National Collegiate Honors Council


Date of this Version



Published in Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council Vol. 11 No. 1 (Spring/Summer 2010). Copyright © 2010 by the National Collegiate Honors Council.


At regional honors conferences, which typically occur around the same time as the NCAA and NIT basketball tournaments, many of us have facetiously wondered aloud whether basketball teams and their coaches spend as much time talking about honors as we spend talking about basketball. Back on our home campuses, a more serious connection between honors and athletics programs often takes the form of mutual recruitment efforts, schedule coordination, arrangement of make-up tests, co-advising, and enthusiastic attendance at sports events when honors students are in the competition. Many honors programs and colleges also sponsor their own sports events, fielding intramural teams or hosting Frisbee tournaments. Academics’ attitudes toward sports programs are often complex; a faculty member might simultaneously play pick-up volleyball with her students, have season tickets to the school’s football games, and grumble loudly about how much attention and money are devoted to the athletic budget. Some of that complexity occurs among honors administrators as well. The complexity and diversity that we value in honors is well represented in this issue’s Forum on “Honors and Athletics,” where the range of perceptions fairly well covers the spectrum.