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tzsegal
December 4th, 2002, 01:19 PM
Did you see? You can buy the Dartmouth Swim Team for a mere $211K.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1976909200

Thought some people might enjoy this!

Robin Parisi
December 4th, 2002, 05:29 PM
See a related story here:

http://www.swiminfo.com/lane9/news/4537.asp

cinc3100
December 4th, 2002, 05:46 PM
I don't know if we can preserve all college swim teams. Some states like California even have it at the community college level. On the other hand, Cal-State Fullerton also in California no longer has a swim team, the last team was in the 1970's. They even dropped football in the early 1990's. But Fullerton is a communter school where many students have to work at least 30 hours a week and most of the students have little interest in what Fullerton does in a particular sport. Darthmouth is the tradtional elite school, where either you have a high GPA or come from a upper or higher income family background. I suppose that division 1 schools are more important to preserve their programs, yet I don't think that every college needs to have all sports at that college. Fullerton has great softball and baseball teams, yet they dropped Football, Swimming, Water Polo and Golf, sports they were not that good at.

Phil Arcuni
December 4th, 2002, 06:40 PM
In the late seventies my college team swam against Dartmouth. Generally they were a better team, and one of the highlights of my college career was winning the 200 fly 2 or 3 times in dual meets against them.

I am saddened by the demise of this team.

I do not think that a small college in the middle of nowhere needs to maintain travelling squads in every sport. I can see the logic of Dartmouth's decision to eliminate a small sport, rather than share cost cuts among all the teams, in a time of tough budgets.

On the other hand, the cost of the swim team is small compared to the budget of the football team. Though no one from Dartmouth has publicly said it, given the equipment costs, travel costs, and size of competitive teams, football is one sport that I find hard for Dartmouth to justify. [actually, I am not even sure if Dartmouth has a football team. If they don't, forget what I just said. If they do, it rarely plays at the level of the best Ivy teams.]

KenChertoff
December 4th, 2002, 06:57 PM
Dartmouth does, indeed, have a football team. One of the purported justifications given by Dartmouth's administration for eliminating swimming was to avoid "sacrifices" by other sports. My guess is that means football.

cinc3100
December 4th, 2002, 08:34 PM
Now, some have a good argument for Darthmouth. But what about the commuter colleges and community colleges. I don't see why they have to preserve swimming and other sports at all their campuses, since many people are going to school and working full time and are not involved with sports teams. The cal-state system which is a commuter college system doesn't have football or swimming at all its colleges. And I was someone that swam at the community college level back in the 1970's. For many swimmers, school swimming eventually comes to a end. In Arizona many swimmers at my level as a teenager would not have swam at the college level since their is no community college program swim team. Many schools like Cal-State Fullerton and Cal-State Long Beach got rid of both football and other sports. It isn't always the case where a school keeps football and gets rid of another sport.

Windrath
December 4th, 2002, 10:22 PM
To All -

I graduated from Dartmouth in 1976 - swam varsity all 4 years.

There is a little more to the issue of Dartmouth eliminating Swimming & Diving that has not been touched on in this thread. The issue is far more than the $211K it costs to operate the men's and women's teams.

The real issue is tha natatorium is 40 years old. It was a darn good pool in the 60's and 70's and is still a nice pool for practicing, but by Division 1 standards of the Ivy League, it has a long way to go.

The estimated cost for a new facility is $20 - 25MM and there is not a good location for it to be built and, unlike the other Ivy League schools which are in major metro areas, the opportunity to generate revenue from a new facility is very limited.

So, why build a great big facility for 53 athletes and some swim classes that won't generate a significant amount of revenue compared to other sports facilities that get used more?

It is a business decision that I have mixed feelings about. I understand their point even though I am sad about it. And, face it, Dartmouth swimming hasn't exactly set the Ivy League world on fire during the past 25 years.

Some might say a better facility would draw better swimmers, but I don't think so. You go to Dartmouth for the education and experience of a rural campus in the green paradise of New Hampshire. You don't go there because you are a world class athlete in any of the sports they have there. If you are national caliber and go there, it just happens that way.

