« Let's Go To War Open Thread | Main | 28th Amendment »

March 18, 2015

Comments

And while I'm fixing problems in sports, here's how you fix the extra point in the NFL: Touchdowns are worth 7 points. But you can go for 8 points by either (a) going for "2" as current practice, or (b) kicking a 50 yard field goal (or whatever yardage is close to the success rate that going for "2" has now). If you fail/miss, your TD is reduced to 6 points.

For some reason people seem to think the solution is to make the extra point a longer attempt, like 35 yards and this will add "excitement" to the game. BS. No one wants to see games won or lost on the extra point, what could be more dull than a missed 35 yard extra point, leaving the game at 35-34? None more dull, I say.

Ugh, you need to expand on this thought. What we need are multiple field goal values based on distance to the goal. Obviously smaller minds will prefer discrete values based on integer yard ranges, but I believe the game would be even better with continuous values based on a probability distribution of all field goals kicked and their distances since the beginning of the A.D. (After Dempsey) period, weighing recent years more heavily, and recalculated on the fly every time a field goal is scored.

Yes, I have a degree in statistics; why do you ask?

Ugh, you are missing one critical factor: marketing! If you pay the players in real money, there really isn't any relationship (not that there is much now) between the teams and the colleges that they are nominally associated with. Which loses you all the alumni who are rooting (and spending money on jerseys, etc., etc.) for the school that they went to long long ago.

What you have left are the equivalent of baseball minor league teams. Of some local interest, but no longer fascination to people across the country. Which means that sponsorships, for broadcasting as well as for player endorsements and such, are far less valuable -- read less money for the NCAA, not to mention the individual colleges.

All you really gain is some honesty. Where's the profit in that?

there really isn't any relationship (not that there is much now) between the teams and the colleges that they are nominally associated with.

I dunno about that. Pro athletes get paid a lot, but there is still a lot of fan loyalty.

I think you really hit on it with this:

less money for the NCAA, not to mention the individual colleges.

When you have to pay highly skilled,uniquely talented, and in demand people market rates, it can cost a lot of money.

JakeB - I will take it under advisement.

Another thought for the NFL. Overtime. Right now, it sucks. No one knows the rules, etc. So, here's the fix. During the regular season, NO OVERTIME! Yes America, get used to ties. During the post season, OVERTIME! But, you play an entire 5th quarter and whomever is ahead after that wins. Still tied? 10 more minutes. Still tied? Okay, sudden death.

wj - I don't see why alums would be less driven to give $$ to the school/root for their alma mater just because the players are paid $$ (assuming you're serious).

I guess I'm assuming that the current situation would not completely morph into some sort of minor league, i.e., there'd still be a 4 year limit on eligibility so that you don't have 35 year olds who have played for State U for 17 years on the team. Or, e.g., LeBron playing one year for Duke in the middle of his NBA career to "lead them to a title."

Ugh -- I suspect that alums might well take the position that, if the school can afford to pay the athletes, it doesn't need their donations. Certainly not their donations for athletic facilities. "Why should I give money so that some kid can get paid more to play around than I made for the first couple of decades after I graduated?"

Today, the alums can kid themselves that there actually are "student athletes" like when they went to school long ago. And that athletic scholarships, for example, are "helping a deserving kid get an education." That isn't what actually happens, but you can kid yourself. But if the athletes are getting paid? Nope.

Thompson -- yes, you get fan loyalty with the pros. But what you get is, mostly, local loyalty. (You don't get people spread all over the country rooting for the Indiana Pacers, just the folks in Indiana.) And most people, when they move, appear to embrace the local heroes. There are exceptions, but they are just that: exceptions.

More fixes! Fewer timeouts in basketball (college and pro); fewer TV timeouts during the NCAA tournament. Shorter shot clock in Men's college basketball (say, 28 seconds). Move the free throw line in by 18 inches in college, 12 in the NBA, hope it leads to fewer fouls. Call traveling again.

2 bases for a 4 pitch walk in baseball (although that would come too late to see Barry Bonds hit 90+ home runs in a season). Fewer home run highlights on TV, unless truly extraordinary somehow (walkoffs count). Who cares about a solo dinger in the bottom of the third to make it 3-2? Reinstate Pete Rose and Shoeless Joe. Fire (or whatever the proper term is) the hall of fame voters currently failing to vote for Bonds or Clemens for HoF. Ban batting gloves. All weekend games must start between 1 and 4pm local time, for the children.

Move the line where players can be called offside in soccer closer to each goal (so there'd be two lines), say 1/3 to 1/2 way. Move the penalty kick line 3 meters back. No shoot outs in the World Cup knockout rounds - keep playing until there's a real goal, shifting to sudden death after a certain point and lift substitution limits.

