A DANGEROUS MISCONCEPTION
By a recent disclosure it has been shown that athletes at West Virginia Wesleyan have received as much as $500 for their services Shortly after the announcement the President and Board of Trustees ordered the curtailing of athletics. Funds formerly devoted to sports will serve to establish a new chair of theology. Presumably this drastic measure arose from a recognition of the fact that flagrant breaches of the amateur code like the payment of outstanding athletes are caused by the disproportionate emphasis which has been placed upon intercollegiate football in the colleges. Yet no measure could be more illogical.
It is not athletics that are at fault; it is the over-emotionalized over-dramatized intercollegiate spectacle that has been made of football. But obviously there is here no need for funds. With very rare exceptions it more than pays its own way. The athletics that particularly need appropriations are those which attract little or no publicity, which are often under, rather than over-emphasized. These are the smaller major, the minor, and the intramural sports which affect the general student body and are therefore to be encouraged since physical training has properly become a recognized part of the college curriculum. Furthermore, general participation in athletics is an excellent antidote to the spectacle complex. The administration of West Virginia Wesleyan, by curtailing funds for athletics, not only goes far wide of the mark since football is self-supporting but actually opposes a development which promises to accomplish the very reform which inspired its ill-conceived ruling.