Some great reporting from the Michigan Daily on Schlissel's take on sports and the academic life of the University. It is certainly worth posting anyway, but especially because of this:
Schlissel added that Curzan [English Prof. Anne Curzan, who serves as faculty liaison to the Athletic Department and requests reports every semester on any classes with more than 20 percent student-athletes enrolled] said the Athletic Department “often tries to keep her at arm’s length,” expressing frustration regarding the marginalization of faculty governance in these matters.
“That’s why I’m taking a bit of time with the search for Dave’s successor,” Schlissel said. “Some folks wanted me to hire an athletic director (earlier) so he could fire the current football coach and hire the next coach but I want to take the time to make sure we get someone who is not only technically adept, but can ensure that the program has financial and academic integrity, and also someone who shares the value system of realizing our mission.
“People have been saying all kinds of things about who I’m talking to about positions and this sports stuff, and they name names of people who I have no idea who they are,” Schlissel said. “I’ve really learned that this whole athletic sphere and the usual way you approach things just doesn’t work. It’s just a crazed or irrational approach that the world and the media takes to athletics decisions.
“It’s a time sink,” he added.
Schlissel seems committed to maintaining the academic integrity of the sports teams. People will panic about what this means about Michigan's competitiveness going forward, but I think that many of us would be happy with a balanced approach. We don't want to replicate what happened at UNC, certainly.