The Ledger’s Fran Wood documents the rot that is eating away Rutgers’ academics in this piece. She writes: “academics are falling at the same time the school is spending millions to upgrade its football program and facilities.” In the piece she documents — in vivid detail — what happens to a university that has a half billion dollars worth of deferred mainenance. It isn’t pretty. She writes: “if a school is willing to indulge in big-time bonding, which is precisely what Rutgers has done for its stadium expansion, you’d think some cooler head would have reminded the school’s board that Rutgers’ raison d’être — i.e., education — should be given a higher priority.”
Meantime, the Gannett central Jersey papers speculate that perhaps Rutgers’ BoG — in its zeal for closed door meetings and secrecy — is violating the state’s Open Meeting Acts. We don’t know about that — we think the BoG meets in private because it likes to hide the depths of its stupidity and incompetence. Wouldn’t you? But then…by that token…perhaps Greedy Greg Schiano’s Stumblers ought to play in private because, despite the millions poured into that “program,” it remains a Big East bottom feeder.
Back to Gannett. “So many of the university’s decisions of late — specifically those related to sports in general and to big-time football in particular — haven’t exactly been afforded a vigorous or thorough public review or, if they have been discussed at length with the university community, in many cases the belief persists that public opinion was ignored.”
The stadium expansion of course is a prime for instance. The boosters — for whom the stadium is being expanded — care so little about the program that all they could donate is $90,000…against a $30 million goal. The team is so bad the season ticket waiting list — which prompted pulling the trigger on the expansion — will evaporate by season’s end. And yet Rutgers insiders keep talking as though bonding $100+ million with no rational repayment scheme makes sense. Does Rutgers offer remedial classes in leadership?
Bottomline, says Gannett, “Rutgers’ ruling body has managed to sow the seeds of outright distrust. ”
Which bring us to the Bergen Record’s harsh editorial about athletics at Rutgers. The Record wants to know why the six Olympic sports were killed — and yet money for football gushes. It writes: “In recent months it’s become increasingly clear that there are major problems with the funding for the football stadium expansion. The university has also been criticized over other aspects of the football budget, including high salaries for coaches.
In fact, the state comptroller has already begun an investigation into Rutgers’ sports finances, including spending for the stadium expansion. ”
Which brings us to the deliberations that led to athletic director Mulcahy III’s agreeing to roughly a $2 million annual pay packet for Greedy Greg — despite the fact that Greedy has a lifetime losing record and even onetime fans now admit he is clueless about coaching. How many part-time lecturers could be put back on the payroll if Schiano’s pay were cut back to the $250,000, max, that his performance warrants? How many more classes could be scheduled?
It is obvious: Mulcahy III needs to be fired, preferably within days.
And exactly that may happen. Rumors are circulating that Trenton’s warlords are embarrassed about the performance of the Rutgers football team on national TV. Two blow-out losses have made it untenable for all but the most jocksniffing pols to put any weight behind the stadium expansion. It will be “delayed,” Mulcahy will “retire,” and the Rutgers stadium will stand empty by the Army game. You read it all here, as early as March 16th: “Our predictions: there will be a sharp fall-off in the season ticket waiting list (we expect it to evaporate) and, by season end, there will be many rows of empty seats (the 11-22 Army game will be lucky to draw 20,000).”
Now mull on the fans for whom so many dollars are spent by Rutgers. Not only is there the Rutgers Finger Effect, there are loud complaints — by fans! — about other fans doing unspeakable things. Like urinating on rows of bleacher seats mid-game. Read it all in this thread.