If money was an issue, eliminating men’s soccer and baseball saves nearly $900,000 annually in the athletic budget, according to the independent task force assigned by Towson to review the case. After factoring in the cost of men’s tennis, that figure drops to about $800,000. The athletics budget totals $18.27 million, meaning the cuts represent about 4.4% of the overall funding. Claiming austerity is even stranger when you learn that Towson increased its athletic budget by more than $10 million between 2002 and 2010. So why not decrease funding equally from each sport instead of eliminating two programs entirely?

Towson seems to be justifying its decision based on the desire for athletic competitiveness, a confusing excuse considering that Towson’s basketball team is less than 18 months removed from a D-I record 41-game losing streak. Towson is not alone in this approach, though, and is in fact part of an emerging new class of would-be big-time college athletic programs that have opted to pour money into football and basketball even though their moneymaking sports haven’t succeeded historically.

“From October 'til now,” Toribio said, “it was just one huge mystery. Whenever we tried to ask Waddell a question, it wouldn’t really be answered.”

Eventually, the lack of administrative accountability reached Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, who assigned $300,000 into the state’s 2014 budget to support the baseball team for another season. The governor plans to match the funding in 2015 if the baseball budget isn’t self-sufficient by then. Previously, the baseball players had covered the Towson logo on their uniforms with black tape after learning of the athletic cuts.

“I don’t think the current regime can repair the damage,” said Andrew Constant, former sports editor of the Towson Towerlight from 2010-2012. “The governor’s decision makes the president, the athletic director, and the university all look ridiculous.”

As ridiculous as it all may seem, the baseball team gets to play next year. The soccer team does not.

***

Months before there would be an official decision for Toribio and the soccer program, Sean Cunningham received a thank-you letter in the mail from Towson for contributing to the “Football Enhancement Fund.” Cunningham, who played midfield for the men’s soccer team from 2003 to 2006, never raised a dime for the football program. He and other soccer alumni had fundraised exclusively to keep their old team afloat. When the school initiated an alumni challenge for sports fundraising, former soccer players grossed more money than all other athletic alumni groups.

“I gave my money and it took away from the hard work that I did,” Cunningham said. “It felt like I was doing it for a good cause, and they just gave it to football.”

The next time Cunningham met with members of the athletic department, he brought up the problem, and Towson sent him a corrected thank-you letter. It’s conceivable that the mistake was an isolated clerical error. It's also unlikely: Cunningham served on the T Club Board of Directors, which is a social club for alumni athletes sanctioned by Towson. He was working directly on Towson’s behalf, making it doubtful that the athletic department would send him, of all donors, an accidental letter. Also worth noting: if budgetary issues were serious enough to result in major athletic cuts, how did there come to be a Football Enhancement Fund in the first place?

Cunningham remembers optimistic meetings with the administration last spring, where Waddell discussed plans for a new soccer and field hockey stadium. There would be lights, more seats, night games, and a healthier revenue stream. “Very politician-like,” Cunningham said. “[Waddell] came in and told us, ‘if you guys do well, it’s going to be hard to cut a program this active donating back.’”

Waddell’s hollow promises didn’t fool many people close to Towson athletics, but they did serve as evidence of the athletic department’s deceit. Constant, who took over the campus newspaper’s sports section a month before Waddell was hired, added, “We quickly found out what he was doing was a big front. He wanted to come off well to the public. He’d basically say anything that would make him look good.”

After the excuses piled up, Cunningham decided to write an op-ed in the Baltimore Sunoutlining the “shady” process that had unfolded. Towson has stuck to bureaucratic defenses rather than address any specific criticisms, even as Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot called for President Loeschke’s resignation at a show trial last month. Loeschke chose not to attend.

The administration’s defiant response hasn’t changed, and regardless of how many critical articles pop up in the pages of the Sun, it appears that Loeschke and Waddell won’t have to answer for much. The Towson Athletic Department has chewed up and spit out people like Toribio and Cunningham. But the news cycle is waiting for the next story, and soon, nobody will talk about the neglected players and the forgotten money except for those who were personally affected.

