Twenty or 30 years ago there was a Doonesbury strip featuring the president of Walden College and a rich uncle pennybags donor who wanted to give the college a new gym or fieldhouse. And the president tried, gently and awkwardly, to nudge the rich man toward the idea of a new African American Studies Center which the college actually needed. The last frame was the rich guy in full tantrum mode, fists clenched, screaming "I WANNA DONATE A GYM!"
This week, in more or less real life, we got to see what one of those tantrums looks like when Robert G. Burton Sr.'s wild bullying tantrum at the UConn athletic department spilled into the press.
It does direct our attention to the elephant in the room. How unusual is this? It's a little extreme, but my sense is that wealthy donors to sports programs, even at state universities, expect a lot for their money.
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