Thoughts On Sportsball

The Federal government won convictions on three of its cases against the sneaker pimps working behalf of the apparel company Adidas. The case is a strange one in that the FBI invested a lot of time into surveying and wiretapping some famous basketball coaches, as well as some senior company executives. Yet, they have narrowed their focus to some small fish and two executives. It’s one of those cases that probably reveals things about our age for what is not happening, than for what is actually happening in the courtroom.

For those unfamiliar with American college basketball, here’s some background.

Men’s college basketball is probably the most corrupt sport in America. It used to be that boxing was the dirtiest sport, but interest in it has collapsed to the point where it is probably no longer worth the trouble for the criminally inclined. Basketball, on the other hand, is a big money sport with lots of public interest. Like boxing, the talent tends to be unsophisticated and dull-witted, so they are easy to corrupt. There’s also a culture in the sport that tolerates hustlers and conmen. In fact, they are often celebrated.

Strangely, the corruption is not driven by the money coming in the front door, from ticket sales and player contracts. The corruption is driven by the money that comes through the back door, in the form of sneaker agents, apparel companies and the youth development leagues. The business model for sneaker companies is simple. They want black kids buying their sneakers. Since Americans worship black people and youth culture, whatever black kids like, gets bought by Americans and then the people of the provinces.

To that end, the sneaker companies are always looking to sign young basketball stars to represent their brand. They also want college programs, where many of the stars start to become famous, wearing their shoes. The result is the sneaker companies operate complex webs of street agents who bribe kids and their families to sign off-the-books contracts, so they can be guided to the college programs on the payroll of the sneaker company paying the street agent. It’s institutional bribery that has been normalized.

With that as background, it is a mystery as to why the Feds decided to go after these guys, when they have been turning a blind eye to it for decades. The corruption in college basketball is so well known that some of the notorious street agents, who bribe players on behalf of sneaker companies have become institutions. The agent for LeBron James has become very rich just because he got lucky and signed the biggest star in the sport when he was in high school. There are lots of guys hoping to win that lottery.

In other words, the Feds could have been arresting people for decades, but they didn’t and then all of a sudden they went after Adidas. Now, maybe that is just bureaucratic inertia, but what makes this strange is the limited scope thus far. The company executives involved were handing out hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes. Given the nature of the sport, that means they probably had a budget of millions to use to bribe players and coaches. That money did not fall from the sky. It came from the company.

Everyone familiar with corporate accounting knows there is no account for bribery in the G&A expenses. Adidas is a publicly traded company, which means they have to follow strict accounting standards. That means there are people in their finance department who have been involved in fraud for a long time. It certainly means C-level managers were aware of the activities and approved it. The FBI could easily take down the whole company if they started to dig around in the books. They certainly have probable cause.

Then there is the strange fact that there have been no plea discussions. The people have not been offered a plea deal and no one has offered to talk. Again, the Adidas executives were not operating alone. They have bigger fish to trade for their freedom. The assistant coaches that have been charged can easily hand over their bosses, who are all famous people. The Feds love putting famous people in jail, because it gets them on TV, but in this case the Feds are strangely uninterested in leveraging what they have to get big fish.

Now, like most people reading this, I have limited interest in basketball. What’s intrigued me about this case is all of the dogs not barking. I can accept that the Feds just ignored the issue for years, because their political bosses put things like terrorism and the drug war as top priorities. Still, the Feds have time to hassle citizens for all sorts of stupid and petty things. It’s not like they are actually doing anything about drug crime and terrorism, other than putting on a show for the public. They could have been on this years ago.

Putting that aside, the real mystery is why they have not bothered to expand this case to the most obvious places. If we’re going to assume that the Feds are lazy so they go after low hanging fruit, then why are they not picking these big juicy plumbs that are right in front of them? Similarly, if sloth is the reason behind their lack of action for decades, why did they bother going to trial, when they could have offered these guys a deal? It’s one of those times where the answer to one question contradicts the answer to something else.

The reason this intrigues me is I think it reveals something about the entire system that most people just suspect. That is, the level of incompetence is much worse that even the harshest critics assert. We’ve seen glimpses of this in the FBI scandal. These people are supposed to be the elite, yet they bungled the simplest of tasks. That means down the line, the quality of personnel is even lower. The reason this sneaker case does not make a lot of sense is because the people running it just time-serving hacks.

Another angle to this is that this case reveals the cultural rot of the American empire. The appeal of professional sport is to see men compete in mock battles on a level playing field, abiding by transparent rules. The governing bodies are supposed to make sure the field remains level and the rules transparent. That’s sportsmanship. The state is supposed to step in clean up the business if the governing body is corrupt or simply needs help policing their sport. It’s why casinos have a strong relationship with law enforcement.

Yet, we have a sport that is flagrantly and openly corrupt and no one says anything about it or tries to do anything about it. As we see with this Adidas case, it would be very easy to pop dozens of coaches and even more sneaker company executives. A handful of high profile people going to prison is the sort of thing that reminds everyone else of the need to maintain high standards. As the Chinese say, sometimes you kill some chickens to scare the monkeys. Imprison a few sneaker executive to keep the rest of them motivated.

One final thought, as I have gone on too long about this. The political class is now moaning about the fact that the public has lost faith in institutions. They never think that maybe their unwillingness to enforce the people’s laws could be the reason. They never mention the flagrant disregard for the spirit of the law throughout the elite. Most Americans are sports fans and every day they are reminded that the Cloud People have no respect for the rules. Eventually, the message does sink in and the Dirt People follow suit.

119 thoughts on “Thoughts On Sportsball

  1. “The Games” Super Bowl etc. Are a modern version of the Roman Games.
    If you have a chance or a way to read the 400 years of silence between the old and the New Testament, i would. You may glean much.
    This modernized Global Roman Empire that ‘is’ here needs to collapse. i believe we are witnessing it. It needs to. Many are balking at this and will go to war to stop this (try.)
    The point being God does not want nor need much of this empire ( man’s) to come back. Neither shall we.

