Pay College Athletes Essay

1204 words - 5 pages

College sports, specifically football and basketball, generate millions of dollars of revenue for the university and its corresponding city. This notion is backed up by a study conducted in 2012 by Oxford Economics, a global research firm. They found that a season's worth of Texas A&M home football games generate 86 millions dollars in business for Brazos County, where the university is located (Gregory). It is evident that college football generates a tremendous amount of revenue for the surrounding county. But, the disturbing fact is college athletes are unable to receive any portion of this revenue, it would be a violation of NCAA policy. If an establishment wants to share the rewards it heaped in from these college students playing a sport, then they should be able to. This theme is continued by another university in the same state, "The University of Texas, which leads the country in football revenue, brought in $103,813,684” (Jones). This revenue refers solely to the revenue generated by the university and excludes any sort of money made by the county in which The University of Texas in located. Of the 103,813,684 dollars, the athletes receive no such portion of the revenue. Sure some of the money is used to cover the cost of running the team by funding travel and the improvement of facilities. But when the revenue generated by that single sport is that large, the general consensus would be to give some to the athletes. Unfortunately for athletes, the NCAA does not agree with the general consensus. The NCAA is structured in such a way so that the athletes are unable to receive any sort of percentage of the revenue generated by the sport.
The cases of universities, staff members, and NCAA officials receiving large portions of money keep piling up. The Pacific-12 conference is another example where profits off of college football are huge. Their large television-rights deal, a 12-year, 3 billion dollar contract the conference signed with ESPN and FOX in 2011. This, among other things, will keep vast revenues rolling into university coffers. Coaches, admission offices and university alumni operations profit from the student athletes (Gregory). The fact that universities can negotiate for large television deals while students are unable to bargain for a couple hundred dollars is absurd. They are the ones responsible to attracting large television deals, deals that they receive no compensation for. The NCAA needs to figure out a system in which they fairly pay their most valuable assets, the athletes.
There is a growing concern with the exploitation of college athletes as businesses make money off of students. College sports benefit highly paid coaches and the broadcasting industry, but exploit the athletes. The athletes are disproportionately African-American and are from low-income families. Dave Zirin sums up the exploitation, “Look at the money we make off predominantly poor black kids. We’re the whore masters” (Zirin). Zirin is part of a...

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