NCAA

PSU: Fine not as impactful as it seems

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PSU: Fine not as impactful as it seems

By RACHEL COHEN & BRENT KALLESTAD
NEW YORK -- The 60 million fine levied on Penn State by the NCAA doesn't look so big next to the scale of the athletic department's finances.
Penn State plans to pay the fine, part of sanctions announced Monday over the child sexual abuse scandal, in five annual installments of 12 million.
The Penn State athletic department had more than 116 million in revenue to more than 84 million in expenses for the 2010-11 school year, according to data reported by the school to the U.S. Department of Education. The expenses don't include debt service or capital expenditures.
Penn State won't be able to save money by making cuts in other sports. The NCAA specifically prohibited that as part of the punishment.
Instead of simply cutting costs, the athletic department can make up for any shortfalls in another way: raising money.
Major college athletic departments receive significant financial support from booster clubs. The Nittany Lion Club took in more than 82 million for the 2011 fiscal year, according to its annual report. That includes 34 million in special gifts for facilities. Its annual fund brought in 17 million, and donations for suites and club seats at Beaver Stadium totaled 12 million.
There were 50 contributors who gave at least 20,000 each.
Bob Harrison, Class of 1962, has donated more than 250,000 to Penn State in his life. Frustrated that the NCAA based its sanctions on what he considers a deeply flawed Freeh report, Harrison's support for the school and the athletic department has not wavered. And he believes he's not the only booster who feels that way.
"I would say a high percentage supporting the athletic program will continue to," said Harrison, who worked for Goldman Sachs for 28 years.
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett demanded assurances from the university that taxpayer money would not be used. Penn State said it would cover it with its athletics reserve fund and capital maintenance budget and, if necessary, borrow money.
The reduction in football scholarships handed down by the NCAA will save the athletic program some. The accompanying bowl ban could also reduce costs, because schools often lose money on lower-level bowls.
The NCAA said the 60 million represented the average annual gross revenue of the football program. The money will go toward outside programs devoted to preventing child sexual abuse or assisting victims.
The Big Ten also announced that Penn State would not be allowed to share in the conference's bowl revenue during the postseason ban, an estimated loss of about 13 million.
At Penn State, the men's basketball team had profits of nearly 5 million in 2010-11, according to the Department of Education report. Teams other than football and men's basketball had about 23 million in expenses, and the athletic department spent another 36.5 million on expenses not allocated to a particular sport. Football cost 19.5 million.
Of course, football revenue could lag if the team struggles badly on the field as a result of the sanctions, and ticket sales decrease.
The university said earlier this month that its fundraising was strong over the past year despite the scandal. Penn State received more than 208 million in donations for the fiscal year that just ended, the second-highest total in school history.

Hypocrisy of NCAA loud and clear with Maryland Football promotion

Hypocrisy of NCAA loud and clear with Maryland Football promotion

The NCAA is a dumb and monumentally stupid organization with rules that often don't make sense for the student-athletes they govern. One of those is paying, or more specifically not paying, athletes.

In an incredible twist of irony, Maryland will give one lucky regular student (that isn't an athlete) $10,000 for something an athlete (not a regular student) could potentially perform on the football field.

This is a highly specific play that will have to happen in order for one lucky student (again, not an athlete) to win the money, but the hypocrisy is incredible and this entire situation is so backward.

A student-athlete could score a touchdown (while not being paid) for the university and while scoring said touchdown will be helping make money for the university (money they will never see a dime from). The university will then turn around and give money to a student who did nothing to earn it, except decide to stay around in the second half for a game that is expected to be lightly attended, thanks to the achievement of a student-athlete who is incapable of receiving said money. 

That makes sense. Totally.

This comes on the heels of a report earlier this week that Division 1 coaches were "spooked" and against new rules that would allow students who met a minimum GPA to transfer and have immediate eligibility.

This is all totally fine.

Anyway, I can't believe someone didn't see the irony here and think "eh, we just had one of the biggest upsets of the weekend and should have a better way to capitalize on our momentum with something cool to entice people to stick around against Towson?"

I guess not.

MORE MARYLAND: TERPS KICKOFF YEAR WITH TEXAS-SIZED UPSET

 

Virginia Tech beats West Virginia 31-24 in electric showdown at FedEx Field

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USA Today Sports

Virginia Tech beats West Virginia 31-24 in electric showdown at FedEx Field

LANDOVER, Maryland -- Virginia Tech made FedEx Field feel like Lane Stadium Northeast and got to bring that Black Diamond Trophy back to Blacksburg for the first time in more than a decade.

Oh, and the Hokies' new quarterback looks like a keeper, too.

Josh Jackson passed for 235 yards, ran for 101 and accounted for two touchdowns in his first start for Virginia Tech, and the No. 21 Hokies made a last-second stand to beat No. 22 West Virginia 31-24 on Sunday night.

The 52nd meeting between the Appalachian region rivals was the first since 2005. It ended up being a classic. The Hokies rushed the field after their defense held the Mountaineers out of the end zone on two last plays from the 15, and their fans screamed along to Metallica's "Enter Sandman" to celebrate.

"This was a fantastic win," Virginia Tech safety Terrell Edmunds said with a huge grin.

Jackson, the redshirt freshman who won a three-way competition for the job, was up and down with his passing, but showed off some nifty moves running in the opener for both teams.

"I felt calm," said Jackson, the son of former longtime Michigan assistant coach Fred Jackson.

Josh Jackson's 46-yard keeper up the middle -- which ended with him taking a hard low hit -- set up Travon McMillian's 3-yard touchdown run that put Virginia Tech up 31-24 with 6:30 left.

"I felt that one pretty good," Jackson said about the hit.

Jackson said he read a blitz on that play and the Mountaineers gave him all kinds of room inside.

"That was a bad, bad call by me," West Virginia defensive coordinator Tony Gibson said.

West Virginia's new quarterback was just as impressive. Florida transfer Will Grier, who left Gainesville after being suspended by the NCAA for failing a test for performance-enhancing drugs in 2015, pass for 371 yards and three touchdowns.

He got one more chance to tie after usually reliable Virginia Tech kicker Joey Slye missed a 32-yard field-goal attempt with 1:55 left.

Grier slinged and scrambled West Virginia down to the Virginia Tech 15. Hokies coach Justin Fuente used a timeout before the last two plays because he was worried his defense was getting gassed chasing the shaggy-haired quarterback.

"You just want them to hold on for one more," Fuente said.

Grier's second-to-last pass into the end zone under pressure was a little behind David Sills and it went through the falling receiver's arms.

"I thought I had him," Grier said. "I got hit and I couldn't see. I thought he caught it. That's the one I'd like to have back to get it up more for him."

It was a tough ball to catch, but Sills wasn't hearing that.

"I just got to make that play," he said. "That's really all it comes down to."

Grier's last throw sailed high and away, but a couple of penalties on the West Virginia offensive line made it moot.