General InformationResults/Thoughts

Pay to Play?? Just a Rant!

By September 23, 20135 Comments

P.S. (Pre-script): I havent re-read, spell-checked or anything so there may be a mistake or two, but that’s how I roll…

Paying athletes or not paying athletes has seemed to be the topic of debate daily around the blogosphere and twittersphere alike and I’m not going to offer up any new facts, just my own opinion…and that opinion is that I don’t know yet. It seems if you don’t take one side or the other you are an idiot and you hate athletics or you devalue education. The way I see it is if you form your opinion on a headline alone without considering the arguments for and against then you are the idiot.

There is a lot of money to be made on college athletics and no one can debate that part and I assume the university soaks that up like a sponge. Sure the money made can enhance the university in a lot of ways, upgraded facilities and such. I’m not saying that STUDENT-athletes don’t deserve something, but what about the average student? Are they less important than the athlete? If that isn’t the case then we sure are acting like it is. It’s been duly noted that the athlete cannot hold a regular job on scholarship due to time restrictions but then again the average student (correct me if I am wrong) doesn’t get room and board. I say correct me if I am wrong because I am one of those who chose not to attend college and try my luck in the workforce, it worked out decently for me. So maybe the key is kill the high school to the NBA rule at least in basketball, maybe the one and done rule was a mistake. A year in college so they can groom themselves for the NBA? If there is no interest in school why do we force them to attend, seems a losing proposition for both parties. If you don’t want to be there how well are you really expected to do?

On the other hand we pay coaches inordinate amounts of money to run these programs and one could make the argument that its almost like slave labor, but then its a game that these kids grew up playing and to monetize it at this early an age to me might just send the wrong message (although at very least the money would come from a reputable source). To throw money at kids who are still developing a value system may be detrimental going forward. That being said I don’t want to see college students struggling at all, whether they be athletes or not. If I work my tail off and scratch and claw for the money to get into school to see that the school values the athlete over me might make me a little angry, but because of revenue and status that’s the game. Shouldn’t we value the scientist or the journalist or the economist or whatever profession that comes from these degrees just as much?

Do you see why I’m conflicted? If you are reading this looking for answers, sorry, I don’t have one but I can say that the current state of things isn’t working. Feel free to inject some facts into this rant which is all this is, just a rant I don’t have a horse in this race necessarily because trust me the “game” isn’t nearly as innocent as it should be right now.

In any event tell me why I am wrong, or right but try to be civil about it. We have enough people on the internet that call others idiots for having a differing opinion.


  • Mike Penny says:

    Well thought out post. This is definitely a topic that provides a lot of room for different opinions because of how controversial this topic has become recently.

    I definitely agree with your statement “To throw money at kids who are still developing a value system may be detrimental going forward.” As of right now, I think that a lot of the great college coaches are teaching student athletes a lot about how to play for the “love of the game” and not just about the money you can make.

    I also agree with you that colleges are making a ton of money on these athletes and I do not want to see any college athletes struggling at any point. However, most of these athletes are being provided with a FREE education from some of the top schools in the nation, where this experience might not be available to them if it weren’t for basketball.

    As you can see, I am also torn on this issue. I see both sides of it in certain cases, however I do not think student athletes should be paid to play right now unless the NCAA publishes a well-organized plan for the sources of income and how it could be spent.

  • dukeblogger says:

    Well stated, I think it’s ok to have mixed feelings on it. The love of the game seems to be something a lot of people arent thinking about. It’s all about business and most of the time business and teenagers don’t mix well. The world is littered with kids with arrested development who entered the league too soon. Money shouldnt be the motivating factor, at least not the only factor.

  • Mike Penny says:

    Exactly. I am a die hard college basketball fan and Duke fan, but I am not a huge fan of the NBA. I enjoy it because it’s still basketball but I think it has become too political and too many players play for the name on the back of the jersey, instead of the name on the front. And I can confidently say that money had a huge impact in that.

  • dukeblogger says:

    yeah the NBA doesn’t much matter to me, I do like to see the players achieve that ultimate goal if that is their goal, but I’m just as excited to see them do things outside of the NBA as well. On the other side as well I understand just like any profession you could be in college to groom you as a professional athlete and the kids do incur the risk, so hence I’m still conflicted.

  • Mike Penny says:

    Exactly. Good point

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