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College athletes deserve payment for competing

Brent Lane, Journalism Writer

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Over 480,000 college students are scammed out of hard earned money every year, as they earn nothing despite bringing millions into their colleges every year. They study may different majors and have different life aspirations, but they all have on thing in common. These students play college sports.

Student athletes make their colleges millions of dollars and receive nothing in return. According to the Wichita Eagle, Wichita State’s basketball program made $1,109,088 in profit. None of that profit went towards the athletes.

Many Division I universities make over $25 million in revenue on athletics alone, reports USA Today. They say that 116 of the 231 schools that publish revenue reports made at least this much profit.

In fact, according to that same web page, all but two of the 231 schools made a profit on college athletics. The biggest earners, such as Texas A&M, Texas, Ohio State, and Alabama made as many as $85 million a year.

Some college athletes report that sometimes they don’t have enough for basic living expenses. Former University of Connecticut star Shabazz Napier told CNN on April 8 that he sometimes has to go to bed “starving” because he doesn’t have enough to eat. Wisconsin player Nigel Hayes recently held up a sign on ESPN’s College Gameday program asking for donations.

Many people say that colleges can’t afford it, however the salaries of many top coaches say otherwise. USA Today’s coaching salary database says that the 25 highest paid coaches in the nation all make $1,000,000 or more, with the highest paid being Mike Krzyzewski from Duke, who earns over $7 million a year.  If they can afford to pay coaches this much, why can’t they at least give a small amount to the student athletes.

The most common argument against paying student athletes is that they receive a full scholarship education in exchange for playing. However, there is evidence that some of the education they receive may not be on level with that of other students. CBS Sports reports that after North Carolina’s athletic scandal, in which it was found over 18 years of classes were fake, the academic integrity of UNC may have been compromised. That reputation may be hard to get rid of.

There is a very simple solution to the problem. If the NCAA approves a small pay for each athlete, maybe $10,000 or $20,000, and then allow them to do sponsorship deals, they would be able to make enough to support themselves and have a solid life after college.

Paying athletes a small amount of money and allowing them to get sponsorships would not effect college athletics at all. In fact, it may encourage athletes to stay in school longer instead of leaving to join the professional level. This would improve the all around quality of college athletics.

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College athletes deserve payment for competing