  2. College ball is corrupt and has always bean for one reason only…the “student-athlete” scam. You can either be a serious student or a full-time semi professional athlete but not both. Yes, I know there are rare exceptions but not the norm.

    To cut out corruption, simple cut out the whole student-athlete BS scam. Let “college-sports” be a development league funded by the NBA and the NFL. The leagues pay the college coaches and share the revenue generated with the colleges (50%-50%). Athletes, can accept endorsements, cash awards for joining any development league team just like the NFL. At the end of 3-4 years, they get drafted. Oh yes, the athletes are free to join college buy they pay full tuition and other fees just like any other student. The NCAA should be abolished. Besides, why the NFL and NBA get talent development for free? If they want to develop talent they should pay. Period.

  3. Dull witted but a candidate for political father of the year. Le born
    I ddnt do muffin coby…..

  4. Totally unrelated , but since the topic is basketball. Today on sports radio they interviewed Danny Ainge and his expectations of the Celtics this year.

    Instead he started telling a story about Bob Cousy visiting the team this past week and telling the young players the strides basketball has made when in the early days the black players had to use a separate entrance to get into a restaurant.

    The story goes instead of using the separate entrance the Celtics first black player and Cousy went to the side of the building and pissed on it

    Just another reason to hate basketball. It’s supposed to be entertainment. Instead they can’t help themselves interjecting politics.

    The fact the corruption starts early is of no surprise.

  5. When they write the history books in the collapse, they’ll have to put Hillary Clinton on the cover. Not just that she wasn’t prosecuted for ridiculously illegal violiations of national security laws, but that the agents involved were active working to ensure she walked. Then, she gets defeated in humiliating fashion. In the old days it was understood that she should disappear from public life. That’s how the elites used to police themselves. Banishment and exile.

    I said this years ago, but they’ve given up on the idea of policing themselves, and they’ve put people in place who will ensure the public cannot police them either.

    And now they’re mailing themselves bombs to blame on the opposition.

  6. College sports have always been corrupt. Lucius Allen & Lew Alcindor stayed at UCLA for 4 years because a “Sports Booster” was giving him cars and “No show” jobs. That was 50 years ago. Cash under the table, signing bonuses, etc. – in College Football it all goes back to the 1920s.

    • C’mon now man, College sports was squeaky clean in the 1920’s. It was clean till those darkies ruined it /sarcasm. Inconvenient facts are not to be mentioned to the Dissident Right.

  7. Corruption laws cant be too hard to get around, hell, that’s basically what the DS is all about as I understand it. You cant ask an official to so something in exchange for rewards, that’s ‘crude corruption’ and clearly illegal. But as far as I know, there is no law against saying ‘maybe, in the future, we would like to hire you for advertising/consulting etc’. People will be people, corruption is a sign of cultural, not legislative, decadence I think. And maybe the difficulty of proving wrongdoing is why the feds are moving slowly here, just a thought?

  8. The college sports weirdness runs deep indeed. For instance, I often commented to faculty colleagues that we really ought to let jocks “major” in their sport — that way they don’t take up chairs in real classes, no profs get strong-armed into passing them when they don’t show up, even the stats go up, as “graduation rate by major” looks a lot better when the majors include football. Now here’s the weird part: Everyone on the faculty was aghast at this idea. These are people who hate sportsball with the heat of a thousand suns, and yet, though they’d happily ax every single program, they won’t endorse a Football major despite its win/win nature. Weird, eh? I can’t begin to explain it.

    • Because deep down they are arrogant pricks who cannot imagine that any field other then their own and those they deign to deem worthy of being treated as “real” majors is worthy of such treatment. And don’t ever forget they like the money any successful university football or basketball program brings their workplace because it often frees up other university funds for research and other things that result in direct compensation for professors.

  9. Interesting little piece I read in the Journal on airplane haul back east this morning. The “one and out” rule has been modified to allow kids to go straight to the rather small basketball minor leagues from high school and raised the first year salary cap to $125k. Apparently was fought tooth and nail by the NCAA as it’s a significant step towards creating a true minor league system that bypasses the colleges and pinches their free labor. For a kid to start at that at 18 plus, going to assume, some freedom to do his own side deals, it’s a pretty big incentive to skip the college bullshit.

    Bribery is illegal, but as I learned in China, sophisticated webs of “consultants” are not strictly so and act as very efficient conduits to government officials and others who want their palms greased.

  10. I think you provided the answer to the question early in your post. That is, Americans “worship” black people, (or at the very least, regard them as much loved pets incapable of wrong-doing or sin).

    Nobody in the federal government (the Deep State is still full of Obama minions) will target a basketball-American. That’s practically a modern day lynching. So the thugs and pimps will just skate. Always and forever. But if you can throw a few white shoe company middle managers in jail, then by all means…

    Like banks being accused of “predatory loans” that target and hurt minorities, so too are sneaker reps “predators” on innocent, wide-eyed dreamers who dindu nuffin.

    In fact, I bet many fed law enforcement agents and bureaucrats are big fans, ticket buyers, whose big dream is to get court-side seats close enough to smell the sweat of their demigods.

    You CANNOT go after LeBron! (Jesus was already crucified once).

    When sportsballs get devalued below their current religious status, back down to the farcical minstrel shows that they truly are, maybe we’ll return to sanity.

    Oh, and yes, the FBI and DOJ are corrupt and stupid. But at least they hate America. So they got that going for them.

  11. Slightly different take on this, while conceding that gross incompetence could explain everything:

    What if the FBI got involved in this without quite being aware of what they were getting in to? What if, after a quick education in the reality of college sports, they had an “oh shit” moment when they realized that the implications of what they had uncovered would mean that the FBI/DOJ would have to prosecute high profile cases of famous people (John Calipari, top NIKE executives, etc.) and send them to prison? Maybe it was just decided, given the alternatives, that they’d bag a couple of small fry, quickly close the book and forget it ever happened.

