The smelly jock state

by Willard B. Shapira

Pardon me if I am less than ecstatic about the new football season and the new stadium. As I have said many times in the Daily and elsewhere, the values of our society are skewed beyond belief when we waste millions of dollars of taxpayer money, as well as private funds on frivolous, meaningless, even counter-productive activities âÄî such as professional and intercollegiate sports. University of Minnesota President Robert Bruininks, his rubber-stamp Board of Regents, the Athletics Department and its stooges in the statehouse and the Minnesota Legislature have yet to make a connection between big-time sports and education. Likewise, professional sports moguls lie through their teeth when they describe their ventures as anything but completely self-serving, providing no societal value whatsoever. What do you want to bet that Vikings owner Zygi Wilf will extort a new publicly-funded stadium from our elected public representatives in the next session of the Legislature, just as Carl Pohlad did several years ago? Minnesota was once known as âÄúThe Brainpower State.âÄù Now, weâÄôre âÄúThe Smelly Jock State,âÄù and the shabby politics and inappropriate budgeting of public funds stink to high heaven. Willard B. Shapira University alumnus