Peter Crumbine - your thoughts.....?

Paul Windrath

rseltzer
December 5th, 2002, 09:09 AM
On the face of it Paul's comments make sense but I have a very different perspective re th e new facility. My connections to Dartmouth are indirect, that is through my wife's family, some of whom still live in Hanover. I do think that with more forward looking administration and planning Dartmouth could have a swim team and updated facility. Paul is right on when we says one cannot justify a brand-new natatorium for a competitiv swim team. HOWEVER, Dartmouth can make a good case for a new student fitness facility that includes a new pool. Such facilities are fast becoming a necessity to attract the best students to campuses (see Univ of MD, MIT and recently approved Kenyon facility). These facilities include fitness centers (the MIT facility as 12,000 square feet and Kenyon will have 15,000 sf), squash courts, multi-purpose courts (in-line hocky, basketball, etc) and various other spaces for students to congregate. These facilities somewhat more than 25m as quoted by Paul BUT the pool component (if kept to a basic 50 meter pool that is not designed to host large meets) is less than 50% of the total cost. These facilities serve the general community quite well.

Kenyon obviously has a very successful swim program and it has become one of the most important sports at that school. The $40 million new student fitness facility (include a new 50 meter pool) was not designed exclusively to support the varsity program. The pool while an improvement over the existing facility was basically designed to be an excellent training facility and good venue for duel meets but was clearly not designed to be a state-of-the-art competitive aquartic center. The real secret to the success of getting that facility is the non-swimming components of the new center (fitness center, student lounges/labs, etc).

Those of us who care about swimming at the college level need to rethink how we present the benefits of building new pools. As others have pointed out it's pretty hard to justify building new 50 meter pools to support varsity programs (how can you spend $25 million for such a narrow purpose when science/art programs also need new facilities). However, student fitness centers that serve the entire community have great promise because they serve the larger community and are becoming increasingly necessary part of campus life. At the risk of stating the obvious, such centers present tremendous opportunities to grow masters since many students who do not participate in varsity swimming might find masters a very attractive way to continue their interest in "organized" swimming.

Rain Man
December 6th, 2002, 01:12 PM
I can't fathom where people in the administrative ranks are coming up with figures like these for the cost of aquatic facilities. A few months ago, Splash Magazine ran a nice feature article about a club team from Kentucky that built a 10-lane, 50m facility for just about $2.5M a couple years ago. Now assuming inflation has not caused the cost of goods and services to rise 1000% since 2000 (hey, it doesn't cost $20 for a loaf of bread), one can safely guess that a similar, high-quality facility could be constructed at a cost around $3M. No?

What's the proverb (or whatever they call those little sayings) "Penny-wise, pound foolish". They're saying that saving $212,000 a year will relieve them of their budget problems? At a school with a multi-BILLION dollar endowment? At bank-rate interest levels (~2.00%) they would make enough in interest in 2 DAYS ($263,000) on their 2.4B endowment to cover the cost of their swim team.

Nebraska too... what were they thinking? Cutting a $200-$300K athletic program will solve their problems when they give out $1.1M in athletic department BONUSES??? Or Iowa State spending $11M on a football PRACTICE FACILITY so they had to cut swimming to make ends meet? A joke.

Regards,
RM

Phil Arcuni
December 6th, 2002, 02:39 PM
Hey, this issue made the AP wire:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/national/AP-Dartmouth-Ebay.html

by the way, Paul, that was a good joke:


You go to Dartmouth for the education and experience of a rural campus in the green paradise of New Hampshire.

When I was in Hanover, there was only one color - white (and more white). ;)

Was the Kentucky pool indoors?

Paul Smith
December 6th, 2002, 02:44 PM
There are problems with building a student rec. facility as well. UCSB built a beautiful one a few years back but it was strictly limited to recreational use.

Apparently when the student body voted on increasing their dues to fund the facility they made it clear that they would not be the "ugly stepchild of varisty sports".