  12. The FBI was NEVER as good the federal agency Hoover’s propaganda and the willing press made it out to be. I have known a dozen or so FBI special agents of various ranks over the last 30 years. All are competent at their jobs but none of them are geniuses. They are above average in intelligence, dedicated to an ideal of law and order and proud of their roles. Put another way, they are not much better than any good local LEO on the NYPD or LAPD. FBI special agents just have access to lots of federal dollars and an institutional/corporate culture that marks them as “elite.” But they are human and capable of amazing blunders, and there are plenty of examples, the Robert Hanssen espionage case being one of the most illuminating.

    More to the point, FBI special agents and employees are government bureaucrats just like anyone at the Commerce Department, Interior Department, etc. They know where their paychecks and pensions come from and when push comes to shove, most will do as they’re told so they can continue paying their mortgages, rent, bills, retirement, etc.

    • FBI agents will tell you that there are three classes of agent. There are the field agents who try to be good at their work. There’s a class of time serving bureaucrats who do the minimum and avoid trouble. Then there are the politicians who are looking to climb the ranks. The evidence nos says the ratio is 20/60/20 now. That may be generous.

      • All bureaucracies are somewhat like that. Having served as a prosecutor at the county level for 22 years, I saw and lived the life cycle of a careerist. You start out with incredible zeal and work hard to master the art of trial advocacy. You don’t persist unless you have some chops for the work, but after 10-15 years you see how little impact you really have on society as a whole. It’s all about particular individuals, some of them repeat offenders, all of whom are bad people. Many are stupid. A few are truly evil. The work leaves you jaded, and you have two choices: get political, chase leadership roles, try to change the system; or get apathetic and serve time until you can retire. A lot of smart lawyers trod this path because they are extremely risk-averse and conservative, in the sense of actually prefering to avoid innovation.

  13. Years ago I worked at a major aerospace firm. During the required ethics training, the manual stated in so many words that bribes are tolerated only when doing business in countries where bribery is the norm. Some countries pay their civil servants so little that they have ask for bribes just to afford to eat.

    • I’m surprised that such payments were openly authorized, unless this was really a long time ago. These payments are the fun Customary Expediting Payments permitted under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. It’s very vague and as a result corporate policies always formally forbid them while informally winking at their use. No one with any power will sign off, but they happen anyway, because, as you say, they have to. The corporate policies perform their core function of protecting corporate management. If the Feds decide (as they could, at any time and for any reason) that the Customary payment wasn’t Customary, the corporation (that is, the stockholders) pays a price, some low level patsy takes the blame, and Management remains pure and unsullied, apart from some furrowed brows and disappointed sighs about their unsatisfactory work force. More mandatory training!

      • In some countries you can’t even get the power turned on or a phone line installed without paying a gratuity. If you open an office in one of those countries you either pay up or sit in the dark.

  14. Yes, this is another example of cultural rot, but underlying that is the reality that all the players are taking the easy road. The shoe company execs want to increase profits, not by making better shoes than the competition, but by bamboozling their customers with fake bribe-based advertising. The customers buy overpriced shoes, not because it makes them better basketball players, but because it gives them fake status in the hood. The Feds want to appear like they’re doing their job, but not by actually taking down a corrupt industry, too much work so just put on enough of a carnival show act to entertain the masses. Common denominator is lazy, and lazy societies are not robust.

  15. Zman, can you link me to your post on “10 things that explain your philosophy” or something like that? It’s not included in your essentials, or other banner items, and I can’t seem to find it anywhere – thank you!

  16. The opposite of love is apathy. There are many things I simply do not care about any more. Sports, the “college experience”, gayness (never did care), new music, new art, new movies, new TV shows, news reports, new fiction books, SF and fantasy, Halloween, voting (other than to vote no on any taxes and financing, and to vote for the most outrageously rightist candidates I can find), networking, gender (other than the plumbing), feelings, magazines, new cars, big business, politics, and the investment markets. I guess sitting on a mountaintop and watching everything go by like one huge, ridiculous gay pride parade is what I am into now. So be it.

    • It’s strange, a lot of dissident right guys seem to have had a quasi-Buddhist experience of seeing through the vanities of the world. After a real redpilling, the world never really looks the same.

      There’s a beautiful Buddhist saying, “seeing through the red dust,” to describe this experience, the red dust being what gets kicked up by the angry hustle-bustle of the world. A lot of d-righters see ours as a fighting creed, and I hope it is, but it also has this unusual spiritual component which I rarely see commented on.

      (P.S. I am not a Buddhist, but I learned some Chinese for business purposes and, like the great John Derbyshire, have tried to collect some of the usable or colorful wisdom of the East.)

  17. They don’t want to upset the bread and circuses Z. The social contract is getting mighty frayed and too vigorous an action risks wrecking the whole damn thing. Then those soma stilled minds might do dangerous things, like realize, actualize and even think, instead of watching the assorted @ball.

    About you point of the cloud being rotten, so follows the underlings. The only reason the whole works hasn’t settled into the basement as a pile is because the little ones at the bottom are keeping it alive. Oftentimes through brilliant strikes of ingenuity or just plain old grit and determination. They too are asleep and should instead withdraw consent and participation, in order to hasten the decline.

    Just because there’s a prevalence of idiocy on the coasts doesn’t mean it’s syatemic throughout the redneckistans. We didn’t wear those fucking parachute pants, either.

  18. On the topic of fedgov incompetence, I currently work as an assessor in warfare/combat readiness.
    3/4 of the .gov employees I encounter do NOTHING but pretend work, moving paperwork about nothing from place to place. If they fail entirely to do even that rudimentary task, there are ZERO consequences. So they progress up the GS ranks, inexorably gaining pay, power, and benefits, providing absolutely no value whatsoever to “the mission.” The uniformed folks are not a whole lot better, but there is some slight accountability there, at least for white males.
    Anyone with eyes can see that at some point it must all come crashing to a stop under the ever increasing weight of incomprehensible inefficiency.

