MAILBAG: Will any other school join Saint Francis and drop out of college athletics?
Plus a few other questions
Good morning, and thanks for spending part of your day with Extra Points.
I’m flying back to America tomorrow evening, after several days of family, sunshine, and an irresponsible number of pastéis. Thanks for your patience while I’ve been out.
I’ve already lined up a few interviews and story ideas for when I get back to America, and I think we may have a few other contributor posts coming as well, but in the meantime, let’s crack open the mailbag for a bit. As always, you can send mailbag questions to me on Twitter at @MattBrownEP, or email me at [email protected].
Let’s get into it.
@MattBrownEP How many schools are you aware of that operate on the Fairleigh Dickinson model of using students in significant sports operations roles? Are you aware of any schools that do this programmatically as a part of helping students to gain experience for future opportunities as grads?
— Chaka Cummings (@ChakaCummings)
Mar 21, 2023
Quick disclosure: I hope to speak to officials at FDU next Monday AM, and plan on sharing additional details and context about their situation later next week.
For those who aren’t aware, FDU’s Sports Information Director is a gentleman named Jordan Sarnoff. Part of what makes Jordan unique is that unlike most other SIDs, Jordan is still an undergraduate.
In my professional experience, this arrangement is rare, but not completely unheard of. I remember a time during the Extra Points era when I was trying to work with representatives at Western Illinois on a story, only to learn that their SID personnel were all graduate assistants. Other D-I schools have probably had undergraduates work as SID in some capacity, but what FDU is currently doing would be very uncommon.
That being said, I’m not sure fans appreciate how much work students (both undergraduate and graduate) do in a typical athletic department. Having graduate assistants serve as the lead communications role for some Olympic sports is very common. Graduate assistants may also work in development, operations, athletic training, broadcasts, and just about anywhere else in a department.
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