A JERSEY GUY: CFB: Greed vs. Good

Mark Blaudschun

If you cut to the chase in the ongoing debate at the FBS level of college football, the two main protagonists are a freshman guard from Indiana named Brady Feeney and a Michael Douglas character from 33 years ago named Gordon Gekko.

In the movie Wall Street, Gekko a high rolling Wall Street mogul, expressed his philosophy quite clearly.

"Greed is, for lack of a better word, good,'' said Gekko. "Greed is right. Greed works.''

And that, to perhaps  milder degree, is the primary motivating factor among Power 5 schools to put together a college football season this fall.

At a level of college football, where money is not the primary issue, the sport has been essentially shut down.

While finding ways to keep the season moving forward, college administrators and coaches talk about how their overwhelming and over riding concern is for the "student athlete--and can we please eliminate that outdated term.

Yet, until the last few days, the concerns of the athletes have been the softest of voices.

That is changing. The Pac-12 spoke up first, other individual players also voiced their doubts and concerns.

The UConn football team was on course to be the first FBS team to stage a player's walk out, with the message being sent to the UConn administration through Coach Randy Edsall, "We don't feel safe playing this season and we are going to shut it down.''

But yesterday afternoon, the UConn administration was closing in on an agreement in which the school, not the players, would take responsibility.

And then we come to the potential real game changer. The Big Ten and specifically, Indiana and Feeney.

The facts can not be disputed. Feeney was healthy when the summer began. Now he is not and he may have suffered permanent damage.

His mother used Facebook to express her sorrow and concern and voiced a warning to other parents of players.

That's a deal breaker, which no one in the Big Ten can explain away. 

Big Ten Commissioner Mike Warren has spent the past few days talking to players and their reps from conference schools.

An expected announcement of  the conference's football schedule was expected Tuesday morning.

That may be on hold for a day or could be erased by a bigger more significant announcement that football in the Big Ten will not be played this fall.

The mitigating factor is the millions of dollars with television contracts and other revenue producing events and activities which would be halted with any such stoppage.

The star power of players such as Ohio State QB Justin Fields and the money produced by the ever popular Big Ten television network are reasons why revenues for Big Ten schools has topped the $50 million dollar a year range.

Decisions must be made, but few people have been willing thus far to step up and accept responsibility

The buck passing is amazing.

The consensus opinion, which is growing rapidly, it is that this time greed will not prevail over what has seemed obvious for weeks.


Mark Blaudschun