Claming “privacy,” some colleges no longer publish graduation rates for male basketball players. Rates for black athletes have disappeared from web sites too, writes Gregg Easterbrook.
As the NCAA basketball tournaments begin, you’ll hear endless stats about players’ heights, weights, shooting, assists and rebounding. What you won’t hear is whether they are graduating.
Graduation rates for NCAA scholarship athletes have been up somewhat recently–rising to 62 percent, better than the 60 percent when the organization began keeping statistics in 1984. Graduation rates for African American male basketball athletes are also rising–38 percent of the class that entered school in 1996 eventually walked to “Pomp and Circumstance,” versus 28 percent of the entering class of 1995. ThatÂ’s the good news. The bad news is that the NCAA has decided that in most cases, it will no longer reveal the male African American basketball graduation rates for specific universities.
Officially this is to “protect privacy,” since basketball scholarship holders are sufficiently few that you can sometimes figure out, from raw data, who it was that never graduated. Apparently NCAA scholarship athletes have a right to not get an education, and that right must be protected! But the real reason for the policy is to protect the NCAA and those many universities that exploit African American players for ticket sales, making no attempt to provide meaningful educations. Many of the schools are public universities that use public funds and have extremely elaborate disclosure rules on other aspects of race and education, but now keep secret the key information about race, education and athletics.
My alma mater, Stanford, willingly discloses graduation stats by race, because the numbers are so good.