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Letter from Bruce Benson

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by Buffnik, Dec 9, 2010.

  1. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    I know a bunch of you also got this, but wanted to share with those who hadn't seen it. Very good news regarding university support of athletics.

    The University of Colorado has been getting a lot of attention lately, but not because of the accomplishments of our students or faculty, or because of revolutionary breakthroughs by our researchers.

    We're getting attention because of our football program. Changing head coaches draws the media spotlight, rouses our alumni and fans, and dominates public and private discussion about the university. I frequently get questions about the football program at speeches I give, and alumni and friends of CU write to my office more about that issue than any other.

    We're pleased with the selection of Jon Embree as our next coach and are confident he will get the program on track. He will get some great help from Eric Bieniemy and Brian Cabral, among others. I met with this group and their families this week and they are first-class people who I am sure will be successful. Yet doing so does not rest solely on the shoulders of Coach Embree and his staff. It will require a team effort from constituents inside and outside CU. The administration, athletic department, and faculty, staff and students all play a role. So do alumni, donors, fans and our corporate partners.

    While these constituents have expressed strong - and often conflicting - opinions about direction and leadership of the program, we all agree on one thing: We want this important area of the university to succeed.

    There are certainly those who contend that athletics gets attention far beyond what it deserves in the big picture of an institution whose fundamental purpose is education. It's hard to argue with that. But rather than bemoan the attention athletics gets, we must use it to our advantage.

    Fair or not, intercollegiate athletics is the window through which many view the university. It is a rallying point for our alumni and a critical touchstone for keeping them connected to CU once they leave campus for lives in Colorado, across the country and around the world. It is an area of keen interest for donors. It sometimes draws the national media spotlight, as was the case a couple of years ago when the Buffs beat West Virginia in a thrilling Thursday night game from Folsom Field, which was the only nationally televised game that night. We can't buy that kind of publicity.

    Likewise, our move to the Pac-12 in athletics has a substantial ripple effect in terms of enhanced connections to our largest feeder state (California), a boost to our efforts to attract international students, connections with a larger number of alumni than in Big 12 states (46,000 vs. 11,000) significant research partnerships with faculty colleagues at places like Cal, Stanford, Arizona, UCLA, Washington and others.

    Given the attention the athletics program receives, it is important that we foster partnerships inside and outside the university to provide the program the support it needs. At the same time, we must also ensure we are accountable for the academic, citizenship and athletic performance of our student-athletes, as well as the operational and fiscal stewardship of the program.

    Excellence in athletics will help us showcase the other areas of excellence at CU. And that's a win-win for CU.

    Sincerely,
    Bruce D. Benson
    President
     
  2. cnbuff410

    cnbuff410 Club Member Club Member

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    Seriously, I sincerely don't know what make this so simple point so hard for those academical guys to understand?

    Look at Florida, UCLA, Duke, UNC or even Cal and Stanford. Their academical things are as strong as, if not better than, ours. How about their fb/bb Programs?
     
  3. Del

    Del Member

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    Good to hear that he gets it. I wish all the faculty and community that do not support the program would get this one sentence ingrained in their head --But rather than bemoan the attention athletics gets, we must use it to our advantage.--
     
  4. nycskibum

    nycskibum Member

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    It is such a simple concept, why some people don't get it I'll never understand. Certainly appreciate Benson spreading the message.

    Hopefully his letter makes it to the state legislature. The opportunity in having a direct connection to California and the PNW in bringing professional talent and business to the Denver/Boulder corridor would be fantastic for the region. Which is why properly funding the University is so important.
     
  5. The Guest

    The Guest Guest

    Not sure on Flordia, but can we all acknowledge that the other schools have far, far higher academic standards than ours? CU is a great school, and I'm proud of my diplomas, but I'm sometimes embarrassed when we act as if we're an elite academic institution rather than just a very good one.

    Re: the OP. It's a good letter, but certainly nothing that we shouldn't have known and understood already.
     
  6. nycskibum

    nycskibum Member

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    No doubt.

    Lets go with Wisconsin, Penn State, Washington, Texas........

    Unfortunately the current money crunch at the school doesn't allow admissions to be as selective to get us to that Michigan, Cal, UVA level. Hopefully the move will result in better athletes as well as better academics at the University.
     
  7. UrbanaBuff

    UrbanaBuff Member

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    As touched upon, the problem is that our academia fancies us as Northwestern or Stanford. It is true that those schools almost frown upon athletics.

    Just within the past decade or so, there was a big push among professors at Rutgers to eliminate the football team (or drop it down to 1-AA). The thought was that the negative perceptions of being a D-1 doormat adversely affected the school's academic image. I would agree with this, and I would say that CU's scholastic rep has suffered of late since our AD is in the toilet.

    Finally, we shouldn't compare ourselves to any southern schools like Florida or Texas, since their priorities are way out of whack. They would sacrafice academics for sports, and that is complete bunk.
     
  8. fatbuff

    fatbuff Well-Known Member

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    I think you make some good points, but I dont see how it is possible to sacrifice academics for sports. Athletes make up less than 1% of the student population, and even if they all had the IQ of Alan Grayson, the impact would be minimal on the university. Maybe you mean financially, but most sports related expenditures are separately funded from the academic side. A great sports program costs next to nothing in academic prestige, but the benefits are profound.
     
  9. Mick Ronson

    Mick Ronson Well-Known Member

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    not true at all in my personal experience. in fact the opposite, most faculty are pretty snide about CU's "quality" of undergrad education and do not fancy at all that way.


