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Paying of College Athletes


Should College Athletes be paid?
Darnell Vandivort
University of Texas El Paso

Paying of College Athletes


A lot of commotion has been caused by such a simple question. Should we pay college athletes
or not? Many people have various opinions on this question, some are against and some are for
it. The people that are against the issue say college athletes are already getting paid by receiving
a free education, free books, and free room and board. Is that not a good enough reward for
getting to do the thing you love day in and day out? Many may ask how selfish could the athletes
be. Now on the other hand the people for this argument state that being a student-athlete takes
dedication and hard work to succeed in both aspects, many consider it to be a full time job. The
biggest argument they have is how much revenue these athletes bring into their universities not
seeing a penny of that money. From selling jerseys, to the video game industry, and any other
marketing ways these athletes make their schools money. Giving you a better understanding of
these arguments is my goal in this report.

Should College Athletes Be paid or not?

The debate whether student athletes should be paid has caused much debacle between
lots of people. Athletes and others have argued many valid points, but here are the main three
main points. The amount of money the schools make off the athletes is mind blowing and not a
penny is received by the athletes, the amount of hours put in is more than a full time job and can
be hard to succeed in the classroom and in your sport, scholarships do not cover all expenses for
college athletes.
Paying of College Athletes


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In 2010 the Southeastern Conference became the first conference to receive $1 billion
dollars in athletic receipts, the Big Ten conference came in second with $905 million. (Source 3)
This is jaw dropping money these schools are making every year in just sports, now do any of
these million dollar athletes see any of this money? No. Schools make all this revenue on jersey
sales, video games, TV broadcasts, and advertising.
These athletes have been called money makers
which is without a doubt true. The NCAA makes
nearly $11 billion in revenue of all college sports,
thats more revenue than the NBA and NHL make
combined! (Source 4) You walk into any Division 1
bookstore and youll see jerseys hanging all around
for as much as $80. Thats an honor to see your jersey
being sold, but is it fair that the school makes that money off of the athletes hard work and
dedication? Many of these games are nationally televised and make millions of dollars. So what
do the athletes receive in return? A scholarship that doesnt cover all of their expenses, yes it
pays for school and room and board which is nice, but how greedy could the NCAA and major
schools be? This is what a lot of college athletes are arguing and I couldnt agree more.

Paying of College Athletes

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The typical Division 1 football player devotes 43.3 hours per week to his sport, 3.3 more hours
than a typical American workweek. (Source 4) That is dedication and a lot of time being put into
just your sport, thats not even including class time, time for homework and studying. These
athletes have a lot of pressure in succeeding not only in their specific sports, but in the classroom
as well. As you may know no pass equals no play, which can lead to being put on probation and
could eventually put your scholarship at risk. Managing time is the most important for these
athletes. You often have school in the morning, then practice and other sport related activities,
then homework and studying. The day is planned from the second you wake up until the second
you go to bed. As you can see being a Division 1 athlete is not for everyone.

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On an average a full Division 1 scholarship is $25,000 (Source 2) covering books, room and
board and many other little fees by the college. This $25,000 is a full scholarship, and partial
scholarships would obviously be less than this. What about other expenses? Such as groceries,
car fixes, emergencies, where does this money come from? Directly from these athletes pockets.
Many people think that athletes are well off and have everything they could ever need, but they
are similar to just a regular student. Getting a scholarship doesnt equal cash in a players pocket,
most athletes are dirt poor. (Source 2) With the circumstances the athletes are in they often
question why they cant make some revenue on signing a few autographs or selling their jersey.
As Michael Wilbon explains in his article the athletes should be able to make money off their
jerseys as in a supply and demand. If a star athlete wants to sell his or her jersey for $100 and a
Paying of College Athletes

decent player wants to sell his for $40 it comes to supply and demand the more you put into your
sport the more you can get out of it. (Source 7)

Ive told you the three main points that give the athletes an argument in why they should be paid.
The outrageous amount of revenue the NCAA and schools make on their jersey sales,
advertising, and TV broadcasting, the long hours and hard work and dedication needed to
succeed in being a student-athlete, and the expenses the scholarships fail to cover are all very
good reasons why athletes should be paid.

Paying of College Athletes

(n.d.). Retrieved from

Hartnett, T. (2013, October 21). Why college athletes should be paid. Retrieved from

Barry, R. (2014, February 25). Should college athletes be paid?. Retrieved from

Edelman, M. (2014, January 30). 21 reason why student athletes are employees and should be
allowed to unionize. Retrieved from

Bechara, S. (2014, March 27). Should college athletes be paid? former gator players weigh in.
Retrieved from

Sherman, E. (2014, February 11). Jay bilas speaks up for college athletes. Retrieved from

Wilbon, M. (2011, July 18). College athletes deserve to be paid. Retrieved from