What Does the Northwestern/NLRB Ruling Mean for Uniforms?

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By now you’ve no doubt heard about yesterday’s regional NLRB ruling that Northwestern football players can form a union. There’s a big uni-related component to this story because the ruling, if it’s upheld on appeal, will likely allow the players to profit off of their names and likenesses. This means the people who are willing to pay $200 for a polyester shirt will now be able to have a college athlete’s name on the back of that shirt. (It may also mean that EA Sports will be able to revive its college football video game, which it discontinued in the wake of a class-action lawsuit filed by players who argued, successfully, that their likenesses were being exploited by the company without their consent.)

I’m also wondering if this development, if it’s upheld, might also make college sports the most likely frontier for uniform advertising. The pretense of big-time college football and basketball being “amateur” athletics (which we all know has been a sham anyway) would be dispelled, schools would probably claim the need for more revenue to pay the players, and the rejiggered financial landscape would invite new sponsorship schemes, all of which might combine to open the door to jersey ads. Or maybe not. Just something that occurred to me.

As for the non-uni implications, I see some good and some bad. The good is that the ruling (if it’s upheld, which I keep mentioning because that’s a big if) would likely alter the way huge amounts of cash are distributed in college athletics, and the current way that cash is distributed is clearly corrupt. I’m not sure the new way will be any better, but it will at least shake up a system that deserves to be shaken up.

Also, I have never — never — understood the point of athletic scholarships. Why exactly should someone get a subsidized education just because he or she is a fast runner, or a good swimmer, or anything else that has nothing to do with a university’s mission? If this ruling (if it’s upheld) ends up changing the athletic scholarship system, I’m all in favor of that. Save the scholarships for academics.

The bad part is that the professionalizing of college sports will likely have a trickle-down effect on high school and AAU-level sports, which will now be one step closer to where the big money is. This means those sports will likely become even more infected than they already are with sponsorship influence, shady boosters, shady quasi-agents, and all the other crap that now afflicts college sports. And as big money gets one level closer to the level of child athletes, a new generation of Super-Annoying Parents™ will become even more annoying, which will be awful for everyone they come into contact with and even worse for their kids.

As for what else the ruling may or may not mean, start with my ESPN.com colleague Lester Munson and then check out this piece on SI.com, both of which offer good, level-headed analysis. And that’s what I’d like to stick to today — level-headed discussion. If you want to partake in all the other overheated, emotional chatter currently taking place about this ruling (unions are awesome vs. unions suck, spoiled college kids, don’t you dare ruin my college football, Title IX, now they’ll have to pay taxes on their income, blah-blah-fucking-blah), there are lots of other websites out there that should be able to meet your needs. But none of that here, please. Thanks.

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Membership update: Several new designs have been added to the membership card gallery (including Frank Serpas III’s card, shown at right, which is based on Herbie the Love Bug’s hood design — an inspired request that we were happy to grant). The printed/laminated versions of these cards should mail out by the end of the week.

As always, you can sign up for your own membership card here, you can see all the cards we’ve designed so far here, and see how we make the cards here.

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Unmasking the Commenters: I recently invited the site’s commenters to tell us a bit more about themselves and give us a peek at what they look like, just because I thought it would be fun to pull back the internet’s curtain of anonymity. I’ll keep showcasing you folks as long as you keep sending in your photos and quick bios.

Today’s commenter is longtime reader/contributor Ronnie Poore:

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I’m 56 years old and a commercial/promo producer at a TV station in Greenville, South Carolina. My wife, Lisa, and I have been married for 27 years. We have a son, 24, and a daughter, 21. In my spare time I enjoy playing guitar. I am a graduate of the University of South Carolina and avidly follow the Gamecocks. My favorite pro teams are the Raiders (since 1966) and Panthers in the NFL, Braves baseball, and the Lakers in the NBA. In my youth I played basketball (see photo on right).

Thanks, Ronnie — I’ve enjoyed your many comments and Ticker contributions over the years. Thanks for helping to make Uni Watch a better place!

Do you want to be featured in “Unmasking the Commenters”? If so, send me a photo and a quick paragraph about yourself. You don’t have to reveal your real name, and the photo doesn’t have to show your face, but you must include a photo to be considered. Send everything this-a-way.

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Book deal reminder: In case you missed it earlier this week, our friends at Diversion Books are offering an exclusive deal to Uni Watch readers this week: The e-version of Mike Shropshire’s awesome book Seasons in Hell is now available to you for only $1.99 — a 60% discount off the regular price. Snap it up while it lasts, people.

ESPN reminder: In case you missed it yesterday, my latest ESPN column is the annual MLB season-preview edition. Enjoy.

And here’s a late-breaking tidbit (courtesy of reader Steven Zerhusen): The Orioles announced late yesterday afternoon that they’ll be wearing a memorial patch for team investor Tom Clancy. No visuals yet. This patch is in addition to the previously announced 60th-annivsary patch.

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Tick-Tock: Today’s Ticker was compiled and written by Mike Chamernik, except for ’Skins Watch, which was handled by Paul.

’Skins Watch: Looks like Dan Snyder’s newly formed foundation to assist Native American tribes isn’t going to satisfy critics of his team’s name — and that includes critics who happen to be Native Americans. Here are some further thoughts on that Washington Post columnist Mike Wise and from the Post’s editorial board (all three of those links from Tommy Turner). … An even better analysis of this week’s developments — easily the best I’ve seen so far — comes from, of all places, GQ magazine. Highly recommended reading (from Joshua Paster). … But Snyder still has one friend in a very high place: Roger Goodell (Tommy Turner again). … Meanwhile, some Canadian junior hockey teams and First Nations activists are close to solving a recent controversy over Native team logos (thanks, Phil).

Baseball News: An anonymous submitter (I’ll call him Joey Joe Joe Junior Shabadoo) says that Vestavia Hills High School in Alabama wears Kansas City Monarchs-inspired uniforms. “Interestingly enough they play on a solid artificial turf field,” Joey Joe Joe Junior says. … Century-old tobacco baseball cards and baseballs signed by Hall of Famers are going up for auction. The items were confiscated because they were used in a money laundering scheme back in 2007 (from Dave Rakowski). … Bill Mazeroski’s bat and uniform from Game 7 of the 1960 World Series are on display in Pittsburgh (from Phil). … Arkansas Travelers fans don’t care for the team’s two new mascots, Ace and Otey (from Michael Cossey). … The Travelers also have new batting practice caps (from Phil). … Normally the Dodgers’ script logo has a swoop underline from the ending “s.” But for the new clock signage at Dodger Stadium, the swoop comes from the “r” (from Aaron Wiens). … The Yankees are introducing nacho helmets and the White Sox will sell full-size batting helmet banana splits (from Phil). … Vanderbilt will wear flag-desecration caps Sunday. … Speaking of flag desecration, Jonny Gomes bought his Red Sox teammates American flag sport coats (from David Greene). … MLB is limiting players’ at-bat walk-up music to 15 seconds. Now I’m curious: What would be your walk-up song if you were an MLB player? Specify, if you want, which 15 seconds of the song you would use. Also, share what you think would be the worst or funniest song for a player’s at-bat. My walk-up song would be “Fire On High” by ELO, and the worst song would be “Young Girl” by Gary Puckett & The Union Gap. ♫♫ Young girl, get out of my mind / My love for you is way out of line / Better run girl / You’re much too young girl ♫♫

NFL and College Football News: The Lions didn’t wear throwbacks last year but they might this year (from Phil). … For the cross-section of Uni Watch readers who enjoy Volkswagens and the Titans, here’s your perfect window decal (from Aaron McHargue). … Oklahoma is letting fans vote on the endzone and midfield designs for the Spring Game (from Jordan Sogn).

Hockey News: An artist paints baby head-shaping helmets with creative designs, including one in Los Angeles Kings colors. But really, the best two are the “Starry Night” and “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte” helmets (from Jonathan Daniel).

Soccer News: Nike released the Netherlands World Cup away kit (from Phil). … The Guardian fielded some questions about football kits (from Gareth Hammond).

NBA News: The AP made an unfortunate uni-related typo — or maybe just a Freudian slip — the other day. … The D-League’s Tulsa 66ers will wear Higher Education Scholarship jerseys on March 29.

College Hoops News: While in Memphis for the Sweet 16, Dayton is superstitiously using the same bus driver and same purple bus the team used while in Buffalo for the first two rounds (from Patrick O’Neill). … The NCAA Store is selling a women’s Sweet 16 shirt with five incorrect teams on it. It has Duke, Iowa, Purdue, Texas and Nebraska instead of DePaul, Louisville, Oklahoma State, Maryland and BYU (from Chris Lewis). … Stephen F. Austin cancelled its logo unveiling (from Phil).

Grab Bag: Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: All these template uniforms are just too much. … An 18-year-old Virginia man was indicted for killing a Virginia Union student over a pair of sneakers (from Tommy Turner). … SI.com compiled the fashion hits and misses from the Sony Open (from Brinke). … Here’s a site where you can purchase (or just look at) boating blazers and rowing caps, and here’s how those blazers are made (from Gretchen Mittelstaedt). … Pro bowlers used to be rock stars, but now the pro game is on the decline (from Adam Herbst). … The Kansas softball team now has sunrise jerseys (from Jeff Braun). … A short color film about Chicago from the mid-1940s was recently found at an estate sale. The video includes shots of the Cubs and Wrigley Field at the 24:10 mark. Great stuff, recommended if you have any sort of Chicago connection (thanks, Brian Boyle). “Earlier this week Newcastle player Alex McKinnon had his neck broken in a tackle against the Melbourne Storm, so his rugby career is over,” says Graham Clayton. “His teammates will honor him for the rest of the season feature on their jumpers for the rest of the season by wearing his name and debut club number.”

 

237 comments to What Does the Northwestern/NLRB Ruling Mean for Uniforms?

  • Biged6464 | March 27, 2014 at 7:47 am |

    I like turtles!!

  • diggerjohn111 | March 27, 2014 at 7:48 am |

    Student athletes get a free ride to universities that academically many have no ability to attend other than the ability to catch a ball while many of us had to work two jobs to pay for books, and now they get a union and “compensation for their likenesses”. Am I the only one who sees the travesty here?

    • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 9:36 am |

      The travesty is the willingness of so many people to denigrate the work of de facto professionals who put their limbs on the line without the protection of labor laws most people take for granted and their earnings are capped at whatever the school’s tuition/room & board/books happen to be while adding immeasurable value to the university.

      Schools don’t give out scholarship out of the goodness of their heart. They give out scholarships because it’s way cheaper than what the market would otherwise bear.

      • Thresh8 | March 27, 2014 at 11:04 am |

        Plus there’s the whole “vocational education” aspect.

        The NCAA has become (through some messed up manner) the best place to get training for those who’ll have a career in football and basketball.

        (The minor/junior systems of baseball and hockey stand somewhat in contrast.)

        It behooves a player to get the best they can given their talent and ambition.

    • ThePonchat | March 27, 2014 at 10:47 am |

      Athletic scholarships exist because the playing field has long been thought of as an “extension” of the classroom. Anyone can earn scholarships for a variety of reasons (left handedness, ginger headedness, race, ethnicity, religion, leadership, art, instrument, etc.). This thought goes back 100 years (minimum) when intramural athletics were started.

      Maybe nowadays (or in the last X years) there are some that utilize the scholarships because academically they struggle? But, at least they have an opportunity to achieve a form of higher education right? That’s the beauty of American higher education opportunities that the rest of the world doesn’t have — many people cannot obtain a higher degree and thus could potentially be a burden to society.

      In the end, we are educating more and more people. That should never really be a bad thing.

      • KT | March 27, 2014 at 12:43 pm |

        I came here to explore this very topic (Hi, Ponchat, didn’t know you were a Uni-guy, too.)

