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A path for the future for Rice
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Fort Bend Owl Offline
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A path for the future for Rice
So everyone who is assuming Rice won't survive the latest round of realignment, and perhaps goes to NCAA D3 is assuming the NCAA does survive. Why would they assume that? With NIL and super conferences, why does the SEC need to be part of the NCAA any more? If they go, would the ACC, Big 10 and Pac 12 follow in turn?

Here's my potential solution for Rice's athletic path in the future? Obviously a lot of dominoes would have to fall in a certain order for this to happen, but it's an interesting possible scenario.

The super conferences break away and the NCAA remains for the remaining conferences, albeit with a lot less power and money. But what if the schools that still focus on academics break away on their own as well?

The Ivy Leagues would probably have to lead the way, but schools like Rice, MIT, the University of Chicago, Cal Tech, Johns Hopkins, Wash U, Emory, Carnegie Mellon, etc. could follow along with them. Those are all top 30 ranked schools, but there are many other top 100's who might be interested in a new affiliation. Possibly, even some Canadian universities would join in the fun.

The elite schools form a new athletic affiliation based on one very controversial rule that would absolutely ensure that they would still have viable athletic programs -- every single student-athlete in their various sports is on a full athletic scholarship. It's possible too to combine athletic scholarships and academic scholarships to ensure a full ride, if NCAA rules and regulations no longer apply (of course Vandy, TCU and others have already taken this approach in certain sports like baseball).

Would Rice want to guarantee full rides for say 250 student-athletes (I'm assuming that many sports would still exist but at much smaller roster numbers - so maybe only 50 to 60 football players instead of 100, 10 to 12 basketball instead of 13 to 15, etc.)? It's a tough sell, but perhaps the schools with the largest endowments would take that plunge. It would certainly help their campus diversity, and true student-athletes tend to be very successful businessmen, doctors, lawyers., etc. and give quite a bit back to their alma maters. Even if they end up being teachers and/or coaches, Rice is investing in its future as these future teachers would be promoting Rice to their top students.

I really don't think you can peg Rice into a specific conference or affiliation in the future, just because it's impossible to know what the college athletic landscape will look like in 20-30 years. Personally, I think this might be the most interesting scenario available for Rice, but obviously it's one that they would need many other similar institutions to follow along with.

ETA - btw my vision would probably not include conference match-ups for most of these schools. Certainly the Ivy League schools would likely keep playing each other. But my thought process is more that these schools really only get together once a year for their version of an NCAA Championships in most sports (or a tournament that determines a champion, although I do realize seeding is difficult if teams aren't playing each other leading up to a championship tournament).
(This post was last modified: 07-26-2021 01:42 PM by Fort Bend Owl.)
07-26-2021 10:17 AM
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RE: A path for the future for Rice
(07-26-2021 10:17 AM)Fort Bend Owl Wrote:  So everyone who is assuming Rice won't survive the latest round of realignment, and perhaps goes to NCAA D3 is assuming the NCAA does survive. Why would they assume that? With NIL and super conferences, why does the SEC need to be part of the NCAA any more? If they go, would the ACC, Big 10 and Pac 12 follow in turn?

Here's my potential solution for Rice's athletic path in the future? Obviously a lot of dominoes would have to fall in a certain order for this to happen, but it's an interesting possible scenario.

The super conferences break away and the NCAA remains for the remaining conferences, albeit with a lot less power and money. But what if the schools that still focus on academics break away on their own as well?

The Ivy Leagues would probably have to lead the way, but schools like Rice, MIT, the University of Chicago, Cal Tech, Johns Hopkins, Wash U, Emory, Carnegie Mellon, etc. could follow along with them. Those are all top 30 ranked schools, but there are many other top 100's who might be interested in a new affiliation. Possibly, even some Canadian universities would join in the fun.

The elite schools form a new athletic affiliation based on one very controversial rule that would absolutely ensure that they would still have viable athletic programs -- every single student-athlete in their various sports is on a full athletic scholarship. It's possible too to combine athletic scholarships and academic scholarships to ensure a full ride, if NCAA rules and regulations no longer apply.

Would Rice want to guarantee full rides for say 250 student-athletes (I'm assuming that many sports would still exist but at much smaller roster numbers - so maybe only 50 to 60 football players instead of 100, 10 to 12 basketball instead of 13 to 15, etc.)? It's a tough sell, but perhaps the schools with the largest endowments would take that plunge. It would certainly help their campus diversity, and true student-athletes tend to be very successful businessmen, doctors, lawyers., etc. and give quite a bit back to their alma maters. Even if they end up being teachers and/or coaches, Rice is investing in its future as these future teachers would be promoting Rice to their top students.

I really don't think you can peg Rice into a specific conference or affiliation in the future, just because it's impossible to know what the college athletic landscape will look like in 20-30 years. Personally, I think this might be the most interesting scenario available for Rice, but obviously it's one that they would need many other similar institutions to follow along with.

Not sure I buy this, but this is.the kind of out of the box thinking that we desperately need. If we are so smart, we should be thinking creatively like this. I hope the people who get paid to run things can and will think like this.
07-26-2021 11:02 AM
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Hambone10 Offline
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RE: A path for the future for Rice
My thoughts have been similar but with a somewhat different focus.

I think we need to appeal to the NCAA and if they don't go along with us, do it without them through the Universities.

The idea is that what the NCAA has become is NOT 'college athletics'. It is a money-making proposition that is being subsidized at most places by student loans, fees and endowments. It is a bastardization of its origins where 'the whole person' was embraced in terms of education including arts. Athletics are a performance art.

If you want to get paid to be an athlete, by all means do so. If you want to attend college while doing it, by all means do so. You cannot though participate in a subsidized education based on your contributions to University athletics, and then also get paid directly. If a University wants to choose to embrace one rather than the other, that's fine as well. Let's end the fa├žade of 'one and done' and 'eligibility' education plans where the goal is to maintain eligibility and not to get a meaningful degree. I think you would find a large amount of support within academia (at EVERY institution) to this sort of separation and especially in numerous President's offices.

The reality is that the top programs will get all the money... the amount of money paid to most of the rest of people will be vastly less than the value of a scholarship. We can look at the University managing some of these programs and 'paying' the players to 'work' (like a work-study sort of thing). We reduce your aid in other areas if you 'make too much' so why is it unfair to do so here?? Make it a 'full cost' amount, giving you spending money like you'd have if you had a part-time job after classes, but not something crazy.

I like your ideas above and do not have any specific issues with it, but I'd simply defer to college Presidents to make the next move. I'd actually pressure the NCAA to either support this or step aside in favor of another similar entity that governs college sponsored amateur, not professional athletics.

This idea of being paid to promote (as an example) a car dealership based on your athletic prowess as opposed to simply being paid for your athletic prowess is just silly, and makes a farce of 'amateur' athletics, not dissimilar to the cheating that took place in the 1980s. It's just alumni/companies/schools 'buying players' in the open rather than under the table.

Let's just decide what amateur athletics... a student-athlete model should look like.... and build around that. The 'we' I'm talking about there is Universities/President's offices. I think most of g5 would be part of this... and there would be pressure on places like UAB, UTSA and other 'secondary' Universities who lose money on athletics but still might want to try and double dip on their endowments. I think even a few p5 schools would get some pressure.
07-26-2021 04:03 PM
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