Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Annals of Insanity – Colorado State University Proposes Building Football Stadium as Way to Attract Better Students

Are These People Completely Nuts? (Uh, Yes, Isn't it Obvious?)

The Forum would like to abandon its posts on college athletics and the devastation they are foisting on higher education in America, but events will just not let that happen.  The news the Colorado State University proposed to improve its academic quality by building an incredibly expensive football stadium is just too crazy to ignore.

Faced with declining state funding, CSU is raising money to build a $246 million, 40,000-seat football stadium on its Fort Collins campus. University President Tony Frank says the new facility will help build a winning football team while advancing one of the school's highest priorities: attracting more out-of-state students paying higher tuition.

There are a few schools in America where the football team may marginally enhance the student body quality, Penn State or Alabama or Notre Dame come to mind, but the idea that higher quality students will go to Colorado State University because it has a brand new football stadium and better football team is absurd.

And the cost of the stadium stacks up like this.


The final word on this idiocy is nicely voiced by this man.

"I am just an ordinary retired citizen who looks at this from a financial standpoint and says, 'This is the stupidest thing I've ever seen,'" said Bob Vangermeersch, a former Fort Collins businessman who is leading the opposition movement against the new stadium. "The numbers just do not pan out."

Here are the numbers that drive that comment.

Colorado State's long road was evident last Saturday when it traveled to Tuscaloosa, Ala., to play two-time defending national champion Alabama, a member of the Southeastern Conference. Alabama routed CSU 31-6 after building up a 17-point halftime lead. The teams both compete in college football's 125-team top division. But while the No. 1-ranked Tide regularly sells out its 101,821-seat stadium and generated $82 million in revenue in 2012, Colorado State's announced attendance sank to an average of 19,250 last season—including 9,304 per game in actual paying customers—and the football program generated $4.1 million.

Gosh has anybody considered that maybe investing $246 million in upgrading the academics of CSU would attrack more and better students?  Just a thought.

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