The Pay for Play Analysis

By Darrell Puckett

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Every morning I wake up and go to work expecting for a pay check on Friday, but the controversy surrounding college athletics is if they should get paid for their efforts. I have composed two different perspectives about payment of college athletes that will challenge the individual thought process. Each one gives certain aspects according to my own opinion, and comments are encouraged.

The first perspective involves the reality of being an outstanding high school athlete and being recruited for your abilities on a field. All college’s have a certain number of scholarships to give each recruiting season, so with that being said, they are paying for that person’s college tuition. Using football as the example in college, there’s only so much an institution is supposed to provide. Full tuition should meet those expectations, but college athletes think they’re entitled to more.

Why take extra benefits that other teammates aren’t taking? It’s not fair or logical, and other kids are happy with a free education, so why can’t that player be content? Unfair benefits can bring NCAA sanctions to a college and possibly danger the programs reputation. If a person accepts the scholarship, then they should know everything that’s guaranteed. Read the fine print before committing and signing.

Expecting more than what’s guaranteed is foolish and irresponsible for these highly coveted high school athletes. It’s hard to show sympathy towards an athlete when his schooling, food and board is being paid for. It’s time for these unappreciative athletes to grow up and realize how great their opportunity is.

The second perspective describes the difficulty of college life. For every student athlete the life of managing studies and sports can be difficult, so why is it a big deal to have extra help? Why not accept certain cash benefits to help out with that little extra bit that the college doesn’t supply? It’s hard to argue with certain athletes that perform well on the field about accepting some side help, but there’s still a problem with it. The problem originates from what’s fair or not.

The average time spent on the football practice field totals 43 hours a week, which is more than most people work per week. Playing sports is equivalent to working a full-time job. Plus, add keeping a certain GPA for eligibility each and every week while you’re enrolled. The incentive for extra benefits is real and lives inside all colleges.

As a currently enrolled college student, I know that trying to fend for yourself is difficult and any help provided is much appreciated. Trying to handle any other activities beyond academics provide additional stress, but college is about learning how the world works. Figuring out how to juggle several things at one time describes exactly what the college experience is all about.

With all this stated, my personal opinion is split down the middle. I like both sides, but this article is intended to make the reader think. Compose your own thoughts and comment. There’s no correct answer. This issue has been debated for years, so don’t be discouraged by my own two perspectives.  Be encouraged to comment and display your honest opinion for the AUMnibus community to read.

Contact the writer: dpucket1@aum.edu