Coming fall semester
B. L. Barfski LIVE!
could anyone have known?"
November 2, 2003
a press conference in Winants Hall, McCormick, with his wife,
Suzanne Lebsock, standing grimly beside him at the podium, said
he was personally sorry for the pain his actions had caused.
Board of Governors Chair Eugene O'Hara issued a ringing statement
of support. "President McCormick," he said, "has
provided exactly the kind of leadership we expected. We intend
to work with President McCormick on the challenges that lie ahead."
want to apologize to the entire Rutgers community," Barchi
said at a 1:00 p.m. press conference in Winants Hall, "for
the negative impact that this situation has had on Rutgers."
Board of Governors Chair Ralph Izzo issued a ringing statement
of support. "Dr. Barchi was brought here eight months ago,"
he said," to lead us to academic success and academic greatness.
I think he is the right person to run this place for many years
Kirschner to Serve
as Interim AD!
"DEAN CARL KIRSCHNER
Wording on the framed plaque given to Dean
Carl Kirschner by the Rutgers Athletics Department in recognition
of services provided to the athletics program. Kirschner, well
known as a Rutgers athletics supporter, was for many years permitted
to travel to away games on the same airplane as the football
The plaque, attractively decorated with the
Nike corporate logo, currently hangs in the former Honors Lounge,
a room once used for admissions meetings to Rutgers's highly
selective honors program. That admissions process having been
abolished, the room is now used for other purposes.
Among his many other services to the Athletics
Department, Dean Kirschner served as a principal member of the
"Academic Oversight Committee" committee that interviewed
recruits such as
Nate Robinson, Shalicia
Francis, and others to ensure that they had academic and
intellectual ability equal to that of other Rutgers undergraduates,
as well as personal characteristics that would permit them to
contribute positively to Rutgers as an institution of higher
Rutgers Dean Carl Kirschner (right), seen here in intimate conversation
with former Athletic Director "Bob" Mulcahy.
Kirschner's committee was similarly responsible
for admitting to Rutgers one Damaso Munoz, a football recruit
whose credentials included a substantial number of credits purchased
for $399 at "University High School,"
a storefront operation specializing in preparing candidates for
admission to universities with Div IA athletics programs.
Kirschner first served as interim athletic
director when AD "Bob" Mulcahy was fired in connection
with questionable financial manipulations.More recently, serving
as interim AD after "Tim" Pernetti was fired in connection
with a national scandal involving basketball coach Mike Rice,
Kirschner played a major role in the hiring of basketball coach
Eddie Jordan, a proud Rutgers alumnus who, as it happens, is
not a Rutgers alumnus, a fact that somehow eluded Carl
Kirshner's"due diligence" committee:
"I have come to know Eddie Jordan
as an open, honest and terrific person to lead our men's basketball
program," said interim athletic director Carl Kirschner
in the press release announcing Jordan's appointment. "Rutgers
is very fortunate to have Eddie return to his alma mater to restore
pride in the program."
One verified Rutgers alumnus described Jordan's
5-year contract, amounting to $6.25 million, as "obscenely
expensive." Another Rutgers alumnus remarked, "with
people like Kirschner on board, we don't have to worry anymore
about Rutgers going into a death spiral. It's guaranteed."
"Big Ten" is a BIG mistake
guesses what these names have in common:
Mary Sue Coleman
AND INTELLECTUALLY BANKRUPT
RUTGERS OUT OF THE "BIG TEN"
marketing from the Rutgers Foundation
Responses from the
Dear President Barchi:
The enclosed solicitation
from the Rutgers Foundation has just reached me in California,
where I now reside in retirement. If this is the image which
Rutgers now wishes to represent itself to the world, then we
have now reached the lowest point in its long and sometimes illustrious
hstory. I trust that you will withdraw this offensive, sexist,
and anti-intellectual image from all university publications
immediately in order to prevent further damage.
I have been a regular
donor since I joined the faculty at Rutgers in the 1970s. I stopped
my giving to protest the athletic policies of presidents Lawrence
and McCormick, but had hoped to begin again with your appointment.
I will need personal assurance from you that you mean to return
Rutgers to academic prominence before I feel I can begin again.
John R. Gillis, Professor
of History Emeritus.
Dear Doctor Barchi:
A fellow alumnus just
contacted me about what he called the "thuggish" image
of the university projected by the recent mailing from the Rutgers
I am writing to say
that, although it is a bit thuggish, it does seem to me to project
an accurate enough image of the Rutgers you have chosen to plunge
into the "Big Ten" conference.
When I lived in Ohio,
I saw newscasts of the hordes of drunken students who routinely
break windows, set fires, and overturn automobiles in downtown
Columbus after Ohio State football victories. The person portrayed
in your Rutgers Foundation mailing would clearly be at home at
OSU or any similar "Big Ten" school.
From this point on,
the Rutgers student body is obviously going to be overwhelmingly
made up of such students. In
that context, the image does succeed in projecting a sense of
your own values as president, and of the direction in which you
mean to take the university. So it seems to me wholly in order
to continue to use it in marketing.
I'm sorry to say,
though, I that I personally will be unable to donate to the Rutgers
Foundation from now on -- or, in fact, to associate myself with
the school in any way. I expect that, with the exception of the
tiny cadre of "Scarlet R " members, most alumni of
the older Rutgers feel the same.
