Paying college atheles Essay

Submitted By lmocherman01
Words: 1788
Pages: 8

Paying College Athletes Tyler Branch wrote captivating article in The Atlantic titled “The Shame of College Sports” which included a disturbing story about the treatment of a college athlete. In 1974, running back Kent Waldrep suffered paralysis after a hard tackle during a game while attending Texas Christian University (TCU). The university paid his medical bill for nine months, but then refused to pay anymore expenses because of his “student athlete” status. For sixteen years his family battled TCU in the courts trying to obtain “workers compensation” benefits. In June of 2000 the Court of Appeals in Texas ruled against Waldrep based upon his status as a “student-athlete”, not an employee. TCU used Waldrep’s football ability to make money, but because of Waldrep’s classification as a “student-athlete,” the court said he had no entitlement to compensation that another TCU employee would receive. Even though the school made money off of his work, unlike a coach for instance, he received no compensation. Currently, National Colligate Athletic Association (NCAA) college athletes do not receive any kind of compensation in addition to their scholarships. College athletes generate millions of dollars for their universities and deserve additional payment. Division 1 college athletes put in countless hours playing their sport to the best of their ability. If playing a sport in college takes as much time as a job, then playing the sport should come with payment like a job. Opponents of compensating the college athletes ignore the billions of dollars generated by the players’ efforts and accept the falsehood that today's college athletes are student-athletes. Advocates against paying college athletes argue several points in hopes of maintaining the current NCAA policy. First, they say college athletes get “compensated” by the value of education which includes housing, tuition, and meals. Secondly, supporters say if college athletes get paid, they become professional athletes not student-athletes. Lastly, supporters of not paying athletes argue the impossibility of fair distribution to all athletes. Proponents for not paying players say athletes receive payment in the form of scholarships, but the scholarships fail to cover all college related expenses. The difference between a scholarship and the full cost of attending a university ranges from $2,000 and $5,000 depending on which college they attend. As shown in a stltoday.com article, $4,300 reflects the difference of cost between scholarship benefits and actual costs at the University of Missouri during the 2011-2012 academic year. Scholarships fall short in covering living expenses such as transportation, clothing, and miscellaneous expenses. For example, off campus athletes receive monthly benefits from their scholarships for rent. However, they do not receive rent money for the two months they are not in school. The NCAA basketball tournament made ninety million dollars in 2011 while Missouri basketball players received five hundred and fifty dollars for rent (Gregorian). Sports writer Duncan Currie’s article argues the average scholarship falls $3,000 short of covering the expenses of the athlete. He said if scholarships supposedly pay players, then scholarships need to be boosted to help “cash-strapped’ players meet their living costs. Syracuse University professor, Dr. Boyce Watkins, who has taught on college campuses for seventeen years, has witnessed the hardships placed on college athletes. He claims the NCAA earns forty percent more in advertising revenue than the NBA playoffs and sixty percent more than MLB playoffs. The NCAA does not pay its athletes and therefore the money should go to enhances scholarships. Although today’s college athletes maintain the label of “student-athlete,” the demands of college athletics make them like professionals. The NCAA titles the young men and women that participate in college athletics student athletes, but the…