Paying College Athletes Sends Wrong Message of Priorities

The discussion of whether or not to pay the college athlete has gone on for years now. Both sides of this argument present a good case of evidence for and against the payment of college athletes. However, the higher power of the NCAA  has decided not to pay the student-athletes. Mark Emmert, president of the NCAA made the decision, as stated  in   an ESPN article posted online.

President Emmert is looking for a way to resolve the financial needs of student-athletes.  Another ESPN article stated that a spokesman for Emmert and Southeastern Conference Commissioner Mike Slive  agreed on a review that would lead to athletes receiving the “full cost of attendance” A spokesman for Emmert said they where reviewing a plan that would meet the student-athletes needs without paying them. Emmert told an ESPN reporter that monetary awards such as $2000,000. to $500,000.per year per student for expenses such as transportation and clothing are possibilities.

My thought on paying student-athletes it is a bad decision to pay college athletes for all involved both school and the athletes. Play for pay in college athletics should never happen. A decision to pay the student-athlete would just create a bigger problem. It would  send the wrong message of priorities to the student-athletes.

During the 2013 college football season former Texas A&M

"" Johnny Rotten" got a slap on the wrist  by the NCAA for selling his  autography this past season. The allegation.  Photo Courtesy  of wiki Commons.
“” Johnny Rotten” got a slap on the wrist by the NCAA for selling his autography this past season. The allegation. Photo Courtesy of wiki Commons.

quarterback, Johnny Manziel brought the issue of paying college athletes back in the media spot light. when he signed some autographs.  .  The NCAA couldn’t prove Manziel was paid by memorabilia dealers to sign his own name on pictures of himself. They instead hit him because it was obvious that the thousands of items he autographed were certainly going to be sold. The decided gentility was he sat out the first-half of the Aggie game against Rice University.  What a joke of a penitently for the NCAA to hand down. It was like slapping Manziel on the hand and telling him now don’t do this again. Now I admit that once the NCAA knew about Manzeil’s issue, they had to do something. But I never expected them to do what they did do. The penitential came as a real shock. Then I thought what a joke on the NCAA’s part.

Now Manzeil is not by no means this first football to get into trouble over this kind of issue. Back when Reggie Bush played for the University of Southern California he was it with some NCAA infractions after he had departed for professional football. It was reported by the media that Bush had taken money off a USC booster during his time as a Trojan. It was also proven that people connected to the football program knew about what Bush had done. So in this case, Bush had return his Heisman Trophy that he had won. The USC football program was give a two year band from any bowl game appearance.  The Ohio State University notorious for receiving NCAA penitentiaries for different infractions or violations. This kind of issue is nothing new to the college sports scene. It just some players and schools get caught with their hands in the cookie jar and some do not.
When athletes attend a college or university he or she needs to realize that first priority is to do well in the classroom. Only then should they be allowed to play at game time. These athletes need to realize that a good education in society today can only be helpful to them. That their athletic careers will not last for ever no matter how much talent they have on the field or court. They will need a good education to fall back on when their athletic days are done.

College athletics is an optional activity for college students, not a need. So it makes no sense to pay a student-athlete for an optional college activity. So if you are an athlete on a college team you need to realize your there by your own personal choice. Paying college athletes would lead them to believe that sports is more important than academics. Although some athletes already the concept that sports is more important than an education already. That could be because they have dreams or ideas of playing professional sport after college. But the true reality is very few athletes go on to successful professional sports careers after college.

The argument that  football and basketball players bring revenue to the schools programs and there for should be paid for it, is a hard one for me to buy into. First both sports are teams sports. These teams may have players with athletic talent that stands out more than other players, which means, when the team wins, it wins as a team and a team effort was given for that win. Just like when teams goes down in defeat, the team was defeated because of team effort. So I don’t buy that any one player brings in all the revenue for his or her college team.

