Monthly Archives: March 2012

College Hoops: A Dissatisfied Public on Many Issues

As NCAA college basketball heads for the Final Four, the overall public voiced discontent over a number of issues related to the sport.

57% felt the proposal by Education Secretary Arne Duncan – that a 40% graduation rate be imposed to make a team tournament eligible – should be higher, with only 19% saying there should be no requirement.

  • 76% felt that, some, most, or almost all colleges break the rules in recruiting athletes.
  • 59% felt that it hurts the game when players leave school early to turn pro.
  • 77% felt that coaches – both basketball and football – should be more tightly supervised by their universities.

More than 1 in 4 – 28% – think that college basketball players intentionally influence the outcome of games because of gambling interests.

“These results run consistent to polling in previous years,” said Gentile. “People tend to want the college experience to be more about college than a training ground for professional athletes.”

Public Comes Down Hard on Saints Too


More than 1 in 4 Americans who follow sports would have gone farther than the NFL did in punishing the New Orleans Saints for the use of “bounties” to reward the infliction of injury on opposing players.

According to a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week, 26% felt the punishment, which included the season-long suspension of the team’s head coach, was not severe enough, with 57% saying the punishment was appropriate. Only 11% felt it was too severe.

51% thought the NFL’s response would have an impact on the number of player injuries during the season.

The poll was conducted among 779 randomly selected people across the country, of whom 618 said they followed sports at least somewhat. The poll has a margin of error of 3.6%; 4% for sports fans.

“When the punishment first came out, the reaction was that it was strong but appropriate, but this shows that a lot of people felt the Commissioner should have even gone further“ noted Rick Gentile, director of the poll, which is conducted by the Sharkey Institute.