Football money trickles down on SEC faculty | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Football money trickles down on SEC faculty

Posted By on Wed, Mar 30, 2016 at 10:18 AM

SEC HONOR: Rodolfo Nayga Jr.
  • SEC HONOR: Rodolfo Nayga Jr.
The Southeastern Conference, which makes jillions off a contract to televise member schools' sports, tosses a bit to the faculty members who theoretically form the backbone of the universities whose names are used to generate income typically spent mostly on athletics.

The SEC has annual "Faculty Achievement Awards." One faculty member at each of the 14 SEC school is chosen, an honor that comes with a $5,000 check. This year's winner at the Univesity of Arkansas: Dr. Rodolfo Nayga Jr., Professor and Tyson Chair in Food Policy Economics

He's eligible to compete for SEC Professor of the Year, worth an additional $15,000.

Altogether, these SEC faculty awards total $85,000 for the 14 SEC schools. (The lowest paid of the UA's nine assistant football coaches is $300,000 a year.)

More on the UA winner here. Recent publications include a paper in which Nayga joined several others in studying the effect of dollar stores on obesity in young people.  From the summary:

We find no evidence that the presence of dollar stores within a reasonably close proximity of the child's residence increases BMI. In fact, we see an increase in BMI when dollar stores leave a child's neighborhood. Given the proliferation of dollar stores in rural and low-income urban areas, the question of whether dollar stores are contributing to high rates of childhood obesity is policy relevant. However, our results provide some evidence that exposure to dollar stores is not a causal factor.

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