So, the swimming and water polo teams are still training in a pool that I believe was built in the late 50s. I heard that the water polo team may have negotiated the use of the new pool for 5 home games this past season (a big help since the old pool has a shallow end which I enjoyed pushing off of in my polo days!)

rseltzer
December 6th, 2002, 02:47 PM
The facility described in Splash was a training pool. Pools get expensive when you need to expand the deck (HVAC costs increase tremendously) and add spectator seating and expanded locker rooms. You're probably looking at least 10 million for a 50 meter pool PLUS the costs of real estate, etc.

I don't think people in the swimming community are going to succeed by complaining about how much money is spent on football. That's the major problem with the approach that many are taking when trying to fight shutdown of programs across the country.

Some organized body is going to have to find a compelling story that goes well beyond the "tradition" of competitive swimming to raise a lot of money to build new expensive facilities that can support swimming.

I think there is great potential in a strategy centered around the benefits of state-of-the-art fitness facilities at colleges and universities. Perhaps we should align ourselves with vendors that manufacture such equipment as well as major swimming vendors and come up with a nationwide marketing program to promote the benefits of such centers (with pools) to universities (it helps them attract good students) and alumni (keeps your alma mater competitive) and students (healthy bodies, healthy minds).

Seems to me that USA Swimming has the most to lose and should lead but USMS has a lot to gain and has the credibility to honestly promote swimming for fitness.

Rain Man
December 6th, 2002, 03:44 PM
The pool in Kentucky (indoors) had ample spectator seating for those who would attend a Dartmouth swim meet. I had only pointed out the Kentucky pool as a sidenote that pools don't HAVE to cost outrageous amounts. Really, the facility shouldn't be the issue. They're doing just fine right now with their pool and so are a number of other college swimming programs. Programs with pools built in the late 60's/early 70's that may be outdated but are still functional.

The bigger issue is the cancellation of the sport due to "budget constraints" or however they want to word it. If every college and university took the athletic department finance sheet and eliminated each program that they run at a loss, they would have to cancel almost ALL of their programs. Swimming certainly falls into this category, but it should be the duty of any athletic-affiliated school (D-I,II,III) to offer the traditional amateur sports at the varisty level. Unfortunately the NCAA and its member institutions have lost sight of the original ideals and focus of college athletics. It's now a business centered around the bottom-line.

Another fact out there is that there are many schools offering swimming programs that are in much greater financial hardship than a school like Dartmouth, or big state schools like Nebraska or Iowa State. Cutting a program (whether it be swimming, wrestling, gymnastics, track) with such an insignificant budget (relatively) makes absolutely no sense. Cutting the athletic program... now that would be a cost-cutting move.

Think of it this way, if your company needed to do some financial housecleaning to meet its numbers what would it do... fire Joe who works on project X, a non-revenue generating, dead-in-the-water R&D program OR eliminate project X?

OK, I tried.

-RM

rseltzer
December 6th, 2002, 05:10 PM
Rain Man:

Your analysis is logical if you look at the revenue/costs numbers for the athletic department etc. The real rationale behind keeping big money losing programs like football is that they contribute to university-wide fundraising from alumni. At virtually every Harvard home football game there is some associated alumni-related activitiy in the adjacent Murr Center. I've not noticed similar activities for swimming AND THATS OUR PROBLEM. We need to stop complaining about all the money that football get's and start mobilizing our supporters in such a way that there contributions are linked to swimming. That's a university-by-university challenge. We also need a global marketing program that shows how building new pools helps ALL STUDENTS on campus.

Re Paul comments on USB. It's obviously true that simply getting student fitness facilities will not guarantee survival of varsity
aquatics. However, if the people spearheading these facilities are tied into varsity aquatics AND MASTERS then the chances are much better.

My recommendation for keeping Darmouth swimming is to fire the people who manage their endowment (5% loss) and outsource it to Harvard management. With the money saved and better returns on their endowment they will have all the money they need for a new pool (and other new facilities).

emmett
December 6th, 2002, 05:46 PM
The truth is that it is the football and basketball programs that bring in the big donors (often regardless of whether thay are winning or losing in any given season) and provide the nationwide exposure that make college athletic programs possible in the first place. Without those programs (and all the expenditures necessary to make them viable) the vast majority of schools would not have athletic departments at all - club sports would be it. As a swim coach I hate that situation.