        When Paul says, “Save the scholarships for academics,” I’m NOT saying he’s wrong, but let’s explore that for a second. Young people who have certain God-given talents (whether it’s the ability to run fast, jump high, play an instrument, paint pictures, whatever) have long been able to parlay that into higher education that they might otherwise (because of background or opportunity or finances) not be able to achieve.

        I don’t think the idea is a bad one. Taking it SOLELY as one slice of the total scholarship pie (athletes, a number of whom, at least in major, revenue sports, seem to see the educational component as something between an annoyance and a means to an end), and one that gets the most attention might lead one to believe the entire system is bad.

        I don’t think it is. Both of my kids got academic scholarships to college because of their high school grades, and there are thousands of kids every year like them and others who can paint or act or do ballet or, yes, row or skate or hit a baseball.

        I certainly wouldn’t want to deprive someone of the opportunity to better themselves through education (if you believe in education as a means of betterment) by parlaying their talents just because their particular talent isn’t my particular talent, or one that doesn’t “measure up” to my personal standard of what someone should get financial assistance for to attend college.

        The college equation itself is all out of whack, leaving athletics completely out of it. I don’t fault anyone for wanting to help kids get an education by awarding scholarships for whatever reason, nor do I fault kids for accepting it. The end of it that exploits predominantly African-American athletes to generate millions of dollars that go to coaches and administrators and wining and dining boosters and donors….well, that’s a little less palatable.

        But I can’t distill those thoughts above into a bumper sticker as simple as “Save the scholarships for academics.” Because I don’t think it’s that simple.

        • diggerjohn111 | March 27, 2014 at 2:34 pm |

          I got scholarships too, but they didn’t cover everything. I also published research for my Uni that involved scoring over historical documents sometimes until the crack of dawn, something that medical science says is more than a little unhealthy- I “put my limbs on the line” too. Did I get a dime for it? Did I get to unionize with other history majors/doctoral candidates? No.

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 2:55 pm |

          I got scholarships too, but they didn’t cover everything. I also published research for my Uni that involved scoring over historical documents sometimes until the crack of dawn, something that medical science says is more than a little unhealthy- I “put my limbs on the line” too. Did I get a dime for it? Did I get to unionize with other history majors/doctoral candidates? No.

          Poor comparison. The school doesn’t require you to be in certain places for 30-40 hours a week and threaten to take away your scholarship if you’re not there, nor does it make immense profits off of your labor.

          This isn’t to say what you do isn’t valuable or important; it just means you don’t fit the definition of an employee, while the athletes do. Or at least that’s what the NLRB found. This doesn’t mean the athletes’ status is better (or worse) than yours — just different.

      • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 1:17 pm |

        In the end, we are educating more and more people. That should never really be a bad thing.

        Unless, as in the case of too many athletes, we aren’t really educating them at all. Which is a bad thing.

        • ThePonchat | March 27, 2014 at 4:34 pm |

          Chance: they are students who happen to play sports. How’s that any different than students who happen to play an instrument? How is it any different than students who happen to play xbox through their whole time in higher education? Heck, how is it any different than a student who happens to be an education major?

          The important thing is they are offered a higher education. If the NCAA did anything, they could ensure the scholarship was actually for educating — hold them to a degree. What’s wrong with that? It could be an associates, but at least it’s a degree.

          KT: Yep! I have been a reader for several years. I randomly have replies. Big, big, big fan of discussions regarding higher education and athletics.

        • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 4:42 pm |

          The important thing is they are offered a higher education. If the NCAA did anything, they could ensure the scholarship was actually for educating — hold them to a degree. What’s wrong with that? It could be an associates, but at least it’s a degree.

          I’d be all for that.

          My comment was more about how these athletes are offered educational opportunities but it seems nobody’s making sure they take advantage of them. No-show classes and easy grades to ensure athletic eligibility don’t actually help anyone.

  • Brendan the Aspie | March 27, 2014 at 7:55 am |

    Stephen A. Austin cancelled its logo unveiling (from Phil).

    Should be Stephen F. Austin.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:08 am |

      Thanks — fixed.

  • mike d | March 27, 2014 at 7:56 am |

    Instead of selling jerseys with player names on them, is it possible the NCAA could go the other way and completely not promote any player? By that I mean banning player NOB for all teams in all competitions. As for selling jerseys, fans could be limited to only a few numbers like 0 and 00.

    I like the amateur status of college athletes, but any money the NCAA makes from merchandise sales or video games that involve any athletes jersey # or likeness should be may made available to all student athletes.

    • Aaron | March 27, 2014 at 7:58 am |

      Maybe a lot of schools could go with “year of founding.” So, my alma mater, Wabash, was founded in 1832, so all jerseys sold would be 32. Or something like that.

    • Thresh8 | March 27, 2014 at 11:14 am |

      Does the NCAA sell jerseys with player names? Isn’t there a legal ramification to the player owning their name for licensing?*

      Once at the UConn coop, years ago, I saw the “your favorite number” promotion, wherein a mens’ jersey #15 (Kemba Walker) or a womens’ jersey #31 (Tina Charles) was available. But no name on back.

      (*Apologies if that has been covered to a faretheewell.)

      • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 2:12 pm |

        They do not put names on off-the-rack jerseys, because that would obviously be promoting specific athletes (though they have no qualm about auctioning game-worn jerseys with player NOBs).

        But it’s pretty standard for schools to sell jerseys with numbers that just so happen to belong to the star players. For example, Texas A&M sold mostly #2 jerseys for the last couple of years. That’s not an accident.

        • Thresh8 | March 27, 2014 at 7:15 pm |

          I thought as much; thanx.

  • Aaron | March 27, 2014 at 7:57 am |

    My walk up music would be “Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen. That is always one of my favorite questions to ask people. I’ve got a little internal catalog of different answers people I know have given me. Usually the choices aren’t too surprising, but every once in a while you get a good one.

    • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 8:10 am |

      I’m usually super indecisive; I have trouble picking only ten items for “desert island” lists, much less actual single favorites. But for wherever reason, I’ve always known exactly what I would want my big-league walk-up music to be: “Guns of Navarrone” by the Skatellites. This version:

      http://youtu.be/dhD-...

      First time up, the opening “chika-chika” with the drums rolling in. Subsequent at-bats, the main melody on horns.

      • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:14 am |

        There has been only one good example of walk-up music ever: Cliff Floyd’s use of the Sanford & Son theme.

        They should have just stopped doing walk-up music after that.

        • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 9:19 am |

          Nah, but the move from walk-up music being the choice of the stadium announcing crew to being the musical bumper equivalent of a vanity license plate should be reversed. Walk-up music should be for the fans and about the player, and the point should be to have a little fun. (Which criteria show why Floyd’s “Sanford & Son” is so brilliant.) Today, walk-up music is mostly by, for, and about the player, and more than half the time it completely fails to engage the stadium crowd at all. A few players get it, and seem to choose music more with an eye to the fans than with their own egos or preferences. Jayson Werth, for example, uses a variety of cues that are as much gentle jabs at himself and his reputation as they are aural tributes to his magnificence or whatever. The typical Werth progression is the “Walking Dead” theme, “Warehouse” by Dave Matthews Band, “Werewolves of London” by Zevon, and the “Game of Thrones” theme. Only “Warehouse” feels like a player’s-favorite-song choice; the others all feel more ironic and aimed at riling up the crowd.

        • Lance Smith | March 27, 2014 at 12:33 pm |

          Speaking of sitcom themes, when Joe Klink was pitching for the A’s, the Twins used to play the Hogan’s Heroes song when he was called in from the bullpen.

          Come to think of it, does anyone do anything like that anymore? Relievers have music in their home parks, but does anyone razz the opposition’s players with specific music?

        • Mark in Shiga | March 27, 2014 at 2:01 pm |

          Lance, back in the ’90s in New York, two Padres pitchers got picked up by the police for soliciting prostitution, and the next day someone at Shea Stadium wanted to play “Can’t Buy Me Love”. I can’t remember if he got talked out of it or now, but the anecdote was in the papers.

        • random reader | March 27, 2014 at 3:08 pm |

          Lance,

          Last night in a Rays spring training game in Port Charlotte, Zach Britton of the visiting Orioles was warming up on the mound before his relief appearance while Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” was playing in the background.

        • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 3:43 pm |

          Lance, I have many fond memories of the Twins public-address folks razzing the opposing team with snide musical cues back in the 1980s and 90s. “Walk of Life” after an unintentional walk, the “Jeopardy!” theme while the opposing manager visits the mound, that sort of thing. As a kid, I just loved that, and it was always kept lighthearted. I’ve only been to Target Field once, and I don’t recall them doing anything of the sort, and the Nats certainly don’t do much of it here in DC. Makes me wonder if culture changed at the team level, or if MLB put a league-wide kibbosh on too-overt opponent-razzing.

      • teenchy | March 27, 2014 at 8:34 am |

        Inspired choice!

        • teenchy | March 27, 2014 at 8:34 am |

          For arrScott and Cliff Floyd, that is.

      • Commenter formerly known as Eric B. | March 27, 2014 at 9:55 am |

        We got to choose walk up music during my high school days (but not college strangely enough), and my first three years I chose music that I liked. And because I was only choosing the music I liked at the time, I can’t for the life of me remember what songs I even chose. My senior year however, I decided to go with something that the fans might get a chuckle out of, mostly because in a small town, everyone knew everyone and most of the fans realized I was taking a jab at myself. I chose the Jackass theme song. Hardly a game went by that I didn’t get a compliment from the opposing catcher for my selection.

      • Gary-O | March 27, 2014 at 11:33 am |

        Mine? Easy. Radiohead’s “Creep.” Start off with the guitar riff and then “But I’m a creep, I’m a weirdo, What the hell am I doing here? I don’t belong here.”

        • G.C. Fields | March 27, 2014 at 12:11 pm |

          My walkup-music preference would be John Cage’s 4′33″.

        • walter | March 27, 2014 at 1:45 pm |

          “Run Joey Run” by David Geddes.

        • Mark in Shiga | March 27, 2014 at 2:04 pm |

          G. C. Fields is the winner.

    • duker | March 27, 2014 at 12:46 pm |

      As a batter I would like The Flaming Lips’ “Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots Part II.” A great baseline and lots of cymbals and screaming.

      As a pitcher my run in from the bullpen music would be The Black Keys’ “Howlin’ for You.” Mainly because of the lines:

      Throw the ball
      To the stick
      Swing and miss and a
      Catcher’s mitt
      Strike two
      Baby I’m howlin’ for you

  • Dave G | March 27, 2014 at 7:58 am |

    “Stephen A. Austin cancelled its logo unveiling” (should be Stephen F. Austin)

  • Christian Berumen | March 27, 2014 at 7:59 am |

    I have noticed that the braves nationals have been wearing a jersey where the front is red and the back is blue

  • Hodges14 | March 27, 2014 at 8:10 am |

    My batter walk up song would probably be Bliss Out by Hadouken! Specifically the beginning. (Ohhhh Waaay up ((bliss)) I’m on my way up/ so high up now I’m floating on the clouds)

  • James Gregg | March 27, 2014 at 8:13 am |

    This unionization will lead to cancellation if athletic programs as they are and they will be reconstituted as a voluntary activity if they are reconstituted at all. Colleges don’t need the athletic programs. Most programs barely break even after non revenue sports are paid for by revenue producing sports. Where the college union supporters miss the mark is thinking they are essential. They aren’t. If I am president of Northwestern for instance and lose the appeal I simply say we are now disbanding the athletic department and be done with it. Not one college in this nation needs to have an athletic department. Not one.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:18 am |

      This unionization will lead to cancellation if athletic programs as they are and they will be reconstituted as a voluntary activity if they are reconstituted at all.

