See Chris Solari’s book review in the Lansing State Journal 6/29/2015
David: I finished [The Student and His Professor] and now offer my congratulations on this fine writing. You have given dimension to the lives and achievements of John Hannah and Ralph Aigler. Any future scholar wanting to chase down either of these two needs to start with your work. John Behee, PhD., author of Fielding Yost’s Legacy to the University of Michigan
David: Your book is first-rate, a very well-wrought combination of deep research and good writing. James Tobin, author of “What’s in a Name?,” Michigan Today, 7/14/2016; http://michigantoday.umich.edu/whats-in-a-name/
The years of acrimony and divisiveness from those in Ann Arbor leading up to MSU’s admittance into the conference plays the pivotal plot throughout Young’s book…. For much of the early 20th Century, Michigan law professor Ralph Aigler and a number of the school’s athletic directors and coaches fought against athletic aid for students. When MSU began offering Jenison Awards prior to being admitted to the Big Ten, Aigler – the Wolverines’ faculty representative to the conference, and perhaps the most powerful man in both the league and college sports – essentially branded the Spartans as cheaters and outlaws. Aigler fought other schools’ subsidy schemes and the practice of athlete recruitment (then also illegal) around the country, but most vociferously and surreptitiously when it came to MSU, under the intentions of retaining amateurism in its highest and most honorable form.
Or simply because Michigan was one of the purveyors of power in the NCAA and dictated policy. The book points out a number of ways even the most pious football programs – including the Wolverines – were circumventing the rules they created and agreed to follow.
Young’s well-researched tome is a fascinating and educational read for all MSU, Michigan and Big Ten football fans. “MSU’s Mark Hollis, Michigan’s David Brandon and Potential NCAA Reform.” Chris Solari. Lansing State Journal, 7/30/2013
Incredibly well researched. Depth of knowledge of inter-related facts and events allows the reader to view the subject from all perspectives. As a Michigan fan, I do not feel that UM was in any way misrepresented. My take-away is that I respect the college football rivalries (among UM, MSU, and ND) even more and regret that the (University of Michigan)-University of Notre Dame…series will not continue past 2014. Amazon: stevexscout 11/15/2012
Overall, the real strength of (Arrogance and Scheming in the Big Ten) is Dr. Young’s research. Since most of the discussion influencing Michigan State took place behind the scenes, he had to pour through personal papers scattered through various archives in the Midwest. The text has a wonderful complete set of footnotes. Speaking as a history professor myself, I was impressed reading the book, and think (the physician) might have missed his true calling. What is really fascinating about the book is that since most of the research was done in personal papers, it’s one of the only chances we’ll have for seeing a behind-the-scenes look at conference realignment in our lifetimes. The folks who brought us a twelve team Big Ten won’t have their papers open to read to the public for decades….
About the only sad part of the book comes at the end where Dr. Young admits that researching all this academic skullduggery and behind the doors infighting has made him lose his interest in college sports. That’s unfortunate. Most of us know skullduggery sneaks into every human activity. Regardless, Dr. Young has written an excellent book….Professor Harold Aurand, Jr. (Pennsylvania State University–Schuylkill); College Football Historical Society, VOL. XXVI, NO.I, November 2012.
A masterpiece in investigative journalism about the BIG TEN and its predecessors. The author’s great diligence in getting to the facts and publishing them in a scholarly manner is impressive. He humanizes the key officials (at various) universities and (within) the conference and through exhaustive research their individual prejudices and ploys are revealed in detail. Protecting institutional and self pride (as well as) athletic revenues to the universities were paramount in (those leaders’) decisions on the conduct of business and the admittance of petitioners. It will be difficult to watch any college football game again without thinking (that this intercollegiate activity) must be recognized as BIG BUSINESS. Period. Amazon: JOD 9/8/2012
At the heart of the story is the clash of two philosophies, pure amateurism vs. athletic scholarships. We know which won out decisively, but Dr. David Young does a masterful job of showing the people and the ideas on both sides during this period in Big Ten (history)….(His book) is so meticulously researched and objectively written that it is sure to be a significant contribution to the sport history of the Big Ten Conference. Professor Emeritus John Behee, sports historian and author of Fielding Yost’s Legacy to the University of Michigan. 5/16/2012
[Your book] answered more questions about the [UM-MSU] rivalry than anything I have read before. You must be exhausted from the extensive research it required. Well done. It should be required reading for anyone who truly bleeds Green or Blue….it will be referenced for years to come by fans…. Email: “Atrueblueguy” (Jack Briegel) 7/5/2012
An excellent explanation and insight about the dynamics in the relationships … [among] major colleges regarding athletics and academics. A good book for anyone interested in college sports regardless of school. Amazon: Edward A. Wynant “Tedwynes” (Basking Ridge, NJ, USA) 5/30/2012
Very well written and with a lot of research put in. I recently started reading it and haven’t been able to put it down. I would highly recommend it. Go Green! “Mark” 5/12/2012
This is an entertaining, exhaustively researched book, detailing the struggles MSU experienced before obtaining admission to the Big 10. Anyone looking for reasons why there is such a bitter rivalry between UM and MSU need look no further than this book. It also demonstrates that even eighty years ago, many guffawed at the title “student-athlete.” It is indeed intriguing how the athletic directors scrambled to fill their stadiums long before the advent of television money. All fans of college football, not only the Big 10, will find this to be a fascinating, enjoyable read. Amazon: “squillyfam” (Dublin, Ohio, USA) 7/4/2012
This book is one of the most exhaustive and well-researched books about the 20th century Big 10 I have ever read. The author really put his heart and soul into this work. I have to admit to being a little overwhelmed by reading it. Not on account of Young’s style, mind you, but by the [extensive] research and background the author uses to weave this story. Not being a big Spartan fan probably didn’t help either! Very well written, well-researched and well put together. Not for the faint of heart. To truly appreciate it one must give his/her undivided attention. If one does so, he/she will not be disappointed. If this topic is of interest to you, I dare say you cannot go wrong in taking the time to read this tome. Job well done. Kudos to David Young. An interesting topic, well explained and properly executed. Amazon: “Michigan Reviewer” (Holland, MI USA) 6/22/2012
A grand review exposing the UM attitudes toward MSU (in years past). Amazon: “tom48” 8/10/2012
This historical account of [Michigan] State’s efforts to join the Big Ten is an exquisitely detailed story explaining not only the complicated political, philosophical, and cultural processes in play, but also the hidden intentional (and unintentional) purposes of the [key] players involved [in the story]. As a graduate of State, I now understand more clearly the basis of the animosity, disdain and blatant arrogance shown toward me by U of M grads (not all of course, but certainly, most). It is their heritage to view State as an inferior institution and consequently, to feel justified and quite comfortable in treating (MSU) graduates as inferiors. I am 77 year-old retired psychotherapist and have had several total strangers (most young enough to be my child or grandchild) confront me with some sort of dismissive comment about Michigan State. I’ve had this happen in airports, on the street, in Europe and Mexico. I suppose I can be accused of “asking for it” because I frequently wear State garb. I used to playfully believe that all M students were required to take a “State is Inferior” class. Now I know better—I think. Amazon: “JJ” 8/9/12
Great book – one to pass on to MSU alumni to enjoy. Points out some things that I never thought about! (nor was I aware of!) Amazon: “Sandra Tack ‘Farmer Tack’s Wife’” (Bellevue, MI USA) 8/6/2012