But, having spent a goodly portion of my prior career inside the upper administration of big-time Div I college athletics, I understand why lots of sports are in line for the chopping block, with swimming at or near the front of the line. I was in the Univ of Houston athletic department when the Cougar men's program was one of the first to be axed in this long and growing wave of athletic financial load shedding by universities. Swimming programs tend to generate bigger negative cash flows than any other sport in their schools. And they generally do not generate much (or any) of the kind of publicity that endears college administrations to them. Facilities for competitive swimming cost more to build, staff and operate than for any other sport (assuming you remove the cost of spectator seating from the equation) - and have little additional income generation potential, unlike facilities for football and basketball.

Universities are not the Evil Empire in this - they have hundreds (or thousands) of worthwhile directions they can send their money. And no matter how many 0s are in the budget, the income side of every budget is finite and the expense side of every preliminary budget is ALWAYS bigger than the income side. The budget scalpel WILL be wielded EVERY budget cycle and only those programs that can 1) bring in sufficient cash/donations, or 2) generate big exposure, or 3) broadly serve student/faculty needs are going to survive the operation. Swimming, in general, doesn't do any of those things.

Swimming has made little or no progress (heck, not even real attempts at progress) in carving out a bigger chunk of the spectator/donor market. Until it does, we will continue to see college programs whittled away at - that's just economic reality. Swimming, in it's current form, simply doesn't measure up to the economic demands of big-time college athletics.

And if we really want to talk about how best a university might serve its population AND the sport of swimming, it would be set the 50mtr pool up in SCY configuration and take that $211,000 and plough it all into swimming classes and intramural swimming with an eye toward having as many graduates as possible enter the workforce with swimming skills and a love for personal participation in the sport.

LATER, when there are 40,000,000 Masters swimmers out there instead of 40,000, you'll see colleges and universities falling all themselves to court that spectator/donor market. So, starting right now, we Masters can do our part by getting every Masters swimmer to actively recruit new swimmers! If every Masters swimmer were to bring two new swimmers into USMS every year -in 7 yrs time we'd be there.

Let's ROLL!

later - e -

KenChertoff
December 7th, 2002, 10:27 AM
I recognize that every school has its own seemingly unique issues. Nevertheless, I do see one common denominator in particular that seems to determine whether or not swimming (or gymnastics or wrestling -- those sports are hurting even more than swimming) survives -- it's the presence of football.

As examples let me describe two universities that I happen to be familiar with. The first is New York University, a "mere" division III school (despite having around 50,000 students, 10,000 of them undergraduates), where I attended college. NYU recently opened a new state of the art aquatics facility, even though it already has a facility that's less than 20 years old and sill in use. It has a very extensive athletic program, including a successful swim team and a water polo club, as well as men's and women's basketball and other sports. What it does not have, and has not had since the 1930's, is a football team. There was never any issue of whether swimming would cause other teams to make "sacrifices." Indeed, the pools were supported as recreational facilities for the whole school, including the teams.

The other school is Hofstra University, where I endured law school. It too has a state of the art 50 meter swimming facility, that's about 10 years old. But it doesn't have a swimming team. It's unwilling to create one despite having all the facilities needed because that might mean reducing the football team's roster a few slots.

Now I'm not against college football -- I didn't take much satisfaction when a college in upstate New York recently dropped football and added (yes, added!) swimming. Football players are just as entitled as swimmers to pursue their sport (althought they shouldn't be more entitled). What I do suggest is that at schools with football, the priorities of the athletic departments and the administration seem to be skewed. The result is that other sports must sacrifice, or be sacrificed, for the good of football.

Several of the posters in this thread have explained that as being because football is a way to generate alumni support and involvement (read, donations). That perception I think is the problem. Sports are no longer seen on those campuses as an activity for the students, but as a business.

