NCAA Division I College Male Term Paper

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" (Weatherby & Edmonds, nd) Weatherby & Edmonds (nd) One argument consistently made by individuals that are against paying student-athletes is that the student-athlete receives a free education so in effect they are receiving something for their services. But examining graduation rats of some universities does not support this statement at all. The following is a list with an accompanying chart showing the graduation rates from several universities across the United States basketball teams.

School Basketball Percentage Graduated

Stanford University 100%

UCLA 36%

University of South California 36%

University of Oregon 33%

Washington State University 33%

Arizona State University 33%

Oregon State University 23%

University of Washington 22%

University of Arizona 15%

University of California-Berkley 15% (Weatherby & Edmonds, nd)

Graduation Rates among Basketball Athlete Students

Chapter 4: Measuring Results - 4%

Weatherby & Edmonds (nd)

Source: Weatherby & Edmonds (nd)

The rates for athlete-students football players graduation rates do not look much better as the following list and accompanying chart will illustrate.

School Football Percentage Graduated

Stanford University 82%

University of Oregon 68%

University of Southern California 65%

University of Arizona 61%

UCLA 61%

University of Washington 60%

Washington State University 54%

University of California-Berkeley 49%

Arizona State University 44%

Oregon State University 35% (Weatherby & Edmonds, nd)

Graduation Rates among Football Athlete Students

Source: Weatherby & Edmonds (nd)

Examination of the foregoing statistics does not present a basis upon which to support the argument that states that college athletes receive a free education because many of them in the long run are not in actuality receiving an education. (Weatherby & Edmonds, nd; paraphrased) The Journal of the Business Law Society published an article on March 23, 2005 entitled: "Pay to Play: Should College Athletes Be Paid?" attempts an answer to this dilemma and states that: "The reality is that college sports programs, namely the "big name" programs such as football and basketball programs at marquee schools, are businesses that stand to make a large amount of money for their respective schools." (2005)

According to an article in the Harvard Journal on Legislation, "[i]n the past twelve years, the amount of money generated by these two sports has increased nearly 300%, such that they now fund almost all other sports programs. 41 Harv. J. On Legis. 319. The student-athletes who participate in these programs are part of the reason why these schools stand to make such handsome profits: through ticket sales, endorsement deals, broadcasting deals, and jersey sales (although player names cannot be represented on jerseys), among other things." (The Journal of the Business Law Society, 2005)

Again the arguments arise that student athletes are receiving scholarships however this journal article states that the truth is that "full scholarships do not always entirely cover tuition and the cost of living. However, these students can still do what a majority of students do, which is to get loans. Still some of these student-athletes do not qualify for such loans, so there is still a gap between the money they get and the total cost of attendance. This gap, coupled with the fact that football and basketball players help generate so much revenue, has caused some intercollegiate teams to provide their athletes with extra compensation, which is in direct violation of NCAA bylaws. 41 Harv. J. On Legis. 319. " (Ibid) However, there are substantial arguments existing against paying student-athletes which of course include the Title IX issue which would cause all kinds of complications specifically if male athletes were paid more than female athletes. Other arguments pointed out by The Journal of the Business Law Society (2005) are the "significant gap in talent" that would result between the rich and poor schools as well as the lessening of competition which would effectively lessen the attendance at games and the resulting revenue as well.

The main problem states The Journal of the Business Law Society is "that it is not the college's primary function. The primary function of academic institutions is to educate, and not to hire student-athletes for their contributions." (2005) Stated as well is the inequity it would cause in the long-run for the athletes themselves as they were unduly influenced for a college and against another due to financial matters. The journal article does relate that even though there are strong arguments against paying student-athletes still "there are certain problems with the current NCAA system which can and should be cured. The gap between a full scholarship and the cost of attendance should be covered by the academic institution, especially when the student athlete does not qualify for a loan." (Ibid) This would ensure that students don't leave college with an unfinished education to play professional sports. (The Journal of the Business Law Society, 2005)

USA Today Sports in the article entitled: "Pros, Cons on Pay for Play" states the following points as to "Why Pay for Play is Good" Players are entitled to some compensation because of the revenue they bring in and the risk of injury they face.

