They Need Their Money Now

Justis Neives, Sports Page Editor

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Quick question for all of those who have jobs. How would you feel if you worked an entire week but weren’t paid for your hours? Furious? Upset? Confused? Would you question yourself and ask, “what did I even really work for?” That’s the reality Division 1 Collegiate Athletes deal with on a daily basis. Time and time again young adults are constantly being exploited by the greedy corporation of the NCAA. But, now is the time to change all of that and give these young men and women the proper compensation they deserve.

Now I know some may feel that paying a student-athlete is ethically wrong thing to do. They’re students at the end of the day afterall. But I would ask those people to reconsider due to the fact these athletes bring in MILLIONS of dollars every year to the schools they represent.  During the the 2015-2016 NCAA Football season the University of Alabama brought in $164 million in profits. That same money goes to coach salaries, campus infrastructure, everyone and everything else except the ones who work the most. To quote Seattle Seahawks defensive end, Michael Bennett, “Everybody [The NCAA] gets paid except the people making the product. In some countries, they call that slavery.”

Student-athletes are students first and foremost. Even though some do receive a full athletic scholarship, those same students don’t capitalize on a “free education.” Let’s paint a picture real quick. The University of South Carolina’s Women’s Basketball team has a game against UCLA in California on Tuesday. Those students will miss an entire day of classes due to travel. Let’s say the game starts at 8:00 pm. Basketball games usually last about two hours. After the game ends around 10:00 pm, players need to get on another flight back to South Carolina which is about five hours. Those students won’t get back until about 2 or 3:00 am and are expected to return to class on Wednesday. On average, D1 players work 43.3 hours a week on their sport. This commitment to their athletic life also causes them to miss two classes per week.

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These athletes also play a part in recruiting students to their respected colleges. After 1983, Georgetown University’s undergraduate application rate increased by 47%. Their overall SAT score requirement also increased by 40 points. What anomaly caused these rates to grow? Patrick Ewing and the Georgetown Hoyas. A similar trend occurred at Boston College in 1984 after quarterback Doug Flutie won the Heisman Trophy. BC’s SAT score requirement jumped by 110 points due to an overhaul of freshman applications. These athletes are walking advertisement for universities.

The NCAA constantly exploits the hard work of young men and women for a profit. None of these athletes receive proper compensation and this merchandising needs to end. They need finally need to be paid.

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They Need Their Money Now