College Athletics

Basten College
The Champions of the East
A Scientific Report On Whether Athletics Should Be Instated At Basten College
Presented By:
Erich Ziegler
SMC 111 Final Project
Professor Jay Basten
4-17-01
An intercollegiate athletics program at Basten College would provide many positives for the college. We would like to focus on the benefits to the majority of your students which would be spectators and athletes. These include health benefits, social benefits, and the effects on politics and race. We would also like to address the problems associated with sports. After our presentation we hope you will be confident in the positive effects an intercollegiate program will have on your institute.

There are obvious benefits to being an athlete, specifically those related to ones health. Everybody should exercise at least three times a week in order to establish a healthy way of life. When one is part of a team, they are able to develop certain social skills that can benefit them throughout life. Also, participating in a sport can increase ones level of self-esteem. In selected patients with major depression, aerobic training can produce a substantial improvement in symptoms in a short time, (Dimeo et. al., 5) However, as important as all that is, the majority of the population at Basten College will probably not be varsity athletes. The majority will be spectators and fans. There are three main benefits to being a spectator. The first is the effects on academics. According to Karla Henderson watching sports or athletic events increases endorphin release in the brain, resulting in a higher aptitude and concentration level. So students have the ability to focus longer and retain more information while studying or attending class. The second reason deals with females personal identity. According to Linda Marsa, Participation in sports pays big dividends physically, psychologically, and emotionally. Extensive research shows that girls who are involved in athletics boost their self esteem; improve their physical fitness; do better academically; are less likely to drop out of school, do drugs, smoke or get pregnant; and are more able to weather the physical and emotional storms of adolescence. The third reason is that it has been found that people who continually participate and associate with athletics, begin to relate facts and literature to sports, enabling them to commit the knowledge to long-term memory better. For example, lets say Jon Doe loves baseball, specifically the New York Yankees. He watches his favorite team at every leisurely moment he can. At the same time, at his college, the University of Basten, he is having trouble in his statistics class. In order for him to understand the concepts better, he begins to relate it to baseball. He uses Derek Jeters base percentage and batting average and relates it to Thirdly, George Graves, in his 1992 study, found people were more likely to join a team then participate in individual exercise, and therefore maintained a higher level of health then people who didnt have the option of joining a team. Sports participation has long been thought to provide youths with a positive social environment and to foster basic values. Specifically, such participation is thought to provide the same benefits as regular exercise, along with team rules and principles that help promote health-enhancing behaviors, (Sherman, 1) These reasons illustrate the benefits of being a student at an institute of higher learning which offers an intercollegiate athletic program.
Sports play an important role ones community pride and identity. People identify themselves with positive groups. A good example of this fact is the Notre Dame Football team. The Notre Dame Football team has an exclusive contract with NBC for the next ten years. Why? Its because Notre Dame is an inherent competitor in NCAA Division 1 football. People enjoy associating with winners. This is because of three theories, including the personal identity, social identity, and BIRG theory. Personal identity is how a person sees themselves in front of society. Ones personal identity includes self-esteem and self image. Social identity is several personal identities together. It is how a group sees themselves compared to other groups. When describing their group, one often uses terms like distinctive, prestigious, and were better than that group. These phenomena are because of a theory known as the in-group theory. People see their group (the in-group) better than the out-group. The final theory is the BIRG concept. BIRG is an acronym for Basking In Reflected Glory. As stated before, people associate themselves with winning teams. When ones favorite team wins, it is proven that the person will say, We won or we did well. On the same idea, when that team loses, a person will most likely say, they lost, or they blew the game. People associate themselves with winners.

Athletics also bring campuses together. What would bring Basten College together without athletics? Friday night parties, or major protests and riots? A Hash Bash or a Naked Mile? These alternatives are not something Basten College wants to be associated with. Athletics is a good catalyst to bring a campus together, both financially and socially. The role of successful Division I football and basketball programs in motivating alumni and other donors to make charitable educational contributions to
US universities are apparent, (Roads and Gerking, 1)
College campuses are in the political forefront. Sport plays a big role in politics. First of all, sports promote legitimacy and prestige. For example, the University of Nebraska and Duke University are established colleges. They have established athletic programs whove won titles for years. This gives the University the national renowned name. Many students go to these colleges based on their name. This name is made by the colleges athletic program. Basten College can be known across the country if you establish an athletic program.

