Stupid Shit You Hear On TV

Yeah. Like that.

So, flipping through the channels today, I came across a Stanford-Notre Dame football game. I was just about to change the channel when I heard one of the commentators say that some player (and I’m paraphrasing here) “embodied the blue-collar attitude” that the Stanford football team has.



Stanford : blue collar :: George W. Bush : cowboy

That would be the same Stanford that has Rodin statues on campus. The same Stanford wherea year’s tuition is almost $4,000 more than themedian individual income in the US.

Let me say that again: For over 50% of all workers in the US, if they saved every penny they made for an entire year, AND didn’t pay any taxes, theystill wouldn’t be able to afford a year’s tuition at Stanford. They’d be four grand short. That doesn’t even count books, fees, living expenses, and all that other crap.

So pick another term to describe their football team, would ya? “Blue-collar” just don’t cut it.

12 thoughts on “Stupid Shit You Hear On TV

  1. I am LOVING the picture that goes with this post. Perhaps those are Stanford grads in the pool with the electricals about to go to town on their sorry bods?

  2. 1. Photo = “get 911 on standby” WIN.
    2. Sports commentator needs a remedial class in school’s tuition and average SES of students. (don’t get me wrong, I am not meaning to say Blue Collar students at Stanford don’t occur)
    Excellent – just effing excellent!

  3. The thing about Stanford is that if you DO get in and go for 4 years and don’t have a butt load of grants and scholarships or parent money you have hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt. And where can you make that money back? In the wonderful world of FINANCE! And Consulting! No body is going to go into jobs where you MAKE anything because it TAKES TOO LONG! Got to pay off those loans baby!
    They go where the money is to pay off their bills. We lose out on lots of smart people who might direct their lives in a area that could help the country.
    On the other hand, if they stay away from the industries that make stuff and create things other than financial “instruments” they are not going to mess up those areas as badly.
    I don’t mean to pick on Stanford. The costs of colleges is really insane. My BIL figured out that it would be better for the family to have LESS income than more which would enable the kids to get more financial aid. A very backward strategy, but one that makes sense given the insane costs that no middle class family with three kids could afford.

  4. Ah, yes, Spocko.
    I believe the economist types call that a “perverse incentive.”
    The first time I heard that term, I was very disappointed to find out what it actually meant.

  5. Well, technically he’s right. In order to even have a football program Stanford needs to give scholarships to the “blue collar” kids so they can attend in the first place.

  6. yeah, but the players are certainly inner city kids who are there with a scholarship.
    an’t have spaulding or bradley getting sweating and showering with the black kids.

  7. Well, first off, it doesn’t really matter what the tuition is, because just about every football player at a major college program is on full scholarship.
    (And by major college, I mean in football terms; there are different levels of competition, based on the conference or league a given team plays in and the size of the attendence at the games. Stanford and Northwestern are “major college football teams”; the teams at Harvard and Yale, for counter-example, are not.)
    I watched some of the Stanford-NotreDame game today, and (probably) that same announcer (Pat Haden, a former quarterback at USC) was talking about how there are maybe (I forget the numbers he used) 3000 kids coming out of high school each year that have the talent to play major college football, and maybe 200 of them also have the grades to be able to get into Stanford (or Northwestern). The problem that the Stanford coaches have every year is convincing 20 of that 200 to actually come to Stanford.
    So, because of that, it turns out that most years, Stanford isn’t all that good. Haden’s comment probably had more to do with Stanford being a perennial under-manned, underdog team than anything to do with income level.

  8. As much as I would love some honest tax relief, help with my student loan, cleaner energy this country has to get its financial house in order. There will be things that I want the government to do that won’t be feasible in the current financial climate. We will have to look with a prudent eye at every one of our pet projects and suck it up that some will be put on the back burner.
    Every issue can make the case that their project isn’t just important but vital to our future and cannot be delayed. Which ones are the most important? How do we prioritize these ‘vital’ issues? I’m sure that the faithful of each program can muster up thousands of voices to force their way up the list but at what cost?
    Expanded educational opportunities and student loan relief are vital to the health and growth of our society. We can no longer tolerate a collegiate system that restricts access to such a large percentage of the population.
    Would you choose that over increased research funds for more efficient solar energy panels if there was only enough money for one project?
    These decisions are waiting for the next president. We want Barack Obama to be the one making these decisions so we should be prepared to be asked to accept some hard realities.

  9. Generally, sportscasters (like the punditocracy) equates “mostly white” with “blue collar.”

  10. Jude,
    While I understand all of our tendencies to look at the class warfare implications of comments given recent history, I think that this comment is actually a fair one.
    The blue collar comment is describing the style of play, not the players themselves. An analogy would be:
    hard working running football team is to blue collar labor as a spread offense is to financial derivatives.
    A “blue collar” football team is one that is generally one that plays without trickery, deception, or gimmicks. It is a team that basically says, “I am going to hand the ball to that guy right there, and he is going to run through that hole over there, and you can’t stop us because we will work harder than you.” A more “modern” offense like the spread or the run & gun uses a lot of pre-snap motion, disguised plays, and unconventional execution to confuse the other team, much like a Wall St. investment banker does to an investor.
    I have heard that description hundreds of times and have never taken it to mean the wealth of the players or other students. In the context it was used I think it is actually more accurate than even Hayden realized at the time.

  11. Stanford actually instituted a “no-pay” tuition – meaning if you could get in and your parents earned under a certain amount of money, tuition was paid for- if they earned a bit more, the tuition was paid for by grants and scholarships. Only if your parents made A LOT of money, did you have to pay. Anyway, just to clarify – the commentator made a stupid statement, but the tuition part not true, AFAIK.

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