Athletes from poor backgrounds cannot rely on their families for money, and because of the demand of the sport, they have no time for jobs.

The money that football and men's basketball programs make should go back to those athletes rather than pay for the other sports at school.

Paying athletes might help stem the tide of those going pro-early.

Paying athletes could curb abuses such as players taking money from boosters or agents. (USA Today Sports, 2004)

Listed under 'what they say' is "They are unpaid workers, and in big-time college athletics, not just football, there are no amateurs. Whenever you get something of value for performing athletically, you're a professional. They call it a scholarship, fees, books, tuition and so forth. What I want is the athlete to have some spendable money." (Nebraska, Senator Ernie Chambers, a longtime supporter of providing stipends to college athletes, who submitted a bill 2003 that would allow football players at Nebraska to be paid a stipend)

Sometimes it just doesn't seem fair. I'm at the No. 1 football school in the country right now, and I'm struggling to get groceries every month." (Oklahoma center Vince Carter before his football played LSU in the BCS national championship) (USA Today Sports, 2004)

Listed as reasons why pay for play won't work are those as follows:

Paying only men's basketball and football players would be challenged in court. Title IX suits would be filed because female athletes wouldn't get similar funds.

Where would the money come from? Most athletic departments do not make a profit.

Non-revenue sports would have to be cut because there wouldn't be sufficient funds.(USA Today Sports, 2004)

The work entitled: "Despite NCAA Concessions, Pay for Play is Wrong Way" states that college football "is not a minor league for the NFL, and it's not a place for athletes to make money playing a game. College football is passion and pageantry and everything the NFL is not." Stated further is that while the athletic budget for the University of Florida is $44 million for the 2000-2001-year there will only be a surplus of $400,000 and the majority of that will be used for "repaving the track." (Hayes, The Sporting News, 2001)




It is the opinion of this researcher that college student-athletes should receive pay or at the very least some type of compensation for the time expended in practicing, training, and playing college sports. The reason this is believed is because of the gap that exist in scholarships and the actual costs of attending college and the fact that there is not time whatsoever available in the schedule of these students to work even part-time and most colleges do not allow their student-athletes to work due to the conflict that is incurred insofar as practice, training and game schedules.


It is the belief of the research that substantial evidence has been offered as proof that the college student-athlete deserves compensation of some form for the time expended related to playing college sports on the part of the student-athlete.


The researcher holds that future studies in this area are critical if a reasonable and satisfactory method of compensating college student-athletes is to be established.


Cody, Jason (1997) Getting Paid To Play - Cyburr Online Available at http://Burr.Kent.Edu/Archives/1997/Fall/Ncaa.html

Recent Developments Payment For College Football Players In Nebraska (2002) Online available at http://Www.Law.Harvard.Edu/Students/Orgs/Jol/Vol41_1/Skidmore.Php

Lopiano, Donna (2004)Football Doesn't Need Title IX Protection Wed" Online available at; Http://Www.Womensportsfoundation.Org/Cgi-Bin/Iowa/Issues/Rights/Article.Html?Record=131

Pay To Play: Should College Athletes Be Paid? (2005) The Journal Of The Business Law Society Online Available at http://Iblsjournal.Typepad.Com/Illinois_Business_Law_Soc/2005/03/Does_It_ Make_Se.html

Pros, Cons On Pay For Play (2004) USA Today Sports Online available at http://Www.Usatoday.Com/Sports/2004-08-31-Pros-Cons-Pay_X.htm

Hayes, Matt (2001) Despite NCAA Concessions -Pay For Play Is Wrong Way - The Sporting News. May 14, 2001. Online Available at http://Www.Findarticles.Com/P/Articles/Mi_M1208/Is_20_225/Ai_74800763[continue]

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