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Realignment - 81723
“I promise I’m not going to Morgantown,” - Ray Anderson, Arizona State AD
First, why is realign not pronounced realign? Second, Let’s jump in.
The Daily Rabbit Hole: Part of the reason Notre Dame remains an independent school in a world where conferences dominate college athletics is because they forgot to send a delegate to a meeting in 1899.
I don’t have much to add here other than, “of course.”
The success rate for company or departmental reorganization, referred to colloquially as “reorgs,” is a whopping 25%. The study that arrived at this conclusion pointed the finger (amongst other things) at the fact that more often than not, the failed reorgs were the result of the deck of employees being shuffled around without any real assessment of what success would look like. In short, the ones that fail are predicated on swapping a bad manager for a good one but without any thought as to whether either of them should be managing at all.
This, much like today’s Rabbit Hole, makes me say, “of course.” The problem with most realignment in the corporate environment is that it realigns people first, rather than the priorities. If you’re in the business of managing teams - maybe … start with the priorities?
This is also a pretty good starting place for a thesis on the woefully entrenched two party system, but I will refrain from digressing until the final section below.
Thank God for modern medicine.
College Football Realignment …
College football is one of the most unamerican things that not only has survived throughout the 20th century and well into the 21st; it has thrived.
Before I break down this hot take, allow me to acknowledge that this is where I was bound to lose the half of you completely disinterested in sports, and the other half of you that have already had enough of this topic … so a hot take was necessary.
Whether you are into sports are not, let’s start fresh and pretend we have no knowledge of “American” football for just a moment:
There is a sport in which people spend almost their entire lives preparing to play at a level where tens of thousands of regional spectators will pay a premium to watch them. These athletes gain notoriety, celebrity, and even get labeled as heroes and conquerors. This sport has been played for over a century, the regional spectators will sing traditional songs, exhibit cult-like behavior, and the sport will even drive the very author of this post to have once eaten a cactus raw on camera1.
In exchange for participating in this sport, as an athlete you receive “exposure” and an education in something other than the thing you’ve spent your whole life doing. If you get paid in any other way, you’re banished and removed from the records like you never existed.
It’s now really difficult to explain how this sports fits into the same culture that propelled the Kardashians into billionaires status! Capitalizing on your talents (or even for just existing) is the most American thing there is - more than apple pie and congressional sessions turning into theater!
We only recently have NIL legislation that allows these athletes to profit on their name, image and likeness. That it took over 115 years is confounding. As much as the legislation was a step in the right direction, there is still a ways to go before we can really claim it’s a sport of the US of A.
Now, college football will become American and the writing is on the wall. This is clear with the conference realignment du jour which is just a really, boringly, long detour for college football’s destiny: the official “minor” league of the NFL.
The only thing holding it back is the very thing people are bemoaning the supposed loss of: the tradition. Once we’re over that, we can call it …
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I’m not linking this, you can do the google search yourself.