On Saturday the Patriot-News weighed in on the new Big Ten Network. They think it is a positive development despite the fact that it may result in fewer games being televised in the central part of Pennsylvania. Here is their reasoning.
...[I]f your larger concern is the strength of Penn State University, then it's hard to argue with the logic of this undertaking, especially given that the commonwealth's fiscal priorities have not, and likely will not, include much more money for the four state-related universities.
The fledgling BTN will be good for Penn State and the 10 other Big Ten Conference schools, their minor sports and their students. The revenues it will generate will be essential in an era when governments -- Pennsylvania's in particular -- are cutting back on their support for public universities.
With tuition sky-rocketing and government support dwindling, who can blame universities for wanting a piece of the entertainment action?
To recap, the Patriot-New thinks that the new network is a good idea because it will supply needed revenue which is lost as Pennsylvania cuts back on its support of state-related universities. According to this pitch for BTN on the Penn State Propaganda Portal Penn State Live,
The Big Ten Conference is the majority owner of Big Ten Network, with its proceeds divided equally among the 11 conference member universities. These proceeds will assist Big Ten Conference member institutions in operating their respective athletic programs in a self-sustaining manner, without university subsidy or allocation of state funding, enabling additional revenue to flow to research, the arts and other scholastic endeavors.
The upshot is that money from the BTN will stay within the athletic departments. At Penn State the athletic department is self-sustaining. Hence their budget isn't effected by cuts in state funding. Consequently, the added revnue from this deal, which stays in the department cannot be used to make up the loses from the state. Therefore, at Penn State, it will have no effect on the funding of "research, the arts and other scholastic endeavors," which are impacted by cuts in state funding.
With this explained to them, I wonder if they still think its a good idea? I also wonder if someone in the athletic department or in Old Main is responsible for the good folks at the Patriot-News misunderstanding the situation
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