On football, tailgating, and student athletes

NC State has a home football game Thursday night at 7:30pm.  I have class on Thursday that ends at 2:45.  The majority of students wanted me to cancel a class that ends nearly 5 hours before kick-off.  Why?  Apparently they think they need at least that much time to “tailgate” and get drunk before the game.  I don’t often editorialize to my students on what I think of their drunken debauchery, but this was a case for it and I let them know what I would think about anybody who felt they had to miss class to have an extra hour or two to get drunk.

For the first time in ages, I also have a football player in my class in a Fall semester.  The player showed me his excuse form for Thursday.  I don’t have that big a problem with the football player missing class, but I asked him how much time they were actually expected to show up before the game.  Apparently, they’ll be spending Wednesday night in a hotel for their Thursday home game and treating the day as a Saturday.  Ummm… give me a break!  Forget for a minute the total waste of money involved, what kills me is the absolute disdain for the idea of the players being student athletes.  Somehow, you can’t go to class on the same day you actually play a football game?  Something tells me volleyball players, tennis players, baseball, soccer, you name it, manage to be in a class that ends at 2:45 on the same day they have a home 7:30 competition.  Are football players just too fragile?

End rant.

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About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

One Response to On football, tailgating, and student athletes

  1. Jeff says:

    Hoped their might be more comments here too. Good for you for not cancelling class, I’m sure we would have had similar complaints here when we played Marshall, had classes been in session.

    The football player is another issue, I see the value in the routine, and somewhat see wanting to keep them contained in a hotel rather than in their own rooms/houses where they might not get needed rest (setting aside that we don’t care as much about that for non-revenue-generators). I do think they can (and should) still make it to class. Do they miss class on Friday every other week of the year?

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