The Dilemma to Pay College Athletes
The United States is the only country in the world that hosts big-time sports at institutions of higher learning. This should not, in and of itself, be controversial. What has become debatable is whether college athletes of high revenue-producing sports deserve to receive compensation for being the basis of a billion dollar business. In other words, do certain college athletes deserve to be paid to play? Although this may seem like a good idea to some, it ignores already existing compensations to players as well as other dilemmas that would arise if players were to be paid. Despite the amount of money universities generate because of their student athletes, pay for play would be wrong. This debate begins with the depiction of universities making large profits as a result of student athletes. Arguments to pay college athletes often develop due to perceptions of greed and exploitation relating to athletic departments. According to various reports, the football teams at Texas, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, and Penn State, just to name a few big-revenue football schools, each earn between $40 million and $80 million a year in profits (Branch). In an article by Forbes.com columnist, Patrick Rishe, he claims, “The reason why schools are chasing the money associated with college football is so they can better finance the rest of their athletic programs. Programs where – in most cases – all but 2 or 3 sports are losing money” (Rishe). He goes on to explain that the pursuit of profit from football and basketball programs, specifically, help support other programs that operate with a deficit. An example of this is a women’s basketball program in 2010 operating with a deficit of $-1,168,000 while the men’s basketball team had a profit of $788,000 (Rishe). The issue with universities paying athletes to play is that the focus is entirely on what the players are doing for the universities, generating revenue. What seems to be forgotten is...
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