Recalling the Great UNC Sports Scandal—How Much has Really Changed?

A decade ago, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was engulfed in a sports scandal that made national headlines, brought down a chancellor who seemed destined for a lustrous career, and caused the school huge expenses in litigation and for public relations experts. For the Carolina faithful, those events are now just a … Continue reading “Recalling the Great UNC Sports Scandal—How Much has Really Changed?”


The Sea Changes at the NCAA

Fifty years ago, I entered the University of Tennessee-Knoxville as a freshman scholarship runner on its high-profile track team. The NCAA held athletes to a strict amateur code in which compensation to athletes was limited to in-kind payments of room, board, books, and fees. The term “illegally paying players” meant sneaking in extra amenities including … Continue reading “The Sea Changes at the NCAA”


College Athletes’ Payment Rights: A Question of When and How, Not If

College athletes’ rights, including their economic rights, have long been denied. American college sports have existed under an antiquated and oft-changing definition of amateurism that requires athletes to forfeit any pay for their efforts on the field or court. Despite the revenue explosions in the industry, and the wealth flowing into athletics departments, amateurism has … Continue reading “College Athletes’ Payment Rights: A Question of When and How, Not If”


The Edifice Complex Has Come for Esports

Collegiate esports—competitive video gaming—has grown dramatically in recent years. Small private colleges and large state universities alike have built programs to attract students, grow name recognition, and pull in sponsorships. However, the expensive esports arenas in which students compete, and the annual budget commitments that come with new programs, have only attracted sponsors in a … Continue reading “The Edifice Complex Has Come for Esports”


The Rot of the Prestigious Colleges

Parents will go to all sorts of lengths to give their children a leg up. In Guilty Admissions: The Bribes, Favors, and Phonies Behind the College Cheating Scandal, journalist Nicole LaPorte digs into how and why parents decided to work with the “college counselor” Rick Singer. LaPorte describes Singer’s strategies to place students in highly … Continue reading “The Rot of the Prestigious Colleges”


Drake Group President: Congress Must Protect Student-Athletes’ Rights

The fight to protect student-athletes’ rights has been a long uphill battle. The injustices that college athletes suffer at the hands of their academic institutions are many, including a shameless disregard for athletes’ physical, financial, and educational well-being. To make matters worse, the NCAA, founded to protect student-athletes from exploitation, has failed in its mission … Continue reading “Drake Group President: Congress Must Protect Student-Athletes’ Rights”


Reforming Higher Ed in 2021

The year 2020 brought changes that colleges would have never made by choice. Enrollment declines, remote classes, and dramatic employee cuts (for faculty and some staff alike) were unthinkable a year ago. But, for the sake of the future, more work remains. Below are some priorities the Martin Center staff would like to see catch … Continue reading “Reforming Higher Ed in 2021”


Is College Football an Expensive Luxury for Many Universities?

The importance of college football to university education is vastly overrated. Rather than an integral part of the college experience, football means more student debt, another burden for taxpayers, and a compromised education for athletes. The COVID-19 pandemic is prompting universities to develop costly new teaching methodologies, require expensive campus protection strategies, and has caused … Continue reading “Is College Football an Expensive Luxury for Many Universities?”


How College Sports Can Survive

Without revenue from the NCAA Final Four tournament and other sources of income, it is clear that the intercollegiate athletics industry faces difficult choices from the consequences of the coronavirus. College sports will confront a continuing crisis until adequate testing is in place, along with social distancing at athletic events, or a vaccine is created. … Continue reading “How College Sports Can Survive”


How UNC Can Save Money Post-COVID-19

UNC has announced its intent to reopen all 16 campuses this fall with in-person instruction. But the system will have to make significant changes before moving forward. Jenna A. Robinson and Sumantra Maitra released a new policy brief for the Martin Center describing some of the financial changes that universities can make to survive and … Continue reading “How UNC Can Save Money Post-COVID-19”