An often vocal, of nearly everything UO, posted on his site today about how the NCAA is a cabal, and works to enforce a student athlete population to work for free, and live on 1 year scholarships, etc. The story has been covered in several other locations as well, and there seems to be a very conspicuous missing piece of thought: “fairness”.
Maybe I’m wrong, but I think the NCAA probably WOULD work to pay the players if they thought it would be fair. Working for a university with deep athletics pockets, I imagine it would probably benefit us to be able to pay our athletes, and give them longer scholarships. But our neighbors to the north would probably be crying foul all the way to the NCAA. Think the days of Norte Dame football are done? Let them pay their athletes and see how fast they return to being a power house. By limiting what schools can give their athletes, the NCAA levels the playing field and allows public schools to really compete with the private ones.
Yes, the NCAA would limit it to a $2000 stipend, and the number of scholarships. But I would argue once this starts, we’d end up like professional sports.
It’s actually MORE amazing that the man that runs UO Matters didn’t realize that doing something like this would put even MORE pressure on the academic side of a university if the athletics departments are suddenly on the hook for paying athletes, or giving them longer scholarships, etc.
Do I think it’s right that student athletes work for “free”? No. But I do think it’s one of the only ways to make things fair, and prevent situations where a “University” becomes an “Athletics University”. Just imagine what Phoenix University, or something like them, could do with the ability to attract players with money, scholarships, etc.