“People need to know the types of things going on over there, “ Cunningham said. “I’ll never go to another sporting event. I’ll never donate to that school. I won’t let my kids attend there. I’ll have no affiliation with the school whatsoever.”

***

With these types of stories come questions about institutional oversight. Where did the money go? Who will be fired? How will the athletic cuts impact future recruiting? But really, whether Towson administrators want to acknowledge it or not, their decisions play into a larger economic narrative relating to college sports. It's a two-parter: what are student-athletes worth, and should they be paid for the value they create?

For all the NCAA's intransigence, the answer to the question of paying athletes seems to be moving more toward "when" than "if." So, when ESPN college basketball analyst Jay Bilas appeared on The Charlie Rose show and said, “I think the free-market—which works pretty well for the rest of us, and very orderly—would work just fine for [college] athletes,” we nodded in agreement. One month later, Foxsports.com columnist Jason Whitlock echoed the idea, writing: “The excuse-makers will throw up a thousand reasons why you can’t pay the kids…How do you pay the wrestlers and volleyball players?...It’s all bull(spit). This is America. We pay people who generate revenue. That’s capitalism. Wrestlers and volleyball players don’t generate revenue.” Both opinions are rational and justified. They’re also unrealistic.

It's easy to make the counter-argument that, no, the free-market does not necessarily work well for the rest of us. And capitalism is most orderly—and perhaps only orderly—for those with the power to make decisions. To the athletes, those decisions naturally seem less rational and more exploitive. The NCAA is in power. Mike Waddell is in power. Maravene Loeschke is in power. The athletes, who are both the labor and the product in this strange economy, are not.

In theory, if schools could pay certain players a fair wage—and fair, meaning what exactly?—there would be a more balanced power dynamic in college sports. But, judging by recent evidence at Rutgers, Penn State, Auburn, Oregon, Iowa State, USC, Memphis, et al., fairness butts heads with the NCAA’s moneymaking mission and the sort of perverse and widespread institutional tendency towards gold-plating that Patrick Hruby has written about extensively at Sports On Earth. The question of whether athletes should or shouldn't be paid is a complicated one—those salaries must come from somewhere, and be calculated somehow. The question of paying athletes in revenue-generating sports does little to address the future of overlooked sports. And if or when the time comes to pay football and basketball players, axing athletic teams that don’t earn revenue will be an easy way to balance the budget.

So, what happens to the wrestlers and volleyball players? What happens to the soccer players? Forget about paying them to play. Will they even get to play at all?

***

Yes, this is America, land of the free market, but that's not the end of the story. That market needs managing—regulations and regulators, rules and laws— and who says we have to treat college athletics as a private business anyway?

If privatization is the approach explicitly or implicitly agreed upon, if college athletics must mirror the harshness of the free market, then we ought to be ready for what's coming. Whitlock, one week before arguing for players to be paid, wrote a column about the Mike Rice firing at Rutgers: “There should be no surprise that all-powerful institutions in pursuit of dollars would tolerate the abuse of young people.” Unleashing the free-market on college sports might give some student-athletes fatter wallets, but it would also centralize NCAA power in an even more exclusive club of rich football and basketball programs. What’s stopping that abuse from increasing?

We should prepare for all schools to trim smaller, lower-profile programs if that system ever takes hold. After all, if the only goal is revenue, what need would colleges ever have for wrestling or volleyball or soccer or tennis or even baseball? If the bottom line must be the ultimate bottom line, then the costs attached to those programs become an insurmountable argument against them.

I should admit that if it weren’t for personal connections to Towson University, I wouldn’t be this invested. Toribio and my brother are best friends from high school, and every few weeks, my brother would text me the latest updates about the soccer team’s issues. Constant and I are friends from high school and our school newspaper, and because of that, my social media feeds contained links to articles about the misdeeds of the athletic department. This was not abstract to me.

