College Players Making Money

It’s been around since the start of the NCAA, this uneasy feeling that whatever we are watching that weekend, whomever that one athlete who tore his ACL and got kicked out of school, or whichever school had the latest scandal, shouldn’t these kids be paid some money?

The answer most times is that, well “They are on Scholarship.” “We pay them through their education.” Trust me, I’m super happy I got a scholarship for playing soccer in college, but this bill change in California isn’t for guys like me. It’s for the people being taken advantage of.

Per the N.Y. Times, “Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill to allow college athletes to hire agents and make money from endorsements. The measure, the first of its kind, threatens the business model of college sports.” Gov. Gavin Newsom was also on LeBron James “The Shop” where he signed this bill into existence.

Basically put, college athletes are now allowd to be paid to use their name and likeness. Think about this real quick…if a college student signs a book deal, should the school have any say in how they profit off of the book? If a school musician is asked for an autograph, can the musician charge money? Arts v Athletics is a discussion for a different day (2nd chair band, 1st chair baritone NBD) but the nuts and bolts of this arguement for me is simple.

Human beings should be able to make a profit off of their name and likeness. If this chick can become a millionare for no reason other than her face and her name and her “the hoes are laughing” comment on my steel Phil daytime show, why can’t athletes?

Basic numbers alone on march madness, per investopedia; “One of the most lucrative contracts connected with the tournament is the one for the broadcast rights. In 2010 the NCAA signed a 14-year, $10.8 billion contract with CBS Sports and Turner Broadcasting, paid over the 14-year term. The deal was extended in April 2016 for a combined total rights fee of $8.8 billion that will keep the tournament on the networks until 2032.”

So like….$8.8 bill to watch these kids play and they make 0? Alright, so the host makes a buck, so what they organize the whole thing right? If they are the only ones getting paid, where’s the harm?

“This year, 68 teams got an invitation to play in the tournament. Each of those team’s conferences will get a piece of a $220 million pot of money. For each game a team plays, its conference gets a payout, spread over six years. For playing one game the team’s conference gets roughly $1.7 million. If a team makes it all the way to the final game, it can earn as many as five units, totaling $8.3 million. If a team makes the final game from the first-four bracket, it could earn a total of six units.” (investopedia)

ok wow so the conference makes a crap load too…and the athletes STILL get nothing? Maybe this bill isn’t your perfect example of how the structure should be, but we can all admit that it’s flawed, right?

I know some people will still be against this law, which I mean I can’t say I understand but there’s always two sides to the coin. See, Tim Tebow –

I get that Tim did it for the love of the game, but some players don’t have that luxury. Some players really need to just play football in college because the league is it for them (again, another discussion for another day.) Check our Shabazz Napier’s comments about the topic.

All in all, let these guys profit off of their likeness. Yes, there are most likely unforseen circumstances and situations that we can’t fathom right now and I get that. But letting these athletes who we all watch risk their careers each week go to bed hungry or blast out a knee and get left for nothing isn’t the answer.

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