The Debate Rages about UAB Football

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Almost a week after UAB President Ray Watts’ announcement that the university’s football program would end, vigorous debate continues about the decision. Watts said the university couldn’t afford a projected $49 million increase in spending over the next five years to make football competitive.

David Goldenberg of FiveThirtyEight.com argues UAB was hobbled by the unsupportive Alabama System Board of Trustees and an increasingly difficult financial picture. Meanwhile, Associated Press writer Paul Newberry says costs will drive more universities to cut football programs.

But Vice Sports contributor Andy Schwarz says UAB does have the money and actually might lose some by ending football.

The Birmingham Business Journal offers two competing views. Kris Dunn says UAB football is dead because of a great leader and the enemies a great leader attracts. Tony Mauro says President Ray Watts’ decision represents an unpopular one, but the right one for the university.

ESPN’s College GameDay aired a piece on Saturday on the end of UAB football, but university officials dispute a claim in the story that administrators didn’t approach top donors about contributing more money to save the team. The school has released a FAQ on the UAB football situation pointing out what it says are inaccuracies.

 

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