I’ve been at UNCC for several years and it amazes me that we have one of the stupidest basketball teams in the nation. Yes, they can dribble a basketball and every once in a while make a basket, but what about academics? I mean, they are college students after all, right? What kind of classes do they take to prepare themselves for when they actually graduate and leave UNCC and go out into the real world?
Well, at some big-name universities you do have players that have a fairly good chance to go into the NBA and make some serious money. Here at UNCC in the past 60 years we have had only a few and most went as free agents or late round draft picks and never amounted to anything in the NBA or elsewhere. There have only been 3 first round picks to come from UNCC ever and only one basketball player that ever made it big and became a star – Cedric Maxwell from back in 1977. So the odds of the current UNCC basketball players ever making it in the NBA are basically close to nilch.
That means there is a 99.99999% or worse chance that these UNCC players are going to be relying heavily on their college degree and education received here at UNCC to get a job after they graduate (this is assuming that they do graduate – sometimes that doesn’t happen, but that is a rarity here at UNCC because they have “special classes” and “special treatment” reserved for these athletes to help them maintain their eligibility to play, but more on that later).
So one has to ask what kind of an education do they they receive while they were at UNC Charlotte? Do they take classes and programs businesses desire and want to hire people from? Or did they take a bunch of basket weaving type classes that are worthless? Well, if you walk into the gym you will see a banner proclaiming the high GPA’s of the UNCC athletes overall. What that banner is not telling you is that certain athletes are taking up major slack for other ones.
For example the UNCC men’s cross country team is intellectually on an entirely different playing field then the men’s basketball team. Many times certain members of the cross country team have to tutor the players on the men’s basketball team. So, that great GPA average of 3.20 or whatever it might be now, doesn’t carry fairly across all teams, sports and players.
Now, back to the classes these basketball players take. Did you know that some of their classes are very special in nature? When I say special I mean they are reserved solely for these basketball players and maybe a few other athletes and their close associates and nobody else could take them. Why do you think that athletes get to pick the classes they want long before anyone else, even graduating seniors? It’s not because of their sports schedules because no class would fit entirely around that. Did you know that some of these classes involve playing games for the entire class and no homework whatsoever?
Some of these classes have no attendance policy and no one ever shows up and there is virtually no learning that goes on whatsoever. Another thing that I’ve noticed is that we will never see these men’s basketball players taking classes in certain majors. For instance, there has never been a man’s basketball player that majored in computer science or MIS (that’s Management Informations Systems for the UNCC men’s basketball team and athletic department).
This may be typical of most college basketball athletic programs, but the problem here is that these athletes are ill prepared for graduation and the real world. Does UNCC and their athletic department care? Not in the slightest because once these players graduate with their worthless degree full of worthless classes that taught them basically nothing during their entire 4 or 5 or more years here at UNCC, they are no longer their problem.
Then they become just a statistic. There’s only so many of these men’s basketball players and their are enough good students at UNCC to easily hide their true statistics. If you were to go back and find where past UNCC men’s basketball players are now you would be amazed and appalled at the same time. I found one that is homeless and meanders the area around Tuckaseege Rd. here in Charlotte, NC. You can usually spot him walking with a limp and hunched over (must have a bad back or something like that). He is always wearing the same pair of paint splattered pants and has lost most of his teeth.
I found a few more at a local men’s homeless shelter. They have nothing, can’t find a job, have no qualifications and basically graduated UNCC with a worthless degree in basket weaving classes – at least they learned how to play in their classes. That prepared them for life in homeless shelters across the South East. But, if you ask at the athletics department they don’t care and don’t want to know what happens to their men’s basketball players when they leave UNCC.
This is what sickens me. The athletic department brings in millions and soon billions of dollars with the addition of the soon to be fielded men’s football team (which means more dulled down and “special classes” for the majority of these athletes. Yet they don’t care about the long term plight of their athletes. All they care about is what they can do for them right now and winning – that’s it.
It’s called churn and burn and they do it every year in the athletic department here at UNCC. I used to do tutoring for some of these athletes (mostly for members of the men’s basketball team because they needed the most help of any athletic team and didn’t do their homework very often – most had a 6th grade level of education at best and I to this day have to wonder how they got in to this college and how UNCC can give someone with such a low intellect and education a degree).
Everyone I know of knows this. Yet no one cares when it comes to the UNCC men’s basketball team. Professors also have to cater to the basketball team. If they give them too low of a grade or ask them to do what is usually expected of the other classmates in a tougher class then they will get a visit from someone in the athletics department or the Dean of the school the professor is in will get contacted by someone in the same athletics department with significant clout and it will come down very hard on the professor.
So, professors know to be easy on athletes and, in particular, the men’s basketball team. This is wrong. It is unethical and immoral. But even worse you have to think of the long term implications from this. Maybe the UNCC Sociology and Public Administration departments could research this and see what the real, undeniable, long term applications are from an athletics department run amuck like what is going on currently at UNCC.
I believe in transparency and in responsibility – two words that the higher ups and especially the athletics department do not abide by at all here at UNCC. Hopefully by placing this complaint about the UNCC athletics department and their churn and burn policy when it comes to the men’s basketball team on this highly viewed consumer reporting website this problem will get the publicity it needs so that positive changes can be made.
Maybe an exit exam should be implemented across the board so that all graduating seniors (including all student athletes) would need to show they earned a real degree, took real classes and learned something. We don’t need a high incidence of unlearned and uneducated athletes degrading the school and it’s brand as they graduate with 4 years of napping, basket weaving and playing ball – enough is enough. No more cheating (paying tutors and classmates to do others homework, projects, papers and more), no more funneling players into courses that are ridiculously easy and worthless come graduation.
The athletics department should be held acountable for what it creates. If they are going to graduate a bunch of uneducated basketball players that can’t find a good job then they should be forced to pay for their mistakes. If I can visit one homeless shelter here in Charlotte and find two previous UNCC basketball players in less then 5 minutes it makes me wonder how many more homeless and underpaid, unemployed, poor previous UNCC men’s basketball players are out there. Churn and burn…
I have nothing against basketball or basketball players, but I am just sick of watching basketball players with literally a sixth grade level of education or similar graduate ill prepared for the harsh realities of the real world from UNCC. This needs to change. If what is going on with the men’s basketball team at UNCC upsets you please act on it.