Here’s Why Schools SHOULD NOT Pay Student Athletes

Fall is right around the corner, and that means we are getting into the most wonderful time of the year: football season.

Sure, the NFL gives us something to watch on Sunday, but there’s nothing quite like the pageantry and camaraderie that is associated with collegiate football.

That being said, there isn’t really a reason to start paying college players.

“Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?”

College athletes are still playing in spite of not getting paid. Well, MOST of them aren’t getting paid… much… but the point is most of these young men are still participating in their respective sport for the price of college being paid for.

Why would the universities start paying people who are working for free? That makes zero sense.

The thing is, these guys aren’t working for free. They are getting housed. They are getting fed. They are given stipends. They are given an education that we are told is “incredibly valuable”.

On top of that, these guys have trainers, nutritionists, tutors, and a list of resources that would cost the average person thousands of dollars, if not more. Oh, and these are SCHOOLS.

You know, places of higher learning. Athletics are a bonus. Yes, they are incredibly important to our society, but that’s not the point of going to a university. Of course, a lot of people would have you think that sports are the reason for college, and class sort of gets in the way (looking at you SEC fans), but that’s just not the case.

Now, some of you are probably with me 100% right now, while the rest of you are shaking your heads (and then there’s a few of you pissed off about the SEC joke. I stand by that), but let me note that I think college athletes SHOULD be able to profit off their likeness.

What do I mean by that: if a kid is able to profit off his own fame outside of the school paying him, he should be allowed to make money.

A few years ago UCF kicker Donald De La Haye had to leave his school because the NCAA told him he couldn’t make money on YouTube videos.

From USA Today:
The problem here is that the NCAA has built an entire brand on the theme that “most of us will go pro in something other than sports.” And yet, when someone has the audacity to get a head start on that while in college, we have to strain it through so many bylaws and compliance interpretations that a kid at the end of a roster in the American Athletic Conference has to make a choice between his football scholarship and his slightly lucrative hobby.

So, while a university should never directly pay a player for his or her services, nothing should stand in the way of a kid being able to make a buck (from non-tax payer funded groups/people/organizations/companies). My tax dollars pay for state schools. I don’t want that money paying for a left tackle (when we all know the team needs help at linebacker).

“What about boosters gaming the system?”
What about them? If they want to pay some kid to go to their school, let them. Seems like a waste of money to brag about a team you don’t even play for, but whatever floats your boat.

Unfortunately, for the kids, none of this will happen so long as they continue to show up and play every week. You can’t expect for something to change if you do the same thing over and over and over. That’s the definition of insanity.

The NCAA doesn’t look out for the kids, but that hasn’t been a secret. So, until the players do something other than suit up, things will stay the same as they have: Nike pays a kid to go to a school, we all pretend to get upset, we move on.