This article is part of David Leonhardt’s newsletter. You can sign up here to receive it each weekday.
At 11:15 a.m. local time in Des Moines this morning, March Madness will begin in earnest. The men’s basketball teams from the University of Minnesota and the University of Louisville will be playing each other. It will be the first of 16 games today, and another 80 men’s or women’s games will take place over the next several days.
In a couple of recent newsletters, I’ve written about the downsides of college sports, and there are some big ones. Today, I want to talk about some upsides — and about how college sports might be able to achieve a better balance.
I assume that many of you have filled out March Madness brackets with your friends, family or colleagues. Those brackets give you an excuse to have some fun together. Some of you are also fortunate enough to have a big rooting interest in one of the teams still playing. Maybe you’ll watch a game together or exchange nervous texts in a game’s final moments. Maybe you’ll end up jumping around your house in joy at some point in the next couple weeks with your kids or siblings.
[Listen to “The Argument” podcast every Thursday morning, with Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt.]
College sports bring people a lot of joy. As one of my college roommates texted me last week, as a way of objecting to my recent criticism of sports, “I’m happier when our basketball team is good.” He’s got a point. Sports create shared experiences in a way that few other activities in this country do.
This communal function means that colleges have a good reason to treat some athletes differently from most other applicants. Yes, the colleges should make sure they’re admitting only athletes with the academic preparation to graduate. But I understand why the basketball players representing the University of Minnesota today don’t necessarily need the same academic qualifications as the student oboists or journalists at Minnesota. Those athletes bring something to the campus that few other students can.
‘Why in the world?’
But it’s important to remember something else. Most college sports don’t look anything like basketball. They don’t bring a lot of people together. Their crowds are small. They don’t have many spillover benefits for the other parts of a university. They exist largely for the benefit of the athletes themselves — which makes them not so different from many other extracurricular activities.
And these other sports are often disproportionately played by white, relatively well-off students. They don’t add much diversity to a campus. Only 4 percent of male college lacrosse players are black, as Justin Wolfers of the University of Michigan has noted. Only 5 percent of fencers are. In golf, the share is 2 percent. In water polo, it’s 1 percent.
Yet colleges treat athletes in these sports as an entirely different species of applicant. The athletes don’t need to have nearly as strong applications as other students.
Because so many of these sports exist, the share of athletes at some colleges is shockingly high. “Roughly 20 percent, or one-fifth, of the entering class at the Ivy League universities and the leading small liberal arts colleges are recruited athletes,” Jonathan Cole, a top former official at Columbia University (and, before that, a college athlete), has written. “Why in the world are the schools using up 20 percent of their slots on recruited athletes?” The answer, Cole explains, is that sports have become a kind of arms race.
(In a recent newsletter, I mentioned that about one in five students at Williams College, in western Massachusetts, was an athlete, according to an outside estimate. That turns out to be wrong — and too conservative. Williams is on the high end of the distribution, with about 30 percent of students being recruited athletes, according to the college.)
Cole is right that this situation doesn’t make any sense. I am fully aware that fencers, golfers, water polo players and other athletes work extremely hard. But so do many other students who participate in other extracurricular activities and have superior academic records. Those other students are often rejected to make room for the athletes. The problem is the special treatment that so many athletes are receiving.
In a better system, most colleges would substantially shrink the number of athletes they recruit. Each would keep a modest number of sports — split equally between men and women — for which they would recruit athletes and still give huge admissions bonuses.
These wouldn’t be the only teams that colleges fielded. But the other sports would follow a classic scholar-athlete model. The members of the teams would no longer receive extra-special treatment in the admissions process. They would be students who happened to be athletes. And they would compete with other teams filled with similar athletes.
Is any college brave enough to move in this direction?
On this week’s episode of “The Argument” podcast, we talk about what a better college admissions system could look like. We also debate whether President Trump is helping to cause white-nationalist violence.
I realize I haven’t dug into the debate over whether college athletes should be paid here. If you want to, read Nancy Skinner, a California state senator, making the case in favor and the journalist Jemele Hill or Cody McDavis, a former college basketball player, making the case against.
If you are not a subscriber to this newsletter, you can subscribe here. You can also join me on Twitter (@DLeonhardt) and Facebook.
Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook, Twitter (@NYTopinion) and Instagram.B:
江苏彩票开奖公告【一】【听】【到】【这】【冷】【冷】【的】【质】【问】【声】【音】，【前】【面】【那】【两】【个】【人】【顿】【时】【就】【被】【吓】【了】【一】【跳】，【知】【道】【自】【己】【被】【发】【现】【了】。 【顾】【卿】【言】【转】【过】【头】【来】【看】【着】【这】【两】【个】【人】。 “【都】【是】【同】【学】【一】【场】，【想】【不】【到】【你】【们】【俩】【这】【么】【坏】，【竟】【然】【想】【偷】【拍】【我】，【还】【想】【造】【谣】【抹】【黑】【我】，【为】【的】【是】【什】【么】？【我】【现】【在】【咱】【们】【之】【间】【没】【有】【任】【何】【恩】【怨】【吧】？” 【她】【十】【分】【直】【接】【接】【或】【者】【开】【门】【见】【山】【的】【就】【把】【问】【题】【说】【了】【出】【来】。 【千】【黎】
【半】【空】【中】【激】【烈】【的】【交】【战】，【而】【下】【方】【的】【海】【盗】【战】【舰】【和】【龙】【旗】【战】【舰】【一】【边】【靠】【近】，【一】【边】【互】【相】【激】【发】【了】【几】【波】【炮】【火】。【结】【果】【便】【是】【海】【盗】【战】【舰】【被】【毁】，【龙】【旗】【战】【舰】【也】【仅】【剩】【一】【艘】。 【经】【验】【丰】【富】【的】【海】【盗】【们】【在】【战】【舰】【沉】【没】【前】【纷】【纷】【跳】【入】【了】【海】【中】，【一】【个】【个】【叼】【着】【武】【器】【向】【那】【艘】【仅】【剩】【的】【龙】【旗】【战】【舰】【游】【去】。 【一】【些】【提】【前】【激】【发】【自】【身】【妖】【怪】【血】【脉】【的】【海】【盗】【游】【的】【最】【快】，【顶】【着】【炮】【火】【靠】【近】【了】【龙】【旗】【战】【舰】
“【你】【不】【能】【去】！” 【来】【人】【直】【接】【拦】【住】【了】【楚】【烨】【打】【出】【的】【法】【诀】。 【这】【也】【是】【楚】【烨】【第】【一】【次】【碰】【到】【正】【反】【法】【诀】【竟】【然】【还】【能】【被】【人】【拦】【住】【的】【情】【况】。 【不】【过】，【抬】【头】【看】【到】【阻】【止】【他】【的】【人】，【这】【点】【事】【情】【也】【就】【没】【什】【么】【奇】【怪】【的】【了】。 【因】【为】【来】【人】【正】【是】【天】【机】【子】。 “【为】【什】【么】【不】【能】【去】？【他】【马】【上】【就】【要】【将】【整】【个】【玄】【天】【界】【都】【给】【毁】【了】。” “【你】【去】【了】【必】【死】【无】【疑】。” “【我】【不】
【王】【知】【音】【是】【在】【温】【暖】【的】【被】【窝】【里】【醒】【来】【的】，【虽】【然】【房】【间】【暖】【气】【开】【得】【不】【是】【很】【大】，【但】【叶】【渺】【给】【他】【们】【搬】【来】【了】【几】【床】【厚】【实】【的】【被】【褥】，【皮】【毛】【一】【体】，【皮】【厚】，【毛】【又】【长】【又】【浓】【密】，【据】【说】【是】【变】【异】【兔】【子】。 【看】【它】【们】【铺】【展】【开】【都】【能】【做】【成】【被】【子】，【可】【想】【而】【知】【一】【只】【变】【异】【兔】【子】【究】【竟】【有】【多】【大】。 【这】【样】【的】【变】【异】【兔】【子】【被】【子】，【叶】【渺】【就】【给】【送】【来】【了】【四】【床】，【王】【家】【两】【床】，【刘】【家】【两】【床】。 【睡】【在】【这】【种】江苏彩票开奖公告【小】【海】【神】【兽】【鲲】【称】【现】【任】【海】【神】【王】【兽】【敖】【为】【老】【祖】【宗】，【因】【为】【海】【神】【王】【兽】【敖】【的】【辈】【分】【在】【海】【神】【兽】【一】【族】【确】【实】【很】【古】【老】，【能】【够】【至】【少】【追】【溯】【小】【海】【神】【兽】【鲲】【上】【七】【代】【左】【右】，【也】【是】【一】【个】【活】【了】【差】【不】【多】【近】【千】【万】【年】【的】【老】【怪】【物】。 