      This is precisely the kind of overheated assertion I’m looking to avoid on the site today.

      I’m not saying you’re wrong (I frankly have no idea), but I’m definitely saying you’ve made a hyberbolic, unsupported assertion, and that’s not what I want on my site. If you can explain *why* you think this will happen, and if your explanation is rooted in the realities of the case instead of wild speculation, please offer that explanation. Otherwise, let’s please avoid grand, sweeping statements. Thanks.

      • NickV | March 27, 2014 at 8:48 am |

        I’ll stick with football for the moment because it likely presents the most challenges to any union/pay-for-play schemes. I am all for athletes being treated better and receiving stipends or payment for their efforts. As it is, given the practice, preparation, game days, meetings, etc. and conditioning – most football scholarship athletes receive about $2.00-$3.00 per hour for their efforts. My biggest concern is that the rich would get richer – meaning the bigger schools and bigger fan bases will be able to pay, and most others will not. After the first 60-70 larger BCS-level programs able to pay players at varying degrees – most other schools will not be able to afford to pay their athletes anything – the money simply isn’t there – unless you can get the big bowl TV money split amongst EVERYBODY, and not just participant conferences and the like. Forget about Div. IAA teams paying players – those programs barely break even at the schools that do well, and most lose money. Div. IAA is held together financially by rubber bands and scotch tape. That is simply a fact. Basketball is less of a problem – more games, less players and the bonanza of TV money. It is NCAA Baseball is most in need of reform if you ask me. 35-40 athletes on a “big” NCAA Baseball team “split” something like 17.2 full scholarships. The balance of tuition and costs are paid for with grants, or out of the families’ own pockets. NCAA Baseball is a year-round commitment, and the players largely pay their own way. It is shameful. That should be looked at first. Full scholarships for at least 30-35 kids per team – at a minimum.

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 9:01 am |

          It is NCAA Baseball is most in need of reform if you ask me. 35-40 athletes on a “big” NCAA Baseball team “split” something like 17.2 full scholarships. The balance of tuition and costs are paid for with grants, or out of the families’ own pockets. NCAA Baseball is a year-round commitment, and the players largely pay their own way. It is shameful. That should be looked at first. Full scholarships for at least 30-35 kids per team – at a minimum.

          I don’t mean this facetiously or snarkily, but what exactly is wrong with some (or all) college baseball players not getting scholarships? Why can’t the baseball players either pay their own way or apply for financial aid and academic scholarships like everyone else? If your answer is, “Because then there wouldn’t be a baseball team,” what exactly would be so horrible about that? What does having a baseball team have to do with the university’s mission?

          Again, I don’t mean to be snotty about this — I’m genuinely interested in your (or anyone’s) answer.

          I understand the value of athletics at a school, but I also understand the value of educational priorities, and the value of not creating a privileged class of student-athletes. If most college sports were relegated to the club or intermural level, what would be so bad about that? You’d get most of the same civic/cultural benefits, and likely without all the bullshit.

        • ThePonchat | March 27, 2014 at 10:50 am |

          NCAA baseball is also the top losing sport, in all of college athletics. Check it out, The Chronicle of Higher Education released that information a few years ago.

          So, why should they be funded better?

      • Richard | March 27, 2014 at 9:14 am |

        Hello Paul, I don’t think James’ post is an overheated assertion at all. In fact your entire first paragraph, and parts of the rest of your post doesn’t explain *why* either. It’s speculation too. I also am not saying you are wrong – but my first reaction this morning reading about $200 shirts and the EA case is *why* or *how*. The SI and Lester Munson piece didn’t offer the explanation I thought I was going to get to support your hypothesis. I agree with you about the high school parents – I have 14 & 16 y.o. kids and deal with the nutty parents frequently. I don’t think AAU couldn’t get any more slimy than it already is.

        Back to James’s point, two NCAA Division 1 schools within 50 miles of my home many years ago dropped major sports for two different reasons, but both involving money. I have no doubt the ruling, if upheld, will cause many more, athletic programs to fall if it costs them more money. Not all programs are as profitable as Northwestern’s

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 9:21 am |

          your entire first paragraph, and parts of the rest of your post doesn’t explain *why* either. It’s speculation too. I also am not saying you are wrong – but my first reaction this morning reading about $200 shirts and the EA case is *why* or *how*.

          Sorry, I didn’t explain the jersey NOB thing because I thought that was pretty common knowledge. So: At present, student-athletes aren’t allowed to profit off of their names or likenesses, because that would make them “professionals,” not amateurs, at least according to the NCAA. That’s also why they can’t do paid autograph sessions, etc. But under this ruling (if it stands), they will almost certainly be able to exploit their own publicity rights. This means their names will be able to appear on retail jerseys (and they’ll get a royalty, natch).

          If you read the article I linked to, you’ll see that EA Sports stopped producing its college football game due to a class-action lawsuit from college athletes who argued, successfully, that their likenesses were being used in the game (even though their names were never used — just their faces, uni numbers, etc.). Again, they weren’t allowed to profit off of this, but EA Sports was profiting bigtime. EA Sports was faced with a choice: Use generic, faceless players or don’t do the game at all. They chose the latter. The ruling will likely allow the players to appear in the game, and to be compensated for it, just as NFL players are for Madden.

      • Richard | March 27, 2014 at 9:21 am |

        To support/answer Paul:

        From Sports Illustrated, about the late-John Silber, then president of Boston University:

        “When Silber arrived at the school in 1970, he wanted to eliminate the football program. Last month, as the Terriers struggled (they are 2-18 in the last two seasons), he finally succeeded. “University of Paris, University of Oxford, University of Cambridge have gotten along remarkably well and never had football,” Silber was quoted as saying in the The Daily Free Press, BU’s student paper.”

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 9:25 am |

          I myself went to a school — SUNY-Binghamton — that didn’t (and still doesn’t) have a football team. I have no idea why, as it’s a big school (8,000 undergrad when I was there), so they could certainly fill out a roster if they wanted to. But I guess they never got around to building a stadium.

          We did have a decent basketball team, although I think we were D-2 in those days. When the school recently tried to make a play for big-time college hoops status, the whole thing blew up in their faces, much to the embarrassment of alums like me:
          http://en.wikipedia....

          I stopped my annual donation to the school’s general fund after that.

        • Richard | March 27, 2014 at 9:58 am |

          Paul, I fully understand the “jersey NOB thing” and “EA sports” issue. Again, I have teenagers and, for years, know all about EA sports at about $60 per pop.

          I read the entire decision. It’s only 24 pages long. Although we’re not allowed to connect Title XI to the argument, the decision does. The ruling also, of course, mentions that players are “prohibited from profiting off their image or reputation (sic, I think) . . . ” The paragraph supports the Board’s decision that the scholarship athletes (only) are employees, and later an election will be held. That’s it. What I’d like to learn is *how* this changes the “jersey NOB thing” and EA sports settlements. Perhaps it is one of those “slippery slopes”, but saying the decision will likely allow the players to profit off of their names and likenesses is just as overheated as any other comment may be without saying *why*.

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 10:17 am |

          See point No. 6 in this Forbes analysis:
          http://www.forbes.co...

        • Richard | March 27, 2014 at 10:35 am |

          I give up. Point No. 6 says just what I wrote. And that is: the ruling used the prohibition from profiting off their image or reputation to determine that scholarship athletes are employees.

        • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 2:21 pm |

          John Silber didn’t know what he was talking about. By the time he made the statement, University of Paris no longer existed.

          Nor did University of Cambridge or University of Oxford, but that’s nitpicking. But more relevantly, the OxBridge rivalry is integral to the profiles of both universities. I’d say the emotional appeal of Oxford or Cambridge wouldn’t quite be the same without rugby or boating.

          Further to the point, American colleges aren’t Sorbonne or Oxford or Cambridge. They compete with a thousand other universities for attention, and there’s only so much research a school can publish and renovating the student union only gets you so far.

        • Richard | March 27, 2014 at 4:10 pm |

          Whether Silber knew what he was talking about or not (and I have a feeling he knew exactly what he was talking about) really doesn’t make a difference. He simply had a strong desire to eliminate football because he just didn’t like it and didn’t believe that it belonged on a college campus – particularly – Boston University.

          Many people reach to drive home a point and I think I’ve seen it here a few times. Silber, for better or worse, was no different in that respect.

    • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 9:38 am |

      Most programs barely break even after non revenue sports are paid for by revenue producing sports.

      When we’re done here, why don’t you come over to my station wagon – I have a bridge I have here to sell you. Because “programs barely break even!” and “most football programs lose money!” are the most transparent accounting trickery this side of New Jersey waste management.

      • Jim Y. | March 27, 2014 at 9:54 am |

        Even if that were true, forget about revenue for a minute. How much exposure in the way of attracting non-athlete (i.e. paying) students is a winning football or basketball team worth? Sure many students go to the higher education institution that they choose for many different reasons, but the athletic teams they will support and cheer for is one of them.

        • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 10:34 am |

          A shitload. Feel free to sift through the piles of research done on this, but there’s little question that winning in football or basketball is a huge driver in applications and alumni donations.

        • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 11:21 am |

          Can you specifically quantify that, though?

        • scottrj | March 27, 2014 at 12:02 pm |

          Finding this took about 3 seconds of Googling:
          http://freakonomics....

          Here’s the study itself:
          http://are.berkeley....

        • KT | March 27, 2014 at 12:45 pm |

          The so-called “Flutie Effect.”

        • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 12:58 pm |

          My math isn’t good enough to have an opinion on that paper. But is one study enough to proclaim the subject closed?

        • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 2:09 pm |

          No one paper or even a collection of papers is enough to proclaim a subject closed on any subject. But the general consensus is that athletic success => financial boon – most of the disagreement is on the degree that it increases applications and givings.

          To put it another way, schools aren’t blindly throwing money at athletics hoping, preying that something good might come out of it.

          When you see a mid-major or small conference school in the NCAAs, it’s not a Cinderella story of plucky kids giving the old college try. It’s the calculated result of a school deciding to devote considerable resources to elevate its national profile.

        • scottrj | March 27, 2014 at 2:29 pm |

          Anecdotal, but so what:
          http://www.newswise....

          Hell, even fielding a D-III football squad increases applications & enrollments, and thereby revenues:
          http://www.sbnation....

  • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 8:13 am |

    Love the new Holland away kit. The blue is so much better for Oranje than their traditional black. And sure, it’s overdesigned and all, what with sublimated chevrons and gradients and everything, but the particulars of the thing are all very Dutch, so it works for Holland.

    • andyharry | March 27, 2014 at 9:51 am |

      Agreed, though I can only remember maybe two cycles in which they wore black as a change kit, so I don’t think I’d consider that their “traditional” color. Their traditional change kit is white, red and blue (the colors of the flag). They’ve worn this deep blue and orange combo a few times in the past as well.

    • andyharry | March 27, 2014 at 9:52 am |

      I also want to point out how beautifully digitized the embroidery of the lion is on that crest (which you can see in close up photos). The texture is second to none, especially in this day and age where that has all but disappeared.

  • mike d | March 27, 2014 at 8:15 am |

    Walk up music:

    Quiet Storm – Mobb Deep

  • wfy | March 27, 2014 at 8:17 am |

    Fire on High is an inspired choice. I think I’d go with the beginning of the 4th movement of New World Symphony.

    • loserem | March 27, 2014 at 12:41 pm |

      Fire on High is an inspired choice if you want the fans to think the CBS Sports Spectacular is about to begin showing on the Jumbotron.

      Although if you play the part towards the end that is backwards masked “The music is reversible but time is not: turn back, turn back! turn back!!), and you moonwalked to the plate (so you’re going backwards, duh), that might be cool.

