Letter to the editor
12:00 AM, January 22, 2008
Filed under Archives
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Like many, I cannot fathom how, as soon as SIU agreed to pay coach Chris Lowery $750,000 annually, the basketball team is doing poorly.
Nor can I understand how the Board of Trustees approves $83 million for a new stadium to be used five times a year, while the academic facilities literally fall apart and the students are increasingly burdened with more “fees” to pay for this folly. SIU was never a wealthy school with large endowments, nor a true sports-orientated school, just look at the sports attendance records.
SIU is being mismanaged on the hope the state will bail it out under another governor. Don’t count on it. Almost everything below I-70 is ignored because the money and power is in the north and northeastern sections of Illinois. I hope SIU reexamines its priorities, downsizes and restructures itself to be a smaller, more profitable and academically challenging university, instead of trying to be U of I, or all things to all people.
Both may likely lead to its qualitative and quantitative bankruptcy as more students leave to get better educations in better facilities for the same or even less cost. The College of Applied Sciences and Arts building is still in the 1970s, yet it is the second largest college on campus, with two or three of the top programs at SIU. Yet sports are the focus.
Where’s the equity and priorities? This is a university after all. SIU should scrap the sports and focus on finances, facilities and excellence in education.