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Patrick Vint

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Member since 24 July 2016 | Blog

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Comment 19 Jul 2017

I won't speak entirely for Mike, but since I was in the conversation on where these rank, I will say that the placement is due exclusively to the number of players who could be viable and legitimate starters.  There are basically three guys with the size and experience to start on 75 percent of Ferentz teams, plus the most college-ready true freshman lineman to come into Iowa in at least a decade.  That's an embarrassment of riches the likes of which we haven't seen in a long, long time.

Comment 05 Jul 2017

The Daily Gopher article linked above mentions that Teague was already rowing the boat before Shannon committed, but that doesn't mean it didn't make a difference to Shannon after a few weeks of hindsight.

Comment 05 Jul 2017

Fleck is doing what any coach building a program from scratch does (see: Campbell, Matt), and I don't fault him for it.  But it's clear that, as soon as at least some players get some space from him, they realize they have been sold on something that they didn't intend to buy, and buyer's remorse is a real thing.

If you ask me, Fleck and Campbell are great for Iowa, because any kid that is going to buy their BS was never going to buy into ol' Kirk Ferentz and his ol' aw-shucks Iowa Hawkeyes.  Let them cannibalize the market for hype-peddling and Iowa can keep doing what it does best: Locating and landing guys who fit their scheme and ethos.  I would be far more concerned if a guy who made the same pitch as Iowa (like, say, Jerry Kill) was still there.

Comment 05 Jul 2017

Jaleel was listed at 277 out of high school, which isn't as big as these guys, but certainly close enough.  But Jaleel (and Faith, too) didn't play much at all before the roster cleared in front of them, and particularly in Faith's case, there was some body transformation before opportunities were offered.  I get the sense (from talking to absolutely nobody close to the program) that it's mentality over anything else.  If the player has the right mindset and is willing to work to get to the "right" 300 pounds, it doesn't matter much to them whether it's adding 50 to a linebacker or dropping 20 off a defensive tackle and adding it back the right way.  I also think the "right" 300 pounds depends on the role the guy is playing, which is how Johnson spends all that time as a backup before wreaking havoc when his turn comes.

It's a different context, but I always think of Casey MacMillan in these stories..  He was a mountain of a man in high school, but Iowa brought him in as a project offensive lineman and then tried to rebuild him from scratch.  Had he been a 225-lb. wrecking ball, Iowa might still have brought him in and tried to bulk him up, because the player's mindset means more than anything else.  For whatever reason, that never worked out, but I don't think it had anything to do with MacMillan's body in high school (God, this went Caring is Creepy fast).  

Comment 16 Jun 2017

That's the eternal question.  Actually, it's two questions.

A non-profit can turn a profit, oddly enough.  In order to maintain IRS non-profit status, a non-profit corporation has to maintain its non-profit purpose.  If a non-profit makes a profit on activities related to its purpose and uses those funds to pay expenses, it's fine.  It would even be fine keeping those "profits" in a rainy day fund, so long as the fund didn't get to exceedingly large.  However, if the non-profit is making a profit off of unrelated activities, and that profit becomes a significant part of its operations, it could run into serious trouble with the IRS.

I don't have access to the UI's tax records or 501(c)(3) application, but this could be decided on how UI athletics is structured.  To qualify for 501(c)(3) status, an organization must be operated for one of the following purposes: "charitable, religious, educational, scientific, literary, testing for public safety, fostering national or international amateur sports competition, and preventing cruelty to children or animals."  I have always assumed, largely because the UI Foundation handles UI athletics donations, that UI athletics' not-for-profit status is based on the University's status as a whole.  If that is the case, the question becomes whether running a multi-million dollar sports franchise is an activity related to the UI's academic mission.  This is a big reason why the NCAA doesn't want to pay players; with most programs' 501(c)(3) status based on "educational" mission, a for-profit athletic arm with employees could well be out of bounds.  If you look at recent decisions, like the Northwestern NLRB decision in particular, you see that this is in serious doubt.  And if athletics is unrelated to the academic mission, any significant profit-taking would potentially be grounds for losing 501(c)(3) status, which would make donations to the UI no longer tax-deductible.  And that is catastrophic.

If UI athletics has its own 501(c)(3) status as an entity "fostering national or international amateur sports competition," the profit-taking becomes easier, as it is directly a result of its mission. However, the profits themselves could be problematic if this is deemed to be no longer amateur competition.  Furthermore, running a team is no more related to "fostering sports competition" as running Apple is "facilitating phone conversations," which is why I suspect that UI athletics isn't a separate 501(c)(3).

So long story short: We don't know, but any significant profit-taking, even to establish a rainy-day fund, could put large swaths of the UI in serious jeopardy.  Which is why Iowa never shows a profit of any significance.  It's also why Iowa puts so much money into depreciable assets (which generate a gigantic cash-free expense every year) and generally finances those construction projects (which generates yet another expense every year, this time interest on debt service).  Since 2005, salary and scholarship expense have roughly doubled, but facilities expenses have more than quadrupled as Iowa tries to find ways to spend all this cash beyond just giving it to the actual players.  Because if you can't pay them money, surround them with money.