UO could save $3M a year by shutting down basketball, mothballing Knight Arena

7/11/2015 update: Matt Prehm has an interview with Duck spokesperson Craig Pintens on basketball tickets, here:

The Ducks averaged just 6,209 fans per home game during the 2014-15 season, ranking seventh in the Pac-12. It was the lowest figure since 1992 when an average of 5,819 fans attended games at McArthur Court.

… The Athletic Department operates on zero funding from the University of Oregon [Yeah, sure it does], and so every penny can sometimes count. That’s why when Oregon decided to slash prices across the board – a 34-percent slash on average – was such a difficult decision.

The Athletic Department is reporting a near 90-percent season ticket renewal rate from last season, and while that’s well above the 80-percent renewal norm for the basketball team, it’s still a huge financial hit with the slashed prices.

… With a better marketing plan of the program, ticket costs slashed, and a better non-conference schedule Oregon is seeing early returns pay off.

No, actually this isn’t paying off. I’m no economist, but if you cut prices 34% and sales only increase by 10 points on a base of 80 – lets call that 13% – total revenue will drop. As it did. And as explained below the basketball program is now losing millions – even if you ignore the sunk costs of the $13.5M Knight Arena bond payments.

And it seems that they are prepared to lose more millions to avoid the embarrassment of having the country’s most expensive college arena sit half empty. Meanwhile, the millions in hidden subsidies from the academic continue – including the $450K we pay athletics each year for the Knight Arena land.

Meanwhile Coach Altman has also succeeded in driving away the UO student fans:

… Based on numbers given to me by [Duck PR flack Craig Pintens], the average student attendance for this season was 989 per game. Last season, they were 1,539. In 2012, it was 1,541. In 2011, it was 1,574.

5/15/2015:  UO could save $3M a year by shutting down basketball, mothballing Knight Arena

Continue reading

Civil rights historian Taylor Branch lectures Scott Coltrane about NCAA cartel

4/16/2015 PM: I didn’t see our Faculty Athletics Representatives Jim O’Fallon or Tim Gleason or PAGIA Chair Kim Sheehan in the audience – there were a lot of empty reserved seats – but Interim President Scott Coltrane got quite the lecture tonight from Taylor Branch about civil rights, college sports gone bad, and the responsibility of university administrators and faculty to act with courage to fix things.

Dave Hubin tells me that the video will be posted soon. Meanwhile, here’s Coltrane lecturing the UO Senate last week about how we should keep our mouths shut and stop interfering with how the UO administration, the athletic department, and our big-time sports boosters want to run their plantation:

Screen Shot 2015-04-16 at 9.28.34 PM

Screen Shot 2015-04-16 at 9.20.56 PM

4/16/2015 AM: Taylor Branch is the Pulitzer Prize winning MLK biographer and author of “The Shame of College Sports” – a biting critique of the NCAA and its “Committee on Infractions”, of which former UO Faculty Athletics Representative Jim O’Fallon (Law) is a longtime member.

Branch’s lecture is Thursday at 7:00 PM, in the brand new Straub 156 lecture hall.

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 3.12.44 PM
NCAA Infractions Committee Member
Jim O’Fallon, UO Law Professor Emeritus
The Shame of College Sports, by Taylor Branch,
Pulitzer Prize winning MLK biographer
Backup $108K FAR Tim Gleason (Journalism)

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 3.37.07 PM

Kim Sheehan and Tim Gleason won’t share PAGIA agendas, Coltrane wants $151.78

3/20/2015 update:

From: “Thornton, Lisa” <pubrec@uoregon.edu>
Date: March 20, 2015 at 4:39:23 PM PDT
Subject: Public Records Request 2015-PRR-201

Dear Mr. Harbaugh:

The University of Oregon has received your revised public records request for “just the b) part” of your request made 02/26/2015, attached. The office has at least some documents responsive to your request. By this email, the office is providing you with an estimate to respond to your requests.

The office estimates the actual cost of responding to your request to be $151.78.

3/19/2015 update: Coltrane’s PR Office wants $732.92 to show what his secret athletics committee is doing

The University of Oregon, Office of Public Records has received your public records request for “any documents sent or received by the President’s Office relating to former President Gottfredson’s decision to establish the “President’s Advisory Group on Intercollegiate Athletics”, the determination of its membership, and its activities since”.  The office is now providing an estimate to respond to your request.

The office estimates the actual cost of responding to your request to be $732.92. Upon receipt of a check made payable to the University of Oregon in that amount, the office will proceed to locate, copy, and provide the records you have requested that are not exempt from disclosure.  Your check may be sent to the attention of Office of Public Records, 6207 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-6207.

Maybe the PAGIA Chair, Kim Sheehan (Advertising), or UO’s new FAR Tim Gleason (former Journalism Dean) will help make these public records public?

Continue reading