Intercollegiate Athletics

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Research Paper

Intercollegiate athletics is an excellent public relations and fund raising arm for colleges, while providing education and training to future professional athletes.

Academic programs have always criticized college athletic programs. There are five main reasons or accusations as many will call it. First it is said that all major and some smaller colleges routinely lower the admission standards for athletes because of the exposure that they bring to the university. The Ivy League, for example, have on average some of the lowest SAT scores than what are recorded at many other prestigious schools. Many schools will admit that they do allow and recruit athletes with scores of 820 points, which is almost 200 points below the national average. Amazingly enough and a reason for these accusations is because it is much lower than the standards for non-athletic students. Some schools often reserve certain spots just for in coming scholarship athletes. Second, athletes often get far better treatment than academic students. Most schools will immediately enroll their lower scoring athletic students into tutorial programs to ensure that they meet the minimum standards without affecting the time they must spend on their sport. Third, many dollars are spent on athletic programs when compared to academic programs. The salaries of college coachers are now easily at $1 million a year or more at some of the more powerful, prestigious schools. Some colleges will raise more money for a new stadium to build a dynasty rather than educational equipment or libraries to build their graduation rates and test scores. Fourth, college to most athletes is a short trip and pre-requisite for the big money to come from professional contracts worth millions of dollars. College is only used to increase their status in the draft and the amount of money they can make. Lastly, elite athletic programs prohibit and discourage regular students to participate, not to mention allows fewer opportunities and intimidates the students who are interested in playing college sports. (1)

Many who support the current athletic systems and standards will tell you that not only do winning teams increase alumni support not only for athletics but also for academics alike, to increase the financial standings of some colleges it has been shown that by adding additional athletic programs was the most beneficial. Athletics are also a good example of public relations. If you were to talk to a graduating high school student and ask him if he would rather go to the school that has the highest GPA, or the school that Michael Jordan led to a NCAA Championship, they have been found to choose the school that they recognize the famous name. (1)

Which can lead us into the next and one of the most important and influential arguments of this topic. “Intercollegiate athletics provide millions of people—athletes, undergraduates, alumni and the general public—with great pleasure, the spectacle of extraordinary effort and physical grace, the excitement of an outcome in doubt, and a shared unifying experience. Thousands of men and women in the United States are stronger adults because of the challenges they mastered as young athletes.” (2)

For example, millions if not billions of dollars are lost during the NCAA Final Four tournament each year. Time is lost to office and other gambling by colleagues and friends trying to guess which team will move on after each contest. Not to mention the money that people spend on clothing and other souveneirs to promote and support their team. Now think of the money that people will spend each year to watch their team in the tournament. All money that will be beneficial not only to the athletic programs but to the academic programs as well. When was the last time a Math contest filled a thirty-thousand seat stadium at an average of $15 per ticket?

Why is it that intercollegiate athletes, should not be compensated for the...
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