College chess becoming more like football and basketball?
Louis Ojeda Jr.
FOX Sports Southwest
APR 29, 2014 3:24p ET
You may remember a bizarre story two years ago about a Texas Tech chess coach and her entire team transferring to another school.
Like nearly everything in college athletics, their move was about money.
Susan Polgar coached the “Knight Raiders” to back-to-back national championships in 2011-12. Shortly after their second consecutive title, Webster University in St. Louis lured them away.
“The program grew rapidly, and Texas Tech wasn’t ready to grow with the speed of the program,” Polgar told the Associated Press in 2012. “St. Louis today is the center of chess in America. It just seemed like a perfect fit.”
But how much did would it have taken for the team to stay in Texas?
According to documents recently obtained by Webster University’s The Journal, Polgar requested that Texas Tech give her $1 million in funding, including a $250,000 salary for herself and a $150,000 salary for her husband.
Polgar didn’t get her wish and went on to continue winning national championships at Webster.
Chess isn’t exactly a high-profile game, but some wonder if it’s starting to become like the rest of college sports.
“Are we just starting another version of what’s happened in the football or basketball arena?” Richard Vedder, an Ohio University professor, told The Washington Post. “I think we are, even though the stakes are smaller.”
Full article here.
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– GM Susan Polgar