By Autumn McLeod
With college athletes generating billions of dollars for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), the question constantly brought up is whether or not student athletes should be paid. According to NCAA.org, part of the association’s revenue comes from a “$10.8 billion, 14-year agreement with CBS Sports and Turner Broadcasting” while $6.1 billion comes from ticket sales, ads, and donations. However, none of that money goes towards the athletes.
Money generated from the NCAA conference goes directly towards the university, scholarships, conferences, and travel experiences, but not towards the players directly despite the amount of time dedicated to practices. According to the Business Insider, collegiate-student athletes may spend more than 40 hours a week practicing which leaves them little time for academics.
Two former UNC athletes filed a lawsuit claiming they were “deprived of a meaningful education” while playing for the school. The scandal revealed that athletes were registered for classes that never met and only required a final paper in order to maintain their gpa and stay on the team. This term which the Business Insider referred to as “paper classes” has been going on for decades. Paper classes were created because athletes could not handle a full academic load.
Another scandal that broke out was with the University of Connecticut’s star basketball player Shabazz Napier who admitted to going to bed hungry late at night. According to thinkprogess.org, former Tennessee running back Arian Foster admitted that he accepted money from boosters in order to pay for food which is a NCAA violation.
I feel that athletes should receive some type of payment because not only are they pressured to perform to their best abilities on the field, but in school as well. After exerting so much energy during practices, athletes tend to eat more which can cause them to run through their meal plans quicker. A coach is not even allowed to provide any type of help such as money or food because that is also considered a potential NCAA violation. Athletes are not even allowed to accept any forms of gifts from organizations of donors or else they face the risk of getting kicked off the team.
Free scholarships and exposure are fantastic, however, that is not enough to provide the essential needs for a student athlete. The NCAA would not be generating the large amounts of money they have been making for years if it was not for the players, therefore they deserve to be compensated.