Major College Athletics Is Filthy In Case You Have Been Living Under A Rock
The feds? Major college athletics? That is where we are now.
An FBI investigation has resulted in the arrests of four assistant basketball coaches from Auburn, Oklahoma State, Arizona and Southern California. They have been charged with accepting money from an agent to give to a recruit. In return the coach would guide the player back to the agent when the player turned pro.
In addition, the FBI’s complaint detailed the payment of up to $100,000 from the athletic apparel company, Adidas, to recruits on behalf of schools. Though not named in the FBI’s report, it’s apparent that the two schools are Louisville and Miami.
As a result, Louisville’s interim president Greg Postel announced that Louisville coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich had been both placed on administrative leave. Pitino is expected to be fired.
College coaches, agents and sneaker companies are willing to offer big bucks to prospective recruits. Sounds like the realities of major college athletics. You know what would resolve this? Paying college athletes. When delving deeper, it’s a travesty (read crime) they aren’t paid.
Marc Edelman, Associate Professor of Law at the City University of New York‘s Baruch College, Zicklin School of Business has done just that.
Major College Athletics Needs To Pay Its Players
The typical Division I college football player devotes 43.3 hours per week to his sport — 3.3 more hours than the typical American work week. Student athletes? You still believe that? The annual NCAA men’s basketball tournament, when including conference tournaments, causes student athletes to miss up to a quarter of the classes in the spring semester.
The NCAA currently produces nearly $11 Billion in annual revenue from college sports — more than the estimated total league revenues of both the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League. When the NCAA was founded in 1905, the reason why athletes weren’t paid was the same reason why coaches didn’t get paid. Coaches get paid now though.
The average salary for a BCS eligible football coach was $2.05 million. The average salary for a premier NCAA Division I men’s basketball coach also exceeded $1 Million. In 40 of the 50 U.S. states, the highest paid public official is currently the head coach of a state university’s football or men’s basketball team.
Success in major college athletics is also believed to improve the application rates and caliber of admitted students at certain universities. The year Doug Flutie won the Heisman Trophy as the nation’s outstanding college football player, Boston College’s undergraduate admissions increased by 25 points and its average SAT score of admitted freshmen went up 110 points. Patrick Ewing’s basketball performance during the 1982-83 NCAA season helped generate a 47% increase in undergraduate applications and a forty-point rise in freshman SAT scores during the following admissions cycle at Georgetown.
Major college athletics, especially Division I men’s and women’s basketball players, are core members to their university’s marketing team, as well as the labor force behind a lucrative secondary industry in hosting organized sporting events. The argument against paying them is specious at best and nonexistent at worst.