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By ACC BasketBlog

June 6th, 2005




College Basketball: Gregg Doyel Off Base


This Blog of the Day post is courtesy of the ACC BasketBlog, daily coverage of college basketball's best conference.


I have a bone to pick:


From the May 27 entry of Doyel's Dribbles on


"Critical mass has not yet been reached, but a fight involving the media, college basketball, Nike and state government is brewing in Connecticut. The media, as you can imagine, is right. Everyone else is wrong.

Most wrong of all are the agents of UConn basketball coaches Jim Calhoun (men) and Geno Auriemma (women), who are starting to threaten that their clients might leave UConn if the state does away with outside compensation clauses like the ones afforded top college coaches by Nike, Adidas, etc.
In this case, Nike has deals with Calhoun and Auriemma that probably compensate the coaches better than their contracts with the school.


As a state government, Connecticut is in the midst of cleaning up its sullied ethical image by looking at every possible employee from every possible angle. Eventually that means a look at outside compensation contracts like the ones enjoyed by Calhoun and Auriemma, who are surely two of the highest-paid state employees."


Doyel goes on to say the newspaper is just doing its job by reporting on the two coaches' earnings. On that point I'll agree. But he closes with this:


"As for UConn fans ... lighten up. If you honestly feel your elected officials are about to pass laws that will encourage Calhoun and Auriemma to leave, to be replaced by sub-standard coaches willing to work without Nike's safety net, you're got some growing up to do.
And as for the agents of Calhoun and Auriemma?
Shut up."


I cannot agree. In fact, I think Doyel is betraying his prejudices by noting that the press is doing its job but denying that the exact same can be said about the agents of Calhoun and Auriemma. They're doing their best to represent the interests of their clients and they, in fact, have an ethical--as well as contractual--obligation to do just that. The clients would, I'm sure, like to retire from UConn someday and not from some other school. But in the meantime I'm sure they want to keep their lucrative contracts. Bully for them and their agents for letting their views be known.

And as for the fans--short for fanatic, duh--they shouldn't be told to lighten up. That's kryptonite to Superman, Doyel. Fans want their teams to perform on/in the field, court, pitch, mat or pool and couldn't care less about the reasons the Connecticut legislature is fooling with their teams' success. So take all that high and mighty "get over it" nonsense and give Mitch Albom a call about the press getting it right, okay?



This Blog of the Day post is courtesy of the ACC BasketBlog, daily coverage of college basketball's best conference.


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