National Faculty Group Pushes to Cut College Football Season Down

Josh McMullenCorrespondent IApril 21, 2009

MIAMI - JANUARY 08:  Head coach Urban Meyer of the Florida Gators celebrates with the National Championship trophy after therir 24-14 win against the Oklahoma Sooners during the FedEx BCS National Championship game at Dolphin Stadium on January 8, 2009 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

The Bowl Championship Series committee is meeting this week to discuss, among other things, an unneeded expansion to the bowl schedule.

However, at the same time, a national faculty group is calling to cut the season down altogether.

According to USA Today, Josephine Potuto, a law professor at Nebraska and the chairwoman of the Division I-A Faculty Athletics Representatives released a position paper criticizing any move to add games to the postseason saying:

“[The games] need to be played in one semester…No more intrusion can be permitted. No more games can be tolerated. Better yet, the current system should be cut back.”

The example the USA Today used was the BCS Championship game, which was played two days after the Spring semester began at Florida.

From my standpoint as a college student and a former student-athlete myself, what Potuto is asking for is absolutely ridiculous. Usually, during the first two days, even the first week of classes in any semester at any level, teachers are handing out syllabi and possibly, if  they’re ambitious enough, the first assignments, which are usually cakewalks.

I can understand where she’s coming from, though. The football season does run a little long with all the bowls, and they are there, first and foremost, to get an education.

On the other hand, sometimes these “useless” bowls are the first, last, and only chances some student-athletes get to  attract pro coaches, and what Potuto is asking the BCS committee to do would irreparably damage all of that.

Is it a good idea from an academic standpoint to shorten the season? Absolutely. Most student-athletes will probably never make it to the pros, and the only way they’ll be successful is the piece of paper they will receive at graduation.

Is it a good idea from an athletic standpoint? Absolutely not. Some of these athletes got here on their god-given skill, but have less-than stellar academic skills.

They’re the ones who know that their only hope to get out of their situation is to make it to the pros. It’s not the best way to go through life, but, sadly, it’s the most profitable.

But complaining over two days, at least in Florida’s case?

It makes me think Potuto’s heart is in the right place; she’s just not going about it the right way. If reform is the right way to go in this case, then so be it.

Just don’t sacrifice the one chance that some of these kids have at making it big.