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Assigned Reading: What’s going on at Grambling?

Oct 18, 2013, 4:09 PM EDT

grambling

One aspect of college basketball that has drawn the ire of some fans over the years is the presence of “guarantee games,” contests in which a school pays the visiting school to play a contest that in most cases is little more than a glorified exhibition. Programs struggling to balance their accounts send teams on the road for multiple guarantee games, resulting in many days on the road and few (if any) home dates before conference play begins in January.

One school in such a predicament is Grambling, which finished last season with an 0-28 record. With donations dwindling and the same being the case for state funding, the entire athletic department has fallen on hard times. Things have come to a head with the football team refusing to make the trip to play at Jackson State this weekend, which leads to our assigned reading for the day.

George Dohrmann of Sports Illustrated took a look at the many issues plaguing Grambling’s football program and the school as a whole, with the lack of money resulting in professors going on furlough and even in some cases being asked to teach courses for free. Will a few guarantee games cure this issue (Grambling’s lone non-conference home game this season is against Lyon College on December 21)? No, but it does help illustrate why some schools put together such schedules.

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  1. franktrades - Oct 18, 2013 at 10:50 PM

    Sounds like those players are being treated like 2nd class citizens. Good for them, standing up! Colleges have become so expensive due to liberal government loan programs and low standards that let in anyone, that those without loans cannot afford to go. Thus funding drops.

  2. 2late2matter - Oct 21, 2013 at 1:54 AM

    Players sign with these institutions to play in a particular sport, often get tuition assistance, and they know ahead of time their chances of any advancement into professional sports.

    One can be sure not many Grambling football players turned down better opportunities to play for bigger or more reputable schools and their programs, so one must accept that they are where they are and if they don’t like the situations they can always transfer or quit.

    Honestly, I’d never heard of “guarantee” games before this article. Is that sort of like what the Washington Generals arrange with the Harlem Globetrotters for money?

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