Should College Athletes Get Paid? Essay

1536 words - 6 pages

Unpaid athletes, overpaid coaches, and revenue from merchandise are a big

business in college athletics. Colleges make millions off of ticket sales, memorabilia,

and television contracts and don’t allow the athletes to see any of it. Athletes’ risk

career-ending injuries every time they step out to play or practice. In addition, players

for these colleges have to manage academic and athletic requirements, but don’t see

any extra money. These extra requirements can include such things as honors classes,

community service and service projects. While some of the athletes do receive

scholarships, it sometimes isn’t enough to pay for housing and tuition. Some people

may wonder if college athletes should get a share of the profits. Opponents think the

athletes should not be paid because they already receive money in the form of

scholarships and free travel to and from games. Supporters believe athletes should get

paid because they risk a lot and do a lot to bring in revenue for these colleges. Should

college athletes get paid?

Scholarships are already given to athletes; what more do they need? Some of

the athletes, especially for football and basketball, receive a full-ride scholarship which

means their education is paid for and they still want more money. Donaldson points out,

“the “payment” that the student-athlete receives for being a scholarship athlete is a full

ride athletic scholarship that includes tuition, room and board . . . also receiving a

monthly stipend that can range anywhere from $500-$1,000 for basic expenses (food

and gas money)” (pg. 4 of 7). Some athletes are receiving as much as $50,000 a year

including books, tutoring, and access to fitness centers. According to Chen, high school

athletes generate money for their schools just as college athletes do for theirs, but that

doesn’t mean we should be paying high school athletes, so we shouldn’t pay college

athletes either (par. 3 of 16). Athletes should be thankful for getting their whole

education paid for. Edwards mentions, “The answer to the question of paying these

athletes outside of their scholarships and personal merchandising sales, however, is

simple, and that answer is never” (par. 11 of 11). Therefore, the opponents position is

that the athletes are already being compensated.

However, supporters of athletes being paid contend they should be paid extra in

addition to their scholarships. Athletes have to manage a demanding academic and

athletic schedule. They spend hours upon hours training and practicing which puts

strains on their physical well-being as well as mental with the academic requirements

that often accompany scholarships. Staying up late studying, waking up early for class

and then practicing for hours isn’t easy, it’s their job. McCourt states, “Sure, they

receive scholarships. That’s great and all, but there’s more to college than paying

tuition” (par. 5 of 10). How many times does an athlete...

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