  19. This is all so weird. At heart is the ridiculous nature of college athletics. The law firm I work for doesn’t “bribe” me to file motions and respond to discovery. That’s my job, and I get paid to do it. Yet it’s perfectly natural to say Adidas bribed high schoolers to sign with Louisville instead of Kansas. Eh, at least South Park made a good joke of it:

  20. The FBI has been called “The Famous But Incompetent,” and “F***ed up Beyond Imagining” for years. I remember endless video of FBI agents investigating the OKC bombing. The Agent in Charge had a significant gut, wore a cheap suit and a beat up necktie covered with food stains. The investigators waddled about in those two dollar blue FBI windbreakers. There were many a**crack views as they crouched down, looking at something.

    If the Progs ever decide to put the hammer down, the ‘hammer’ will be composed of many timeservers, toadies, and careerists — not exactly the SS.

    • Yeah, sometimes the guy in the beat-up raincoat and sloppy tie is Lt. Colombo, but usually in the real world, he’s just a slob. Say what you will, but Hoover would never have put up with that. In his day, FBI agents at least looked the part…

  21. I’d be far more impressed if they went after the Banksters. Blankfein having his most personal orifices explored by a series of our swarthy brothers for 5 to 10 years would fix a lot that needs fixing.

  22. The political class is now moaning about the fact that the public has lost faith in institutions. They never think that maybe their unwillingness to enforce the people’s laws could be the reason. They never mention the flagrant disregard for the spirit of the law throughout the elite.

    Mentally ill people lack insight. The elites lack insight. Perhaps there is an explanation here.

  23. My first internalization of class consciousness was looking around at the kids in music class in 3rd grade. We were all in a big circle. I felt the kids with Nikes were good and winners. The kids in other shoes were grimy dork losers. (If New Balance, Puma, or Addidas, you were lesser but ok.) But any other shoe that wasn’t a Nike wasn’t just not a Nike, but a wanna-be Nike. You sucked. Your family shopped at Kmart. Your shoes were 90% foam. I was probably in the prole shoe category because my dad was too cheap or too sensible to care.

    Around this time you start hearing adults using the term “imitation”. As a youth, before marketing takes over your soul, the concept of “imitation” or “knock-off” brand is meaningless. A nice looking watch is just a nice looking watch. Until uncle Edward glances down and tells you it’s just an Omega wanna-be. Then it’s a suddenly loathsome thing. Remember when you’d see an awesome car and not think for a second what the owner was “trying to be”? It would be neat to see the world without categories again.

    Only for a week though, since I’m not a commie, and know that categories are often real and humans need them for all kinds of stupid but necessary reasons. But yeah, it would be sweet to wear that pretty Kmart watch and only care that it’s pretty.

  24. You do know Adidas is a Germany company? I suspect the current American administration will be doing more anti-European investigations like this in the future given the current feelings between our two governments.

  25. Interesting topic and discussion. I wonder why it even matters. So what if shoe companies are bribing black teens. The money almost certainly redistributes immediately in the community or more likely goes straight to Bavarian motor works.

    This gave me an idea. Remember when Z told about how the shoe company BKs went bankrupt when kids randomly started calling them “brother killers.” ? We need to engineer a similar fate for Nike. Nike was the Roman goddess of victory. The Romans enslaved many blacks didn’t they? We can start calling nikes brother enslavers!

  26. I guess the big question for me is, why is it all illegal in the first place? I assume it’s all tied back to college player NCAA agreements not to compete for profit. THAT is the biggest corrupt crock out there. Schools, coaches and administrators cleaning up off the backs of the poorly-compensated players.

    What needs to happen is to take the “college” out of college basketball. Then the men can make whatever endorsement agreements they want at whatever prices they want.

    • Bribery is always illegal. Handing the parents of a kid a bag of cash so they will have him sign a contract with a specific university is bribery.

      • Yeah but what makes it bribery? If I offered you fifty dollars to wear a shirt saying “chaotic neutral is cool,” would that be bribery? Why then aren’t academic scholarships bribery? It’s an economic enticement to go to a particular school. Bribery is an attempt to buy influence of an impartial legal entity.

        • If I offered you fifty dollars to wear a shirt saying “chaotic neutral is cool,” would that be bribery?


          Why then aren’t academic scholarships bribery?

          It’s not.

        • Yeah but what makes it bribery?

          To answer your question, the coaches are public officials. They work for a state agency. Some are charged with taking money from the sneaker companies to recruit certain players. The sneaker people are being charged with fraud.

        • So is a paycheck, but obviously not all bags of cash are the same, legally or morally. A man who pushes an old woman out of the path of a bus and man who man who pushes an old lady into the path of a bus are men who push old ladies. They are obviously different in important ways.

      • “Bribery is always illegal.” As a maritime and corporate finance attorney who has closed dozens of very complex financial deals over the last fourteen years of law practice, I must disagree. Designating as a “bribe” one form of compensation that is otherwise entirely legal in other commercial circumstances is arbitrary at the least, regardless of Congress’s action. You don’t need to be a libertarian or liberal/progressive to see the double standard or the undermining of a basic freedom to contract for your labor.

        “Signing bonuses,” “fees” of various kinds and other forms of compensation for agreeing to enter into a legally binding contract are a regular part of commercial transactions and are completely legal. For some strange reason, the “powers that be” decided student athletes, who are adults under the law, shouldn’t be allowed to do the same as any other adult in the labor market, i.e. bargain for the best deal in exchange for their labor and/or willingness to allow their name to be used for commercial benefits to another contracting party. Why? Because these young adults are playing a sport for their university. If the universities didn’t want students to take money from other sources, then they could simply include such a clause in the athletic scholarship contract and that would be legally binding if the student agreed to take the scholarship. The universities’ scholarship rules and other policies incorporated into the scholarship contract usually include such clauses. A diligent prospect with legal representation, more normal than many realize these days, can at least know and bargain for what obligations they are agreeing to. But that wasn’t good enough for the NCAA. So they got Congress to pass a statute that strips the student athlete of a fundamental right to enter into contracts.

