Getting What is Due

College athletes whose names are used to make profits for their schools should receive some portion of the profit. Universities are moneymaking entities that currently profit from free labor of their athletes. College athletes bring in millions to their schools through the selling of jerseys, hats, and other memorabilia. The players whose abilities popularize the items for sale do not get any credit for the sales. Their universities are exploiting these top-notch college athletes. Colleges offer student athletes scholarships as meager compensation for full access to all the potential profits. Moreover, NCAA players are not allowed to earn income while participating in sports. Players can not have a part time job of any kind. These NCAA regulations are completely unjustified and wrong. Therefore, athletes should have paid a percentage of the profit received from their sports.

Colleges have developed a cartel. A cartel is a business agreement to level the playing field. In this case, the field is talent in athletes. The agreement states that colleges and universities can not offer players anything more than scholarships and tuition benefits. From a business aspect, this is an intentional lowering of labor wages. If a business tried to do this they would wind up in court, but colleges get away with it. Colleges use this agreement to make profits off the players they have acquired for free, or essentially free. Once the players are on the team, merchandise can be sold with all profits going directly to the school. The profits instead go to the coaching staff and other personal. For example in 1997 the head football coach, Steve Spurrier, for Florida University made 1.1 million dollars, money his players earned, but he received unfairly.

On top of being exploited, players are not allowed to hold part time jobs. Athletes have to dig in the couch for enough change for a slice of pizza. This regulation has recently been eliminated, but it still illustrates the unfairness the NCAA imposes on its athletes. Along with jerseys representing athletes, coaches make shoe contracts restricting the players choice of shoes. For example all the Kentucky Wildcats basketball players have to wear Nike shoes. The Kentucky coach signed the shoe deal and he receives the check from Nike. He is not forced to wear Nike shoes; His players have to wear them, but they do not receive an endorsement.

Do college athletes really deserve to be paid? After all they receive a free college education. Sports are not cheap. Universities and colleges pay for traveling expenses associated with away games. Without the schools support, students would have to pay for rooms at hotels, gas for the buses or planes, and food as well as other expenses. These expenses are a part of sports in general and student athletes should not have to pay those expenses. High school athletes do not have to pay for traveling expenses so it is unrealistic to expect that of college athletes. Ticket sales and television air time deals more than make up for the costs of travel.

Many people believe that athletes should be happy with what they have. They receive a free education worth thousands and they get to do something they love. Jocks do not deserve all this special treatment because they do not value the education they are obtaining. Well, the NCAA offers rewards to athletes who perform well in the classroom. Most athletes work hard at their areas of study. Athletes are under appreciated and exploited. Most are considered to be just dumb jocks. Most jocks work hard in the classroom, as well as in the sporting arenas. They deserve some compensation for the money they help bring in.

College athletes should receive some profit if their names are used to generate funds for the schools that they play for. The business of college sports is a money-producing machine that can afford to help out the athletes that make the machine run. Without the athletes, the universities and colleges would not make the millions they produce currently. Sure, athletes receive free college education, but this is a small price to pay compared to the large profits that are to be made by player name exploitation. Universities and colleges should share the wealth. Give the athletes who earn the dollars some of those dollars.