But it's not really abstract to any of us, or to the future of college sports. Many of us probably knew or know a college athlete who doesn’t play football in the SEC or basketball in the ACC. The precedent Towson sets with these cuts could impact many college athletes moving forward. I didn’t go to Towson, but I care about the implications these decisions can have on the future of college sports. If you like college sports other than football and basketball, you probably should, too.


Share |

Comments

Lesson 3: How To Build A Strong Revenue Share.

DEFINITION of 'Compound Interest'
Interest calculated on the initial principal and also on the accumulated interest of previous periods of a deposit or loan. Compound interest can be thought of as “interest on interest,” and will make a deposit or loan grow at a faster rate than simple interest, which is interest calculated only on the principal amount. The rate at which compound interest accrues depends on the frequency of compounding; the higher the number of compounding periods, the greater the compound interest. Thus, the amount of compound interest accrued on $100 compounded at 10% annually will be lower than that on $100 compounded at 5% semi-annually over the same time period. Compound interest is also known as compounding.

Now this works exactly like it sounds it does. To use Compound Interest in relation to revenue sharing is simple 100 % REPURCHASE for as long as possible, Yes its that easy the system is set up for you just buy as often as you can with as much as you have and you will make money.

Now i would like to discuss way's to help you build your referral chains to help you with your commissions. We will discuss Key forms of advertising and how to effectively use them to increase your wealth.

#1. Facebook Group Posting.Advertising
This is one of the best free methods to get active referrals. There is no science to this its simple join 25 advertising groups on Facebook every day, Create a text add with a picture ( You can all this from the files section of group ), Add your referral link to the end of the add, then copy and paste till your hands hurt. Answer anyone who likes or comments on your links. ( alternatively you can use an auto poster which will make your life easier but costs money )

#2. Other Revenue Share Sites.
The second best area to get active referrals is other revenue sharing sites where people are already familiar with the plat form. This is also easy you can use your banner credits to put up adds as well as using some of your profits to buy ad space.

#3. PTC PPC PTSU ( Pay to click, Pay per click, Pay to sign up )
These are not a bad alternative and usually lead to quick sign ups, however only about 30 % of them ever end up being active. These sites are often expensive and not as effective as some of the other methods but still not a horrible idea. Pay to sign up is often a waist of time entirely as the people just want the money there getting to sign up.

#4. Other Social Media Platforms .
If you have any of these social media platforms you could be using them to get referrals, Pinterest , Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram ANYTHING like this can be used to advertise your referral link.

#5. Create your own Landing page, Advertise your sites all at once.
Why advertise one link when you can advertise all your programs at once tongue emotico all the pros are doing this.

You're in point of fact a just right webmaster. The website loading speed is amazing. It kind of feels that you're doing any distinctive trick. Moreover, The contents are masterpiece. you have done a fantastic activity on this subject!givvgo review

Great post full of useful tips! My site is fairly new and I am also having a hard time getting my readers to leave comment Free PDF Links Blog

In fact your creative writing abilities has inspired me to start my own BlogEngine blog now. Really the blogging is spreading its wings rapidly.
sun protection for car

It's a propitious custom to stifle your amulet further derive worthy feedback in school. As a ensue, pupils can abet further furthermore grow a consumer.
wordpress

I am always searching online for articles that can help me. There is obviously a lot to know about this. I think you made some good points in Features also. Keep working, great job ! local locksmith

Very informative post ! There is a lot of information here that can help any business get started with a successful social networking campaign !Copy Trade Profit Reviews

Thank you for your post, I look for such article along time, today i find it finally. this post give me lots of advise it is very useful for me. לימוזינות להשכרה

I’m excited to uncover this page. I need to to thank you for ones time for this particularly fantastic read!! I definitely really liked every part of it and i also have you saved to fav to look at new information in your site.beanstripe amazon analytics

