College Athletes: Paid to Play?

Athletes who continue their career in college normally are considered to be some of the luckiest athletes in the world. Most of the time college athletes are on full scholarships that cover everything; they are in a great position to make a name for themselves in the collegiate level and get themselves ready for the pros. However, there is a lot of concern with how college athletes are being treated, and many students, coaches, team owners and members of the NCAA (National College Athletic Association) are demanding improvement. What they are asking for? They are asking to see athletes get compensated for their skills used on the field or court.

Many people believe college athletes need to be paid because they are being taken advantage of by the NCAA. The schools are making an enormous amount of money off of these athletes and their talents, although, in the NCAA, the athletes don’t get cut from the team like in the pros. College teams may not have the same amount of talent as professional teams, but they both have lots of faithful fans to cheer them on. Thousands of dollars are made off of team merchandise, continually due to team performances as well as revenue being brought in through food and ticket sales during the season; however, despite being one of the main reasons why the events are gaining more and more revenue, the players don’t receive a dime. A lot of athletes are feeling mistreated because they don’t get paid for doing their job. Why should others keep benefiting from their performance while they get nothing in return?

College sports would be nothing without these athletes. It’s not fair that the players are putting in all the blood, sweat, and tears into the program, but are not receiving any of the profits that are made off of them. Merchandise is sold with popular players’ numbers on the item and these players never send any of the profits to the player. Student athletes should be able to receive a percentage of the money raised and be able to pursue business deals and endorsement opportunities. Many college athletes are stopped from reaching those types of deals by their school, even though there’s nothing in the rules that should stop it. College athletes involved in sports that bring in millions of dollars, like football and men’s basketball, should be treated like employees. They exchange all their hard work for a form of payment, which is usually a scholarship, just like the employees who exchange their hard work for an hourly wage and benefits.

Students on full scholarships have different details in their contract that give them some sort of payment other than money. The students are getting paid in forms of flights home and other similar benefits. Even with a scholarship, athletes still don’t have enough money to pay for other expenses. They don’t get to have a job to earn extra money. A full-cost scholarship will be like paying them for their play. Students on full scholarships get payments from the school, but it’s mainly for basic school necessities. Most players aren’t on a full scholarship. Some student athletes run out of money even before buying their food, and after they buy food they don’t have enough money to get around or to pay bills. Students are struggling to make money to the point they need to sell their possessions to get enough money. Student athletes don’t have enough to buy things they want, so they have to preserve their money for things they need in order to have enough money to make it through college.

College athletes deserve to be compensated for the money profited from merchandise they advertise in games. Athletes should also be allowed to pursue their own financial gains with the merchandise that has their name on it. As athletes, they work hard on the field every day to bring in new fans and wins for their school. It’s only fair that they are paid for their play, at least in some small way.

Jaeden Arder, Staff Writer

Senior Jaeden Arder has a wide variety of interests, including spending time with friends and playing basketball. While he doesn’t participate in any clubs, he’s a frequent sports spectator and movie connoisseur.

Author: thecolonel306

The Colonel is Ledyard High School's award-winning news magazine, serving as the student voice of LHS for almost 50 years.

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