Should College Athletes Be Paid For Their Likeness

Should College Athletes Be Paid For Their Likeness

Should College Athletes Be Paid: For years, proposals to pay college athletes have drawn polarizing responses. Athletes such as LeBron James and Richard Sherman and politicians such as Senators Chris Murphy and Bernie Sanders have expressed their support for allowing students to make money during their college careers. College and athletics administrators have mostly rebuked the idea.

“College athletes are workers,” says Sanders. “College athletics is about college students playing other college students, not employees playing employees,” Mark Emmert, NCAA president tells CBS Sports. Most college students, however, are in agreement. According to a recent survey of 2,501 college students by polling platform College Pulse, a majority of students support initiatives to pay college athletes.

Should College Athletes Be Paid For Their Likeness
Should College Athletes Be Paid For Their Likeness

Being a college student-athlete is a full-time job, bouncing between the weight room, the court/field, classes, and film sessions. College athletics are extracurricular activities, but the schedules of the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) tournaments require an extended period in which the student-athletes must miss school.

Why College Athletes Should Be Paid

Since student-athletes also bring in revenue for their team and college or university, especially in the championship games, those who debate in favor of paying them say the students could receive a small portion of the profits. Yes, pay would vary, just as the universities with the more successful teams receive more television time or money than those with less successful teams.

College football and men’s basketball programs earn far more than any other athletic program, so these athletes would likely earn more as well. This may not be considered fair pay, but many of those who argue in support of paying college players point out that team popularity and consumers generally determine what is “fair.” These sports also tend to support other less popular sports that do not bring in a lot of money on their own.

Should College Athletes Be Paid Pros and Cons

It Encourages Healthier Student Athletes

Many scholarships may offer tuition, room, and board coverage in return for participating in a sport, but not every student athlete qualifies for a scholarship. Walk-on players have their images used to generate revenues for the NCAA too for zero compensation. Paying all athletes would allow them to focus on academics and athletics without worrying about making ends meet.

It Provides Relief For Families

Families are often tasked with providing direct support for their student athletes to abide by current payment rules. Student athletes are not even permitted to autograph items, or sell certain personal memorabilia, as a way to generate revenues. Outside of student loans for partial scholarship or walk-on athletes, it is up to each family to pay for the student to be at the school.

Should College Athletes Be Paid Pros and Cons
Should College Athletes Be Paid Pros and Cons

It Provides Another Incentive To Play

Most student athletes who play in college never become professional athletes. In the NCAA, fewer than 2% of college athletes go on to become professional athletes. Most become professionals in their chosen field of study. By offering a stipend for playing, much like a work-study program, students would gain another incentive to become involved in athletics. They could use these funds to pay for costs not covered by a scholarship. Students could save the money for a first apartment outside of college.

Cons

  • It would eliminate the line between amateur and professional sports.
  • It would prioritize athleticism over academics.
  • It would become a burden on taxpayers.
  • It would burden smaller schools.
  • It could encourage schools to cut other programs.
  • It could create issues of paycheck equality.
  • It would create opportunities to unionize.

What You Need To Know

The National Collegiate Athletic Association, the nonprofit organization that administers student athletics, made over $1 billion in revenue in 2017. Much of that money is returned to member schools, which use it to fund their sports programs, coaches and administrators, as well as scholarships and supplementary academic assistance for student athletes. The athletes themselves are compensated only in financial aid and are forbidden to be paid in exchange for the use of their name, image or likeness.

500,000 Athletes In Play

Bigger athletic brands such as Adidas are likely to be selective, but could still be interested in tapping the student-athlete market at some 1,100 NCAA member schools educating a total of 500,000 young men and women.

“In the marketing offices of Nike and Under Armour, they’re looking at individual athletes and programs who have the most promising records and who look like a good bet for the future,” O’Keefe said.

The experts based their numbers on deals that college athletes have received after they recently turned pro, adding that a definite range doesn’t exist yet because the market for college athlete endorsements hasn’t been created. One example is when Golfer Justin Suh left the University of Southern California this past summer and turned pro and soon after signed a three-year endorsement deal with Titleist reportedly valued between $500,000 and $750,000.

Should College Athletes Get Paid To Play?

If the National Collegiate Athletic Association will not to allow college athletes to be paid for playing the sports, then they should at least let them make money by marketing themselves. Players don’t make any money from the selling of merchandise, such as their jerseys.

Why College Athletes Should Not Be Paid?

A big reason college athletes should not be paid is simply because they are not professionals. College athletes are people that are trying to get to the pros and therefore, are not paid because they have not made it yet. Since these players are in college, they should never be paid to play their sport.

How Much Money Do College Athletes Make For Their School?

These priorities become clear when you compare coaches’ salaries to the average athletic scholarship. According to the “Madness, Inc.” report, $986 million is spent annually on student-athlete scholarships at these schools to support 45,000 student athletes. That ends up being just under $22,000 per student.

Are College Athletes Allowed To Have A Job?

Student-athletes are allowed to work during the academic year, but must be monitored by the Athletics Department to ensure that all rules regarding employment are followed. The Recruiting Coordinator and coaches may assist student-athletes secure employment.

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