        The bottom line is that young adults are basically told their only legal form of compensation is their athletic scholarship to fund attendance at the university for which they play and any other perks the university deigns to grant them. So much for freedom of contract. Meanwhile, the universities pay coaches huge salaries (far greater than any professor) and expend huge amounts of money to build athletic complexes hoping to pay for it with revenues from successful NCAA football or basketball programs. This has nothing to with their core educational mission but allows the faculty members to run a for-profit corporation with the benefits of being a nonprofit entity.

        • Oh, I’ve heard all of these arguments. I simply point out that “freedom of contract” exists in the world of forms, not here on earth. It’s never existed and will never exist.

          That leaves us with reality, which in this case, means the kids get paid and paid quite well, to play for a school. But, there are restrictions on who can pay them. They don’t have to play for a school. They can go overseas or play in a minor league. If they wish to play for a school, then there are rules they must follow. There are rules on the coaches and school administrators.

          Maybe these are bad rules, I don’t know, but they exist for a reason. Chesterton’s fence.

  27. My surprise is anyone actually likes basketball in the first place. It struck me years ago that it’s a sport that relies entirely on a rule of time to make it vaguely interesting, needs very tall people to function and creates athletic drama by having people swinging on some metal hoop like, er, a …um… oh, what’s the name of the animal…?

  28. College sport is so weird I’m not sure even a 500 IQ space alien could understand it.

    Human: “So we have these prestigious educational institutions for young adults, but they take in big dumb guys who play children’s games that have nothing to do with education, and those guys pretend to study, and their games make millions of dollars, but these fake students are not paid, even though the fake students come from a tribe that is otherwise fanatically helped and protected by all the powerful people in society. Except the fake students *will* be protected if they rape and/or murder one of the women of the other tribe that passionately cheers for them in their children’s games.”

    Zorglax of Xirxon: “Wha?”

    • I’ve tried explaining the college sports model to Europeans. It is impossible. When you try explaining it, you realize it is something that no one would create if it did not exist. It just evolved without design.

    • Make me Czar and Number-One Head Chopper of College Athletics and I could fix college sports.

      General Principle:
      Playing college varsity athletics is a privilege accorded to good students, not a play pen for semi-retarded thugs. College varsity athletics are not to be taxpayer/parent-subsidized minor leagues for professional leagues.

      1. Those who play varsity athletics must have had a SAT/ACT, HS GPA, and HS class ranking (all three) higher than the median SAT/ACT, HS GPA, HS class rank for those admitted in their class/cohort at both their college (Ole Miss, for example) _and_ for their playing conference (SEC).
      2. Varsity athletes must carry the equivalent of a full load (24 credit hours minimum) over the course of the academic year (may use summer classes toward this).
      3. Varsity athletes must have selected a major by the end of their sophomore year. Majors that end in *-studies do not meet the requirement.
      4. Varsity athletes must maintain a 3.0 GPA and/or a GPA higher than the median GPA for their class/cohort, _whichever is higher_.
      5. Varsity athletes will be tested for PEDs on a monthly basis during the season, and quarterly off-season.

      That’s a good start.

      • Part of my annoyance with college sports is the mercenary aspect of it. Who couldn’t be king of the hill given enough money to hire the best from anywhere, without regard to local ties or how well s/he actually does in school? I suggest all athletes on a given school’s team must originate from that school’s environs – let’s say s/he must have lived continuously for the previous 5 years within 100 (200? 300?) miles of said school. That might provide an incentive for schools to make their immediate surroundings more inviting, whatever that means. It would certainly make things more actually tribal, as opposed to the BS tribal stuff we see now. (MY hired blacks are better than YOUR hired blacks.)

    • College sports certainly is weird. I could be the biggest college basketball fan on this board, although my interest is quickly decreasing the last couple of years. I have spent many years on my team’s message board and most non-fans or casual fans wouldn’t believe how closely the fans follow recruiting.

      They know about every 16 to 18 year old high school player their team is in the process of recruiting and study the scouting reports and watch all their highlight videos. They spend a lot of time discussing the kids’ strengths and weaknesses, if it looks like they’ll get taller, get stronger, if their shooting will improve, etc.

      They know when their “official visits” are and also know when they go to the other schools’ official visits who are also recruiting them.

      They all read tweets and reports for clues as to how the visits went, what these kids say about them and what the kids ate for dinner. I’m kidding about the last part, but maybe not. I’ve seen pictures of the recruits at a restaurant dining with the coaching staff followed by the fans analyzing the look on the kid to see if it looks like he’s enjoying himself, which might lead to the kid picking our team!

      These fans are so dialed into the recruiting process that sometimes I think they’re more satisfied with a successful recruiting class than actually winning a championship!

      There are several scouting services which rank the high school kids numerically. The top kids are the ones that powerhouse programs (the “bluebloods”) go after. Kentucky, Duke, North Carolina, Kansas. The bluebloods almost always get at least one, and usually more of the top 10 kids. The pressure on the coaches is unbelievably high to recruit successfully, so it’s easy to understand how it’s become such a corrupt business.

      I’m not sure if Zman covered it, but for those who don’t know, each college program is affiliated with a shoe company, mostly either Adidas or Nike. You can see the Nike Swoosh on the teams’ jerseys, for example. It’s a long ways from being amateur sports.

  29. When the ruling class whines about declining faith in institutions, what they really demand from us is faith in them, personally, as individuals.

    They clawed their way into the job, so it’s their right to do as they please with it, and the other part of the reward is that the little people are supposed to respect them and believe they’re Great Men.

    This is third world thinking. Of course nobody in American politics ever was immune to it, but at one time you had to maintain a convincing simulation of public service, even in Tammany Hall.

