Resolved: The Faculty and Senate admit we’ve lost institutional control of Duck Athletics

Mike Gottfredson’s pick for Faculty Athletics Representative Tim Gleason (Journalism) and current Senate IAC chair Andy Karduna (Human Phys) are going to present the Senate with a proposal to replace the Senate’s Intercollegiate Athletics Committee with a “Presidential IAAC” that the administration can control. See below for details. Given the long history at UO and other universities of the failure of shared governance when it comes to big-time athletics, I am considering proposing the following resolution instead:

Whereas: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury and a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object;

Resolved: That the University of Oregon Faculty and Senate declares that all connection between the Duck Athletic Department and the University of Oregon’s academic mission is and ought to be totally dissolved. We renounce any pretense that the Senate or the Faculty operating through the institutions of shared governance has any influence over academic matters involving Duck Athletics. We dissolve the University of Oregon Intercollegiate Athletics Committee and we refuse to replace it. We leave all responsibility for academic matters peculiar to the NCAA and Intercollegiate Athletics to the UO President and UO’s Faculty Athletics Representative, who serves at the President’s pleasure and who does not represent the Faculty. We advise all faculty to refuse to serve in any role connected to athletics including presidential advisory committees and special athletics admit committees. We encourage all faculty to make their best efforts to advise and educate those athletes who take their classes just as they would any student, and to catch a few games if they have time.

Further Resolved: That the UO Senate asks the UO administration to follow our lead on this, and shift their own time, efforts, and resources away from promoting, apologizing for, and defending Duck athletics in the press and the courts, and back towards doing more to help advance UO’s academic mission.

Here are my references for an upcoming Senate meeting on the IAC charge, so I’ll have them in a convenient place. In chronological order. I’ll add more later. My old list of athletics docs is here.

  • 2001-2004 Athletics Task Force Report. A thorough, well researched, inclusive, and mostly failed attempt to strengthen UO faculty governance over athletics and get some benefits for the academic side. Authors included President Dave Frohnmayer, Athletics Director Bill Moos, Nathan Tublitz (Bio), Jim Earl (English), etc.
  • 2004 (current) Senate IAC charge and membership, passed in 2004 in reaction to above. Senate IAC archives including minutes. Additional Senate athletic document archives. Old Senate IAC charge and useful definitions of terms.
  • 4/19/2012 IAC meeting on the IAC charge. Bob Berdahl, Rob Mullens, and Jim O’Fallon were trying to gut the IAC. The official recording of the meeting (in lieu of minutes, made with the knowledge of all in the room) is here as an MP3. The powerpoint I am discussing, which put Jim O’Fallon (Law, longtime UO Faculty Athletics Representative) in a tizzy, is here.  
  • 2012 emails between IAC Chair Nathan Tublitz and Interim UO President Bob Berdahl, in which Nathan explains a few things about shared governance to Bob, here.
  • UO runs athletic “special admits” through a special committee, refuses to allow IAC participation or membership on that committee. (Senate motion.)
  • 2015 FAR election legislation
  • Some history of the 2014 Presidential Advisory Group on Intercollegiate Athletics (PAGIA). John Canzano’s report in the Oregonian.
  • 2016 draft of the proposed charge for a presidential Intercollegiate Athletics Advisory Committee (IAAC) to replace the IAC, written by Andy Karduna (Human Phys and IAC Chair) and Tim Gleason (SOJC and FAR).
  • Emails to IAC about IAAC, suggesting the faculty and Senate stop pretending we can influence athletics, and Gleason responses.
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7 Responses to Resolved: The Faculty and Senate admit we’ve lost institutional control of Duck Athletics

  1. Fishwrapper says:

    Too straightforward and commonsense. It’ll never fly, Orville…

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  2. Go for it says:

    Love it.

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    Rating: +6 (from 6 votes)
  3. Captain Nemo says:

    There is much to be said for this solution…it is worthy of Solomon in its simplicity.

    And yet…it seems to surrender the the forces that have been undermining the proper role of athletics in higher education for two generations. It is manifest [alas!] that there is too much money in football and basketball to trust the faculty with oversight. I long for the days of yore when student athlete had some meaning. But mostly I envy European universities who do not have to face such problems. I recall how appalled the Rektor of our sister university in Tübingen was when he learned how much time our President had to spend on such things.

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  4. fruit-fly says:

    Leave it to Human Physiology to champion the relevance of jock-dom once again!

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  5. hopeless says:

    Can we do this for all the issues we find unpleasant? Budget meetings? faculty meetings? student advising? This is the plan from our incoming Senate Pres????

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    • uomatters says:

      My plan for the IAC is nothing if not constitutional, and comes directly from Oliver Wendell Holmes:

      Nail to the mast her holy flag,
      Set every threadbare sail,
      And give her to the god of storms,
      The lightning and the gale!

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  6. Marc Mooney says:

    Wow. This is great. Bravo.

    (I’ll probably still catch a football game on TV once in a while.)

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