College Athletes And Whether They Should Be Paid

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College sports are turning out to be more and more like the professional leagues with the one exception being the players don’t get paid. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) makes billions of dollars off these student athletes. College basketball and football are two of the greatest cash creators for the NCAA, in 2010 the NCAA marked a multi year bargain worth nearly $11 billion with CBS and Turner Sports that would give them the rights to show the games. Football and basketball acquire the most money for their schools, so why not pay the athletes? Especially when the colleges, NCAA, and coaches are for the most part getting paid millions upon millions of the free labor of these athletes.

College athletes are certainly some of the hardest working people you’ll ever meet. Not only do they have to go to class and study for tests like regular students but on top of that they also have to practice 50 hours a week for their sport. When UCLA Quarterback Josh Rosen was asked about the topic at the NFL combine he said “it was like working two full-time jobs”.One of the most discussed topics in the world of college athletics is whether or not student athletes need to be paid money for playing they help make money for. Those who disagree with the paying the athletes have some good arguments to make, primarily that the athletes get to go to college free of charge for playing the sport they love. Another argument is that if student athletes were to get paid it would wreck the purity of college athletics. But I’m here to argue that student athletes should be paid for the amount of work they put in to their sport and go into depth of how they should be paid.

I first want to go into more detail as to why some people don’t want to pay the athletes, many friends people saying athletes should be paid are representatives of the NCAA, coaches and even some of the games biggest stares like Tim Tebow. When Tim Tebow was the starting quarterback at the University of Florida his jersey was one of the best selling jerseys in America, when asked if he agreed with California’s new law that allows student athletes to make money off of their image and name he stated that “when I went into college I knew it wasn’t about the money, it was about the pride to play for the University and win a national championship. But for many other players pride for your school doesn’t pay the bills,feed them or help support their families, and while paying the athletes may have an effect on the game and the decisions future players make it’s still the right thing to do.

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Now I’m one of the biggest college football fans you’ll ever meet, I’ve gone to many San Jose State and Stanford as a kid and even keep up with the college playoffs if my team doesn’t make a bowl game. But as I’ve gotten older and seen and heard some of the injustices the players have gone through. For example earlier this year Memphis university basketball star recruit and potential No. 1 NBA Draft pick James Wiseman has been suspended 12 games by ncaa, for his mothers involvement in accepting $11,500 in the recruitment of their son. Now Wiseman just wanted to help his mom move into a better neighborhood, but because the person who gave him the money was a “booster” he not only got suspended but has to return all the money he accepted. This is not the first time a player has accepted money under the table from teams trying to get them to commit to their school.

Back in the 1980s Texas’s Universities were basically the wild wild west of trying to recruit the best players they possibly can for their school, every school in the state had their boosters go to the hometown of the best players and try to buy their commitment. This included buying the recruits cars,giving them money even going as far as buying their families a house to live in, and no school was more guilty of these actions that’s Southern Methodist University(SMU). They were caught not only giving their players monthly payments for how well they played, but even going as far as moving players families halfway across the country just to live near their son’s. This resulted in SMU’s downfall as they received the “death penalty” for multiple rule violations within 5 years, this resulted in the school losing scholarships canceling the football program for two years and being illuminated from a bowlgames for five years. Now the question can be asked why go so far and break so many rules? Well in the short answer it was to win some football games but I’m not here to talk about the short answer. The long answer is there are no real way university will be caught unless there’s someone is willing to leak information, this was the case for SMU when a former linebacker Sean Stoppers was kicked out of school for not meeting expectations and also having drug problems off the field they decided to ignore. So when he went back home to Pennsylvania the NCAA flowed and asked Stompers and his mother about some of the stuff that was happening at SMU. But most players don’t want to give up information that will hurt their university so they keep their mouths shut and their schools just keep doing the same thing over and over again.

Off course SMU’s story hasn’t stopped other schools from exploding their players and bending the rules to help them win games, it’s just made them more careful of how they do it. So to the people who say that players are doing this for the love of the game and that college sports are pure, I say there is so much corruption in college sports that we need to take the boosters out of the equation and just allow the players to make money the legal way and keep on playing the sport they love without any worry of losing their scholarship or hurting their team.

Now it’s not as easy as handing out checks to every football and basketball player who plays for the best team in the nation. There are a lot of factors that must be accounted for, one of the main reasons being title 9 which is the equal distribution of money for every sport the university provides. So if you want to pay the Heisman trophy winner you have to pay the second string goalie on women’s soccer. Now this is not what people think of when we’re talking about paying the students, far from it. Now there are some ways of getting around this some people say the more you do on the field the more money you should make. But their are some problems with this format, one is the locker room setting and how some players may see it as unfair that their going to practice and class every day like the rest of their team. But because their not a starter they either don’t get paid or are paid very little. 

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