  30. I guess most coaches are black as are most players. It would be racist to prosecute black coaches in a black sport.

  31. I worked the TV & Radio broadcast side of b’ball with a number of Div. I schools 30+ years ago, and the shoe money, even then, was out of control. Everybody in the program had their hand out to be greased.
    The answer to all this is change the role of the NCAA and just pay the damn kids as if they were pros. End the hypocrisy of ‘amateur athletics’.

    • Title IX. You wanna pay Football Hero, you gotta pay third-string on the girl’s pretend sport team. And the pay better be “equitable” or it’s all for naught.

  32. Mostly I look at this as a complete waste of my tax $. Why do the feds care about black kids families get money on the side? Who gets hurt really? NO ONE.

    Except the NCAA feels bad that their special status as a quasi government agency was hampered.

    If the government wants to fix something, pass a law denying the NCAA’s rights to screw over athletes in the name of “amateurism” when there is so f’ing much money floating around at the expense of the “kids”.

    • This is a good example of how libertarianism has poisoned the minds of so many. Their answer to the problems of government is to shout about getting rid of government, as if that is in the realm of the possible. It’s why I used to call libertarianism the art of hiding under the bed.

      The fact is, you cannot have rules unless you enforce them, all of them. That’s just the reality of civilized life. Selective enforcement erodes the public’s respect for the law, by making the law arbitrary and capricious.

      • It’s about prioritizing how and where our government spends its limited resources. When we continually make bad choices like this, other big problems like solving our infrastructure crisis or building the wall don’t get done.

        This is an example of a bad choice of resource allocation and prioritization.

        Sometimes you do need to turn a blind eye to minor nuisances like this and focus on much bigger problems.

      • The discussion could center on which rules are actually enforceable and for that matter how intrusive it would be to enforce a rule.

        What the shoe companies are doing amounts to a series of voluntary transactions. I agree that if there are rules they should be enforced, but in this case a strong case can be made that these rules are unecessary and stupid.

        So the position is get rid of the rule or enforce it, correct?

  33. Could it be that if they take down Adidas, they need to then take down Nike, which would upset someone who pays a Cloud person’s bills? It’s hard to believe it was just Adidas working this racket.

    • There’s no question the other sneaker companies are doing the same thing. Nike invented the practice. That’s something I probably should have mentioned. It’s possible the Feds are doing this on behalf of Nike. They bribed the feds to go after a competitor.

    • I am shocked, shocked I say, to hear that stupid things are happening in The World’s Stupidest Sport.

      Basketball degrades everyone and everything it touches. America collectively must have lost 20 or more IQ points due to the fetishization of sportsball.

      Grown men making fools of themselves cheering for other grown men to throw a rubber ball through a hoop. Who then behave as if they just won the battle of Austerlitz. (Which was itself a monumentally stupid thing to bother with.)

      I can’t sit anywhere in peace and have a damn drink without being besieged by ESPN, with its armies of leaping retards and solemn dimwits in suits gravely discussing how Leaping Retard A threw the rubber ball through the hoop better than Leaping Retard B. It’s almost worse than CNN.

      Well, there’s cold comfort that this isn’t the first time an empire was destroyed by stooopid entertainment. Byzantium pretty much burned to the ground, more than once, over which set of horsies could pull the big wheelie-thing faster.

      • I agree whole heartedly, Lester Fewer. I really can’t stand sports. My wife says that’s one of my endearing qualities. I could get into athletic competition if it was a “two go in one comes out” sort of thing. But having spent three tours in the quintessential competition, war, I really find zero interest in anything wherein all participants survive. And don’t get me started on golf!

        • I’m always puzzled by the hatred of sports. I get hating the presentation of it. The ads and PC proselytizing are revolting. I get the racial angle and I get a general lack of interest. I don’t get the hatred. I don’t find figure skating interesting. I don’t hate it. I certainly don’t lecture people on the evils of figure skating.

          There are a lot of people on our side who share your loathing of sports.

          • It’s the worship of it. It’s seeing the cultural degeneration that results from placing trash on a pedestal to be role models for children. It’s not getting a scholarship or having properly functioning lab equipment while you’re grinding through a hard science or engineering degree, but the 80 IQ communications major “student”-athletes have a new training facility and don’t pay tuition. It’s seeing a beloved stadium torn down, replaced by a corporate branded facility, churning out cheap Chinese manufactured tchotchkes for the wage slaves with no savings who pay to watch their gods toss a ball around. It’s knowing that most Americans can’t find the country on a map their stupid “representative” government sent your friend or family member to get killed, but they can tell you exactly how many rebounds or rushing yards their favorite violent felon had last season.

            Mostly though, for me, it’s seeing grown men put on a jersey with another man’s name on it, to cheer for him and all the other decamillionaires that supposedly represent a city none of them grew up in. Obsequious fawning is for cucks.

          • During the Olympics my friend made the following observation about curling, in particular mixed pairs (one woman and one man per team):
            “It’s the only time a man is not only allowed, but actually encouraged, to yell “SWEEP” at a woman.”

            Another friend, who actually plays, says it is the best drinking game ever invented…

          • The picture of the US Men’s team which won gold was a hoot. Someone described it as four dads who got lost and ended up curling.

          • The sports call-in radio program is in crisis, because more and more guys who call these shows want to discuss the political and social aspect of sports, rather than rushing yards, batting averages, draft-picks, and the rest of what has traditionally constituted ‘sports talk’.

            “The sports crazed NPC” versus the “red-pilled” ex-sports fan presents a challenge to the aging sports guy who hosts our local sportstalk program. The premise of all such shows is that sports are not connected to the outer world, that for example “we need a new stadium!” is a sports opinion, not a public opinion connected to all the other things “we” “need”.

            The downside off all this is that sports too has fallen into the “everything is political” pit, but the pit is there, and it’s what has to be talked about. Young people don’t seem to care about sports; they might be NPCs, but they won’t be running around in Tom Brady jerseys, like their parents.

