College Athletes Deserve Compensation Essay

1137 words - 5 pages

Millions of devoted fans eagerly watch their favorite sports players and teams year round. Some people watch professional sports, while others prefer college. College basketball and football are passionately described topics on television and radio. College and professional sports are analogous in every way; the only difference between them is the lack of payment to student athletes. The National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) receives millions of dollars in revenue from college men's basketball and football, and college coaches of top schools are paid the same amount as professional coaches. Fans of both college and professional athletes can proudly show their commitment by ...view middle of the document...

The NCAA allows Division I college athletes to hold jobs, provided they cannot receive more than $2,000 from their job and financial aid combined (Nelson). Also, athletes may not have enough time, between their sports and education, to hold jobs. College athletes usually dedicate about 50 hours per week to their sport (Nocera 2). Consequently, 86% of college athletes that are covered by full scholarships live below the poverty line (College 1). Shabazz Napier, the star point guard of Connecticut, complained of hunger after leading his team to win the March Madness men’s basketball tournament. “I just feel like a student-athlete, and sometimes, like I said, there’s hungry nights and I’m not able to eat and I still got to play up to my capabilities. … When you see your jersey getting sold — it may not have your last name on it — but when you see your jersey getting sold and things like that, you feel like you want something in return.” (Phillips 1). The NCAA and the colleges earn enough money made by college athletes, to get the athletes out of poverty.
The NCAA’s greatest fear about paying student athletes is the money itself. They worry it will be spread thin between all the sports departments, but the money circulating around the college sports industry would be sufficient to cover all athletes. The two most popular college sports, football and men’s basketball, generate over $6 billion in annual revenue combined; more than the amount the National Basketball Association (NBA) makes (Nocera, 2). Furthermore, the deal between the NCAA and television programs for television rights during March Madness was worth $10.8 billion, and the NCAA’s revenue from March Madness was $770 million, while the payment the winning star point guard received was $0 (Breech 2). Additionally, the top coaches of college teams can receive a larger salary than a professional league coach (Nocera 2), and head basketball coaches usually receive an average of $1.4 million per season (College 1). Adrian Peters, the running back for the Minnesota Vikings and an alumni of the University of Oklahoma stated, “[As much] money as the universities make, I feel that some of the money should be given down to the players as well because we are the ones that are making this university money.” College athletes can, and should, be paid through the millions of dollars from ticket revenue, concession sales at home, television contracts, radio contracts, and merchandise from already exploited athletes (Sobocinski...

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