Universities make scheduling sacrifices not just for the lucrative contracts but also because few visuals build the brand better than an appearance on ESPN’s road show "College GameDay." (In November, it had John L. Hennessey, president of Stanford, out on the Oval at daybreak working the crowd.) The school spirit conveyed by cheering thousands — there were 18,000 on Francis Quadrangle at the University of Missouri, Columbia, on Oct. 23, 2010, for "GameDay" — is a selling point to students choosing colleges. When Missouri first started recruiting in Chicago a decade ago, few prospective students had ever heard the university’s nickname, "Mizzou," according to the admissions director, Barbara Rupp. "Now they know us by ‘Mizzou,’ " thanks in part to "GameDay." "I can’t deny that," she said.This from a SHOCKING BREAKING NEWS piece in the New York Times reporting that [GASP]... athletics have become a big deal at universities. I'll let you pause to pick up the pieces of your blown mind. The linked story includes the requisite dose of intellectuals who are shocked and appalled just to make sure it fits the template of the other 75 stories exactly like this one that are published annually.