Only In America . . . TM

Copyright © 2002 Frank G. Van Atta. All rights reserved.


The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) announced the formation of a new Athletic Farm School yesterday that would move all of the college athletes in the country into a single location.

"The formation of the Athletic Farm School is in response to the increasing number of problems being created by student athletes' irresponsible conduct and brushes with the law on campuses across the country," according to Clinton W. Giveout, an NCAA spokesman.

The new college, to be located in Northern Utah, will be an "athletes only" school, and all college athletes in the country will be required to attend. There will be no other students at the new college, and there will be no athletes at any other college in the country.

"The primary purpose of the Athletic Farm School is to eliminate student athlete-related problems in the nation's colleges," Mr. Giveout said. "Putting all of the athletes in one place will insulate the other instutions from any problems they may cause and permit all incidents to be handled quickly and fairly by one entity operating under a single policy."

The NCAA also hopes to squelch the "unfair treatment" complaints which have surfaced recently. The 'single policy' at AFS will replace the current hodgepodge of independent rules and regulations that create situations where an infraction can be punished by a simple "slap on the wrist" at one school and cause the student to be expelled at another.

AFS will actually be an "athletic factory," supplying entire teams to play for each school in the association. "We will supply the coaches, the winning strategy, and the athletes," Giveout explained. "The participating schools will supply the uniforms, the playing field, and the money. The AFS will funded by transferring all athletic scholarship monies from the other NCAA-sanctioned schools."

Under this system, athletic teams -- whose members will be chosen and trained by the AFS "faculty" -- would be sent to the appropriate schools one day before the game. The schools would provide room and board and uniforms, and the "teams" would compete on local athletic fields. They would be sent back to AFS the day after the game -- giving local Alumni time to celebrate.

AFS will eliminate the necessity of each college recruiting players and trying to build a better team than everyone else. It will also build parity into the system because the players won't have to play on the same team each week. This will make it easier for the smaller colleges to field competitive teams.

In order to provide a real "athletic farm," AFS will be a 10 year school -- "to give the athletes time to really build their skills." They will be given room and board, paid $1000 for every game they play, and will be eligible to enter one of the professional drafts anytime after their fourth year. There won't even be any pretense of providing an education; the athletes will have to attend one of the "traditional" schools for that.

"The AFS will keep all of the 'big money athletics' and 'students with special priveleges' in one place, which should improve the atmosphere in all of the nation's colleges and universitys," Giveout said.

Copyright © 2002 Frank G. Van Atta. All rights reserved.