Sport and race is another major topic in the college athletic realm. Basten College is not very diverse, and some changes need to take place, in order to make the college nationally known and respected. An athletic program will increase diversity at Basten College. This is because of two major structures, including the occupational opportunity structure and sport opportunity structure. The occupational opportunity structure explains that minorities often think the only ticket to success is through sport. Take Boobie Miles for example. Boobie Miles was a major character in H.G. Bissingers Friday Night Lights. Miles was a standout running back his junior year for Permian Panther football team of Odessa, Texas. He was being recruited by major colleges across America. His senior year, he took a bad fall on the football field, and hurt his knee. He was never the same after. Colleges stopped calling, and Boobie Miles self esteem plummeted. Life without football? He couldnt see how that life would be worth living. After high school, he attended a local community college briefly, dropped out, and is now working a construction job in his hometown. Without football, Boobie did not have the chance to be successful. Sport opportunity structure is another theory that supports the need for athletics at Basten College. Although the theory is not very positive towards minorities, the background behind the theory will benefit Basten College. Sport opportunity structure explains the fact that minorities are more likely to play certain sports. If Basten College initiates these sports, more minorities will likely attend Basten College, which will increase the diversity and name recognition.

Sport and gender is another phenomenon of a college athletic program. Sports aid women physically, psychologically, and emotionally. As stated earlier in the report, sports aid females in areas such as their self-esteem and academics. They are less likely to drop out of school, smoke, drink, or get pregnant. Athletics create physically, as well as emotionally, fit women who are ready for society.
It has been argued that having intercollegiate athletics leads to many problems within an educational system. As you have heard from other company presentations these problems include confrontation among spectators and fans, focus away from academics, and the instigation of celebration. Fortunately most of these problems can be solved and are not the result of athletics in and of them selves.
First well focus on spectator behavior. The basis of this argument is that a sport causes its spectators to engage in violence with each other and civilians. In a resent study which took place at the University of Virginia in 1999, a team of 5 doctors and 4 social behavior specialists conducted a study focusing on confrontation. They took six groups of ten people. One person of each group was an age between 19 and 49. These six groups were then isolated with the same daily schedule, except one activity which varied from the rest. For example, all of the six groups would eat three meals, take showers at 9 am, and watch TV at night and so on. But at 3 oclock group 1 would take a science class, where as, group 2 would drink in a bar, group 3 did nothing (the control group), group 4 would do arts and crafts, group 5 would play cards, and group 6 would play soccer. They had a different activity for each group, and being careful to allow enough away time so as not to promote problems, they recorded any confrontation for two months. They had records of an argument escalating to a fight over sculpture style and one over a game of blackjack. After the study they concluded that confrontation was bound to happen anywhere actions could be interpreted as hostile, but it was more common among subjects that could be made competitive, equally they found was the ability to make things competitive. Such as a card game, grades in a class, the beauty of a painting, amount of shots taken and so on. The soccer group had three less confrontations then any other group, which was attributed to upheld rules regarding the game.
We can determine that violence among students at a university is just as likely to happen with or without sports; instead it is more reflective of the characteristic of students then of the activity they are partaking in.
The next major argument against intercollegiate athletics is focus away from academics. This again reflects the attitude of the students rather than the effects of sports. The number of hours spent watching television is far greater then those spent attending ones collegiate sports competitions. Yet we do not propose to ban television. We do not hold television accountable or the students grades. We instead hold the student responsible for their time management.
Basten College aims to become a leading institution in academics, and therefore is unsure about the foundation of intercollegiate athletics. But its success depends on its students. It is in the control of the admissions office whom they admit. If they chose to accept students whose academic focus is not their priority then it will not be the fault of sports. Whom they admit and what academic programs are available determines how they school will do academically, not what extracurricular programs they implement.

The third major argument against implementing an intercollegiate athletic program is the instigation of celebration. Meaning that the success of sports teams will make people party, People are looking for a reason to party, drink, socialize and in general be happy, they can use any team, any out come, and any season to do this. But they could use any reason if necessary.
It is not our job to determine your campus drug, alcohol, and noise policies. But regardless of your implementation of intercollegiate athletics these would be necessary for the partying that would no doubt take place.
Over all two main factors are important to realize when considering intercollegiate athletics. One, if you still feel that sport causes the deviant behaviors addressed before, you would not only have to deny our attempts to institute a intercollegiate system, but you would also have to eliminate any club or impromptu sport as well, due to the fact that they would cause the same problems, because they have the same characteristics. Doing this would isolate millions of students and prospective students, because more then 75 percent of the U.S. population participates in some form of athletics. And two, we are not insisting upon the recruiting of athletes, the special treatment of participants, the monetary focus on sports, the schools attitude that the end warrants the means, or the acceptance of athletes that threaten the prestige of the school. We are only suggesting the implementation of organized sport that competes against other schools.

An intercollegiate program would be beneficial to your college. We hope we have facilitated you in the decision that will affect your students and future perspectives. President Basten, you are creating an institution of higher learning, but more importantly you are creating a place where students can have access to all experiences. To fulfill this responsibility you need to provide students with a sense of community, a greater spectrum of diversity, and access to physical as well as academic exposure. Establishing an intercollegiate athletics program would achieve all of this and more. Thank you for your time and we hope we were of assistance.


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