Shorten the NBA season by 20 games. Cut the first round of playoffs back to best of 5. Contract by 4-6 teams. Same for the NHL.

Shorten the MLB season by 30 games, or better yet 40. Go back to only two rounds of playoffs. Contract by 4-6 teams.

Add an extra game to the NFL season and cut back 2 exhibition games. Add 2 playoff teams in each Conference so only one team in each gets a bye. Play the Superbowl on Saturday night.

Get rid of 50% of the college football bowl games. Get rid of the conference championship games and in exchange move to an 8 team playoff.

Fix Tiger Woods' back and golf swing.

Get rid of the tie-breaker in the 5th set (for men, 3rd for women) at the U.S. Open. Consider having the women play best of 5 at the slams.

End the Tour de France.

Allow sports betting in the U.S. as in the U.K.

More cowbell.

I hate sports.

Ugh -- I suspect that alums might well take the position that, if the school can afford to pay the athletes, it doesn't need their donations. Certainly not their donations for athletic facilities. "Why should I give money so that some kid can get paid more to play around than I made for the first couple of decades after I graduated?"

I don't know, I might argue the opposite. "I need to donate so Recruit X plays for Kentucky rather than Louisville, they're offering hime $150k!" And, why can't alums take your position now with respect to the coaches? "Why should I give money so that John Calipari can make more in one year than I will ever make?"

I have to imagine that the #1 reason alums donate $$ now (at least to the athletic programs) is that they want their alma mater to win!

Also, why fight it if T. Boone Pickens or Phil Knight want to pony up large sums of cash directly to players? I mean, suppose Harvard and Yale start fielding competitive football and basketball teams again because they can, e.g., spend some of that endowment money to attract the players that now attend Duke, Northwestern, Stanford, Vanderbilt, etc.?

I hate sports.

I threw something on on golf, and cowbell.

ugh, all of this crap is true because people care about who wins the game. It is utter bs. Don't support it. If enough people follow your lead, it all goes away.

I live in Charlottesville where all kinds of worthy things are happening, but will keep happening only if they are funded. But who cares about that? They care about the games, because people pay.

And fine. People aren't stupid. They know what they're supporting.

I have to imagine that the #1 reason alums donate $$ now (at least to the athletic programs) is that they want their alma mater to win!

I kinda agree with Ugh on this one...I think alums will donate just so they can recruit better players. I have some friends that are bloodthirsty about the whole Michigan/Michigan State thing (honestly, I can't remember which side they are on, but it's REALLY IMPORTANT).

I don't think they care about the players being scholars. They care about the other side getting ground into a pulp.

Live ball on the incomplete pass in football - waddya say? Genius, right?

I have to imagine that the #1 reason alums donate $$ now (at least to the athletic programs) is that they want their alma mater to win!

Well, the qualifier kinda' took the edge off that claim, but otherwise....

I kinda' think not.

sapient - There is certainly a fair share of bread and circuses going on, especially for big time college sports, yes.

At a certain point it pays to remember that professional sporting events, and big time college football and basketball, are just a particular form of entertainment. That they are tied into U.S. Universities (is it this way elsewhere?) in a way that, say, the movie industry is not, seems to be an accident of history.

What if we just put college sports on CSPAN and banned broadcasts on commercial networks?

Or, institute a hard salary cap for coaches and athletic directors?

Differential points up to 3 for field goals depending on distance from the goal selected by random draw (10-30-40); 3 1/2 points for what is now the 2 point conversion.

Starting scores on the board for football games should reflect the point spread---no more of this 0-0 at the beginning of the game crap.

bobbyp - fair point on giving there, I guess more generally the point was that I can't see a drop in giving due to paying players, since the reasons for giving aren't tied to that in any kind of way that I can see. Hey, maybe you're proving my point! :-)

I keep waiting for one of the 4 schools with the biggest endowments (check out the large gap between 4 and 5) to announce they will no longer charge undergrads tuition and see what happens.

I think I read that for state schools, it is not the alums they are getting to donate, it is non-alums who want to be able to rub elbows with athletes. This paper suggests that:

... football and men’s basketball are less important as determinants of giving than the success of an alumnus’s own team. Moreover, among former male athletes, donations to the athletic program depend on the success of the alumnus’s team when he was an undergraduate.

though that is a single school so it might not generalize.

I probably read that before the rise of Phil Knight and UO becoming a Nike outlet, but that's less alumni giving and more advertising in a different form.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Blog powered by Typepad