“Bring in ‘da Pomp, Bring in ‘da Circumstance….”

In recent months, U.S. News & World Report has been taking more body blows than Michael B. Jordan in Creed III, as one high-profile school after another refuses to participate in the magazine’s annual college and university rankings. 

On Wednesday, however, the Report bounced off the ropes and landed a punch of its own, unveiling a new dimension that will, in the words of company CEO Eric Gertler, “help ensure the validity of our college prestige rankings for decades to come.”

Dubbed G-7, it measures the grandeur of a school’s inauguration ceremony for a new president or chancellor.

A college or university’s G-7 score will incorporate the following components:


100 pts.:  Cathedral (at least 300 years old)

50 pts.:  Cathedral (less than 300 years old)

5 pts.:  Anywhere else


100 pts.:  Monarchs, Potentates, Prime Ministers, Overlords, etc. 

90 pts.:  Nobel Prize winners in STEM fields

85 pts.:  Neil deGrasse Tyson

80 pts.:  George Clooney

75 pts.:  Football coaches from the Southeastern Conference (SEC)

70 pts.:  College and university presidents with a Ph.D. 

65 pts.:  College and university presidents without a Ph.D. 

60 pts.:  Head of the faculty union (not wearing a protest sign)

50 pts.:  Chair of the Core Curriculum Committee

45 pts.:  Emeritus professors (cognitively intact)

40 pts.:  Emeritus professors (not quite cognitively intact)

35 pts.:  Student government presidents with at least a 2.75 GPA

30 pts.:  Adjunct faculty with a minimum of 30 teaching credits

25 pts.:  Live poultry from a neighboring institution’s School of Agriculture (must be wearing ceremonial robes)

15 pts.:  A bucket of KFC donated by a local franchisee

-10 pts.:  Head of the faculty union (wearing a protest sign) 


100 pts.:  Symphony composed by John Williams especially for the event

75 pts.:  Barry Manilow medley performed by the school’s marching band

50 pts.:  Star-Spangled Banner sung by a sophomore Music major with a head cold

20 pts.:  Pre-recorded “Tunes to Twerk By” played by a local DJ


100 pts.:  Jon Stewart

80 pts.:  Patrick Stewart

40 pts.:  Rod Stewart

30 pts.:  Stewie (from “Family Guy”)

10 pts.:  Martha Stewart


100 pts.:  Formal wear featured in the New York Times Style Magazine

70 pts.:  Sweats

30 pts.:  Anything from the “Trailer Park” rack at David’s Bridal


100 pts.:  Shrimp cocktail (with sauce)

90 pts.:  Shrimp cocktail (without sauce)

80 pts.:  Cheese bits (with toothpicks)

70 pts.:  Cheese bits (without toothpicks)

60 pts.:  Hummus (with crackers)

50 pts.:  Hummus (without crackers)

40 pts.:  Turkey jerky

30 pts.:  No-salt Cheez-Its


100 pts.:  Wine

90 pts.:  Beer in wine glasses

80 pts.:  Beer in glass bottles

70 pts.:  Beer in cans

60 pts.:  Beer in 20-ounce stadium cups

50 pts.:  Breast milk

40 pts.:  Tap water

30 pts.:  Pedialyte Grape 

Immediately following the U.S. News & World Report press conference introducing the inauguration factor, Harvard and Yale Law Schools announced that they would resume participating in the ranking process.  As Harvard Law Dean John F. Manning put it, “we’re back in the game, baby, with gold-tasseled loafers on both feet!”