          • I’ve come to hate football, because it, more than almost anything else, is what is keeping the white middle class anesthetized to our current decaying situation. When the time comes to carry out white genocide, middle-aged white guys will stuff themselves into the gas chambers, if there’s a big screen TV in there showing football. But nobody who is on our side, or who might possibly be on our side, is interested in basketball, so I have no feelings about it at all. Insofar as it keeps some of our potential rioters stealing shoes rather than raping and burning, it’s a good thing, IMHO.

          • Probably true about rioters, Toddy, altho some whites are also into hoops (as I was decades ago, before my views on race congealed).
            But, yeah, far more are into football, incl. the incessant pushing of it on TV, incl. college games.

            How can a guy be into the fate of a college team, if he (or someone close to him) didn’t go to that school?
            See Compsci’s comment, and my reply, below.

          • I’ve played on a couple of teams that were greater than the sum of their individual-player parts. One was a baseball team, one was a software development team. Playing on those teams was a peak experience for me, among the best times of my life. It’s hard to describe, but each player, including me, operated on a higher level, as if levitating two feet off the ground. It rarely happens and is impossible to reproduce formulaically, but when it happens, it’s magic. It was never about winning for me. It was about the ecstasy of surpassing my own capabilities as an individual by working together with others similarly devoted to excellence. Team sports, especially for boys, is worth rescuing from the corruption of “win at all cost.”

          • I agree with Hoagie and Lester Fewer.

            But it’s not “hatred of sports” – it’s rather hatred of sports on TV, or hatred of professional sports. For me at least – it’s not even hatred , I just don’t give a shit. The last time I can remember watching an interesting football game was way back when the Refigerator Perry was playing in college and
            they would hand the ball and just watch him plow downfield dragging a few opposing players behind him as he strolled into the endzone.

            The lack of caring about sports for me probably comes from actually playing in high school. Watching it on TV just isn’t the same. The only “sport” I can really stand watching on TV is auto racing. But that’s a competition that maybe Hoagie might like – since people often die engaging in it. Auto racing is the only “sport” I can think of where the fans get to be involved up close and personal – including dying. In rally racing the fans often pack the sides of the roads close enough to touch the cars – and every now and then some driver will lose control and take out a few dozen people.

            Hell of a lot more entertaining than watching a bunch of black guys run up and down a court breaking all the rules that were supposed to make it a game in the first place.

          • Auto racing, track and field, and golf are the only “sports” where everyone loses, every time, except for one guy per match. In every other sport, half the guys win every time.

          • I don’t hate sports, but after 40+ years at the University I’ve come to the realization that the only sports are the fans in the stands—and they’re a bit suspect as well. All is big money and has been for decades. The corruption big money brings is rampant—unto the destruction of the very meaning of the institution (Higher Ed). I have read “papers” from athletes that could not write or even spell their own name to put on it. Said athlete went on to “graduate” and play in the major leagues.

            If you want to get a bit of an idea of how it used to be, watch the equivalent sports as played by women. Like night and day. Yeah, the play is not up to men’s level (obviously), but the enjoyment and sportsmanship still seems there when the girls are on the field.

            Maybe it’s just me.

          • My ex-mother-in-law used to do office work at the Univ. of South Florida. On Friday afternoons she’d see the b-ball coach bring in big-black-guy to the office to take his test that he had to pass to remain academically eligible to play in tomorrow’s big game. Coach to big-black-guy, “Write your name here. Number 1 is A. Number 2 is C. Number 3 is B.” Etc., etc. It was ridiculous.

          • Yeah, Comp, the way college sports works, is the destruction of the very meaning of the institution.
            But, so much else on campuses nowadays also destroys that meaning, so, in a sense, the sports thing has the “virtue” of consistency with the rest of it.

          • I love watching my kids play team sports. Not interested in the individual sports, though, like swimming.

            They can take all the pro and college sports and toss them in the sea for all I care.

          • It is because there are a lot of noodle arms who don’t play sport themselves – they aren’t going for a 3 mile swim every day, they aren’t on the mat 3 nights a week, they aren’t even lifting – other people doing sports just reminds them of their physical inadequacy.

      • “….I can’t sit anywhere in peace and have a damn drink without being besieged by ESPN……”

        Try changing the TV channel or try reading a good book; I may watch the game that determines the NCAA champ, maybe, but if I miss it I could give a damn.

        Sports viewers, like viewers who watch the “news,” have a choice; change the channel, read a good book, or turn off the TV or go on a 30 mile (pedal) bike ride.
        Trust me, after riding 30 or 40 miles , you will find that your attention to professional / NCAA sports goes to zero; and you can’t wait for that shot, or two, or three, of a good bourbon. .

      • We were at a neighborhood (retirement community) party one day, and my wife and I got up to leave before everyone else. A guy said, Oh, you’re going to watch the game.
        I assured him that I had no idea what game he was referring to. Heck, I have to stop and think even to know which sports are in season, so little contact do I have with that crap. He said, Why don’t you follow (‘local’ highly-paid felon team)?
        I said, I haven’t followed sportsball since I outgrew peer pressure thirty years ago.
        The look two wives gave their husbands was priceless. They had had that exact conversation.

  34. The big name head coaches arrange this so they have plausible deniability. The assistant coaches handle all this dirty work and don’t report any of the details to the head coach beyond, “we have a commitment from player X.” It is the same way with the academic fraud, Roy Williams knew none of the details about what courses the players were taking at North Carolina, because he didn’t want to know. A staff member is hired to guide the players through the tutoring process and as long as everyone is eligible, Roy questions nothing. This is why the NCAA created the penalty called “lack of institutional control,” but they still won’t go after the real big names like Williams. They have too much power.

    • That’s what puzzles me. The coaches charged in this case will never coach again, at least not in the US. They have a strong incentive to roll on their bosses. Yet, they are holding up like members of the Mafia, mostly because there is no offer on the table. Maybe there is another shoe to drop, but it sure looks odd.

