Northern Illinois University administrators: Please skip the next paragraph because I love my NIU job and want to keep it.The reference the author makes to Reavis Hall could apply to any of the buildings in the Watson-Reavis-DuSable complex, particularly their bathrooms.
NIU showers excessive attention and resources on athletics for questionable return and at the expense of many other worthwhile pursuits. Walk through downtrodden Reavis Hall, read the salaries of coaches, and teach student-athletes who often are unprepared for (and uncaring about) college-level academic work, and you might feel similarly.
To be fair, NIU is not alone. Many universities put way too much stock in their teams.
Those additional football weekends in DeKalb might bring in tourists with disposable income, but, note, only for one weekend.
John Crompton, a highly respected researcher who studies marketing and financing of public leisure and tourism at Texas A&M University (an institution no stranger to athletic boosterism), notes: “Economic impact analyses have an obvious political mission. They invariably are commissioned by tourism entities and usually are driven by a desire to demonstrate their sponsors’ positive contribution to the economic prosperity of the jurisdiction that subsidizes their programs or projects. The intent of a study is to position tourism in the minds of elected officials and taxpayers as being a key element in the community’s economy.”Come fall, our senior economics majors will be picking capstone paper topics, and more than a few might involve stadium subsidies. Consider the above as a head start on a literature review.
Some ways in which economic analyses are flawed include erroneous aggregation, abuse of multipliers, ignoring community-incurred costs, and exaggerating the number of visitors, according to Crompton.