Fiscal Austerity: Sports and Athletic Teams Fight to Prevent Spending Cuts

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Budget Chops Push Tennis Stars into an Orange Spin-Nips-Spin

April 15, 2009

The recent world-banking crisis has made clear that sports, like other any business activity, can be battered by an unpredictable economy. Recent financial loses by sport team owners and stock market loses by University endowment funds have led Professional leagues and Colleges across the country to cut athletic programs and eliminate teams in every sport. In city after city, College after College, the powerful world of economics has given the sports world one game-busting thumping after another.

College sports leagues are now fighting back. When the University of Vermont cut baseball from its sport program, a group of eighteen Northeastern Colleges scrambled to find new school teams for Vermont’s baseball players. Out of this cooperative effort a new cross-college athletic commission has been formed which seeks to amend sports programs and avoid elimination of:”College sport teams, College athletic programs, and locker rooms which serve one gender at a time.”

Among the suggestions for College Basketball, the commission is recommending that teams: put four-players on the court at a time, shorten expensive nylon basketball nets by an inch, and allow second string players to use their bench time to assist in cheerleading, coaching, and rebounding. Also under consideration is a lend and lease plan which would allow College basketball players to be lent out to government agencies, such as the CIA, to help those agencies improve their slam dunk record.

A smaller group of Midwestern colleges have also put forward a “worst case budget” proposal which would replace the game of basketball with, “court running”. According to athletic director at Ohio State, Chris Visda court running would require players of both teams to run “back and forth” and “back” across the court. And forth. Fans would be taught to scream each time a “dunk” buzzer went off. (And back.) According to Mr. Visda debate is currently underway on what criteria, (and forth) if any, would be used to set off dunk buzzers. Mr Visda stated:

“With eighteen scheduled winter ‘court runs’ a season, we could, in addition, eliminate seven indoor track events and save money all around.”

And so back.

The athletic budget crisis has not been restricted to U.S. Colleges. Many professional team owners also lost money in the financial crisis and are following the nation’s Colleges into the sports reform movement. The National Football Association admitted that they are searching for “rule changes” which would save money and enhance the excitement of the game. Among the suggestions put forward by the NFL commission are: replacing game half time performances with home foreclosure auctions, charging players a fee for pass interceptions, and replacing Middle Linebackers, Defensive Ends, and Tackles, with much cheaper German Shepards.

“I think the dogs would really raise the excitement level of the game. Wait until the fans see a German Shepard blitz on a quarterback just as he was about to unleash a bullet pass up the middle. We would probably rake in a mint on pass interception fees,” said NFL team owner Lib Graspinini.

 And forth.

Just as the financial crisis began in the United States and spread worldwide, so too has the sport budget crisis. Tennis, once known as the sport of the “leisure classes” in both the United State and England, has come under intense pressure to cost cuts and has adjusted quickly. After the fall of World Stock Markets in December of 2008 the World Tennis Association quickly announced new standards: According to the Tennis Association the standard 60 by 120 feet tennis court, will be reduced to a 9 by 5 foot size area. Court surfaces, which range from asphalt, to Teflon, to clay, to expensively maintained grass will be replaced by 30 inch high wooden tables. Nets size will appropriately downsized to the fit the new dimensions. Rubberized tennis balls will be replaced by small plastic white or orange balls.

The top ranked U.S. world Tennis association official and formerly top seeded doubles player, once famous for his scrappy net charging style, Rank Filo was blunt:

“This meets the new fiscal reality. For the cost of one court we can install sixteen tables. And so can every city and county in the country. We should have done this a long time ago.”

Opposition to the new standards by several world tennis association member countries was, at first,quite strong. However, after China and Korea enthusiastically embraced the new rules, other member countries soon fell in line.

Meanwhile, top seeded players Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, and Novak Djokovic have purchased their new paddles and were said to be experimenting with several types of playing “rubbers.” Nadal is rumored to prefer a Chinese made “pips out” rubber, Federer is said to prefer a Swedish made “pips in” rubber. Djokovic is said to prefer: “whatever keeps my game from being distracted by a new kid.”

America’s top tennis players Andy Roddick, James Blake, and the Serena sisters have responded by moving to Gaithesburg, Maryland and are said to be working with world famed coaches Cheng Yinghua & Jack Huang in developing proper forehand, backhand, and footwork skills to suit the downsized game dimensions. The team of top American Tennis players were rumored to be taking pills to prevent coach Cheng’s serve return exercises from developing into full fledged “spin-induced” motion sickness”.

While sport programs everywhere are adjusting to the new fiscal realities, American Baseball continues to retain its ageless devotion to rules, structure, and statistics. Baseball owners and commissioners have refused to think about making any change to the game. However, several teams owners, have said that they will consider allowing yoga instructors to work the crowds at major league events, and collect a “yoga”" surcharge on ticket sales to specific seating sections of the ballpark.

And back again across the court.

“We are not going to tamper with the highly intricate and beautifully intra-laid structure of the American classic game just because a few baseball owners and fans lost a couple million Wall Street dollars. Owners lose that much money every time a backup pitcher is injured. And besides, no matter how much those Bankers impoverish us, no American would allow this country to be debased to the point that some newly hired shortstop’s dog poop, suddenly turned up, on a freshly raked American infield” insisted Yankee pitching coach Davel Kech.

(And for-BUZZ.

So Forth)


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One Response to “Fiscal Austerity: Sports and Athletic Teams Fight to Prevent Spending Cuts”

  1. Rank Filo

    That was good,Tony.


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