My new col at Time.com is about the huge amounts of public dollars that are shoveled at college and pro football.
As someone who enjoys following both levels of competition, it pisses me off that people who never bought a ticket or even watched a game are on the hook for something that is in no way a core function of government.
Here's the start of the col:
As we enter the drama-filled final week of the regular college football season and the final month of the National Football League's schedule, forget about GM and Chrysler, Solyndra, or even cowboy poetry readings. Fact is, nothing is more profitable, more popular, and more on the public teat than good old American football. That's right. You, dear taxpayer, are footing the bill for football through an outrageous series of giveaways to billionaire team owners and public universities that put pigskin before sheepskin.
It's just not right when governments shovel tax dollars at favored companies or special interests, even when those firms are called, say, the Minnesota Vikings or the Scarlet Knights of Rutgers University. …
Especially in an age of busted government budgets, even the most rabid sports fan should agree that it's an outrage that the highest-paid public employee in a majority of states is a college football coach (in another 13, it's a basketball coach).
And here's hoping that Ohio State murderlizes Michigan State in the Big 10 champeenship game.