AMHERST, Ma. – Amherst College athletics officials announced the termination of the school’s football program Monday after learning from a professor that the sport promotes male chauvinism and death. “We were stunned to hear that football encourages masculine stereotypes and can lead to serious injury,” said Amherst athletics director Suzanne Coffey. “When we did, we had to shut it down.”
Coffey commended Thomas L. Dumm, the William H. Hastie ’25 Professor of Political Science, for reporting the sport’s harmful social and physical effects to her department in an editorial in the school’s Amherst Student newspaper. “I can’t thank Tom enough for bringing this to our attention,” said Coffey. “If it weren’t for him, we never would have known that there was research on this topic.”
“With data like that, the conclusion was obvious,” said Amherst College President Carolyn “Biddy” Martin. “We had to close the football team.” Martin also immediately halted construction on a new campus field house, expressing outrage that the college was “spending more and more money to support a violent sport.”
“Why didn’t anyone tell me?” asked Martin, who noted her prior tenures at Cornell and the University of Wisconsin left her wholly unfamiliar with collegiate football.
Dumm’s discovery proved emotionally wrenching for Amherst football staff. “[Dumm] suggested that the program detracted from our students’ singular focus on academic excellence,” said former Amherst head football coach E.J. Mills. “I spent the night in front of a mirror thinking, ‘How could I be part of that?'”
While Coffey said it might merely take months for the campus to recover from the shock of Dumm’s revelations, she fears she may be haunted by her prior ignorance forever. “It’s just hard to get past it,” said Coffey. “My god. If only I’d known.”