    CU's rankings disagree. in the mid 80's CU was considered nationally as a "Public Ivy", a smaller and gentler Berkeley. Admitting there is an in-born bias from them, many people I know at CU claim the "culture" at CU changed for the worse after the football success of the late 80's/early 90's. that different types of out-of-state students were applying...etc. FWIW. But, since 1990 or so....the academic rating has dropped far out of the range of the top public schools....like Texas, UVA, Wisconsin, Michigan to rank alongside the Iowa's and Indiana's. Very respectable, but not top tier. Personally, i would attribute this to underfunding by the state and non-competitive faculty salaries re: peer institutions more than "football". I also think CU is at a "ranking" disadvantage since it is considerable smaller (total enrollment 30,000, not 50-55, 000 like Big Ten schools or Texas, even ATM)....and this bears out exponentially over the years in terms of total alums, alum giving, endowment, etc. However, in a more comprehensive sense....being smaller than the Midwestern factory schools is an overall positive for CU insofar as the undergraduate experience even though it's not a "measurable" like endowment.


    agree 100%.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2010
  10. leftybuff

    leftybuff Iconoclast Club Member

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    Great letter. Talk is cheap. Can BB walk the walk? By many reports he was the one afraid to hitch up his skirt and get rid of D II. I will wait to see if he stands up to the next academic criticism of the AD, or the next left wing whacko witch hunt. When he does that, I'll take him seriously. Right now, it's just talk...no matter how good it sounds.
     
  11. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    I'm glad he's talking now. Next step: Reading allbuffs and doing what we tell him to do :smile2:

    We know bohn reads the boards, or has people reading them. Hi bohn!! :wave:
     
  12. Mick Ronson

    Mick Ronson Well-Known Member

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    agree with this. issuing a lot of statements is one thing, like Bohn's over-rehearsed position about asking for fans to organize and give and give and give....i'd like to have a 2500$ Italian, carbon-fiber road bike....and *I've got a plan to buy one*....all I need is everyone on the board to send me 100$.

    and, after it's done, "we can all feel great about doing it together".

    not sure firing Danny gives the admins the holy right to reboot their own job performance to the sunny new morning before 5 years ago.
     
  13. kalbuff

    kalbuff New Member

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    Regarding the academic excellence of the schools mentioned, I think it is a somewhat complex issue. There are really good public universities, Berkeley and Michigan come to mind, where the school itself is top notch but they do compromise, and to an extent in certain situations, substantially, to recruit and field subpar students. Someone told me that at Michigan the sports facilities are like a separate campus. But I do think some schools don't compromise, at least much and I would submit my undergrad school, Notre Dame, as an example. Rumor had it that Urban Meyer was as good as signed as head coach but the school would not give him authority to recruit about seven or eight players under the radar.

    As far as CU's academic excellence is concerned, I believe it is top notch in certain areas such as engineering and some sciences. I have always understood the liberal arts program was pretty pedestrian with the exception of psychology which is mostly a science program anyway.
     
  14. The Guest

    The Guest Guest

    I'm living proof of that. I walk at a rather brisk pace and look good doing it.
     
  15. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    Reaching for the neg rep button. You are better than this Wally!

    But yes, I am also living proof of the pedestrianness of our LA program. But, I don't really see how a LA program could be all that intensive. **** is easy.
     
  16. The Guest

    The Guest Guest

    Yeah, I thought the "pedestrian" part was generic and easy, but a "pretty pedestrian"? I thought that was worthy of a response.
     
  17. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    Having seen you in real life, I cannot comprehend the "pretty" part. Pedestrian? Most definitely. :wink2: Damn, I'm a jerk this morning. time to cook up some bacon.
     
  18. Wyo Buff

    Wyo Buff Club Member Club Member

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    All of a sudden, the song "I Believe I Can Fly" is going through my mind! Thanks a lot. "I believe I can touch the sky - - y--- y!!!!"
     
  19. The Guest

    The Guest Guest

    Well, I'm pretty on the interwebz.
     
  20. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    Now you are just getting creepy.
     
  21. dply

    dply Doble hoja Club Member

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    Euphemism?
     
  22. fatbuff

    fatbuff Well-Known Member

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    He did say 'jerk'.
     
  23. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    friction does cause heat...
     
  24. The Guest

    The Guest Guest

    Do you think Mr. Benson will peek at this thread to see how his letter was received?

    You know, they pulled the plug on Gilligan's Island, not because the ratings were low, but rather because advertisers figured out the demographich that was actually watching the show.

    I wonder if our University leadership would close down athletics if they actually met us...
     
  25. fatbuff

    fatbuff Well-Known Member

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    Are you picturing Wally in his 501s? Cause I dont see what else would have given you the urge to cook up some bacon here.
     
  26. kalbuff

    kalbuff New Member

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    Man, that's a thirteen dollar word. Maybe the Liberal Arts program is better than I thought!
     
  27. BehindEnemyLines

    BehindEnemyLines beware the habu Club Member

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    translate?
     
  28. The Guest

    The Guest Guest

    Demographic. Sorry. Advertisers determined that the socio-economic status of most viewers wasn't aligned with the product they were selling.
     
  29. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    That's also why wrestling isn't on a major network despite the big rating the big weekly show gets. The people watching are buying Slim Jims, not BMWs.
     
  30. BehindEnemyLines

    BehindEnemyLines beware the habu Club Member

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    Yeah, Wally, I get the gist of demographics. Don't go all Demogorgon on us.
     

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