Writing with style and getting good compliments on the article is quite hard, to be honest.But you've done it so calmly and with so cool feeling and you've nailed the job. This article is possessed with style and I am giving good compliment. Best!chlamydia

The next time I read a blog, I hope that it doesnt disappoint me as much as this one. I mean, I know it was my choice to read, but I actually thought you have something interesting to say. All I hear is a bunch of whining about something that you could fix if you werent too busy looking for attention.forge 1.8.4

I don’t have the time at the moment to fully read your site but I have bookmarked it and also add your RSS feeds. I will be back in a day or two. thanks for a great site.irctc signup

Your article has piqued a lot of positive interest. I can see why since you have done such a good job of making it interesting. wild yam cream

Thank you for posting such a great article! I found your Find Out More website perfect for my needs. It contains wonderful and helpful posts. Keep up the good work!

Your share of formatting during making your minutes assembles your remarks truly open plus familiar to recognize.
Mini Bars

they will find a way to be successful,” he says. “If you start with bad people, they'll find a way to ruin your program. loft conversions

You might comment on the order system of the blog. You should chat it's splendid. Your blog audit would swell up your visitors. I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.Alfombras para Sala

BusinessOpportunity.com is a leading source for finding business opportunities for sale—along with a number of other exciting work-at-home and other small business-model options like distributorships, licensee opportunities and small franchises—any one of which may be specific to your needs. Our team is dedicated to helping you realize your financial goals by providing you access to the perfect business opportunity, one that is just right for you! Home-Based Business

I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well. stamped concrete patio

I was actually captured with the piece of resources you have got here. Big thumbs up for making such wonderful blog page ! stamped concrete patio ma

Opportunities Made Simple | Business Opportunities from A to Z Always Free - BusinessOpportunity.com is a leading source for finding business opportunities for sale—along with a number of other exciting work-at-home and other small business-model options like distributorships, licensee opportunities and small franchises—any one of which may be specific to your needs. Our team is dedicated to helping you realize your financial goals by providing you access to the perfect business opportunity, one that is just right for you!
Online Business Opportunity

Hola, indicarte que en el caso en que desees presentar una reclamación una reclamación a una compañía aseguradora, a través del siguiente enlace puedes consultar las pautas necesarias para ello lovecoolair

This content is written really well. Your share of formatting during making your minutes assembles your remarks truly open plus familiar to recognize. Bless you e-cigarette kits

Ixperia IT Schulung und Beratung An 18 Standorten in Deutschland bieten wir anspruchsvollen Führungskräften und Mitarbeitern erfolgreich Seminare zu den Themen IT Service Management, ITIL, Projektmanagement und Prince2 in exzellenter Atmosphäre. Sowohl fachlich als auch für die Durchführung erhalten wir von unseren Teilnehmern dafür die besten Beurteilungen mit 100% Erfolgsgarantie. ITIL Zertifizierung

"Going to graduate school was a positive decision for me. I enjoyed the coursework, the presentations, the fellow students, and the professors. And since my company reimbursed 100% of the tuition, the only cost that I had to pay on my own was for books and supplies. Otherwise, I received a free master’s degree. All that I had to invest was my time. online advertising

Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates.fast webhosting

Delightful info, inestimable plus amazing draft, as use salubrious crowd among saintly thoughts furthermore ideas, multiples of fantastic info moreover incentive, both of which I wish, blesss to extend such a cooperative info here. Free Merchant Account

I wish to show thanks to you just for bailing me out of this particular trouble.As a result of checking through the the net and meeting techniques that were not productive, I was thinking my life was done.Business Opportunity

Awesome blog. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles. Keep up the good work!Rika Nagasawa and Mao Sakurai are good at what they do healing nurses in japan hot miracles from god the world need to join this site now see why we nomore wars but healing-love you going join today !

