UConn Basketball’s Responsibility

Tonight I found something pretty discouraging that I felt somewhat compelled to share and comment on.  Granted this has nothing to do with CRM, per say, but it applies to projects and life in general.

UConn basketball's dirty secret

UConn basketball’s dirty secret

I came across an article titled “UConn basketball’s dirty secret”.  The attention grabbing headline coupled with UConn’s recent national championship, immediately lead me to dive right in.  Unfortunately, I found the author purposely misleading the facts surrounding UConn basketball’s academic situation.   The numbers are factual, just manipulated for viewership.

To summarize, UConn’s graduation success rate (GSR) is an abysmal 8%.

Granted this is extremely low, but in reality has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with the current team or head coach.  The 8% represents the players (and coaches/administration) from the 2006-2007 men’s basketball team.

In reality, UConn’s academics are drastically improving…

Showcasing Shabazz Napier, the tournament’s MVP, is comical only because he’s on pace to graduate this semester with a degree in Sociology.  In fact his main reason to come back to school for his senior year was to keep a promise he made to his mother about graduating.


UConn basketball’s head coach, Kevin Ollie, became the head coach in 2012.  Last year, Ollie’s first season as head coach, UConn was ineligible to play in the NCAA tournament due to academic issues stemming from the 2009 academic year.

As far as the program goes:

“The academic improvement that our men’s basketball program has made over the past three years in the NCAA’s Academic Progress Rate has been well documented,” athletic director Warde Manuel said in a prepared statement. “Our team has earned three outstanding scores in a row, including a perfect 1,000 for the 2012-13 academic year, which will be officially announced by the NCAA this summer.”


Granted, I understand we’re talking about gaining viewership versus covering a topic without bias.  I’m probably asking for too much.  Glamorizing rear-view facing metrics clearly grabs attention, but in turn misrepresents the current trajectory of the program.


Criticizing is easy, but accepting responsibility isn’t

“There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them.” –Denis Waitley

Not to over analyze, but in life you can always look at the negative of things.  If someone is determined, you could argue that they are stubborn.  If someone is mellow, you could argue they lack passion.  I’m arguing this article was all about viewership, when in reality the author may not have been the one to select the photos which infer these players have anything to do with these numbers.

UConn has clearly accepted their responsibility and there is plenty of data to support this.  Let’s embrace their bracket busting victories and offer continued encouragement to these student athletes that can’t even afford to eat.

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About Paul Way

Born and raised in Greenville, SC. I'm a coder to the core. The only thing I love more than coding is my family and your epic comments.

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