Category Archives: Athletics

The business of college sports.


Calling Alleged Rape Victim’s Lawsuit ‘Frivolous,’ U. of Oregon Seeks Dismissal

The University of Oregon has answered a lawsuit by a student who said she had been sexually assaulted by three basketball players with a document calling it “frivolous” and “unreasonable,” The Oregonian reports. In the document, dated earlier this month, the university and its basketball coach, Dana Altman, ask that the complaint be dismissed and that their legal fees be paid, among other things.

The lawsuit against the university and the coach was filed in January by a female student identified…


Dean Smith, Coaching Legend at UNC-Chapel Hill, Dies at 83

Dean Smith, the longtime former men’s basketball coach at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, died on Saturday, the university announced. He was 83.

Smith led the Tar Heels to two national championships and 13 conference titles in his 36 seasons as head coach, and he was the winningest coach in NCAA Division I history at the time he retired, in 1997. Yet he is remembered as much for his qualities off the court as for his basketball success, obituaries in The New York Times and The N…


California U. of Pa. Plans Reforms for Its Troubled Football Program

California University of Pennsylvania will require student-athletes to report when they are arrested outside the local community, among other reforms, following the release of an independent report on the institution’s troubled football program, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

The university said it would take a series of actions including re-examining its drug-testing policies and convening a panel to review “high-risk” transfers and other football recruits.

Last fall the university asked…


Academics vs. ‘Ballghazi,’ Round 2

News outlets are no longer the only ones asking academics about the science of deflated footballs. Investigators for the National Football League have approached physics professors at Columbia University to help them understand how footballs supplied by the New England Patriots might have lost two pounds of air pressure during the first half of a conference championship game last week.

After first calling the university’s physics department, a representative of the law firm hired by the league…


Former Vanderbilt Football Players Are Convicted of 2013 Campus Rape

Two former football players at Vanderbilt University have been found guilty of all charges for their roles in a 2013 campus rape, the Associated Press reports. Cory Batey, 21, was convicted on seven counts of rape and sexual battery, and Brandon Vandenburg, 21, was convicted on nine counts of rape, sexual battery, tampering with evidence, and unlawful photography.

Prosecutors said Mr. Vandenburg brought an unconscious woman back to his dormitory room, where she was assaulted while he took video….


Physics Professors Tackle the NFL’s ‘Ballghazi’ Scandal

The National Football League’s “Ballghazi” scandal (also known as “Deflategate”) continues to threaten our national innocence, and some news media have turned to academe for answers.

After winning their conference-title game on Sunday, earning a place in the Super Bowl, the New England Patriots came under suspicion because 11 of the 12 footballs they supplied for the game were found to be underinflated two pounds per square inch below the league’s minimum standard, arguably making them easier to…


California Regents Shelve Policy Tying Coaches’ Bonuses to Academics

The University of California’s Board of Regents has for now shelved a policy that would have tied the bonuses paid to athletic coaches to the academic performance of their athletes, the San Jose Mercury News reported.

Some critics on the board, including Gavin Newsom, the state’s lieutenant governor, said this week that the policy was too weak and did not set high enough academic standards.

The regents decided to send the policy back to the office of the system’s president, Janet Napolitano, f…


Chapel Hill Faces Second Lawsuit Over Sham Courses for Athletes

Two former athletes at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have named the institution in a lawsuit, the second one filed over a long-running scheme of fake classes exposed in full last year, the Raleigh News & Observer reports.

Rashanda McCants, a former women’s basketball player, and Devon Ramsey, a former football player, are represented in the suit by Michael Hausfeld, the lawyer representing a former University of California at Los Angeles basketball star, Ed O’Bannon, in his law…


NCAA Restores Penn State Football Wins Forfeited After Sandusky Scandal

The NCAA has agreed to restore 112 football victories stripped from the Pennsylvania State University football program in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky sex-abuse scandal, the Associated Press reports. The new agreement, proposed by the NCAA on Friday and approved by the university’s Board of Trustees, also resolves a long-running lawsuit challenging the NCAA’s punishments by spending the $60-million fine it imposed on Penn State within Pennsylvania.

The NCAA has been gradually rolling back the …


Adams State U. Changes Policies in Response to ‘Chronicle’ Investigation

Adams State University has frozen enrollment in its print-based correspondence courses in response to an investigation by The Chronicle detailing how a former coach helped athletes across the country cheat to become eligible to compete, according to a statement on the university’s website. Adams State has also commissioned an outside review of its student-verification process and canceled a mathematics course mentioned in the Chronicle article.

The article states that the former coach, identifie…