The difference between NYU and Hofstra to return to my example, is that when NYU's recently retired long time President, L.J. Oliva first took office he made a deliberate and publicly stated policy decision, that athletics and athletic facilities (a school with 10,000 undergraduates needs extensive recreational facilities) were to be for the benefit of the students involved, not a fundraising tool. And, by the way, NYU has been doing just fine since then in both fundraising and alumni involvement.

cinc3100
December 7th, 2002, 11:09 AM
Now, most of you never attended either a community college or a cal-state school. Football and basketball are not much money makers at them. Most of the students are commuters that work 30 or more hours a week. Unlike UCLA, both Fullerton and Long Beach had few people that attended the football games and in fact Fullerton had their games at a community college field. Now one of the UC schools in California has never had Football, UCI but it has always had a swim team water polo team. UCI is pretty commuter for a UC school. At a tradtional college setting Football and basketball make money but at JC's and commuter schools no. So, a community college or Cal-state school drops a program they might also drop basketball and football along with swimming or track and field. For those back east the Cal-state system is kind to similar to the city college system in New York. Maybe, their is a good reason to keep a swimming team at Indian River Community college in Flordia since they do offer scholorships but many of the JC programs are at a level from C level age group swimmers up to pre-nationals and many good high school teams can beat them. California has swim programs at the community college level where the schools are less than 10 miles apart. If one of them drops swimming or other sports, someone can always go to another school that is close.

Phil Arcuni
December 7th, 2002, 04:03 PM
My favorite school is the University of Chicago (where I went to grad school.) It still has the best overall football record, percentage wise, in the Big Ten, but dropped out of the league because it felt football had an inappropriate effect on campus and academic life (more accurately, its academic standards and admission policies were having a negative effect on football success.) Now it plays an active Division III sport schedule, with lots of student participation.

Another favorite school is the California Institute of Technology which plays a complete lineup of competitive sports, also in Division III. The teams are not very good, but given how small the student body is, the percent participation is very large.

It is a mistake to think that an athletic department should be self-supporting. Instead, a comprehensive sports and recreation program is part of the college education - recognizing that the brain and body are part of one person, and no person can be complete without developing all aspects of oneself. Nobody expects that the college english or sociology or biology department pay for themselves, the athletic department and the individual sports should not either.

The schools I mentioned understand this, as does Stanford and (most) of the Ivies and many of the liberal-arts colleges that are around.

On a personal note, a significant factor in deciding what college to attend was that it have a swimming team that I could participate in (and I did not attend better academic schools just because they had *too* good of a team.) I went to a school very similar to Dartmouth (isolated, cold, small) so I could very well have selected Dartmouth instead of the one I did. The strenth of my college application was my academics, not my swimming (I was not recruited by anyone), but I know that I would not have gone to any school that did not have a team.

I'm sure that Dartmouth will not notice the loss of acceptances by the few applicants that feel the same I did. But Dartmouth, next year, will be less of a school than it used to be.

aquageek
December 7th, 2002, 08:45 PM
To compare Stanford and the Ivies is not a legitimate comparison. Stanford has the largest sports budget of all Division I schools.

While Stanford is clearly an equivalent of the Ivies academically, in my opinion, they are not in the least bit equal in their spending on athletics. Many have complained about Stanford's excessive spending on sports these days.

Phil Arcuni
December 7th, 2002, 08:53 PM
I compare them only in the sense that they both treat athletics seriously and support many athletic teams. Stanford spends a lot on sports - including the minor ones, because the school thinks that sports are important. I assure you that they do not have state-of-the-art swimming, and baseball, and . . . facilities because these programs make money.

Why should anyone complain that Stanford spends too much money on Gymastics and other on-the-edge sports?

