We Interrupt This Summer

I don't know why, but that's it:

With no disrespect to Mike, but this is a bad idea he's been pushing for a few years now. The basic thrust of the argument is that, sometimes (looking at you, UNC), academics are a joke for elite athletes. No disagreement here, sometimes that's true (how true, or how much of a problem this really is, is certainly up for debate).

DeCourcy's point is that if we just treated sports like academics, suddenly academics cannot be a joke for athletes, by definition. Problem solved, right?


I submit that the point is not pieces of paper. We can make "Getting Drunk and Sleeping In" a major as well, and watch dropout rates across the country plummet, but I don't think that makes us any better off (it's hard to see how it would not make us worse off).

DeCourcy always comes back to the analogy of dance majors, the supposed silver bullet in his chamber. I don't know if DeCourcy is score-settling with arrogant dance majors he's come across, but I don't think this analogy works. Employers that hire dancers care about whether or not someone possesses a degree in dance. Ballet companies and opera houses don't just hold open tryouts, like I assume they did in Step Up (but not the grittier, Step Up 2: The Streets).

As the risk of pointing out the obvious, that doesn't happen with athletes. I don't think anyone willing to pay them millions of dollars would have cared that John Wall or LeBron James did not possess a BA in Basketball Studies. And that holds true all the way down the line—professional lacrosse might not be a big deal, but physical performance still trumps all.

So, who exactly would care that an individual has a BA in a sport? Is the country suffering from a gym teacher shortage? And if no one cares about this, then isn't this just putting tape over the Check Engine light?