L. G. Henrikson, San
Dear Mr. Izzo:
I have written to
you and to President Barchi deploring the effect of big-time
football on Rutgers academic reputation. Attached is a
photograph which is being used in a solicitation by the Rutgers
Is this how you and
the Board of Governors want Rutgers to present itself to the
world? Is the tattooed lout in the photograph the sort of student
you hope to attract? The transformation of Rutgers from a distinguished
institution to a diploma mill and a sports factory has been very
painful to witness.
Despite the warnings
of many alumni, two administrations and now, it appears,
a third have used a spurious sports glory to obscure the
schools obvious decline. You may be interested to know
that in the past Rutgers attracted a large number of outstanding
students and that these students set the tone for the entire
One longtime faculty
member estimates that there are only about 2,000 of these students
remaining in New Brunswick. When they leave, faculty flight will
follow. I suggest that the Rutgers name or brand,
as it is now called be decently and quietly retired. Then
those of us who have a Rutgers diploma can still be proud of
a school that no longer exists.
Walter Boldys, Boston,
around the nation:
simply is perceived as a second tier school with the exception
of a few departments. I went there in the early 70s and wish
this was not the case. Whatever sex appeal it has stems from
it not being called the U. of NJ or NJ State. The name Rutgers
conjures up its colonial heritage and, yes, the competition it
used to enjoy when playing football against Princeton and Columbia.
My own son, a 2008 high school grad would not even look at the
place. Actually, he did see it once, and the facilities looked
so decrepit (other than those devoted to football) one look was
all it took. Just as well since I assured him I would never pay
for him to go there.
be participating on the Division III level. RU would still be
able to field teams and have their kids participate in varsity
athletics. This move would let RU participate on a level they
are truly suited for both financially and competitively.
Sadly, a very small
handful of people desperate for RU to give them a sense of self-importance
are willing to sell their souls and dump good money after bad
at the expense of academics. All the while, the majority of people
in New Jersey want nothing to do with this endless quest.
What will it take
for RU to finally wake up and realize that Division I sports
is not where it belongs?
I think the
core problem with big time college sports is that there are too
many people out there who think that somehow their lives will
be made better if one group of young men defeat another group
of young men in a game of football. I emphasize the word "game."
If more residents
of New Jersey (or Ohio, where I teach a few miles from THE Ohio
State University) would actually get a life, there would be less
pressure on supposedly academic institutions to waste resources
trying to please people who care nothing for their academic mission.
Let's hear it for Division III sports.
perfect at RU - that is, until you leave the football complex
and step into the shoddy reality of the rest of campus. My campus
residence is, on a good day, on par with Section 8 (then again,
with Rutgers being a state institution, I guess the place technically
is "public housing").
Paint bubbling on
and peeling from the ceiling, carpet haphazardly stapled to the
ground with staples protruding all around, mold flakes and paint
chippings flying out of the air vents, and so on and so forth.
And reporting such issues are an exercise in futility and frustration.
Most I know don't bother anymore.
It is sad to
see how Rutgers priorities have changed. Football was certainly
part of our student culture in the late 1960s and early 1970s
but it was not the monster it has become at RU. We thrilled when
ABC Sports did a regional telecast of the centennial game against
Princeton in 1969, but we didn't aspire to see experiences like
that as the be all and end all of our four years on the Banks
of the old Raritan.
The last time I walked
around campus I saw dorms sorely in need of repair. Yet, there
seems to be all this money for bright and shiny sports facilities.
I hope someone comes to their senses.
When I was looking
at colleges in the early 2000s, I excluded Rutgers because it
has long had a bad reputation for shaky academic quality and
overemphasis on athletics.
It is a shame that
the taxpayers of New Jersey are having so much of their dollars
spent on athletics when there are needs for improving academic
facilities and resources. Where is Gov. Christie calling for
fiscal responsibility ?
of the nine Colonial colleges, was a poor but excellent educational
institution when I entered as a freshman 60 years ago. It has
since grown enormously, ever since as the State of NJ took on
a major role in underwriting its financing as a full fledged
In recent years, the
state has been short of money.That alone should be sufficient
reason to reserve those funds for academic purposes, rather than
squandering them in some fools' fantasy of enhancing Rutgers'
reputation by emphasizing the support of athletics over that
Furthermore, the admission
of woefully academically incompetent athletes as "student-athletes"
has further undermined Rutgers' academic mission and institutional
When an academically
incompetent football recruit with failing high school grades
and a fraudulently obtained diploma, as well a combined SAT score
of 740 putting him in the bottom 9% of the nation, is admitted,
put through an undisclosed curriculum that awards him passing
grades, and acquires enough credits to be given a Rutgers diploma
-- this after university president Richard McCormick has explicitly
admitted knowing about the fraudulent terms on which the recruit
was originally admitted -- it is abundantly clear that there
is something rotten going on, and it's not in the State of Denmark.
Hopefully, there is
still time left to change course and go back to the primary goal
of educating NJ residents, including athletes who can also legitmately
perform as college level students in the classroom as well as
on the playing field.
The Boards of Trustees
and Governors have the power and obligation to resurrect sanity
at Rutgers. I and many other alumni hope that they take the cue
and perform honorably in their mission.
alumni, and faculty who have written the BOG or Robert Barchi
to protest the degrading of Rutgers into a "Big Ten"
sports factory may send copies for posting here. E-mail text
of letter to:
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