University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler

Leah Millis, Star Tribune

Letter of the Day (Oct. 21): University of Minnesota

  • October 20, 2012 - 9:16 PM

University of Minnesota athletic director Norwood Teague and Gophers football coach Jerry Kill convinced university President Eric Kaler to spend $800,000 to break a contract to play two football games with the University of North Carolina ("Ducking a so-so-foe not worth $800k," Oct. 16).

Here are other ways that money could have been spent:

1. Paying the tuition and fees for 59 full-time low-income students for a two-semester academic year at the U.

2. Paying for tuition and fees; plus, books and supplies, room and board, transportation, and miscellaneous costs for 32 low-income, full-time students for a two-semester academic year.

3. Providing a $2-per-hour pay increase for 192 full-time equivalents of the U's lowest-paid workers, many of whom, if not all, currently can't afford to rent a one-bedroom, market-rate apartment in the Twin Cities metro area, even when working full time, according to federal affordability guidelines.

I urge Minnesotans to let the governor, state legislators and university regents know whether the U should have spent $800,000 breaking the football contract or making one of the three choices listed above.


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