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Georgetown Basketball and Academic Reputation

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Georgetown University and its basketball program were mentioned in a Pittsburgh newspaper article which discussed the forced resignation of a high school basketball coach.  The reference to the University had nothing to do with the caliber of student-athletes or the resurgence of the basketball program, but rather how an admissions director reportedly linked the academic reputation of Georgetown with the race of its basketball team.  The article states:

"The lawsuit claims Kiski's admissions director balked at the number of black recruits and claimed Georgetown University's reputation declined after it began fielding all-black basketball teams."

This was a controversy that reared its ugly head thirty years ago, as a young John Thompson Jr. brought the nation's oldest Catholic University into the national spotlight because of the success of its basketball program.  The fact that it is still being referenced today is embarrassing, not only because it has been proven untrue, but because people still hold onto the notion that athletic success comes at the expense of academic reputation, with the race of the team being the determining factor.  For those interested in learning more, Leonard Shapiro wrote an excellent book entitled Big Man on Campus: John Thompson and the Georgetown Hoyas which discusses past statements similar to that made by the admissions director of the Pittsburgh school, and how Georgetown has responded.

Good talk.