I compared Stanford and the Ivies to other schools, not to each other.

rseltzer
December 9th, 2002, 10:01 AM
I think that Emmett is on the right track. We need to stop complaining about football and start mobilizing people to support SWIMMING and remember that varsity teams are a small (but important) part of our sport. Again, masters can play an important role but getting more students BACK INTO swimming -think about the 40,000+ freshman entering school every year who will give up organized swimming when HS, Summer and Y involvement stops when they enter college. This group should be our prime recruiting group for masters--it certainly has proven a very good group to target here in New England. These non-varsity swimming college students are the future of our sport and can be the immense popular base to support swimming at ALL LEVELS.

cinc3100
December 9th, 2002, 11:19 PM
I understand that some of you that benefited from a 4 year program and are favor of keeping them. But I swam for a 2 year program and I don't think swimming at the masters level or at the adult USA level will suffer if some of the community college teams in California are dropped. As I stated before, LA and Orange County have several community colleges less than 10 miles of each other that have a swim team. And even in my day,few swimmers at the JC level swam at the four year level for 2 more years. Four year programs that give scholorships are different from two year programs that don't. Only two swimmers of note swam at the JC level, Shirley Babashoff swam for the Golden West mens team and Lenny K swam for Santa Monica during his freshman year,mainly because his high school team didn't have a swim team. But these are big exceptions to the rule. I didn't say that I wanted them to drop the JC programs but its better to drop then than Division one programs where swimmers are at national level or near national level.

kaelonj
December 10th, 2002, 01:58 PM
Once again it comes down to the bottom line, why do schools offer one program and not another, recognition and support with the ability to attract more potential supporters. For the most part someone would go to Cal Tech not for the sports programs but for the education (most of their sports teams are club anyways). Cynthia's example of Cal State schools is a good case. All Cal State schools charge about the same amount for a years education (whether you go to Cal State LA, Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Long Beach, San Diego State, etc). San Diego State still has a footbal team, Long Beach axed theirs a few years ago and Cal State LA hasn't had one for as long as I can remember - the reason San Diego's football is still around is it's seen as being successful, Cal State Long Beach wasn't. At the time Long Beach cut their football program they still had a swim team and water polo team because these were deemed successful. The school I graduated from did not have a swim team or water polo team - I could have gone to another school and probably swam and played polo but they didn't offer my course of study - so I chose my education over sports.
I think there are more swimmers that have come out of community colleges than you think Cynthia - I believe these are a good support base for USMS, so removing these prograsmm would also undermine the growth of USMS ( one of my fellow team mates at a community college was ranked fairly high in the 50 free even going to the Olympic Trails - also correct me if I'm wrong but I also believe Michael Collins of Nova went to Santa Monica).

Phil Arcuni
December 10th, 2002, 03:49 PM
The programs that a college supports, academic or athletic, says a lot about the priorities of that school. A school that thinks that a good education includes both intellectual and physical development supports a variety of academic and athletic programs. A school that believes that training a person for future life includes establishing good intellectual, moral, and lifestyle habits will set up a program that does that.

I mentioned several college programs that I believe properly integrate academics and sports. These schools do it at all levels, from the club/fun teams of Cal Tech, to the good teams of the Ivy League, to the superior teams of Stanford.

Another school, such as Dartmouth, that drops a sport because they find it difficult or expensive to be 'competitive' at a particular level says quite a bit about its priorities. Perhaps it should redefine what makes a successful athletic program. But for now we know that if it can't win, it won't play.

As for some other schools - surely most people see the hypocrisy of dropping sports so that the 'revenue' sports of football and basketball don't have to take cuts? (What is the revenue for?) And then these schools blame it on Title IX?

I hope every athlete goes to a school for the education, but I know it is not true. The 'farm team' role of colleges in football and basketball subverts the very purpose of these institutions (at least until they recognize 'football' and 'basketball' as degrees of study like Biology or Philosophy.) I fully expect all athletes in college to maintain a rigorous academic program. I also have nothing but respect for those athletes (such a Phelps) that have forgone a college education to dedicate to their sport.

No one argues that schools don't have to make choices, but the choices of a Cal State school should and will be different from an Ivy League school.

rseltzer
December 10th, 2002, 04:15 PM
Another reason why we should support the different components of our "sport". The growth and well-being of masters does depend on the growth and well-being of "youth" swimming (USA, Y, summer league) as well as college varsity programs. Many of our coaches in masters swimming come from varsity swim programs at all levels. Furthermore, we depend on varsity programs for coaches and pool time. Our experience in New England is that college swim teams (and Y teams) have made tremendous contributions to our growth.

