January 15, 2013, 2:34 pm
The NCAA’s annual convention tips off on Wednesday in Grapevine, Tex. I reached out to a handful of people to see what they’re keeping an eye on at this year’s gathering. Here are five issues they flagged:
1. The $2,000 stipend. A year after colleges overturned an NCAA policy allowing institutions to provide up to $2,000 more to help full-scholarship athletes meet their full cost of attendance, there appears to be renewed energy in this debate.
NCAA leaders have floated three new proposals, and they hope to hear more ideas during the convention, said Sidney A. McPhee, president of Middle Tennessee State University and chair of an NCAA working group focused on the issue.
The new plans—described in detail in this NCAA document—include a need-based proposal and others that would give institutions more flexibility in how they might award the money.
One concern I’ve heard: Two…
January 15, 2013, 4:56 am
The NCAA on Monday pulled the plug on its Scholarly Colloquium, canceling financial support for future academic conferences and announcing plans to wind down its investment in the forum’s scholarly journal, following a sometimes-contentious six-year run.
The news—delivered by James L. Isch, the NCAA’s chief operating officer—came during a meeting of the colloquium’s Executive Board on Monday night, just hours before this year’s colloquium was set to begin, on Tuesday morning.
Citing poor attendance at the annual conference, a lack of profitability of the journal, and a failure to influence public policy, Mr. Isch said the NCAA planned to redirect its investment into “targeted research” that its member colleges wanted, according to academic leaders present at the meeting.
Scholars saw the move as a pretext for NCAA officials’ objections to the critical examination of…
December 10, 2012, 1:59 pm
In recent weeks, organizers of the NCAA’s Scholarly Colloquium got what some consider to be a brushback pitch: At least one top NCAA executive has not been happy with the tone of recent conferences and raised questions about whether the association would continue to back the event. (I write about the story in more detail here.)
On November 7, David K. Wiggins, a professor at George Mason University and chair of the colloquium’s Executive Board, sent an e-mail to fellow board members alerting them to his worries about the event’s future.
In the e-mail, Mr. Wiggins said that several top NCAA administrators apparently were concerned that the last couple of forums had “primarily included ideologues intent on criticizing the NCAA.” As a result, one top NCAA leader told him, the colloquium “runs the risk of no longer being funded,” Mr. Wiggins wrote.
Mr. Wiggins based his concerns on …