This has been driving me nuts since last week when Dr. Mike Cusak, Athletic Director for Wright State University, decided to hand $168,000 to former basketball coach Paul Biancardi to go away. Biancardi was banned from participating in recruiting because of his involvement with paying a recruit $6,000 while he was at Ohio State.
No matter what the NCAA decided as a punishment, Biancardi has had a job for almost 2 years while the investigation took place. He continued to say he had done nothing wrong, the NCAA verdict proves he was lying. Liars shouldn’t be paid- not when they are supposed to be moral guideposts for young men whom they coach and mentor.
Cusak had no problem firing former WSU coach Ralph Underhill for shoplifting $39 worth of vitamins- yet here; the bagman gets rewarded with a year’s salary.
Here are two things that bother me most:
- Who gives Cusak the right to decide to spend $168,000 of State money for services not performed? Biancardi’s actions made him ineligible to complete his duties.
- Where is the outrage from other members of the WSU community? That kind of money could fund a club, research, and a bunch of scholarships. I founded the Raider hockey club when I was a freshman in 1983- if Cusak had given me $168,000 the hockey club would have survived longer than 2 partial seasons.
The last thing that bothers me isn’t just specific to Wright State- it’s college sports in general- slavery and indentured servitude still exist in this county- it’s called NCAA sports- where coaches and schools make millions of dollars off the labor provided for a measly college scholarship. Where players are expected to give up their lives, risk permanent injury to their bodies, perform to their peak and maintain a 2.0 gpa- all so people like Cusak can hand out their hard earned money- to a coach who broke the â€œrulesâ€ of this athletic cartel.
If there is any profession more in need of a union today than college athletics, I don’t know what it is. In the mean time- Biancardi should have to return the money and earn an honest living until his kangaroo court penalty expires and he can return to the fold of slave owners now known as Division 1 coaches.
What do you think?