Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Global Studies: The New Golf Course Management?

(Update: Who is the moron who can't tell the difference between a roster for Georgetown University and one for Georgetown College? Me, apparently, because I did just that below. Thanks to commenter Jack for catching the mistake, and to an anonymous commenter for providing the accurate list.)

It’s a long-standing joke that athletes in major college sports such as football and basketball choose easy academic majors that don’t require a whole lot of coursework and allow them to focus on the important things in life, such as nailing cheerleaders and figuring out what the hell “Trips LT Y-Zoom 219 H-Swing” means. With leisure activities like that, who can blame the player who chooses to study Golf Course Management? Priorities, people, priorities.

But is the old adage true? Do athletes really choose crappy majors? To answer those questions, I looked up the academic majors for every player on the current Final Four teams (Florida, Georgetown, Ohio State and UCLA). The sample size is small, but the results are interesting nonetheless: on all four rosters, there were at least a couple of questionable courses of study, many of which were repeated by a group of players. Three of Florida’s Big Four Juniors, for example, are planning to one day enter the field of Social & Behavioral Sciences (Joakim Noah is the lone holdout of the group; his degree will be in anthropology).

My personal favorite, however, is UCLA. What exactly is Global Studies, and why is it so popular?

Florida Gators
Most popular: Social & Behavioral Sciences

Jack Berry (junior) – Business
Corey Brewer (junior) – Social & Behavioral Sciences
Taurean Green (junior) – Social & Behavioral Sciences
Walter Hodge (sophomore) – Social & Behavioral Studies
Al Horford (junior) – Social & Behavioral Sciences
Lee Humphrey (senior) – Physical Education
Joakim Noah (junior) – Anthropology
Chris Richard (senior) – Social & Behavioral Sciences
Brett Swanson (senior) – Engineering/Digital Arts & Sciences
Garrett Tyler (junior) – Engineering
Jonathan Mitchell (freshman) – NA
Brandon Powell (freshman) – NA
Marreese Speights (freshman) – NA
Dan Werner (freshman) – NA

Georgetown Hoyas
Most popular: BusinessSociology and Government

Sead Dizdarevic (senior) - Government
Kenny Izzo (senior) - Finance/Management
Tyler Crawford (junior) - Government
Jeff Green (junior) - Sociology
Roy Hibbert (junior) - Government
Jonathan Wallace (junior) - English
Marc Egerson (sophomore) - Sociology
Jessie Sapp (sophomore) - Sociology
Octavius Spann (sophomore) - Government
Josh Thornton (sophomore) - Government
Patrick Ewing (junior) - Sociology
Vernon Macklin (freshman) - Undecided
Jeremiah Rivers (freshman) - Undecided
DaJuan Summers (freshman) - Undecided

Ohio State Buckeyes
Most popular: Undeclared

Mike Conley, Jr. (freshman) – Undeclared
Ivan Harrison (senior) – African American & African Studies
Ron Lewis (senior) – Sociology
Danny Peters (sophomore) – Special Education
Jamar Butler (junior) – African American & African Studies
Kyle Madsen (sophomore) – Undeclared
Greg Oden (freshman) – Business Administration
David Lighty (freshman) – Undeclared
Daequan Cook (freshman) – Undeclared
Mark Titus (freshman) – Math
Matt Terwilliger (junior) – Family Resource Management/Consumer Affairs
Othello Hunter (junior) – Undeclared

UCLA Bruins
Most popular: Global Studies

Russell Westbrook (freshman) – Undeclared
Darren Collison (sophomore) – Undeclared
Josh Shipp (sophomore) – Sociology
Aaron Afflalo (junior) – Sociology
DeAndre Robinson (sophomore – RS) – History
Mustafa Abdul-Hamid (freshman) – Global Studies
Ryan Wright (sophomore) – Global Studies
Alfred Aboya (sophomore) – Political Science
James Keefe (freshman) – Pre-Business/Economics
Lorenzo Mata (junior) – History
Michael Roll (sophomore) – Global Studies
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute (sophomore) – Global Studies
Joey Ellis (sophomore – RS) – Psychology
Nikola Dragovic (freshman) – Pre-Business/Economics
Matt Lee (junior) - Sociology


Mini Me said...

