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Amateur Athletes Essay

1404 words - 6 pages

Many potentially gifted athletes shy away from fulfilling their dreams because they do not have the funds to purchase the proper equipment to practice or play a sport. This paper is going to discuss amateur athletes and keeping their amateur status. Oxford’s dictionary definition states, an amateur is a person who engaged in a pursuit, especially a sport, on an unpaid basis. Sport’s attire companies should be allowed to give free shoes and equipment to high school athletes for the athlete’s exceptional performance, recruitment purposes, or the athlete’s inability to purchase their own top performance shoes and equipment.
“Student-athletes shall be amateurs in an intercollegiate sport, and their participation should be motivated primarily by education and by physical, mental and social benefits to be derived. Student participation in intercollegiate athletics is an avocation, and student-athletes should be protected from exploitation by professional and commercial enterprise” (NCAA Principle of Amateurism). Being an amateur athlete comes with a great deal of protection from sport’s attire companies, such as NIKE, Adidas, and Under Armour. There are also many ways that an athlete’s amateur status can be forfeited which should be changed. An athlete forfeits amateur status in a sport by: Signing a professional playing contract in the sport, capitalizing on athletic fame by receiving money or gifts of monetary value, receiving any award or prize of monetary value which has not been approved by the student’s state association, or competing for money or other monetary compensation (allowable travel, meals and lodging expenses may be accepted) (Rules and Regulations).
Losing amateur status can result in forfeit of any played games by the now ineligible athlete, which can be detrimental to a team’s record and drive to win. Forfeit in amateur status can also prevent an athlete’s ability to play other sports during a single school year. Sometimes may even include fines. A consequence for an athlete’s wrong doing can be harsh but is very effective. The need for these consequences prevent sport’s attire companies, professional teams, and depending on age or grade of athlete coaches representing colleges from overexposing and taking advantage of the student athlete. A lot of coaches and recruiters know the rules and regulations but choose to push the limits and work around them to in the end get what they want. An athlete is able to regain amateur status once he or she has returned any tokens, quit any professional team, or stop income of direct or indirect salary. “Maintaining amateurism is crucial to preserving an academic environment in which acquiring a quality education is the first priority. In the collegiate model of sports, the young men and women competing on the field or court are students first, athletes second. The NCAA membership has adopted amateurism rules to ensure the students’ priority remains on obtaining a quality educational...

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