      Or at least unique

  • Dumb Guy | March 27, 2014 at 8:19 am |

    Walk up music is stupid.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 10:52 am |

      Oh, it is. It’s unnecessary and narcissistic. It delays the game (hence the rule change).

      But I still find walk-up music endearing.

  • Dumb Guy | March 27, 2014 at 8:19 am |

    The helmet art for kids is very cool.

    • Adam N. | March 27, 2014 at 9:58 am |

      LOVE the pilot helmet! The others are all great, and some may be more ‘artistic’, but I love the cleverness and execution of the pilot’s helmet.

  • Hodges14 | March 27, 2014 at 8:20 am |

    Funny story about batter walk up music. My best friend Anthony plays college ball for Trinity in Hartford, and he’s a big guy, so I’m taking him to lunch one day last summer and we end up driving in my car and I have my iPod plugged into the radio and the song Faded by soulDecision pops up. Basically it’s this garbagey synthy pop song from 2000. And Anthony says, “Man, that’s a great song”. A few months later, he calls me up and asks me about the song again and when I ask why, he says he wants that song specifically as his walk up music. I just couldn’t stop laughing. It gets even better. I’m going to cover the game between my school and his school for my school’s newspaper and my high school’s alumni magazine. So if I hear that song, I’m gonna have a good inside laugh at it.

  • ChrisM70 | March 27, 2014 at 8:22 am |

    I like the idea that the unions might stop the universities from profiting off of athletes, the vast majority of them get (almost) nothing in return while endangering their bodies.

    However, I’m not sure if I agree with the idea of ending sports scholarships. To my way of looking at it, universities are places of learning/career training — so why can’t a school be a place to go an learn how to be a better athlete? Instead of pretending like the players need a major, why not make the ACTUAL SPORT THEY ARE PLAYING their major? Why can’t Andrew Wiggins major in Basketball? Then they would have to take courses that actually prepare them for a life of playing basketball (foreign language classes, money handling, dealing with agents, public speaking, etc.) That seems as valid to me as going to school and getting a degree in Public Relations.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:25 am |

      So you’re basically positing universities as vocational schools, where the vocation is basketball (or football, or whatever).

      That’s a novel concept. But here’s the thing: If you go to vocational school to learn to be, say, an electrician, there’s a pretty strong chance you can end up being a professional electrician. But very, very few college basketball players will get even a sniff at a professional basketball career.

      • Chris Holder | March 27, 2014 at 8:48 am |

        To play devil’s advocate, I know plenty of people who majored in something in college, but later couldn’t find a job in that particular field. Is that any different? Maybe the player could still choose to have a true academic major. But if he chooses basketball and then doesn’t make the NBA… well, I guess he’ll either pay for more education or hope to find a job where a degree isn’t required.

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:54 am |

          I know plenty of people who majored in something in college, but later couldn’t find a job in that particular field. Is that any different?

          I majored in political science, which has had relatively little impact on my career. But that’s not the point, because I wasn’t trying to learn a trade as a political scientist — I was simply trying to get an education in something that interested me. The original comment in this thread was proposing that athletes would learn a trade and be equipped to practice that trade professionally, and the fallacy of that argument is that the vast majority of college athletes will never become professional athletes, no matter how well-trained they are for that particular trade.

        • Jim Y. | March 27, 2014 at 10:05 am |

          That’s just a definition of whether something is considered a “liberal art” or a “vocation”. You define basketball as a ‘vocation’ simply because it is preparing someone for a position in that field, but then disqualify it because relatively few will attain that position.

          But then you use the same argument to say that a “liberal art” (like Poly Sci in your case or History in mine) isn’t meant to prepare one for a job, as much as just be “an education in something that interests him” — well why can’t basketball then be a Liberal Art?

          I was hoping a liberal art degree would lead to a better job than what I currently have, but then I chose to major in History, so it’s my own fault. (Of course I didn’t choose to not be 6’10” with a killer jump shot, either.)

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 10:14 am |

          You define basketball as a ‘vocation’ simply because it is preparing someone for a position in that field, but then disqualify it because relatively few will attain that position.

          No, you are mistaken. I defined basketball as a vocation because that’s how the original post in this thread defined it. The original commenter didn’t use the term “vocation,” of course, but look at what he wrote:

          Why can’t Andrew Wiggins major in Basketball? Then they would have to take courses that actually prepare them for a life of playing basketball (foreign language classes, money handling, dealing with agents, public speaking, etc.)

          The problem with “prepar[ing] them for a life of playing basketball” is, once again, that the vast majority of them will not have a life of playing basketball.

          You can argue another issue in another thread if you like. But in this thread we’re discussing what was proposed by the original commenter, and what he proposed was the functional equivalent of vocational school — but for a vocation that most people will never get to pursue.

        • Jim Y. | March 27, 2014 at 10:31 am |

          But in this thread we’re discussing what was proposed by the original commenter, and what he proposed was the functional equivalent of vocational school — but for a vocation that most people will never get to pursue.

          Okay I shouldn’t have said you originally defined it as being vocational as opposed to the original poster, but the greater point, which you backed up, is that students that major in liberal arts study those subjects merely for the education, but with no guarantee of a job.

          Likewise I assume students in a voc-tech cirriculum also have no guarantee of success. (True, perhaps 98% of those students line up apprenticships and eventual position, wheras maybe .002% of athletes ‘make it’ in the NBA.)

          But his last sentence:

          That seems as valid to me as going to school and getting a degree in Public Relations.

          …seems to agree with what I’m trying to say. A degree in the ‘vocation’ of basketball, may be as particulary useful in landing employment as a degree in P.R. may be. (or for that matter any Liberal Arts degree).

          I don’t see such a clear cut distinction between a vocational degree (being defined solely as something that helps you land a job) and a liberal arts degree (defined solely as something you study just because that’s what you want to learn). I think a degree is a degree – what you make of it is up to you, whether that’s an English degree or a certificate as an electrician.

          Perhaps I’m just dense, but like I said, I was a History Major.

      • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 10:23 am |

        But universities really are the functional equivalent of vocational schools for many, sometimes most, students. Take journalism programs: That’s pure vocational ed, and about as likely to lead to actual professional employment in the field as a basketball program. Many other vocational university programs are more successful with post-collegiate professional placement – most business programs, for example, such as accounting, and pre-med and pre-law programs, and IT and engineering. But they’re all largely conducted as vocational training. For various reasons having largely to do with class identity, we don’t regard specialized pre-professional training to be “vocational” if its practitioners wear polo shirts or sportcoats rather than coveralls or gloves, but it is.

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 10:33 am |

          Take journalism programs: That’s pure vocational ed, and about as likely to lead to actual professional employment in the field as a basketball program.

          Journalism is a troubled industry right now, it’s true. But do you honestly think the percentage of journalism students who find jobs in journalism is even vaguely comparable to the teeny-tiny percentage of college athletes who go on to become professional athletes? Come on, Scott — you know it’s not even close.

          Also, some people get journalism degrees for other reasons, like to pursue jobs in other fields, like PR. (Phil, for example, is about to complete a journalism degree but does not intend to go into journalism.)

        • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 12:13 pm |

          Paul, you are now quite persuasively, if accidentally, arguing against your stated position. It’s not about journalism being a troubled industry right now. Journalism education has always been vocational training, and most of those who graduate with j-school degrees have always wound up in careers other than paid reporting.

          So yes, many of those in j-school either know that they will need to support themselves doing something other than writing for the New York Times, or they fully intend to apply their vocational training in other careers, such as politics or corporate communication or whatever. Just like NCAA basketball players! Sure, few will go on to carry an NBA team to the finals. But many have ambitions to go into coaching, or sports education, or physical training, or sports management, or other related fields, and intend to apply the skills developed as players to those careers.

          The notion that we ought not treat athletics as vocational training in college because college isn’t about vocational training is a ridiculous argument on its face. In its disconnection from the reality of American higher education, the argument carries a strong odor of classism. If a college wants to offer vocational training in accounting that students may or may not use to become professional CPAs, no objection. If a college wants to offer vocational training in athletics that students may or may not use to become professional athletes, Quick! Bar the gates against the vandals! Why do we accept the legitimacy of collegiate vo-tech education for journalists and accountants and human-resources folks and librarians and IT techs and doctors and lawyers and teachers but not for athletes or coaches or trainers? Is it only a coinkydink that the former are seen to represent a step up within the middle class, whereas the latter are seen to represent a step up from the lower or working classes into the middle class? Is it an accident that the American mental image of an undergrad accounting major is white or Asian and middle class, whereas the American mental image of a full-ride basketball player is black and poor? (Though neither stereotype is particularly true, the stereotypes do exist.)

          But see what the Wildcats players are doing? They’re forcing everyone to think about these interesting, challenging, and important questions. We really can’t answer the question of how student athletes should be treated without also forcing ourselves to take a hard look at what college is for and whether it’s really doing what it should be doing for all students, not just athletes. Good on them, and here’s hoping the players prevail as their case makes its way up the regulatory and judicial ladders.

        • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 1:30 pm |

          So yes, many of those in j-school either know that they will need to support themselves doing something other than writing for the New York Times, or they fully intend to apply their vocational training in other careers, such as politics or corporate communication or whatever. Just like NCAA basketball players! Sure, few will go on to carry an NBA team to the finals. But many have ambitions to go into coaching, or sports education, or physical training, or sports management, or other related fields, and intend to apply the skills developed as players to those careers.

          But that’s not what the original commenter proposed. One more time (sigh), here’s what he actually said:

          Why can’t Andrew Wiggins major in Basketball? Then they would have to take courses that actually prepare them for a life of playing basketball (foreign language classes, money handling, dealing with agents, public speaking, etc.) [Emphasis mine]

          Your point isn’t a bad one. But it doesn’t address what the original comment proposed, which was that college sports could somehow be justified as part of a university’s mission if we viewed the athletes as vocational trainees gearing up for careers as professional athletes. And that’s clearly not going to happen — which means it’s hard to justify college sports as part of a school’s mission.

          You want to major in sports administration, sports business, etc., go for it! But don’t pretend that playing basketball is vocational training.

  • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:22 am |

    Shit, I forgot to add ’Skins Watch to today’s post until Phil just now reminded me. It’s now been added. (Yes, I know some of you liked it better the first way, insert all the obvious comments here, etc.)

  • Jason German | March 27, 2014 at 8:29 am |

    I’m playing college ball this year, and my walk up song for this season is the beginning of “Musta Had A Good Time” by Parmalee (I’m a country guy; gotta keep it country!) However, next year, it’ll be changed to “Trenches” by Pop Evil.

  • teenchy | March 27, 2014 at 8:30 am |

    Walk up music: Before there was such a thing, I was once serenaded by my industrial league softball teammates with this.

    Today I’d have to choose “Second Chance” by Peter Bjorn and John. It’s gotten a bit overexposed in the pop culture, but given how often I’ve had to reinvent myself in this life I consider it appropriate.

  • Mike Wissman | March 27, 2014 at 8:34 am |

    Too funny about the walk-up music. For some reason I had actually given this some thought and selected ‘2AM’ by Slightly Stoopid. Not sure it would go over given the songs about getting busted for weed. But then again I could always sign with the Mariners or Rockies…

  • Jim Gregg | March 27, 2014 at 8:39 am |

    Disagree my assertion was overheated. Here is why Paul. If you pay the football players, then you will need to pay every other athlete of every other sport including those sports that do not make revenue and are operated from the money a football program makes. How much do you pay these non-football athletes? What about Title IX? If they are now employees is Title IX still in effect? I mean the university could in effect do away with scholarships. Player gets paid and then part of that income pays for his tuition. No scholarships, then Title IX is not in effect since it is based upon scholarships. I based my view on all the big picture ramifications. Considering those, the best move a school might make is doing away with athletics all together. This is not knee jerk or over the top but one of the very possible things that could occur.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:46 am |

      You have now provided a plausible (although certainly disputable) explanation for your assertion — that’s all I wanted. Thank you!

    • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 9:05 am |

      The argument simply doesn’t follow. If colleges pay athletes in one sport, then they must pay athletes in all sports. Why? There is no basis for this assertion. I mean, in our entire market economy, there is no sector where this is true: Some top-level performers are paid handsomely, while others are paid poorly, and still others are not paid at all. But set aside the general realities and focus just on colleges: Some university instructors are paid handsomely, many are paid poorly, and still others are not paid at all beyond the graduate-student equivalent of a football scholarship.

      If universities can treat their most core employees with such wide variation in compensation, why could they not treat student athletes with a similarly wide variation in compensation? Say, football and basketball players earn a pension-like deferred compensation package with some level of ongoing healthcare coverage, while field hockey and golf players continue to earn scholarships.

      • Johnny O | March 27, 2014 at 9:16 am |

        Because of Title IX, doesn’t that mean EVERY athlete on EVERY team needs to be paid if the athletes unionized? I guess that was always my assumption, and my main thought as to why unionizing would never work.

        Did Johnny Manziel make a ton of money for Texas A&M? He sure did. Should he be compensated for that? Possibly. But if you compensate him, you would have to compensate the Women’s LaCrosse team, and the Men’s Swimming and Diving team too. Heck, you need to compensate the punter on the football team too. So now you get into the slippery slope of how much compensation should the schools give out. Manziel makes 50K a year, plus residuals from jersey sales. OK. What does the punter get? 5K? What does the forward on the Men’s soccer team get? 2K? How do you spread it out evenly. In my opinion, it can’t be done.

        • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 9:29 am |

          Nope. Title IX very much does not mean that. Note that Title IX does not currently require that if a football player gets a full ride, therefore every athlete with a scholarship must get a full ride. Heck, athletes in different sports already receive wildly different non-scholarship benefits – think of the greater access to medical care, post-injury rehab and PT, and academic counseling that men’s basketball and football players already receive, compared to what, say, women’s lacrosse or men’s water polo players can expect.

          Where I think you’re on the right track is this: What if a school’s football program professionalized, and eliminated scholarships entirely. Instead, players are paid a salary, with a large part of the salary withheld by the school to offset tuition costs for mandatory classwork. Then the school might have less of a Title IX “burden” and could reduce the available scholarships for women’s programs. The existence of Title IX would create incentives that could produce perverse outcomes in the event of the professionalization of some NCAA sports, but it does not require any particular nightmare scenario like “all athletes must be paid.”

        • DJ | March 27, 2014 at 11:15 am |

          academic counseling that men’s basketball and football players already receive, compared to what, say, women’s lacrosse or men’s water polo players can expect.

          No, when it comes to academic counseling/tutoring, all athletes are required by NCAA rules to have equal access, regardless of sport.

        • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 11:49 am |

          No, when it comes to academic counseling/tutoring, all athletes are required by NCAA rules to have equal access, regardless of sport.

          And yet in practice, they don’t. But we’re not talking about NCAA rules, we’re talking about federal law. Different things entirely.

        • scottrj | March 27, 2014 at 1:26 pm |

          Not so. All NCAA D-I athletes at a given school do in fact have equal access to the academic resources the school provides (though what those resources are differs from school to school).

          It’s just that football and basketball players requires/consume more of those resources than, say, men’s water polo or women’s lacrosse players.

    • Big CK | March 27, 2014 at 9:22 am |

      Actually, scholarships are just one part of Title IX. The prime function is to provide equal opportunity, such that schools have to have enough sports for women and men, with those numbers determined by enrollment and/or other factors that I’m not immediately familiar with.

      Ultimately I have no idea how this will play out, but from the beginning of all these lawsuits my message to the players has been to be careful what you wish for because you just might get it. What they think is a great victory for them might end up making things even worse, such as fewer opportunities for marginal players. Universities have really smart people, and whatever the end result of the lawsuits, there’s a good chance they’ll find some way to mostly circumvent the ruling, which may result in the players getting even less than they have now. Or not, but the barn door has been opened and the cash cow is headed for the butcher’s block, and the powers-that-be won’t give that up without a fight.

  • Don G | March 27, 2014 at 8:44 am |

    “The (Memphis) Redbirds will be wearing blue-and-gold Egyptian-themed jerseys with Memphis spelled in hieroglyphs on June 7 for Tribute To Memphis, Egypt Night.”

    http://media.bizj.us...

    Tops are terrible…here’s to some of the players showing off the socks, though.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:47 am |

      Was in the Ticker last week. Loved it then, still love it now!

  • Mike V. | March 27, 2014 at 8:46 am |

    For my walk up song I would have to go with “I’m Too Sexy” by Right Said Fred. 2 reasons:

    1. Just try to walk while listening to that song and try not to strut your shit.

    2. Hopefully the pitcher would be laughing too hard or just too confused to focus on the at-bat.

    P.S. I’m too sexy for this comment…

    • NickV | March 27, 2014 at 8:51 am |

      Excellent choice!

    • Adam N. | March 27, 2014 at 10:02 am |

      Hold all calls please, I believe we have a winner!

  • Rob S | March 27, 2014 at 8:47 am |

    Coding error on the final item of the ticker.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 8:52 am |

      Thanks — fixed.

  • just Joe | March 27, 2014 at 8:57 am |

    My walk-up music would have to either be “Gravity’s Gone” by Drive-By Truckers or “Big Mouth Blues” by Gram Parsons.

    The best choice for walk-up music I’ve ever heard was back in 2008 when UGA played in the College World Series and a player named Dean Weaver used Gary Wright’s “Dream Weaver.”

    Unrelated topic, but after watching old DVD’s of WKRP in Cincinnati last night, I was going to link to an image of Venus’s jacket typo. But, after a quick search of google images, the only photo I found was from…uni-watch. Not sure how I missed that discussion.

  • Keith | March 27, 2014 at 9:01 am |

    For at least thirty years now, I’ve known that Uptight (Everything’s Alright) by Stevie Wonder is my walk-up song.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 10:41 am |

      Yes. Great song, very upbeat for at-bat music.

  • Chris LaHaye | March 27, 2014 at 9:04 am |

    Walk up music:
    Ain’t seen nothing yet- BTO
    Immigrant Song- Led Zeppelin

  • name redacted | March 27, 2014 at 9:05 am |

    Age of Consent by New Order.

    I always thought colleges should just have a professional team where the players are nit students and get paid as pros.

    And have intermurals for any non revenue generating sport, since those vary by sport. (Uconn and UT could have pro womens teams, RPI and Bowling Green could have pro hockey, …)

  • Johnny O | March 27, 2014 at 9:17 am |

    It’s been done many times before, but I have always loved it.

    My walk up theme would be “Your Love” by The Outfield

    • Chris Holder | March 27, 2014 at 9:25 am |

      Great song. I have that on a “Baseball” playlist on my phone. Maybe it’s just the band name, but it’s definitely a song that reminds you of baseball.

      Along the same lines and from the same era of music… I might have to go with “Walk of Life” by Dire Straits or “Put Me In Coach” by John Fogerty. Who cares if they’re cliche – they’re good songs.

  • Turtle12 | March 27, 2014 at 9:18 am |

    Walk-up: The intro to River Queen by Volbeat or Metallica’s version of The Ecstasy of Gold right when the full band kicks in.

  • Noonan | March 27, 2014 at 9:20 am |

    For bad walk up songs you have to go with either “The Stripper” or “Baby Elephant Walk”

  • DenverGregg | March 27, 2014 at 9:22 am |

    Funny ones:
    They Might Be Giants – Put Your Hand Inside the Puppet Head (starting with “Memo to myself . . ”
    Moxy Fruvous – King of Spain
    Mahna Mahna
    Sweet – Wig Wam Bam (particularly against Braves or Indians)

    For reals:
    Skatalites – Ring of Fire or Eastern Standard Time
    Rolling Stones – You Can’t Always Get What You Want (ending)
    Shout Out Louds – Streams of Whiskey
    Thin Lizzy – Whiskey in the Jar
    Kiss – Detroit Rock City (intro)
    Theme from Peter Gunn
    Sweet – Little Willy or The Ballroom Blitz

    • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 9:33 am |

      You’d be one of my favorite players with this list.

      Also, is this a first-ever Moxy Fruvous reference on UW?

      • BWags | March 27, 2014 at 12:54 pm |

        I concur! And amazingly, no… it was not a first-ever reference. (Thanks Google custom search!)

        It was in the comments:
        http://www.uni-watch...

    • mike 2 | March 28, 2014 at 1:25 am |

      “Moxy Fruvous – King of Spain”

      “…and now I vacuum the turf at SkyDome”

  • Paul S | March 27, 2014 at 9:30 am |

    My walk up song would be the intro to Unchained/VanHalen.

    As far as a college players union, I think this will go on for years. And it will come down to a Supreme Court ruling. A conservative court will strike it down. A liberal court will uphold.

  • Jet | March 27, 2014 at 9:39 am |

    Nice job on the MLB preview!

    Two comments: Is it just me, or have the “spikes” on the Pirates now-primary “P” logo become even more pronounced? (thereby throwing off the balance of the rest of the letter even more)

    And I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Red Sox road threads! THAT’S how the Bosox should look!!!!

    -Jet

  • FiteClub | March 27, 2014 at 9:47 am |

    Re: Unmasking the Commenters
    Pleased to know of another Raiders/Lakers fan in South Carolina! Being a SoCal transplant myself, haven’t met too many, especially Raiders fans, in SoCar.

    • Jim Y. | March 27, 2014 at 10:09 am |

      Do you still correct people when tha call the University of South Carolina in Columbia USC and tell them where the real USC is?

      • FiteClub | March 27, 2014 at 10:21 am |

        HA! No chance, they are quick to point out here which was the FIRST USC. Plus, I’ve had a ton of fun following Gamecocks baseball the past 5 years!

  • Jake | March 27, 2014 at 9:53 am |

    I feel the need to point out the unfortunate picture choice for the “artificial turf field” of Vestavia Hills High School. Great uniforms, but unfortunate error committed at the moment of the pic!

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 10:39 am |

      Yep, I noticed that! He even used two hands and looked the ball into the glove. Awesome photo.

  • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 9:56 am |

    I think we (and I really do include myself in this “we”) need to be a little more careful to avoid conflating the concepts of “player unionization” and “professionalization” in NCAA sports. The bulk of the Northwestern players’ case for seeking collective representation is not about direct payment of salary dollars. The dominant issues seem to be matters of safety, care, and post-collegiate treatment. Schools can, and frequently do, treat individual players as commodities to be used up and discarded if they are no longer useful. Say a football player suffers traumatic brain injury while playing for a school. Currently, he’s likely to receive no care or compensation from the school after he graduates (or even after he simply leaves the football program, even if he continues his studies).

    In the near term – well, in the near term nothing, as this is likely to be appealed first within the executive regulatory chain and then to the federal judiciary – it seems that unionized students would be much more likely to bargain for improved terms of participation, better academic support, scholarships that can be maintained even if a student leaves the athletic program, some forms of post-collegiate healthcare, and possibly a pension-like program of deferred compensation. All or most of that could be done without too much conflict with existing NCAA rules, whereas outright salary payments would likely get a program booted from NCAA competition entirely.

    The ultimate end-point may be (should be!) the outright professionalization of high-revenue college athletics. But that’s unlikely to be a near- or even medium-term aim of any collective bargaining.

    • Eltee of DC | March 27, 2014 at 7:52 pm |

      ArrScott,

      Damn your infernal irrefutable logic!

      Why ruin a great thread with your lethal legal insights just because they happen to be based on facts and empirical experience? Thanks for the Buzzkill Arr. I kinda wanted to see the Scott Borasification of college sports.

