I attend a class whose premise is theoretical and practical applications of leadership through the lens of a certain college sport. This course is co-taught by our college's coach in that sport. It is essentially a class full of people who are fans of this sport and wanted to see the coach of said sport, myself included, except for one guy who comes off as a curmudgeon and probably shouldn't be in the class as he clearly doesn't enjoy it.
I am a fan of college sports and sport in general. I think that athletes have a place in college and that they bring value to colleges which is why we offer them scholarships. That being said, this discussion still shocked me. I forget how it started, but the interesting bit began when the coach present said something along the lines of, "Our University has gotten better over the years about encouraging professors to make allowances for student athletes."
And, le playlet:
Student A: Do you find that some professors aren't very understanding when it comes to student athletes?
Coach: Yes, there are some professors who just say "I don't care if you're a student athlete. You have to attend class and do the papers just like everyone else, no exceptions." and they just don't give any yield.
Students: Murmurs of disapproval.
Student B: In [my athletic program] our coach tells us which teachers not to take because they aren't "athlete friendly".
Coach: Yeah, we have a bit of that going on too. But, you know, by and large I think the professorship at this University recognizes that athletes provide a service to the school and are willing to cut them a bit of slack. And there are some professors that we have a good relationship with along that line.
Professor: Yeah, that's very interesting how some teachers are willing to bend a bit when it comes to student athletes and others aren't. I know I've always been a bit more lenient in that regard.
Student C: Professors just shouldn't be allowed to fail student athletes. Like, yaknow, the lowest they can get is a C minus or something like that.
Coach: Well, that would be ideal, but I don't see that happening in the near future.
Coach: It's better to just avoid those tenured professors that are... unshakable in their pedagogy and stick with the more forward thinking professors. And that tends to solve the problem.
What the quack? I don't even have a tongue-in-cheek prayer to recite for this one. I was just so flabbergasted that this discussion took place, with a professor in the room. FQS (for quack's sake). Is Athletic Privilege this widespread? And so casually acknowledged? I am a bizarre mixture of befuddled, enraged, and saddened. Have any of you been browbeaten into treating student athletes differently?