Bobo, I think your argument is stronger without the football reference.
I got an academic scholarship to GWU. It was my best financial option, even better than in-state rates at UConn, once I figured I was willing to bite on all the loans; and it was better than any other combined loan/scholarship package at any ofther private school. So, I am biased.
My biases, coupled with my prejudicies, lead me to the conclusion that too many LAX scholarships go to pink IZOD types who can drive their own cars to school, and who don't really need extra money to go to a school they would have attended anyway. I look ok in pink IZOD these days, but had not even heard of it when I was in high school.
Anyway, I like basketball. And even though its a crazy and inefficient system to give scholarships to basketball players so they can go to college when maybe they couldn't without that money, I'll spend my entertainment dollar, and a portion of my charity dollar, on that.
Football is simply an inefficient way to maim and dismember guys, while we watch. It's impossible to play or know anything in detail about the sport and not come to a conclusion similar to that. (I played, and through a series of mistakes by overeager recruiters, even got some scholarship nibbles. I was an undersized, weak-wristed, eager, but dumb kid.) The sport is dead. It just has not yet been declared dead. I can see why colleges in the middle of nowhere might play a version or if, and why Behemoth State U will continue to play it (it isn't financially profitable, but it does churn a lot of green, and it does keep a lot of folks employed) But it is dead, and we will all see it declared dead in our lifetimes.
And, thankfully, really, nothing in the world of college "makes up" for major college football.