LETTERS : FOR STARTERS, CSUN SHOULD GET OUT OF BIG SKY.
1. Withdraw from Big Sky Conference.
2. Eliminate football program.
3. Make CSUN enrollment contingent on athletic participation.
Southern California is not Big Sky country. Forcing CSUN to comply with Big Sky Conference guidelines is ludicrous. Blenda Wilson should be fired for trying to force CSUN into the Big Sky. CSUN is the epitome of the very sports which she is eliminating in order to comply with the Big Sky. There is nothing wrong with being independent. Notre Dame and Penn State did great as independents. Blenda Wilson could show real leadership by admitting the mistake of the ill-conceived union and get out before the meaningful sports programs are destroyed.
Football is a killing, injuring brutality which has no place in a scholastic environment. All football players suffer injuries which handicap them in their later years. Attend any high school reunion and talk to the older football players. Fewer than one in 10,000 make it into the pro ranks, and nobody plays football as a pastime or hobby. Football is not an Olympic sport. It is much better to participate in golf, swimming, tennis, volleyball, softball, baseball, soccer, gymnastics and basketball, which you can enjoy in later years. Eliminating football would solve the budget problem. As a taxpayer, I cannot condone funding a sport which leaves a trail of paraplegics, corpses, and wheelchair cripples such as the great 00 (Jim Otto). Football is an ego trip which mature society can do without.
Requiring athletic participation unless a valid excuse can be provided would excuse the student from participation and exempt the university from the silly numbers game which NOW has laid on the university. Once football is eliminated, there is no reason that all sports couldn't be coed, true equality.
I can't believe that anybody in our state education system thinks they are answerable to no one. When Northridge canceled baseball, men's volleyball and two other men's sports, they at worst ruined many young men's college sports careers. At best they wasted half of many sports careers. The Valley is no hotbed of Little League football, nor is it a hotbed of American Legion football. This is baseball country.
Last year, when the administration knew they had budget problems for the sports department, they offered a referendum to the students for higher fees for the students body to vote on to save the football program. The student body turned this down twice. On the third time they asked the baseball players, among others, to post flyers asking their peers to accept higher fees so the university would be able to keep their football program.
The students accepted the referendum and agreed to the raise in fees - and guess what?
The university does have a football team but they cut the other men's programs. The administration did not go to the community and ask for input to try to solve the problems and they did not go to the business sector and ask for help. Now we have an assistant to the mayor and a pro sports team that want to build a $1.5- to $3-million multi-purpose baseball/softball stadium - and guess what? We don't have a baseball team anymore.
Now, we are in the Big Sky conference and we have to spend extra money to travel longer distances to play other teams in the conference. Almost a million-dollar budget for football!
Now the administration says that they will have maybe 15,000 fans at the stadium for football games. Why would we have anywhere near that kind of turnout for a football game? Are we natural rivals of Montana or Montana State.? Give me a break. Oh, by the way, we had nationally ranked baseball and volleyball teams, and their timetable for 15,000 fans was 10 years.
Please, people of the Valley, do not let this kind of high-handed, out-of-touch-with-reality, education administration go unnoticed. They conned their own students. I hope we all refuse to support Cal State Northridge in any fashion until they get in touch with the region and the reality. This is chicanery at the highest level.
Forgive me if I don't travel to Montana every other year to watch the Matadors play football. The beauty, and the money, in college football is the traditional rivalries. You see that in USC football when they play UCLA and Notre Dame. Many don't like USC because of all the arrogance, but those of us who follow CSUN understand that tradition is special. That is never going to happen here. Why does the school think it will?
Let me get this straight. Cal State Northridge needs to cut its athletic budget so it keeps football and basketball, two absolute drains on the school's limited resources. I can understand CSUN officials getting swept up in the roar of a football crowd. But nobody goes to the games.
It is annoying that much of the backlash from the cutting of those teams was aimed at the National Organization for Women. This wasn't a gender issue. It was a stupidity issue. I would think the L.A. market would be attractive for a conference like the Big Sky. Instead, they seemed to dictate all the terms.
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|Publication:||Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)|
|Article Type:||Letter to the Editor|
|Date:||Jun 15, 1997|
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