Monday, April 23, 2012

Does Florida have its priorities right? Some question dumping an entire department for athletics

We always knew football has reigned supreme at the University of Florida, but has the school gone too far in wiping out an entire science department so athletics (mainly football, who are we kidding) can continue to remain elitist.

Forbes Magazine reported last week that in a cost cutting move the University of Florida was elimnating its computer science department to save about $1.7 million while adding $2 million to its athletic budget that now hovers around $99 million.

Even at Florida where athletics is considered the straw that stirs the drink this isn't being taken lightly. Some students have organized a website to stage their  protest and several distinquihsed computer scientists are backing their cause.

Money is tight as we all know. But do coaches have to be earning multi- million dollar contracts at the expense of academics, particularly in the midst of a technological revolution.

Lets be honest you could see this happening at Alabama or Auburn and no one would rasie a stir, but this is Florida. The school does have some academic prestige sort of a long the lines of Vanderbilt.

It is also a school that enabled former coach Urban Meyer to become a millionaire albeit while Tim Tebow was broke. The most famous Florida quarterback writes in his book he had to clean chicken coops for his mother one Christmas because he didn't have the money to buy her a present.

Some people are blaming the Florida legislature for making some huge cuts in the Florida's budget, about 30 percent according to Forbes.

But it begs the question; do we need to be paying some of these coaches exhorbitant salaries. Maybe the football program could donate $1.7 million to keep the computer science department alive.

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