      • The NCAA and the Feds have shown little to no interest in going after the biggest names in the sport. Given the way those coaches insulate themselves from the illegal payments, it would be hard to build a case that could get a conviction against their high priced legal teams. We may be nearing a tipping point where the NCAA will collapse under all this corruption, but we aren’t there yet.

  35. I can’t imagine that any sentient human being gives a flying F^^k about sneaker company payoffs to BB players, whether under, over or through the table.

    If a player and his family wish to accept a few hundred grand in return for wearing a sneaker brand and to agree to attend a high profile BB school, what’s wrong with that?
    Why is this even illegal?
    Why is it OK for a college to make a financial killing by sporting a first rate BB team, but not the player?
    (I went to a Big Ten university; the $$ earned by the BB team and the football team funded ALL of the university athletic facilities for the student body.)
    The players are not being asked to “throw” a game or knee-cap an opponent.

    What is even more bizarre about this is that Olympic athletes these days are supported and endorsed by corporations; how else do you think they can train 24/7/365 and not have a real job?

    It’s amazing that stories like this do not shake the conscious of those who wish for a bigger and more intrusive government.

  36. I was an a huge basketball fan in the 80’s. Since then I’ve lost all interest in the game for 2 reasons. Teamwork seems to be gone particularly in the transition game. And more importantly, the rules on the court are no longer enforced. Players no longer dribble the ball and offensive fouls are almost never called.

    Me watching a game: “Carry. travel, double-dribble, carry, carry, travel…. click”

    No surprise they stopped following rules off the court too. The whole thing just looks false to me.

    • Same here. I enjoyed the NBA in the 80’s. Jordan ruined it for me. If everyone gets special rules, what’s the point? It became theater, rather than sport.

      • It’s actually an exhibition league, like a traveling carnival show. The players do it for the money (simple self interest), but the dupes that pay for the tickets are proving P T Barnum’s diction in real time and are therefore a useful barometer of the decline of the species.

      • It was amusing to see him constantly called for travelling in college. Then the NBA decided they wanted entertainment instead of rules. Now we have this.

        It is kind of fun to watch NBA players in International tournaments get called for travel every time they touch the ball.

        • Just watched the linked video. I wonder if the original ‘dunkmeisters’ like Elgin Baylor and Julius Erving got away with this stuff. Could be, but Jordan was the real pioneer, in making the ‘player’ bigger than the ‘game’.

          • Baylor and Erving did occasionally, but really no more than anyone else, nothing like you saw with Jordan. They were basically playing the same game by the same rules as everyone else.

          • And the pity is that Jordan was a gifted player – dunking with his tongue flapping made him the poster boy of the NBA, but he could score from anywhere, and he played defense too.

      • NPR interviewed the head of the Olympic basketball team that stomped the American team of super athletes. He said that their success was based on training on the fundamentals: shooting, passing, etc.

        • I’ve rooted against the dream teams since 1984; that club, I admit, impressed me, and it was a shame they couldn’t take on the USSR, which boycotted LA ’84 in response to Carter’s 1980 boycott of Moscow. None of that means anything now, but it ruled our attitudes as young men – and patriotic Americans – in the days of Brezhnev and his successors.

          The victory of Bobby Fischer over Boris Spassky for the world chess title in 1972 on September 1st was humiliating to the USSR; they needed a face-saving event of equal shock to US pride, and they got it eight days later in the Olympic Men’s basketball final, when every official decision at the end of the game helped the Soviets get that winning basket against a ball club 63-0 to that point in Olympic play. At a guess I’d say the refs and timekeepers were under very explicit orders to aid in producing an outcome consistent with ‘détente’. Better a lost basketball game than nuclear war! The Russians were in a foul mood, and a sacrifice was necessary, to feed their pride… it’s just a thought.

          And who can forget the joy we all felt at the USSR hockey team going down at Lake Placid in 1980? Those of you who don’t recall, this was one of those 9/11 type things, where you remember where you were when you heard the news or saw it happen. It was a national orgasm.

          That was our world, at any rate a major part of it. My point is that sports and games were proxies for nuclear combat in an age not that long past. It’s all absurd, obviously – but not unimportant.

          Ergo: Sports has been politicized for a long time, and I can only guess at the emotions it produced back in the days of Joe Louis and Max Schmeling.

    • I think it was when it came out that the FBI had both (a) participated in an election-rigging conspiracy against a presidential candidate and (b) at the same time incredibly tried to pin a fraudulent charge of election-rigging on that very same candidate, that I had the “big epiphany” that basic rule of law had evaporated in the United States of America. I think finding other people who “see” the WROL is one reason I read the Zblog every day.

    • Every Islamic terrorist they were warned about, they either ignored or white washed. In one case, the FBI aided two Muslims to tried to kill Pam Gellar and the attendees at the “Draw Hohammed” show.

      Then there Boston bombing, various high school shootings where the FBI was tipped off and did nothing, the pulse nightclub shooting, 9/11, the framing of Richard Jewel, , Ruby Ridge,

      Now they will drop the hammer on you if you are a white nationalist. Hence they’re efforts at crushing RAM. – which is a white guy fight club.

      • Mark Steyn likes to call it ‘not the lone wolf, the known wolf’. Time after time it’s “yeah, we knew about him”.

      • Strange that John Edgar Hoover wanted a national police force during the “Red Scare,” after he was appointed director the bombings stopped. Just saying…

  37. Who works for the federal government? Or should I say, what type of people are hired by the federal government? Well, it ain’t your average white boy. What are federal employees interested in? It starts with p and rhymes with pension. A friend of mine is a civil engineer with 20 years in with a reasonably large regional federal office. He is the last white male they’ve hired. In the last 20 years.
    Where’s the glory in going after the ghetto heroes in the basketball industry?

    • I figure the decline start in the late 70’s when Carter junked the civil service exam. The test might not have picked geniuses, but it did at least set a floor of competence. Now it’s all AA and who you know.

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