I think all of the components youth-varsity-masters are connected and need each other to thrive in the future. I speculate that very few USMS members swam at the varsity level but have an impact on our organization well beyond the demographic numbers. If I do a quick scan of NEM volunteers the vast majority have some college swim experience; and an even greater number of our coaches have similar background. Yet in our surveys of members very few (less than 20%) swam in college.

In one way, I think it unfortunate that USMS is separate from US Swimming because we could help them do a better job of promoting the l fitness and social aspects of our sport that make it so attractive to many people once they reach masters. In the meantime, we lose a lot of young people who decide to opt out of swimming because the demands of the sport are no longer attractive. Perhaps the USMS planning committee should develop )or expand ) our attempts to leverage the strenghts of the different parts of the swimming community with the objective to grow our sport on all levels.

cinc3100
December 11th, 2002, 05:36 PM
There are some really good swimmers at the community college level. I'm uncertain about whether MR. Collins attended Santa Monica Community College. Also, I found out that Mr Dave Salo of Nova Aqautics fame coaches at Orange Coast College and Flipp Darr now retired coached at Saddleback community college. However,at the Community College level swimmers vary from ability to ability more than the four year level. When I swam at the women's team years ago at Golden West, we had A level age group swimmers in certain strokes like myself and we had one pre-national level swimmer and one that reach nationals in her high school years. Also, we had some people that didn't even swim in high school. Sure, the community colleges gives people a second chance but how many programs should California have I don't know. At the present, I have not heard of any cuts lately.

kaelonj
December 13th, 2002, 02:52 PM
Cynthia,

Kind of like biting the hand that feeds you, you swam at a community college and would have assumed that you gained some benefit from it (I know I did - I didn't swim in High School, for that matter our High School didn't have a swim team). How many community colleges should have a swim team, depnds on the administrators and demand - would assume that if no one tried out for a college swim team, they wouldn't have one and wouldn't waste money on it.
The community college teams are great for our sport - gives those people who wouldn't make it to a division 1 or even division 2 school a chance to learn about competitive swimming and hopefully a lifetime enjoyment of the sport. The fact that not many 'national (fast) swimmers' swim at this level shouldn't dismiss the importance - because the same could be said of High School or even club teams - a team of 100 swimmers may only have a handful of Jr or Sr National level swimmers - yet there is more to swimming that winning titles and could be said that the life lessons learned are as important as anything learned in a classroom.

cinc3100
December 13th, 2002, 09:47 PM
Well, with community college for women in my day, most people were at the end of their careers. It was for fun. I think that Men gain more from the Community college system since they develop their body strength later and have more time drops past high school. If Golden West didn't have a team back then, then I would have swam at Orange Coast. Its just that colleges have budget limits and California has so many JC's that have sports programs that are so close together and if one did cut a program then someone could swim for another school that is less than 10 miles away. But I have not read of any cuts lately, probably the JC's programs are spared compared to four year swimming programs because they are cheaper to run. They rarely travel more than 50 miles for a meet. Usually, its the state final or maybe a couple of dual meets that are more than 50 miles. Also, they pay the coach a much smaller salary. As for high schools, I was in one of the slowest leagues in swimming-Garden Grove league. Last year, I lookup the results for CIF in Divsion 4 and only 4 or 5 boys or girls came from the Garden Grove league. Los Amigos high school (where I attended school) and Garden Grove are not the typical hot spots for swimming-since in the GG school district, anglos make up about only 20 percent of the population. In my day at least over 20 percent of the students had spainish surnames and that was the 1970's at my high school. I know there are plenty of asians and latins that swim, but many of the kids are from immirgrant backgrounds and never swam before high school in the GGSD. Should they limit swimming at all the high schools at the Garden Grove District. No, but its up to those schools if they want to kept certain sports programs. Many probably keep swimming because they see it as a means to get water polo players in shape and they of course each have a 25 yard pool-because they built the pools from the 1950's to 1968 when it was a lot cheaper to built it on a high school campus.

tzsegal
January 13th, 2003, 01:08 PM
Just an fyi:

January 8, 2003. The Dartmouth menís and womenís varsity swimming and diving programs will be continued through a funding agreement between a group of students, alumni, and parents and the Dartmouth administration. The agreement calls for the program to be fully reinstated based on a $2 million fund-raising effort.

