The Impact Of Intercollegiate Athletics On American Education System

1311 WordsSep 14, 20156 Pages
Intercollegiate athletics in America got its start as student-run activity clubs loosely organized for competition against other local clubs. Eventually these clubs were taken over by college administrators looking to control what was perceived as a less-than desirable aspect of the college experience. Faculty sought control of athletics in order to regulate dangerous events, promote events that would interest alumni, and utilize athletics as a vehicle to promote culture at their colleges. Colleges and universities were originally created to train the elite men of new colonial society. The mind and body were intertwined in ancient Greek philosophy and practice, and the idea that physical activity and competitive play was beneficial carried over to a burgeoning new American educational system. However, some faculty members deemed such physical activities barbaric and uncouth. Despite this outlook, the popularity of intercollegiate athletics among students, alumni and community supporters continued to grow exponentially. In order to rectify this disconnect, faculty utilized the assertion of amateurism as a control mechanism towards the gentile notion of education. The faculty thought that if they could mold this competitive physical activity in an image they felt was appropriate, then it could be elevated to a more acceptable form and ultimately tolerated and continued. There was a distinct emphasis placed on the physical, mental and social benefits of athletics and on
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