      For what it’s worth, (you can stop reading now… boring personal opinion alert) I see the University sports system in our country and it’s frontmen (NCAA) finally running out of excuses for what has been decades of inexcusable behavior. These organizations claim that they are temples of higher learning and that the exploitation of labor under the guise of “Student Athletes” is defensible and worthy of acclaim. This is an argument is coming from smart people? Wow.

      Would it bankrupt a university to offer and education AND a living wage (hell even a stipend for date money – like normal students would be a start) to their athletes. Is that concept pure communism in it’s all it’s evil glory? Would we have to shut down college sports for that? Are you kidding me?

      As for what is to come… well we can look at the Olympic transition from amateur to professional for a guide. Not much changed but the winners share.

      In my lifetime I have seen amazing changes in sport starting with baseball, (Thank you Marvin Miller – just ask Mr. Ruess about collective bargaining and what it did for his world class haircuts.) and the Olympic movement (show me the money faster, higher, farther). Did the universe implode, did they lock up the stadiums and go away.

      Nothing changed… yet everything did.

      Now it is college sports turn.

      I say let it come. We can take it.

  • andyharry | March 27, 2014 at 9:57 am |

    The likely situation with the Sweet Sixteen shirt is that the image was a sample created prior to the games so that it could be posted and up for sale as soon as possible. The samples are created based on who you “think” might make the Sweet Sixteen so that there’s something to show in the catalog. The graphic will more than likely have been updated and the correct one shipped out, but apparently they are slow to update the image that shows the product on the web.

    • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 11:12 am |

      That appears to be the case (or the image could have been saved before it was swapped out).

      The actual product page includes this disclaimer: “Please note: The actual tee will feature all team logos for the participating schools once finalized.”

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 1:14 pm |

      Makes sense. I was quick to laugh at the NCAA. Apologies on my end.

  • Chris in Nashville | March 27, 2014 at 10:02 am |

    My walk up song would definitely Blister in the Sun by Violent Femmes because the fans could get involved with the claps and sports shouldnt be taken too seriously

    • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 11:13 am |

      Can never go wrong with early Femmes.

      • Johnny O | March 27, 2014 at 12:50 pm |

        A fine Wisconsin product.

  • StLMarty | March 27, 2014 at 10:03 am |

    Not being a fan of “batter up” music, but having entertained the thought, I determined that I would switch mine up daily.

    Today?

    “It is Like Fresh” – Butch Simile and the Cliche Kid

  • Dagr | March 27, 2014 at 10:15 am |

    Re PBA and professional bowling:

    A lot of it is demographics, social media, and movement into the suburbs. Read the book Bowling Alone by Robert Putnam. It is a devastating look at how these factors make us less connected to each other — and less likely to join a local bowling league.

  • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 10:17 am |

    Has this been in the ticker? “This Is a Generic Brand Video”:

    http://vimeo.com/895...

  • jimmywags | March 27, 2014 at 10:21 am |

    Worst walk-up song is a topic that friends and I have been discussing for years. I contend “Man, I feel like a woman” by Shania Twain has to be the worst. Until the gender barrier is broken, at least. Although “Aqualung” would have to be up there, too. ‘Sitting on a park bench, eyeing little girls with bad intent…”

    • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 10:30 am |

      Close, but the absolute worst walk-up music imaginable would be Greg Brown’s “Laughing River”:

      http://www.youtube.c...

      Key lyrics of the Greg Brown song: “Twenty years in the minor leagues / Ain’t no place I didn’t go / Well I got a few hits / But I never made the show.” As walk-up music, it’d be the equivalent of showing a plane-crash disaster movie on an airplane.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 11:00 am |

      Mike Napoli came up to “I Feel Like A Woman” before! Might not be so awkward if the player is a jokester.

  • LiketheRiver | March 27, 2014 at 10:21 am |

    The membership card with the Herbie cover is similar to
    Steve Mcqueen’s racing suit in Le Mans.
    USA soccer should of went with a similar design for their world cup kits instead of the horrid golf shirt and the Russia/France looking kit leaked yesterday.

    • DJ | March 27, 2014 at 11:17 am |

      “Should have.”

      • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 1:16 pm |

        While we’re at it…

        “should have GONE”.

    • Anthony Nuccio | March 27, 2014 at 12:51 pm |

      I strongly disagree with your characterization of the US home kit being a “horrid golf shirt.” It’s definitely far more beautiful than most people think it is.

  • FiteClub | March 27, 2014 at 10:25 am |

    One of my favorite “walk up” songs was actually more of a “warm up” song. When Kevin Brown was with the Dodgers, they played the opening guitar riffs of Aldo Nova’s “Fantasy” as he made his warm up pitchers to start the game. Got the place rocking and ready.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 10:56 am |

      Oh that’s good.

  • BrianC | March 27, 2014 at 10:32 am |

    Regarding the Thorold Blackhawks:

    Name: Not racist
    Crest: Racist

    And is Otey considered a stereotypical coveralls with no shirt gap toothed hillbilly? Or just another stupid mascot?

  • Jack | March 27, 2014 at 10:32 am |

    I find I disagree with the majority of what is posted as opinion in this blog.

    However I agree with the comment of awarding someone academically for athletic ability (for that matter I’m against awarding someone based on creed, color or any other reason than pure merit).

    But college sports is one big business and it is hypocritical of the NCAA to make a fortune while it’s athletes are only paid thru scholarships that come with limiting restrictions and failure to comply comes with stiff penalties. All the while there are crooked administrators and boosters passing cash like Vegas casinos to the mob during the ’60’s.

    College athletics is broken. It is corrupt and hypocritical. I am curious if this ruling will help right the ship or if it is just too late.

  • BrianC | March 27, 2014 at 10:33 am |

    My walk up song:

    “The Needle and the Damage Done” by Neil Young. I’ve been kind of depressed lately.

    • CortM | March 27, 2014 at 4:17 pm |

      This would really bring down a stadium.

      Saturday Night Live did a thing, years ago, where Neil Young performed a Super Bowl halftime “Tribute to Walt Disney” — that plaintive wail, unwinding a mournful “M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E” to the tune of “Into the Black”.

  • Perry | March 27, 2014 at 10:34 am |

    I generally dislike the whole idea of walk-up music. That said, I can think of two exceptions that I liked. Way back in the day, the organist at Busch Stadium played a bit of “Theme From Shaft” when Lou Brock came to bat.

    And when Todd Zeile played for the Rockies ca. 2000, his walk-up music was “Purple Haze.” That was pretty cool.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 10:49 am |

      “Theme From Shaft” is awesome. But you gotta be enough of a badass to live up to having that as your song. Lou Brock passes, though.

  • Scott Davis | March 27, 2014 at 10:39 am |

    My walk up music would be the first 30 seconds of “Did You No Wrong” by J. Geils Band, and I’d walk up to the plate really, really slowly so everyone can enjoy.

    https://www.youtube....

  • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 10:47 am |

    Good song picks everyone, thanks for sharing. I’ve always been fascinated with personal walk-up music. It’s unique to baseball (and boxing and pro wrestling, too) and it reveals some of the player’s personality.

    I had a small list of other songs I’d choose for myself, including “Go Down Gamblin'” by Blood, Sweat & Tears; “Panama” by Van Halen; “Still Not A Player” by Big Pun; and the instrumental beat to “Dirty Harry” by the Gorillaz. Quite a mix.

    Picking a song was tough, even for just a hypothetical. I felt like Mike Cameron did in this commercial.

    • Kevin Zdancewicz | March 27, 2014 at 11:52 am |

      Mike, you may have seen this, but given one of your additional walk-up choices, you might get a kick out of it (funny overall in my opinion as well):
      http://tribevibe.mlb...

      • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 12:31 pm |

        Nick Swisher’s antics are divisive among baseball fans, but I enjoy them.

  • Marc-Louis Paprzyca | March 27, 2014 at 10:48 am |

    Thank you to Brian Boyle for submitting that video of Chicago. I love my city but I wish it looked more like that today.

    Also, my walk up music would be August 8th by NOFX (http://www.youtube.c...) because that’s my birthday and also bears significance in Chicago baseball. The White Sox first wore their shorts on that date in 1976 and the Cubs started their first night game on that date in 1988.

  • Jimbo | March 27, 2014 at 10:48 am |

    Paul wrote: “The bad part is that the professionalizing of college sports will likely have a trickle-down effect on high school and AAU-level sports, which will now be one step closer to where the big money is. This means those sports will likely become even more infected…”

    MORE infected is exactly right. The continued push toward “premiere” soccer teams, “elite” baseball teams for youth athletes is driven by one thing: money. The premiere clubs are businesses who offer professional coaching and the possibility of a division 1 scholarship to your 12 year-old. It’s big business and our children are hot commodities.

    Recently I’ve seen a move in youth football to catch up to other sports’ “premiere” teams. There are organizations that offer your child “elite” football training, with “100% college placement” (whatever that means), for a significant fee.

    Big money is already infecting youth sports, and it’s only growing.

    Only 1% of all the kids playing high school football play D1 football. I tell the kids I coach this, and remind them that they damn well be doing their school work!

  • ZT in NC | March 27, 2014 at 10:55 am |

    I like hearing walk up music when I take my son to a ball game. I like it because I feel that it shows a little of the player’s personality.

    Even though I know I might catch some grief for this, I’m a fan of the WWF/WWE and have been for a long time. I see a definite connection between a batter walking to the plate and a wrestler making his way to the ring. My walk up music would definitely be the theme song for the New Age Outlaws (“Oh, you didn’t know?”). Great guitar riffs and a good song for a 10 second walk to the plate.

    http://www.youtube.c...

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 1:01 pm |

      Former Brewers reliever Todd Coffey entered to the Ultimate Warrior’s theme.

      New Age Outlaws have a great entrance. Good music and Road Dogg is a natural with the mic. I’ve always thought that Stone Cold’s glass shatter is the best song to get an audience pop. That clip is goosebumps on goosebumps.

  • Brad | March 27, 2014 at 11:15 am |

    Paul said: “I have never — never — understood the point of athletic scholarships. Why exactly should someone get a subsidized education just because he or she is a fast runner, or a good swimmer, or anything else that has nothing to do with a university’s mission?”

    A university’s mission (the business of “higher education”) is first and foremost to make money. Second, it’s to educate.

    The need for TV programming on networks like ESPN and Fox Sports1 leads to TV contracts with major college athletic conferences/programs that in turn receive national television and other media exposure. That exposure helps promote the schools brand to prospective (non athletic) students who will pay tuition, room, and board and help the college towards its singular goal of profitability.

    The science department is simply not getting a three hour national TV window on a Saturday afternoon, but the football team is getting that sort of exposure.

    To secure the type of talent it takes to win and continue to earn the much sought after TV money, scholarships are awarded to those that can run fast and jump high to help the school make money – the university’s mission.

    Scholarships are simply the cost of doing business in major college athletics, it’s that simple.

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 12:06 pm |

      A university’s mission (the business of “higher education”) is first and foremost to make money.

      No it’s not. For starters, many universities are non-profits.

      More to the point, what you’re suggesting is that universities can and should do anything possible to make money so they can keep offering classes. This is the “it’s just business” argument, and it’s as flawed when applied to universities as it is when applied to corporations. Your implication is that “the cost of doing business” is self-justifying, and that is false. According to your argument, virtually any money-making activity would qualify as the university’s “mission” — producing pornography, developing condos, opening casinos, you name it. Because hey, it would all fund the greater mission, right?

      Wrong.

    • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 12:13 pm |

      A university’s mission (the business of “higher education”) is first and foremost to make money

      No, it isn’t. Or at least it shouldn’t be.

  • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 11:18 am |

    Also, for the worst walk-up song, I think “Stan” by Eminem would depress the entire stadium instantly. Imagine it’s a big spot in the ninth, you’re standing and cheering, and then someone comes up and you hear “Stan,” specifically the part where Eminem raps about Stan having his tied-up girlfriend in the trunk (as she screams in the background!) before he drives off a bridge. You hear the splash sound and everything. Total buzzkill.

    By the way, I can’t believe “Young Girl” is still played on FM radio! It’s about a guy who lusts after an underage girl. It includes the lyrics “Beneath your perfume and make-up/ You’re just a baby in disguise” and “So hurry home to your mama/ I’m sure she wonders where you are”.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 12:26 pm |

      Miracles” by Insane Clown Posse would be pretty funny, too.

      • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 1:11 pm |

        … you know what, nevermind. “Miracles” has a really hot beat to it.

    • Dagr | March 27, 2014 at 1:37 pm |

      “Don’t Stand So Close To Me” by The Police also has a Lolita theme.

      As well as “Hot Child In The City,” by Nick Gilder, and “Do Me” by Bell Biv Devoe.

    • Dumb Guy | March 27, 2014 at 3:49 pm |

      This Girl is a Womon Now” ~ also by GP&theUG

      “This girl tasted love as tender as the gentle dawn
      She cried a single tear a teardrop that was sweet and warm
      Our hearts told us we were right
      And on that sweet and velvet night
      A child had died, a woman had been born…..”

      • umplou | March 27, 2014 at 5:33 pm |

        Even the Beatles – I Saw Her Standing There: “She was just 17- you know what I mean…” :O

        In half the states that is illegal – but in Great Britain, the age of consent is 16, so there its no big deal.

        But that’s why in the Stones’ Stray Cay Blues, Jagger deliberately went:

        I can see that your fifteen years old
        No I don’t want your ID….

        ahh…stardom

  • Mainspark | March 27, 2014 at 11:28 am |

    Remember when umpires used to have their own walk-up music – “Three Blind Mice”?

    • JenInChicago | March 27, 2014 at 1:23 pm |

      Nice!

    • random reader | March 27, 2014 at 3:11 pm |

      That happened in a minor-league or college game last year after an umpire got a call wrong in the previous half inning. The umpire heard “Three Blind Mice” being played on the keyboard and ejected the keyboard player!

    • umplou | March 27, 2014 at 5:34 pm |

      BOO you’re OUTTA here!!

      :P

  • Darren | March 27, 2014 at 11:35 am |

    Is there a rule about ballparks playing walk up music for visiting players? Because it would be fun to hear some of these bad ones. My personal favorite bad song is the Mission Impossible theme.

    • mild bill | March 27, 2014 at 12:22 pm |

      I am not sure if there is a rule for walk up music for visiting players but I recall the organist in Anaheim getting in trouble during the 1980’s for playing the Addams Family theme song while Wade Boggs made his way to the plate.

      This happened shortly after it was revealed that he had been having an ongoing affair with a woman named Margo Adams.

    • BeerSnob | March 27, 2014 at 5:09 pm |

      The Diamondbacks played “loving you” (which had just been named the world’s worst song by some publication) before every visiting player at-bat on Opening Day 2007. The fan reaction went over like a lead balloon.

    • Dane | March 27, 2014 at 7:10 pm |

      When I was attending Arizona Icecats games, the organist would play Three Blind Mice as the referees skated onto the ice.

  • JohnK | March 27, 2014 at 11:56 am |

    True walk-up song story: A few years back my son’s team made it to the championship game for the local little league. Someone came up with the idea to have walk-up music for the kids, and asked each what they wanted. Besides the expected pop song requests, there were some who just went with songs they had heard from movies. “Tequila” by the Champs (Pee Wee’s Big Adventure) was my son’s choice. Even more inspired was “31 Flavors” by the Shirelles (Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World version) that one of his friends chose. Sadly, but not really surprisingly, the walk-up music part of the game never came together.

    Since MLB walk up music became common, I have been waiting to hear the opening to “Look at Me, I’m Wonderful” by the Bonzo Dog Band.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 12:25 pm |

      My little (girl) cousin was in a softball tournament a few years ago, on an 11-year old travel team. They played in a pro softball stadium and all the girls had walk-up songs. I’ve never heard so much Slayer in my life.

      Just kidding. It was all crappy top-40 bubblegum pop. So kudos to your son for choosing something unique (even if it never came to be).

  • Connie DC | March 27, 2014 at 12:12 pm |

    “… Also, I have never — never — understood the point of athletic scholarships. Why exactly should someone get a subsidized education just because he or she is a fast runner, or a good swimmer, or anything else that has nothing to do with a university’s mission? If this ruling (if it’s upheld) ends up changing the athletic scholarship system, I’m all in favor of that. Save the scholarships for academics…”

    This is a big big big topic, and today’s comments provide a terrific range of well-argued points of view. Two quick things:

    1) The Ivy League schools never award athletic scholarships. All scholarships are “need-based.” But… but… Whether in the name of “diversity” or “excellence,” it is a fact that being a skilled athlete (or a movie star or a great cello player or etc) allows an applicant to an Ivy school to get a significant advantage over other applicants with better high school grades / SAT scores just to get admitted and, hence, eligible for need-based scholarships. It is also a fact that very few Ivy athletes on football or basketball teams come from families wealthy enough to not qualify for need-based scholarships. I would be surprised if some, if not mod,t of the members of the (excellent) Harvard basketball team would have been admitted if they hadn’t played so conspicuously well in high school. I support this system, by the way.

    2) There is a huge – huge – ethnic/racial component of the debate re athletic scholarships, minimum academic standards, graduation rates etc, and it might bear deeper discussion.

    • scottrj | March 27, 2014 at 1:56 pm |

      The schools that comprise the Ivy League, with their huge endowments, have become exceedingly generous with their financial aid awards in recent years.
      http://www.nytimes.c...

      In addition, a few Ivy League schools are known for manipulating the “Academic Index” they’ve all agreed to utilize, for instance, by recruiting someone they don’t project to play much if at all but whose astronomic A.I. score enables them to bring in 2-3 star recruits who on their own would no more than possibly qualify for admission.
      http://www.nytimes.c...

      As the parent of a young woman child who went through the (largely dehumanizing) D-I recruiting process, but decided instead to “take her talents” to the D-III level b/c the academic opportunities were better & “Dad, there’s no pro league in women’s field hockey,” I fear that the logical consequence of the NLRB’s decision ultimately will be that collegiate institutions shed “minor” (read, non-revenue generating) sports teams like there’s no tomorrow, in turn leading to those same sports withering on the vine at the HS and youth levels over time.

      It’s impossible to contend that both big-time collegiate athletics and the NCAA are corrupt and desperately in need of reform, but that said I don’t see how blowing the NCAA up is going to achieve that goal. To quote the late King of Rock ‘n Soul, Solomon Burke, “sometimes you get what you want – but you lose what you had.” This could well be one of those times, IMO.

  • El Duderino | March 27, 2014 at 12:14 pm |

    In real life, “Please Please Me” by The Beatles

    However, I think where you are in the lineup and roll dictates that what song should be.

    1. “They Want EFX” Das EFX
    2. “Walk of Life” Dire Straits
    3. “Summer In The City” The Lovin’ Spoonful
    4. “Kashmir” Led Zeppelin
    5. “Under My Umbrella” Incubus
    6. “Go With The Flow” Queens of the Stone Age
    7. “Still In Love With You” Al Green
    8. “I Want To Be Sedated” The Ramones
    9. “Please Please Me” The Beatles
    P. “Man In A Suitcase” The Police

  • Scott Bennett | March 27, 2014 at 12:16 pm |

    Baby shaping helmets with “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte” on them? I thought the purpose of the helmet was to avoid pointillism.

    SB

    • Clarybird | March 27, 2014 at 1:44 pm |

      Hah! I see what you did there…

  • mike d | March 27, 2014 at 12:22 pm |

    If student athletes are deemed professional, could that also open the door for them to have their own shoe deal?

    A basketball player at an Under Armour school could probably sign a deal with Nike I would assume.

  • Tony C. | March 27, 2014 at 12:31 pm |

    Johnny Football photoshopped in various NFL uniforms https://scontent-a-o...

    also in his pro day “uniform”
    https://scontent-a-o...

  • Jeremy | March 27, 2014 at 12:37 pm |

    My walk-up music would be “Hocus Pocus” by Focus. The numerous breakdowns in that song are perfect for each subsequent at-bat.

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 12:48 pm |

      Awesome, awesome choice. Love that song.

    • scottrj | March 27, 2014 at 2:32 pm |

      The B side of that 45 rpm was even better. ;)

  • Scott Bennett | March 27, 2014 at 12:40 pm |

    Cliff Floyd’s “Sanford and Son” Is brilliant.
    Lou Brock is enough of a complicated man to pull off the theme from”Shaft”.

    While I don’t care for the song or band, When Scott Rolen was with the Blue Jays, he used to use “Rollin’ ” by Limp Bizkit as his walk up music.

    If I could go back in time, Willie Stargell would get “Superfly” (“We are Family” is too obvious – save that for the rest of the team).

    SB

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 12:47 pm |

      Addison Reed used “Bawitdaba” by Kid Rock last year when he entered as a closer. I don’t care for that Kid Rock but play that song loud enough and you’ll get fired up.

      “Superfly” is an excellent choice. Perfect for Pops Stargell.

    • BurghFan | March 28, 2014 at 12:40 am |

      Once the Pirates moved to Three Rivers, there was an organ, and organist Vince Laschied would play walk-up music of his own choosing. For Stargell, it was the Chicken Reel, since he had a chicken franchise for a while and would occasionally “spread some chicken on the Hill”. Roberto Clemete’s music was Jesus Christ Superstar, and later in Stargell’s career, that’s what Laschied would play when he hit a home run.

  • Scott M.X. Turner | March 27, 2014 at 12:52 pm |

    I’d come up to bat to either Jack Nitzsche’s “Lonely Surfer” https://www.youtube.... (play from right here at the 44-second mark) or the organist’s version of the same song.

  • trevor | March 27, 2014 at 1:15 pm |

    Considering the infrastructure already in place, college sports will end up with some hybrid, semipro system. It has already been discussed last year before the Northwestern unionization.

    http://www.cbssports...

    Some colleges will drop sports altogether, but most will continue on.

  • JenInChicago | March 27, 2014 at 1:25 pm |

    So, after a bit of research, that’s Cubs skipper Charlie Grimm throwing the baseball around in that Chicago video.

    NICE!

    I also think that the river looked much better without the skyscrapers built right up against it!

    • JenInChicago | March 27, 2014 at 1:28 pm |

      And Luke Appling making a play at 1st for the SOX!

    • Chance Michaels | March 27, 2014 at 5:00 pm |

      Very cool – Jolly Cholly would have been in his second stint managing the Cubs at that point, in between his two managerial jobs in Milwaukee.

  • David T. | March 27, 2014 at 1:28 pm |

    I’m guessing Paul doesn’t write the captions on the photos for his ESPN columns. He wouldn’t be inclined to say, “Look for other teams to sport camo gear to honor veterans.”

    • Paul Lukas | March 27, 2014 at 1:33 pm |

      Writers rarely if ever have any say regarding the photos or captions (or headlines, or pull quotes, etc.) that run with their work. I usually make photo suggestions when I deliver my text, and I’ll ask for captions to be adjusted if they’re factually inaccurate (happens inadvertently sometimes when an editor isn’t as intimately connected to a story as I am, which is understandable), but that’s pretty much the extent of my involvement in that area.

