Thursday, June 2, 2011

Should student athletes get paid?

This little debate has been making it's round since Steve Spurier made the suggestion at the SEC meetings in Destin Florida yesterday. Everyone has been giving their opinion on the matter, so I figured it was time for mine.

Student athletes have been earning universities BIG money for years, with no finical benefit coming to the STUDENT ATHLETE. I know they are SUPPOSED to be there for an education and some are, but let's be honest. The ones who are gifted enough to achieve the ultimate goal of "playing for pay" aren't really there for the academic benefits the school has to offer.

Just about every kid who is fortunate enough to actually play division 1 basketball, has the dream of going to the next level. Although most don't succeed in reaching that dream, they work their tails off to have a chance. All the while, the big name university sets back and rakes in piles of cash from jersey sells, ticket sells, and TV programing that the student athlete made possible. And what does the student athlete get in return? Don't give me the " a free education" argument, because the other students get the same education (when on scholarship academic or other) and don't have to put in near the work.

As a "student athlete" you are expected to go to practice, attend all team functions (weight training ect.) and not to mention all games, home and away. But still have time to go to class study for tests and then attend your tutor sessions. Oh, and did I mention that as a "student athlete" your scholarship is good on a year to year basis. Though most coaches never revoke a scholarship for not producing on the court, field what have you, the option is there.

When coach Spurier brought up the idea, he said he thought that the athletes should get paid $300 a game for every game they play. That doesn't go for all sports, just the ones that actually produce a revenue. I tend to agree with this, because let's face it, the rifle, swim badminton teams will never produce the amount of money that football, basketball, baseball teams do.

Not to mention while playing football or basketball (not sure about other sports) it is against NCAA regulations for you to have a job, in fear of the place of business over paying the student. So really, the NCAA has brought this on by limiting the ("student athletes) ability to make money on his/her own by honest work.

By paying the kids the $300 as suggested, it would also curb the temptation to take money from agents or some other outside source as has occured in the past, and no doubt still does.
So, in my opinion pay the kids for the work they put in and dedication they show the universities that they represent with pride. Give them some money to go out on dates, buy clothes (the honest way) and quit making the money that the boosters wave in front of them appear so tempting. It will help in the grand scheme of things.

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