Time to pay student-athletes?

Time to pay student-athletes?

The paying or compensating of student-athletes has been a hot topic the last couple of years. On one hand the NCAA clearly believes that the students are amateurs and should not be compensated. On the other hand the athletes believe they should be able to share in the large profits the schools are reaping because of their services.

We have seen blatant examples from both parties, beginning with the student-athletes. Terrelle Pryor and other Buckeyes were caught exchanging autographs for tattoos and cash. They also got the benefit of driving around nice rental cars. The NCAA responded by giving the Buckeyes nine scholarship reductions and a bowl ban that would ultimately cost them a chance to play for the national title.

Another example is the SMU saga. SMU was basically setting up a business where players got paychecks in their locker. This was in the Eric Dickerson-Craig James era. The NCAA responded by giving them the death penalty, a punishment that still affects SMU today. There are plenty of other examples from The U (Miami Fl) to Reggie Bush and USC, but it all brings us to today when Northwestern players, lead by Cain Colter, have started a union.

I am on the players side on this. I cannot believe the NCAA has gotten away with this for so long. I believe that it is unconstitutional to not pay these players the money they deserve.

Let’s take a look at who all gets paid. The NCAA gets paid, the coaches get paid, the schools get paid, and the conferences get paid. Everybody seems to get paid except the players.

Now I do not believe that all players should get paid. I think that would be ridiculous if Southern Illinois State’s players get paid. That is due to the fact that only about 67 out of 500 college football programs actually make money. I believe that the players should be able to make money off themselves. But those are two totally different solutions.

I’ll start with the fact that only about 67/500 college football programs make money. These are obviously the Ohio States and the Alabamas of the world. This is basically the power 6 conferences which include the SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac 12, Big East, and ACC. When those programs are making hundreds of millions of dollars off players, then the student-athletes should get a cut. I mean just look at the TV contracts for these conferences. It is ridiculous. There is no doubt that they should get a percentage of that money.

The only reason players don’t get paid is because for the NCAA and the schools, it is all about the money grab. That is the only reason for all of this conference realignment; it also is a money grab. They want to make as much money possible and they will screw over anybody in their way.

Then there is the situation of a player making money off of his name. There is a reason that NCAA jerseys do not have a name on the back. There is a reason that there are no names in the college football video games. The NCAA does not allow this because these players are “amateurs” and they cannot compromise their amateur status.

This is the most egregious rule of all time. This means tht players cannot sell their autograph. These players cannot sell any of their things and they certainly cannot get any type of extra benefit. This is like committing college football murder to the NCAA. It is a big no-no.

For example, take Johnny Manziel, who obviously was paid some sort of money for signing a boat load of autographs. The NCAA came after him like a hound dog after these allegations only to get rebuffed by every autograph broker time and time again. The do not have subpoena power, thus meaning the NCAA couldn’t do anything except suspend him a half game.

The NCAA says no player on scholarship can get any type of benefit, no matter what. They cannot use their name to get paid whatsoever. However, that doesn’t stop the NCAA from making money off them. If you go to NCAA.com you can buy all sorts of players jerseys including Johnny Manziel’s #2 Texas A&M jersey. The NCAA claims that you cannot make money off a players name, but if you search “Johnny Manziel or Jadeveon Clowney” on their website then their jerseys pop up as results. The NCAA is as hypocritical as you can possibly be for doing this. It is truly unbelievable.

All players should be able to make money off of their name. They should be allowed to sell what they want to sell and be a capitalist just like the rest of this great country. If a college journalist writes a book then they can sell it. If a scientists invents a new potion or something then they can sell it. The NCAA says nothing when it comes to those scholarship  “amateurs” but they draw the line when a college football player wants to sell his autograph. It makes absolutely zero sense. We are all capitalists and if someone is willing to pay for an autograph then players should be allowed to sell them.

After all this, the NCAA insists that these student-athletes are getting compensated. They say that their scholarship to go to school should be enough. That is a valuable compensation, but it is not enough. Especially for those Alabama players who have made their school a ridiculous amount of money. It is like McDonalds paying their employees in cheeseburgers or P&G paying their employees in soap. The NCAA is paying themselves much more than the athletes.

At the end of the day, the NCAA is all about the money for themselves and what they are doing is unconstitutional. Those athletes should absolutely be compensated for what they are making the schools, the conferences, the coaches, and the NCAA. They should also be allowed to sell whatever they want. But, ultimately the NCAA will never change. They will always be hypocritical and stubborn in the most extreme way.