The New York Times has a good writeup on the hand-wringing going on in New York, where some are questioning the transition of the SUNY system’s four major research universities (Buffalo, Stony Brook, Albany, and Binghamton) to Division I athletics:

[W]ith the university system facing a proposed $90 million cut in state financing, some are questioning whether the emphasis on athletics is misguided. Assemblyman Peter M. Rivera, a Democrat from the Bronx, said state money should not be spent on building athletic powerhouses.

“That’s not the purpose of a SUNY school,” he said. “The purpose of a SUNY school is to provide the best education possible.”

These issues aren’t being raised just because of the economy. Recall that Binghamton’s D-I basketball program has been a source of some major scandal and embarrassment.

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Jesse Singal is a former opinion writer for The Boston Globe and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. He is currently a master's student at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Policy. Follow him on Twitter at @jessesingal.