That's from Dartmouth College News & Events.

Here's a link to the student newspaper and the press release:

http://sa.dartmouth.edu/assembly/index.php?action=show_item&id=25

Michael Heather
January 19th, 2003, 11:32 PM
One of the things that I did not see in this thread is the fact that Swimming as a sport tends to successfully graduate one of the (if not the) highest percentage of student atheletes. Does that ever make a difference?

By extrapolation, the graduates would likely be more successful, and be in the position to make donations on a larger scale or more frequently.

In response to Ms. Curran, I went to Pasadena City College, and it was not by any stretch a second rate swimming school. We regularly had meets with UCLA, USC and UCSB, as well as Cal State LB. We often got creamed, but always made them work for a win. JC's had no scholarships to offer, so we swam for local pride. My final 100 Butterfly in JC would have placed in the top 12 in NCAA Div 1 that year, but I swam it 2 months later. Oh Well.

cinc3100
January 20th, 2003, 10:42 PM
I didn't say all Jr college swimmers are bad swimmers. But many of them are or were around my ability. I swam a 1:06.3 for a 100 yard butterfly and a 1:17.1 for a 100 yard breastroke and a 6:02 for a 500 yard free those were medocre times for the 1970's. If I swam those times in breastroke or butterfly in the 1950's, I would have made nationals. But in the current world, those are not that fast. I even went on the internet and seen that Jr times are not much faster than when I swam back in the 1970's. Sure, they are expections such as yourself but most Jr swimmers mainly the women can be beaten by CIF girls. Anyway, I didn't always enjoy swimming in my teens. I had a father that was pushy and some of the experiances are not that pleasant. For people that are average age groupers that can't be good swimmers are a four year school but are fair at a two year, they sometimes are pushed by parents. We didn't have state for women in those days, but I manage to place 8th twice in 100 yard butterfly at the Southern California meet and 13 and 14th in 100 yard breastroke and 16th in 500 yard freestyle and 15 or 16th in 50 yard butterfly. I enjoyed some of the experiances and still have the thrid place marble thing that Golden West women swimmers received for getting third place. In Arizona, most post-high school swimmers have to go to masters since their is no JR College swimming for swimmers at my ability.

cinc3100
January 21st, 2003, 12:19 AM
Its true that swimmers finished college more than certain sports but many swimmers come from middle to upper-middle class families. So, many are not at a disadvantage when they go to college. Also, their parents would prefer that they bcome doctors or lawyers or sales executives rather than a plumber or truck driver. In fact, in my childhood, the Babashoffs were one of the few blue collar families among top swimmers. Also, among ex-elite swimmers Shirley Babashoff is one of the few who does a blue collar job-she delivers mail. So stats about swimmers finishing college more than football players who have more kids from a minority background that are not middle class doesn't explain the whole picture. Swimmers until about 1988 even at the top level didn't receive any monetary award while football and basketball and baseball do and many people from a poorer background would rather go out for them since they can make some money. This is another reason why swimmers finished college. On the other hand, a sport like figure Skating also which consists of middle to upper middle class backgrounds has less people finished college or enter college because there money out there. Michelle Kwan is taking her time at UCLA since there is money in her sport.

cinc3100
April 17th, 2003, 11:10 PM
I brought this up again because this time its a commuter college Fresno state that's axing the program, and its just the women's program. During the past 10 years because of Title ix and the fact that age groupers are more liking to be female there is a lot more women's programs compared to men when it comes to college swimming, 30 years it was the reverse. I know that some of you would support college teams at commuter colleges since you were supportive of JC programs since you were on them. As for the ladies program I have mixed emotions. Like I said there are more women swimming programs than men out there and it may be easier to find another women's team.