Red Dirt RubyConf 2011

  • Keynote
    Aaron Patterson
    Open source contributions include:
    ARel, Nokogiri, and Mechanize
    Aaron Patterson - AT&T Interactive
  • Keynote
    Dr Nic Williams
    Open source contributions include:
    Hudson.rb, RoR Textmate Bundle, and ChocTop
    Dr Nic Williams - Engine Yard
  • Conference Themes
    nike basketball hoodie
    ´╗┐revenue sources and uniform colors I posted Part I of my recent Q Hokies athletic directorWhit Babcock yesterday. Now it's a game changer, right. It's just under a million dollar a year line item that wasn't even being talked about when I was hired. That's how fast it happened. And I'm all in support of it. And I've said this many times, with what ADs make and nike d edge gloves what coaches make and what facilities cost and television contracts, there's a way within amateurism and the true collegiate scholarship model to return some of that money to our student athletes. I'm all for it. But it was an unanticipated budget line item. It's been well received thanks to the work of a lot of people, but what we've tried to do with cost of attendance is how do we boil it down to be able to explain it? There's all these different audiences. One, we had to go and explain it to nike kids shoes our coaches, and we did that in one on one meetings. So that's one audience. What is it? What does it mean? How is it calculated? What are the positives, negatives, impacts, etc.? Then another one would be to your current student athletes. Because they're here and they're on scholarship. So what do we get? How does that work? So we met with our student athlete advisory council. That was another targeted group. Then your recruits. You're going to package that typically through digital and video. And then your donors and your fan base and faculty. So we really looked at it as how do we take that Pylons of Promise and this cost of attendance, how do we boil it down? The one group we missed was the media. I mean heck, y'all are learning it along with the rest of this. And maybe we should have put together an executive summary and done that. But we looked at it as, OK, we've got this, we're in favor of it, that's the way the world's going, we're on board. Now, how do we segment it? Because it's a little bit different message to each group, but it's still very new and a lot of people don't understand it or the full impact it will have. But I feel like our number [$3,280 more for in state, $3,620 for out of state]is pretty well positioned. We're not the highest, but we're not the lowest. And do I think are there young kids out there that might go to another school for an extra grand or two a year? Maybe. But I hope not. When I sit in front of recruits, still the No. 1 reason they come to a school is relationship with coaches. Facilities help. Academics certainly help. Location. But it's that relationship with the coach that's recruiting them or the head coach that is almost always at the top of the list. So I hope that holds true. AB: The hot topic of the spring was football coaches sounding off about the inequity in the cost of attendance. Since it's a number calculated along federal guidelines, a figure set completely separate from athletics, are those differences just something they have to live with? WB: Yes. And certainly coach [Frank] Beamer and I have talked about it, but the coaches at the ACC meeting were pretty vocal about it. And there's a lot of reasons it just can't be a flat rate for everybody across the board, and some of that is the lawsuit situation. You'd be capping it. But yes, I think coaches have voiced it and I've used this analogy: it's like democracy. It's not perfect but it's the best plan we have right now. And it's still amateurism. And it's still part of a scholarship. What I didn't know, and maybe you didn't either, I didn't even know cost of attendance existed in academic scholarships. I'm embarrassed by that. So for years, student athletes were getting room, board, tuition, fees and books. Academic scholarships were all of that, plus this cost of attendance. So cost of attendance has been calculated at every school in the country for years, but leave it to athletics where it now becomes a focal point and all that. So the education to our fan base, that's it not pay for play, we're not paying players, we're just returning some of what we generate back to the students and it mirrors an academic scholarship. So why wouldn't we do that? It's the best system that we as the NCAA could come up with. And I don't' know, maybe I'm naive, but I'm in favor of it. I'm OK with it. I think it's the right thing to do. And just tell us the rules and we'll go play by them. AB: I read something that Mississippi State is doing, requiring players to go to some sort of financial management class to receive the full cost of attendance. Have you thought of something similar? WB: Yes. And I know the AD of Mississippi State well. I'll call him and copy that. We've talked about it. A lot of our coaches do that on their own with their teams, but I would like to centralize it. And what we're looking at more is the distribution of those dollars. If you and me were 18, 19 years old and you live off campus, you're going to get your room and board check and cost of attendance, if it's only paid once a semester, that's a lot of money to come into. Now, you can look at it two ways. You've got to grow up into an adult and learn how to budget it. But heck, I'm not even great at that right now and I'm 45 years old. Or are we better off, which we think we are, can we break up the payments and kind of make it more a regular monthly type thing? And while that sounds easy, keep in mind there are 30,000 some students on this campus and there are only 600 athletes. So we have talked and will have things in place through our student athlete development office on budgeting, but right now we're still trying to iron out exactly how often we're going to distribute that money. AB: The Power 5 schools are not too long into this age of autonomy. Has there been anything that's surprised you or any unexpected consequences from that new freedom that have popped up? WB: I like that too. The status quo was not working. The model was broken, of the NCAA. I don't' think there are too many people who would argue that. So for Nathan Hatch, the leader from Wake Forest, and what that group did. I'm in favor of it. I think it's good. And at Cincinnati, I was just on that other side of the fence, so to speak. I like having all the Division I schools under one tent. I like all the autonomy stuff. But for the other conferences, what I like for them, and I would if I was at Cincinnati, the fact that autonomy can't change scholarship limits What I mean by that is if there's 85 scholarships here, and all of a sudden as an autonomous group because we could afford it, maybe we could maybe we couldn't, we agree to go to 95 scholarships. That's 65 schools times 10 more scholarships. I know that wouldn't work exactly like that, but at Cincinnati I thought that could conceivably take 650 players off the board, and that's a competitive divide. The money divide is already there, but I like that some of the competitive integrity is still there, that it's not the autonomy group that decides this, it's the whole body that decides scholarship limits, most recruiting provisions and initial eligibility standards. So I like what's done for the quote, Power 5, although I don't love that term. High resources five. But I also like that with the other conferences, what we call the Group of 5, there's some things in place that still give you a chance to compete, because you can still only sign 25 football players. So I think it is a very good system. A lot of people smarter than me figured it out and it makes sense and I like the new model that we're under. Maybe as the NCAA, though, maybe we were just a little too reactive. It probably should have happened sooner. And it took some outside influences nike air max for sale to move it there. I do feel like, though, that we do need to get back to the messaging that a scholarship has real value