【可】【是】【近】【千】【万】【年】【的】【光】【阴】，【对】【于】【数】【亿】【载】【光】【阴】【的】【黑】【暗】【时】【代】【来】【说】，【还】【是】【一】【个】【很】【年】【轻】【的】【存】【在】。 【故】，【在】【现】【任】【海】【神】【王】【兽】【敖】【的】【前】【面】，【还】【出】【现】【过】【几】【代】【海】【神】
【罗】【子】【淇】【眉】【头】【一】【皱】，“【我】【与】【笑】【笑】【是】【两】【情】【相】【悦】，【我】【也】【从】【来】【没】【有】【听】【说】【过】【她】【有】【什】【么】【青】【梅】【竹】【马】。” “【你】【胡】【说】！【要】【不】【是】【你】【威】【逼】【利】【诱】【笑】【笑】【的】【父】【母】，【她】【怎】【么】【会】【答】【应】【嫁】【给】【你】。”【岳】【东】【急】【了】【眼】。 【正】【好】【罗】【子】【淇】【的】【注】【意】【力】【都】【在】【岳】【东】【身】【上】，“【人】【质】”【墨】【霜】【筠】【向】【着】【符】【晓】【小】【声】【问】【道】：“【发】【生】【了】【什】【么】？” “【这】【就】【是】【之】【前】【跟】【踪】【我】【们】【的】【人】，【好】【像】【和】【罗】
【大】【汉】【用】【熊】【掌】【一】【样】【的】【大】【手】【使】【劲】【拍】【打】【上】【桌】【面】，【把】【那】【可】【怜】【的】【桌】【子】【拍】【成】【两】【半】，“【我】【呸】！【冷】【印】【是】【哪】【里】【钻】【出】【来】【的】【混】【蛋】？【这】【个】【名】【字】【我】【从】【来】【都】【没】【听】【过】！【一】【个】【无】【名】【小】【辈】【也】【敢】【出】【来】【跳】？” 【旁】【边】【再】【没】【人】【敢】【吱】【声】【了】。 【雪】【瑾】【在】【原】【地】【立】【刻】【一】【会】【儿】，【假】【装】【不】【经】【意】【地】【朝】【大】【汉】【那】【边】【走】【去】。【她】【一】【边】【走】【一】【边】【念】【叨】，“【也】【不】【知】【道】【冷】【印】【这】【个】【家】【伙】【到】【底】【跑】【哪】【儿】【去】【了】
【黑】【沙】【平】【原】【地】【下】，【层】【层】【黑】【沙】【高】【达】【万】【丈】。 【黑】【沙】【底】【下】，【是】【一】【片】【寂】【静】【的】【流】【沙】，【流】【沙】【颗】【颗】【如】【黑】【珍】【珠】【一】【般】【圆】【润】【光】【滑】，【与】【整】【片】【大】【地】【连】【成】【一】【体】。 【流】【沙】【底】【下】，【幽】【冥】【之】【力】【无】【声】【的】【将】【流】【沙】【排】【开】，【形】【成】【一】【个】【空】【洞】【的】【空】【间】。 【幽】【冥】【之】【力】【越】【往】【中】【心】【越】【盛】，【几】【乎】【化】【为】【实】【质】【一】【般】。 【最】【中】【心】【处】，【一】【丝】【幽】【冥】【地】【界】【孕】【育】【的】【本】【源】【之】【力】【化】【为】【一】【只】【小】【兽】，【安】
“【去】【南】【方】！”【方】【惜】【朝】【手】【指】【南】【边】【道】：“【去】【南】【方】~【去】【云】【巅】【大】【理】，【找】【一】【个】【叫】【温】【少】【观】【的】【人】。” “【温】【少】【观】？”【无】【情】【思】【索】~【口】【中】【回】【喃】【道】：“【他】？【是】【你】【以】【前】【的】【那】【个】【属】【下】？” 【方】【惜】【朝】【点】【点】【头】，【承】【认】【道】：“【是】【的】，【就】【是】【他】！” 【无】【情】【脸】【色】【犹】【豫】【道】：“【他】？【他】【会】【接】【纳】【我】【们】【吗】？【后】【来】【听】【说】【他】【和】【你】【闹】【翻】【了】？” 【无】【情】【很】【担】【心】，【她】【不】【知】【道】