Opinion

Please, President Shalala, let football be a major

Somebody get President Shalala on the phone, I have a great idea. I think that football should be a major. Now, wait a minute, don’t just write this idea off before letting me explain. Think for a moment, if you will, about some of the majors that the University of Miami offers. Other than the standard college student fare, there are a few majors that give grades based on performance.

Think of the music school. There is an entire major devoted to practicing an instrument with an orchestra or other group and then playing that instrument in various concerts throughout the year. How is that different from what the football players do? They practice extraordinarily hard every week in order to be the best at what they do, just like the orchestra. And every week they have to put those skills to the test, just like the orchestra.

And don’t give me that, “how can you compare Dorsey to Debussy?” stuff. The fact is, our football players work just as hard and long as any biology student. They are put up to a test each week at least as hard as any history exam. And even though they must face these trials, they are still required to go to class, study for tests and write papers.

As it is, every few years, a player is inevitably caught for cheating, and the judgmental wrath of the entire student body comes down upon him. You know what I say? Who cares? This guy is working much harder than I am. He’s not allowed to party on Friday night. And he just came from four hours of practice to sit through this class.

So how about it, President Shalala? Let football be a major! Many of these guys are here only to get a job in the NFL someday, just like many music students are here to get a job in an orchestra. They work hard enough, and there are plenty of options for them after college. So what if they don’t want to take Psychology of Women, or Intro to Business Management? God bless ’em. Let them play football, and just like with every other major, if they want to take classes in other fields, let them do that as well.

Now, I can foresee a problem with grading, and so I propose the following method. Grade all students majoring in football on how many games they win. Not only will this show how well they are learning the game, it will also keep the national championships rolling in.

Travis Atria is a junior majoring in English literature.

October 1, 2002

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The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.