Archive for July, 2012

Why Penn St Can’t Drop Football

July 17, 2012

In light of the Freeh Report there has been a school of thought saying that Penn St should disband their football team for a season or two to cleanse the University.  That suggestion is forgetting about one key thing.  Money.  Quite simply, the Big Ten conference that Penn St is a member of is not going to let Penn St stop playing football.  Without the Nittany Lions the conference would only have 11 football playing members, which means they cannot play a conference championship game and make the millions of dollars that game generates in TV, merchandise, and game ticket revenue.  Also, it would deprive per season 4 member institutions from a home football game against a University that will fill the stadium at many 10s of dollars per seat, fill eateries, hotels, bars, etc., which again is money.  The only way Penn St can suspend football is if they are willing to compensate the Big Ten, or to risk getting booted from the conference.

Also, the revenue the football team generates will be helpful when it comes time to make the massive payments to the victims of Jerry Sandusky that the University will be making within the next handful of years.  That money will have to come from somewhere, and if the football team isn’t making a profit, it’ll have to come from other sources, which would almost certainly, albeit indirectly, lead to sharper increases in student tuition and fees.

So, while it may be crass, the economics of the fallout are unavoidable.  Penn St has no choice but to continue playing intercollegiate top division football.