Caddyshack the class is a big draw at Lynn

Students use film to discuss sports gambling, civility and animal rights on the golf course in January Term course

Published Jan. 12, 2010

Theodore Curtis, B.A., M.S., J.D.Danny Noonan and the gang from Bushwood Country Club form the central theme of a new Lynn University J-Term course, “Caddyshack 101: Lessons from the Coolest Sports Movie Ever Made,” currently in session.

The mini-term seminar uses the classic golf film as a springboard for discussing issues such as the dangers of social-class stereotyping, the growth of American sports gambling, the advancement of catchphrases in language, and the importance of civility and etiquette. And, of course, thanks to the gopher obsession of greenskeeper Carl Spackler – played by comedian Bill Murray – the class also deals with animal rights and golf-course-based environmental conservation.

“We use this hilarious, crude, wonderful film as a way to get into some very serious discussions,” says Ted Curtis, assistant professor of sports management, and a lifelong fan of the 1980 movie. “As university faculty, we always are trying to find new ways to engage and enlighten our students. With this class, we are doing that through one of the most-popular sports comedies ever made.”

Throughout the course, students complete research papers and personal journals, reflecting on the many issues covered. The undergraduate course is among the most-popular of Lynn’s new “Dialogues of Innovation” January curriculum, conducted at the outset of the spring semester. During last year’s mini-term, Curtis taught “Reflections on Pinstripes: Viewing Life Through the New York Yankees.”

Innovative learning is a hallmark of the Lynn sports management education in the College of Hospitality Management. Every year, Lynn University sports management students learn, and gain invaluable experience, at the:

  • NCAA Men's Final Four, as part of “The Final Four Experience” course
  • Super Bowl, as part of “The Super Bowl Experience” course
  • Winter and Summer X Games, as part of “The X Games Experience” tour classes
  • Baseball Winter Meetings, as part of an exclusive executive and career conference
  • FedEx Orange Bowl, Champions Tour’s Allianz Championship, the International Tennis Championships and with dozens of professional and collegiate teams nationwide
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