Many questions need to be answered before the NCAA would ever make payment of a  college athletes a reality. What pay scale do you use to decide what an individual athlete would be paid. The how do they put a value on athletic performance. How do you make these two decisions fair for both the school and athletes. These are all things that create problems for the issue of paying college athletes. These issues also makes it hard to find a fair solution to the problem.

If there ever comes a time when college jocks are paid for athletic performance its only logical to pay them after they have earned a degree. That way the student-athlete would have to work hard academically to earn money for playing sports. This way both school and athletes would be in a win-win situation and benefit from the  issue of paying student-athletes.

4 thoughts on “Paying College Athletes Sends Wrong Message of Priorities”

  1. Of course, student athletes should be paid (compensated). Indeed, we should flip the question around: Why shouldn’t collegiate student athletes be paid?

    Without them—on the field or on the court, performing and entertaining millions of college sports fans—the billions of dollars that collegiate athletics generates simply would not exist. Without them, we wouldn’t have millions of fans buying tickets for games and subscribing to expensive cable and satellite sports television packages, corporate sponsors purchasing luxury suits and boxes in college arenas and stadiums, or consumers paying top dollar for sports paraphenelia, jerseys and video games bearing the likenesses and autographs of their favorite college players.
    Most, if not all counter-arguments against paying student-athletes are fallacious and anachronistic. These counterarguments are even moreinvalid, unimpressive and bankrupt of reason and sound economic justification when one sees that big-time college sports often discourage and even preclude student-athletes from pursuing and earning their college degrees.


  2. Remember the line in the Mel Brooks movie Blazing Saddles where one of the cowboys is offered a tin shield and sneeringly says, “Badges? We don’t need no stinkin’ badges”?

    I always think of that line when I’m asked if NCAA Division I athletes should be paid for their collegiate contributions. It invokes the strained logic of Blazing Saddles because college athletes are already paid. They’re just not paid what the market is capable of bearing.

    Whoa, wait a minute. What do I mean they’re already p

    Well, let’s set aside the value of their free or partially-funded education and assume no college athlete goes to class or actually gains any knowledge in class that has a useful value. That purposeful sarcasm (or cynicism) removes a healthy percentage of what many readers consider to be the bulk of the collegiate athlete’s current compensation.

    However, since you can’t trade knowledge (i.e., mental enhancement) for an immediate financial asset, higher education is often (and falsely) assumed to have no value for athletes.

    But even removing this educational asset from the equation, NCAA Division I athletes still receive expert coaching (that could lead to a professional career as an athlete or as a coach), on-campus housing, frequent meals (if not elaborate training tables), non-uniform clothing, free medical consultation, free access to state-of-the-art training facilities and free professional development (media/public relations, life skills, networking, etc.). That all has to count for something, right?

    But what about cash for student athletes? Shouldn’t they get money too?

    Oh, so this discussion is about the Benjamins, eh? Well, why is that? Is the amount (the perceived value) a college athlete currently receives not enough? Are we asking this last question because an NCAA coach might be making millions (or a very hefty six-figure salary)? Or is it because the student-athlete’s university is making millions from ticket and merchandise sales? Is it because the athlete’s athletic conference is headed to the bank with a massive TV deal? Or is it because the NCAA is raking in billions off the performances of college athletes?

    We know the answers to all of those questions are yes but if some “force for good” wants to pay the athletes cash, it seems likely some other party will have to take less.

    And that’s where this discussion stops. Because the NCAA, major BCS conferences, big-time universities and well-paid coaches are all expert at practicing the first law of capitalism … which is to capitalize on inefficient suppliers. Simply stated, college athletes have been convinced they are paid enough. And their appropriate share of the revenue pie has been given to others.

    But I predict, someday, in the not too distant future, college athletes will learn they are leaving money on the training table and they will grasp that the whole NCAA pyramid crumbles unless they perform. When that day arrives, collegiate athletes will start getting paid in cash instead of psychology classes, track suits, knee braces and ice baths.


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