  • Alan Tompas | March 27, 2014 at 1:28 pm |

    Worst walk up songs..
    Turning Japanese-The Vapors
    Baby Baby-that Bieber prick
    Royals-Lorde
    I Don’t Want to Lose Your Love-The Outfield
    Cum on feel the Noize-Quiet Riot

    Best walk up songs..
    Big PImpin’-Jay Z
    Black Dog-Led Zeppelin
    I Fought the Law-The Clash
    My Way/Sinatra and or Sid Vicsious
    Rockaway Beach-Ramones
    Badlands-Bruce Springsteen

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 2:17 pm |

      “Turning Japanese” is pretty bad, both because of the Japanese part and that the song title is (possibly) a euphemism for masturbation. Good call.

      A bunch of MLB players use “Your Love.” So annoying.

  • Jimmy Lonetti | March 27, 2014 at 1:34 pm |

    Walk up music choice is easy, the opening to Bastards of Young by the Replacements. It makes a great ringtone too.

  • Phil P | March 27, 2014 at 1:35 pm |

    Just saw this tweet: Red Sox to wear “Boston” on their home uniforms on Marathon Monday

  • DrowningMan | March 27, 2014 at 1:44 pm |

    Undocumented feature of the new SpeedFlex helmets:

    http://i.imgur.com/S...

  • The Jeff | March 27, 2014 at 1:48 pm |

    Hmm… walk up music for The Jeff… I think I’d go with :20-:35 of Alice In Chains – Man in the Box (so it cuts off just after the “I’m the man in the box” lyric)

    • Ben D | March 27, 2014 at 2:14 pm |

      Yes…just after “I’m the man in the box”, but before “Buried in my shit”.

  • Clarybird | March 27, 2014 at 1:51 pm |

    I’d walk up to either “Wild Cats of Kilkenny” by the Pogues:

    https://www.youtube....

    Or the “Curb Your Enthusiasm” theme song (Frolic):

    https://www.youtube....

    • Ben D | March 27, 2014 at 2:16 pm |

      I was definitely thinking the “Curb Your Enthusiasm” theme.

  • pflava | March 27, 2014 at 2:02 pm |

    “Gathering Crowds” would be fantastic walk up music

    https://www.youtube....

    • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 3:33 pm |

      Indeed. “Gathering Crowds” is my baseball-season phone ringtone. The rest of the year, it’s “Apache” by Danger Beach, which I’d consider for walk-up music if the Skatalites nixed my first choice:

      https://www.youtube....

  • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 2:29 pm |

    The bad part is that the professionalizing of college sports will likely have a trickle-down effect on high school and AAU-level sports, which will now be one step closer to where the big money is.

    I’m not convinced this is a completely bad thing. The red herring you hear from the anti-paid athlete crowd is why they don’t just go to Europe where they pay teenagers. No one put a gun to their head and told them to college. Well, they can’t, because European kids have the advantage of having developed through professional clubs and are gradually introduced to the senior teams.

    But the way sports are set up in the US, they worry too much about winning and getting exposure, and not enough on development. If a 13-year-old basketball can play for professional club instead of doing the high school-college charade, then that would be an improvement.

    • arrScott | March 27, 2014 at 3:30 pm |

      Especially if, up to 18, the professional club also provided a decent basic education through classroom instruction and tutoring, as many European clubs at least attempt to do, and as many young professional actors, dancers, and musicians in America receive.

  • Patrick | March 27, 2014 at 2:32 pm |

    The Lions throwback piece got me thinking–what’s the punishment for not adhering to the single helmet rule? One timeout per half? Major fine? Anyone know?

  • terriblehuman | March 27, 2014 at 2:46 pm |

    My walk-up music would basically be a Pixies medley.

    First appearance: Gigantic – from Hey Paul hey Paul hey Paul, let’s have a ball to the chorus, Gigantic, a big big love, because what’s more baseball than a song about interracial lovin’?

    Second appearance: Where Is My Mind? – the last 5 seconds of the opening instrumental, then the first couple of bars.

    Third appearance: Here Comes Your Man – seriously, what’s more egotistical than walking up as the chorus plays?

    Fourth appearance: Debaser – But I am un chien andalusia I am un chien andalusia I am un chien andalusia I am un chien andalusia (Debaser) Debaser (Debaser) Debaser (Debaser) Debaser (Debaser) Debaser (Debaser) Debaser (Debaser) Debaser – really, why not?

    If I have to pick one song, then it’d be the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ “Y Control” – Y control, y control, you walk walk walk walk walk my winners (this also happens to be my ring tone on rare occasions that I don’t have my phone on vibrate).

    • Scott Bennett | March 27, 2014 at 4:19 pm |

      It’s not considered one of their best, but if I were going with the Pixies, I’d also want La la love you. Great drum session to start.

      And, if I was feeling like the biggest balls in the park were swinging from my groin, “Here Comes Your Man”. Love the vibe on Doolittle.

      SB

  • Michael Emody | March 27, 2014 at 3:06 pm |

    I’m loving the long lost Chicago movie. Though Johnnie Neblett died in 1946, I believe the narration was recorded before many of the shots were made and assembled. I’ll bet it was finally produced a few years after his death, at least. The street scenes seem to show a variety of timeframes from the 40’s. There’s a war bonds sign downtown and plenty of shots of late 30’s cars that would have been driven until a few years after the war. The license plates seem to span from 1939 (though those could be 42’s) to 1948. The bright orange ones are 1948 and the reddish ones would be 46. IL had flat wartime soybean plates from 43 thru 48, though cabs and such had metal plates. Something to think of if you’re trying to pinpoint the dates of various shots.

    The White Sox clips are perplexing. At first I figured the Sox were wearing the mid-40’s red block S jerseys. But they’re clearly playing the Browns, who seem to be wearing 50-51 uni’s. There’s no orange and brown filled-in headspoon that lasted until 45, and they’re wearing brown caps with orange visors. Okkonen has those caps appearing in 1950. A closer look at the Sox suggests they’re wearing the black and white 49/50 uni’s, but with all white stirrups. Okkonen has those ending in 45, but who knows. The reason I think they’re the 49/50’s is the plain black number on the backs. I suspect the red block S jerseys had red numbers.

    Keep in mind that a large portion in the middle of the movie doesn’t have narration, which might be due to the narrators death.

    • rpm | March 27, 2014 at 3:31 pm |

      at first i thought they were playing the browns too, but that might be the cleveland ball club.

      as for the colours in the film of the day, they are not going to be completely accurate, or might read differently, is it black or blue? orange or red? just like you may not be able to clearly see uni elements like a headspoon in a second and a half action shot, it’s going to be blurry.

      • Michael Emody | March 27, 2014 at 10:32 pm |

        Those are good points. I’ll have to spend some more time tomorrow on it.

  • Dave | March 27, 2014 at 3:07 pm |

    My walk-up music would be the first 15 seconds of “We Built This City,” so as to aggravate the opposing pitcher who would then either serve up a 50-mph belt-high meatball, or plunk me in the skull, either way contributing to my MVP season with a 1.000 OBP.

  • rpm | March 27, 2014 at 3:21 pm |

    re: chicago video
    the 22:39 mark of the chicago video shows a golfer in a tournament wearing shorts!

    as far as the unknown production date…the article says they have the video as 1945 or 6 because of the people involved. but thanks to uni-watching i believe it to be shot in 45. the white sox have solid white stirrups, which they wore in 45, but are blue top in 46. also the sox first baseman is #4, kerby farrell, who played two professional seasons, one of which was 1945 for the south siders, no first baseman on the 46 team wore the number 4. the only cub shown by number is manager charlie grimm, but he provides no clue as he managed from 44-49.

    • Michael Emody | March 27, 2014 at 3:26 pm |

      Yes, closer inspection shows the red block S on the batter in the first few frames of the shot. (I was wrong about that.) But the first base shots seem weird. The Browns uniforms don’t seem to be 45’s.

      • rpm | March 27, 2014 at 3:34 pm |

        i replied to you about that….my first instinct was that it was st louis too, but that could be cleveland. if we could only make out the number of that first baseman.

  • Chris Giorgio | March 27, 2014 at 3:27 pm |

    Worst AB music– “Only Women Bleed” by Alice Cooper

    “She cries alone at night too often. He smokes and drinks too often, only women bleed, only women bleed, only women blee-heeed!”

    • Mike Chamernik | March 27, 2014 at 4:21 pm |

      Hahaha

  • Robert S | March 27, 2014 at 3:52 pm |

    Walk Up Music: The End by the Doors.

    Especially if you got to re-live the bottom of the 9th, bases loaded, 2 outs, game 7 of World Series scenario as we all did as kids!

  • Mainspark | March 27, 2014 at 4:09 pm |

    Walk Up Music” “How ‘ya Like Me Now?” Kool Moe Dee. That’s right, I like it OLD SKOOL.

  • Mainspark | March 27, 2014 at 4:21 pm |

    Also, “Beat on the Brat (with a baseball bat)” Ramones.

  • Vegas911 | March 27, 2014 at 4:43 pm |

    Larry Walker’s use of Crazy Train as his walk up music has always been my favorite.

    I think it would be hilarious if someone had the balls to use I Touch Myself by the Divinyls. I think most players take this too seriously and should lighten things up a bit. I didn’t know about Floyd using Sanford and Son,but that is awesome.

  • Christopher F. | March 27, 2014 at 5:47 pm |

    My walk-up music: Fish Heads!

  • Attila Szendrodi | March 27, 2014 at 6:37 pm |

    My personal choice for walk-up music would have to be NY State of Mind. And I don’t mean some lame Billy Joel.

  • Dane | March 27, 2014 at 7:13 pm |

    The Herbie membership card made me think of this: Have you ever seen cars in your area painted to look like famous TV/movie cars? I have seen 2 Herbies: a new Beetle in CT, and a Herbie the Love Smart in NJ. I also used to see a Mystery Machine parked on Blvd. East in West New York, NJ.

    • Vegas911 | March 28, 2014 at 12:27 am |

      I see an A-team van around all the time

    • mike 2 | March 28, 2014 at 1:34 am |

      I’ve seen a couple of Bluesmobiles around.

      • scottrj | March 28, 2014 at 8:40 am |

        I saw the Talladega Nights car at a Days Inn parking lot in Virginia Beach the summer of 2010. Unfortunately that was several phones ago, else I’d post pics.

  • michael patrick mclaughlin | March 27, 2014 at 10:32 pm |
  • Rick H | March 27, 2014 at 10:43 pm |

    As for walk up themes, I would probably change around the music depending on my mood, and I tend to like theme music, anyway, so I would go with any of these (the 3 I’d use the most are at the top):
    Al Hirt’s “Flight of the Bumblebee” aka “The Green Hornet Theme”
    The original Japanese version of the “Speed Racer” theme
    Neal Hefti’s version of the “Batman” theme
    Danny Elfman – “The Flash” theme
    “Justice League” cartoon theme
    Marty Robbins – Big Iron
    Robert Mitchum – The Ballad of Thunder Road
    “The Rifleman” Theme
    Johnny Cash – Get Rhythm
    Iggy Pop – Lust for Life
    “Doctor Who” Theme, 11th Doctor

    …and plenty of others.

  • The Ghost of Ross Gload | March 27, 2014 at 11:06 pm |

    A Tom Clancy uniform patch?

    It’ll be too long and overly detailed.

  • Big Al | March 28, 2014 at 1:07 am |

    “You Can Call Me Al” -Paul Simon

  • mike 2 | March 28, 2014 at 1:33 am |

    Walk up music:

    – Sirius by Alan Parsons Project (though its a little cliche for sports events)

    – The Impression that I Get by the Mighty Mighty Bosstones (the chorus)

    – Ripple by the Grateful Dead – the last verse “you who choose to lead”

  • Ross | March 28, 2014 at 11:39 am |

    BLACK FLAG “NERVOUS BREAKDOWN” CASE CLOSED