In 1920 following the lowest point in baseball’s history, yes lower than the steroid era, owners of Major League Baseball teams selected Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis as the first Commissioner of Baseball and provided him with powers to restore public confidence destroyed by the 1919 Black Sox scandal. Like baseball, college football, and other major college sports for that matter, desperately requires major innovation to establish a modicum of integrity.
Below find 15 changes to college football that will help public confidence, and protect both player and institution from ruination. I understand the inherent difficulty in passing any one of the proposals much less all. Nonetheless, only major innovation can repair this very broken system.
1) Players stipend of $5000 per year included with scholarship
2) Subject to #3 below, unrestricted ability to earn another $5000
3) Players must file twice a year a report noting the sources of the income earned in #2
4) Create the equivalent of a sports commissioner to oversee football with specifically enumerated powers
5) Pursue criminal prosecutions against any person or entity that pays a player to choose a particular university. If current laws concerning bribery prove inadequate, pass new criminal restrictions.
6) Prosecute adults for providing illegal benefits to players
- Money in excess of $5000
- Alcohol to players under 21, and drugs and illegal services
7) Pursue criminal prosecution against any person or entity that fraudulently engages in test or grade manipulation
8) Create the equivalent of Division 1, but limit the number to 80 to 100 teams
9) Allow for 1 exhibition game in which D1 teams can play teams outside D1
10) All other games must be against D1 teams
11) Season consists of 12 games in total, 1 exhibition and 11 regular season
12) Discontinue the BCS
13) Initiate a 16 team playoff from which all teams, even those not making the playoff, share revenue
14) Bowl games can continue but only for teams not making the playoffs from which all teams, even those making the playoffs share revenue
15) Penalties for violations will be pursued against all appropriate parties, including the University, the players, and adults.