The Georgetown players look like they have legit majors.

Jack said...

That is also the roster for Georgetown College, and not Georgetown University. Small difference.

Anonymous said...

Good catch, I was wondering where Hibbert was (the first player I checked to see what he was majoring in).
From their Media Guide:

Georgetown University

Sead Dizdarevic - Government
Kenny Izzo - Finance and Management
Tyler Crawford - Government
Jeff Green - Sociology
Roy Hibbert - Government
Jonathan Wallace - English
Marc Egerson - Sociology
Jessie Sapp - Sociology
Octavius Spann - Government
Josh Thornton - Government
Patrick Ewing, Jr - Sociology
Vernon Macklin - Undecided
Jeremiah Rivers - Undecided
DaJuan Summers - Undecided

Anonymous said...

Pwned! Way to go, Jack.

Mavis Beacon said...

Worth noting that two of the four UCLA global studies students aren't Americans. It's possible they just have an interest in learning about various cultures.

One More Dying Quail said...

jack, thanks for catching that mistake. No excuse for that happening.

anonymous 12:20, I appreciate the compilation of the correct list.

Anonymous said...

speaking as a ucla student who has taken a global studies introductory course (with roll and wright, incidentally), i can tell you that the major is a sort of mish-mash of economics, world politics, world culture, and a little bit of literature as well. it's not supposed to be easy necessarily, and it is one of the only majors to require a senior thesis.

Jack C said...

As far as THE OSU, my wife graduated with a Sociology Degree and it wasn't a joke. Also the Business School is one of the highest ranked in the country. ( Ron Lewis has either already graduated or is graduating with a Sociology Degree and Oden majors in Business apparently).

Run Up The Score! said...

Oddly enough, Penn State has an excellent turf/grass management program. The favorite of the football players years ago used to be Hotel and Restaurant Management.

Lorenzo said...

Yea. these majors aren't as ridiculous as those on some college football teams. Check out the Wisconsin Badgers players' majors. Top choice? Agricultural Journalism. Hey, I know we folks from Wisconsin have our fair share of farms, but come on...inner city kids all of a sudden take a liking to agriculture? There's wayyyyy to many football players with that major on the team!

extrapolater said...

I find it very interesting that Oden picked a major already. I think he might really want to be in college. I find that kind of refreshing. Maybe he'll finish up after the NBA.

Anonymous said...

At Ohio State Social & Behavioral Sciences is the just the name of the college. My degree is from that college (Strategic Communication). I bet most of the players are studying communications or something along those lines. This is an original & interesting post though.

Rex said...

It's worth noting that Mbah A Moute is studying Global Studies so he can follow his dad into Politics in Cameroon.

GS is a popular major for people who are interested in international business.

Let's not down on the athletes because we don't understand their majors...

Mustafa Abdul-Hamid got into Harvard, so I'm sure he's an idiot studying global studies.

honey said...

actually, if you go to an Ag-based or older universities, some majors are in the Ag department or school based on history. for example, the business major at Cornell Universty is in the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences. historically, it dealt with the farming business, particularly cows and dairy.

One More Dying Quail said...

Thanks to everyone who has provided feedback on these and other majors. Obviously, there are many people out there with more hands-on knowledge than myself, and I appreciate your thoughts.

I guess the interesting aspect of this to me isn't that the players appear to be choosing easy majors (I have no room to talk, by the way. My degree is in history, which pretty much only required me to write papers for two years), but that they often choose the same majors. Maybe that's just the way it looks to us outsiders, or maybe it's just a coincidence, but it's interesting nonetheless.

ming01 said...

very interesting

Anonymous said...

While UF has its shares of "easy" classes and majors (who can say Man's Food?), I'm not convinced that Social and Behavioral Sciences is necessarily an example of that. It's Sociology. I took an entry level course that kicked my ass, and I ended up graduating summa cum laude (not in sociology, obviously). Don't diss the liberal arts kids--they're probably experiencing a lot more of what schooling is supposed to be--learning to think, reason and develop arguments.