Exploitation in College Sports: It's Not Just Football and Basketball

When we think of money and college sports, we tend to think only about basketball and football.  In fact, defenders of the excesses we see in those sports – with respect to salaries to coaches and university expenditures – argue that these sports are necessary to support all the other teams universities field. People often argue that outside of football and basketball, athletes in other sports don’t generate enough revenue to justify their scholarships. 

A recent paper by Leo Kahane (editor of the Journal of Sports Economics) challenges this line of thinking.  Kahane’s paper looks at college hockey, which will hold the Frozen Four this week in Tampa, Florida (really, Tampa).  This is college hockey’s championship, an event which doesn’t get quite the same attention as the NCAA Final Four for men and women. (Perhaps also because people don’t associate hockey with Tampa?)

What Do Hockey Visors and Birth Control Hormone Shots Have in Common?

The New York Times recently reported that using Depo-Provera, one of the most popular contraceptives in eastern and southern Africa, may increase a person’s risk of transmitting HIV. I fear this is a case for The Guardian's Ben Goldacre… where a study gets a bit (understatement) too much spin in the media. I first became aware of this while in Uganda and saw the following headline in the local paper: “The injectable contraceptive that could double the risk of women contracting HIV.” That sure sounds like the shot itself does something. Or could this instead be a by-product of behavior change? Huge difference if you are deciding what birth control to use!

The Times article cited a study recently published in The Lancet, which showed that women using hormonal contraception—primarily the injection more commonly known in the U.S. by its brand name, Depo-Provera—were twice as likely to acquire HIV from their infected partners, and twice as likely to transmit the virus to their HIV-negative partners.

Why Not? The NHL Tries Some Experimentation

Steve Levitt likes to preach that experimentation should not be limited to scientists and other researchers; firms and other institutions stand to benefit from it a great deal, and yet often don't engage. But here, from the Canadian magazine Macleans, is one institution that's giving it a shot: the National Hockey League.

Hockey Fans vs. the Band

Photo: C.P.Storm Every time an opposing player is penalized at a University of Michigan home hockey game, the student fans begin chanting long strings of obscene epithets. After the first few times this happened, the band began playing loud music (lots of drums) to drown this out. This is a repeated game, with the students […]

Home Ice Disadvantage?

I stayed up way too late last night watching the first hockey game I’ve watched this year — Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals. The Detroit Red Wings were up 3 games to 1, playing the Pittsburgh Penguins at home, hoping to clinch the title. The Pens won in the third overtime. It was […]