Nice information, valuable and excellent design, as share good stuff with good ideas and concepts, lots of great information and inspiration, both of which I need, thanks to offer such a helpful information here.We also provide FREE Tools to help promote your FreeViral webpage! Ready to start receiving your FREE TRAFFIC Then follow the instructions see link place website now free !

want you to thank for your time of this wonderful read!!! I definately enjoy every little bit of it and Home Health Care Jupiter I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff of your blog a must read blog!!!!

This is a wonderful article, Given so much info in it, These type of articles keeps the users interest in the website, and keep on sharing more ... good luck. https://www.rebelmouse.com/textyourexback/

Great info! I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have. buy e-voucher with visa

I this year delight in The type of topics post here. Thanks pertaining to sharing us an basic steps This can be helpful. Good day! rolling laptop carts

Your article has piqued a lot of positive interest. I can see why since you have done such a good job of making it interesting. goji pro

Amazing inform i prerequisite utter moreover acknowledges for the info. Knowledge is definitely a gummy matter. But, is stationary with the premier issues of our date. I recognize your advise plus see further to also football free bet

I finally found great post here.I will get back here. I just added your blog to my bookmark sites. thanks.Quality posts is the crucial to invite the visitors to visit the web page, that's what this web page is providing. craigsappliances

Yes, that's exactly what I wanted to hear! Great stuff here. The information and the detail were just perfect. I think that your perspective is deep, its just well thought out Read More and really fantastic to see someone who knows how to put these thoughts down so well. Great job on this.

Bei uns finden Sie sämtliches Zubehör zum Aufhängen von Bildern. Vom einfachsten Bilderhaken bis hin zur Bildaufhängung mit Diebstahlschutz. Wir als Bilderrahmenprofi haben hier alle Produkte zur Bildaufhängung in einem Shop zusammengestellt. Bilderschienen

Great post i must say and thanks for the information. Education is definitely a sticky subject. However, is still among the leading topics of our time. I appreciate your post and look forward to more. http://aprilraines.digitalnovelists.com/node/688

I discovered so numerous entertaining pad in your blog, essentially its symposium. From the tons of expounds on your conditions, I think I am hardly the solely undivided holding many the convenience here! Reserve up the awesome process. Safe Work Method Statement Free

Fotograf Reinhard Simon und Waltraud Pioch begrüßen Sie herzlich in ihrem Fotostudio “das portrait” in Frankfurt. Fotoatelier für anspruchsvolle Fotografie. Die erste Adresse in Frankfurt für Bewerbungsfotos, Businessfotos und Portraitfotos. Businessfotos

Great tips and very easy to understand. This will definitely be very useful for me when I get a chance to start my blog.webs

Regular visits listed here are the easiest method to appreciate your energy, which is why why I am going to the website everyday, searching for new, interesting info. Many, thank you!read more

Excellent Blog! I would like to thank for the efforts you have made in writing this post. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well. I wanted to thank you for this websites! Thanks for sharing. Great websites! παπουτσια γοβες

Truly, this article is really one of the very best in the history of articles. I am a antique ’Article’ collector and I sometimes read some new articles if I find them interesting. And I found this one pretty fascinating and it should go into my collection. Very good work! marathi songs

Really impressed! Everything is very open and very clear clarification of issues. It contains truly facts. Your website is very valuable. Thanks for sharing. It's late finding this act. At least, it's a thing to be familiar with that there are such events exist. I agree with your Blog and I will be back to inspect it more in the future so please keep up your act.nutrafarms review

Through this post, I know that your good knowledge in playing with all the pieces was very helpful. I notify that this is the first place where I find issues I've been searching for. You have a clever yet attractive way of writing.Buy Diazepam

Las Vegas SEO tenders a amazing total of techniques to boost sum companies plus appropriates boost the truck to the websites they designed moreover for the companies they pilot. Oakville Wedding Limos

lowes 10 off coupon This short article is perfect! If just one had been to purchase an argument on the authentication of this post, I believe that you would have to throw of your energy because this article is ideal in addition to every individual understands this kind of.