I would like to begin by saying I really appreciate what you are doing with the NCAA and how the viewership has enlarged greatly in the last decade. You have done a great job at publicizing the athletics. but we both can agree that there is a huge problem concerning the issue that is being discussed right now of Should Collegiate Athletes be Paid? You know, as well as anyone, athletes at this point in time cannot be paid in any form relating to their athletic abilities.
One of the key ideas that will be present is what is an amateur? An amateur is someone who is working without any pay. Amateurs is what is the one word that keeps you and the NCAA away from paying athletes. Although paying college athletes may result in schools having to field less athletic teams to pay athletes, there are alternatives like instead of giving each player a salary, the schools are able to give students cash incentives for their accomplishments in their sport. Also athletes should be able to make profits for their jersey sales and publicity because their publicity is helping the viewership of the NCAA as a whole because if a kid at a young age sees this really good basketball player they will watch him. So, although collegiate athletes are considered amateurs through the NCAA, they should be able to be paid because they are made into a product and use so much time throughout their season to excel in their sport.
I, one of the 8.6 million people who watched March Madness, it amazes me how much money you made off of signing a 10.8 billion dollar contract with CBS sports, but none of that money comes back to the athletes(Tracy). It seems immoral to have a multi-billion dollar product that does not give to the students, or product, who have done all of this hard work to get shut down. That does not even cover how much money you make off of ticket sales during the tournament. The NCAA makes roughly 900 million from March Madness, which makes up about 90% of its annual revenue. 220 million of that is divided to the 68 teams conferences which make the tournament. If the team only plays one game the conference makes 1.7 million dollars over the next six years, and if the team makes it to the final game, the conference makes 8.3 million (Parker). This is a lot of money that goes to the colleges, but that questions why cant any of that money come back to the players? So, for example, if the Big 12 sent five teams to the NCAA tournament they could be making 8.5 million dollars over the next six years, which none of that comes back to the students. Of May 2012 the total between basketball and football television rights conferences have big dollar television contracts. Like the Pac 12 who has a 3 billion dollar, 12 year deal with ESPN and FOX(Santa Clara University). Which it keeps building up how much money the Big 5 conferences have in there system. The Bahy-Dole Act of 1980 requires that students receive a share of royalties for their inventions, which questions why cant athletes be compensated for their royalties if they are the ones making billions of dollars for the conferences and the NCAA(Santa Clara University)
I think the more you compensate athletes it will help the success of your product. You are keeping all of this money away from athletes and just recently the G-League started a one and done deal with athletes, where if they were going to be a one and done athlete they could play in the G-League and be making up to 125 thousand dollars over the course of the year(Boone). This is bad for the product you are presenting because of how many viewers you get from some of the best athletes in the world, you may lose them. For example, if the players on the Duke Basketball team, for example Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett, decided to compete in the G-League then it will take away thousands of viewers wanting to watch Duke. Itr’s funny to me you say that paying the athletes will take away from other athletic teams, but because of that you will be losing some of the greatest athletes in the world. Whenever I watch a collegiate sport I see some of the athletes and how hard they compete just because that is who they are as a person, but you could get all athletes to compete like that if they are competing for incentives. It would be a whole different sport where you would be getting games that would be fun to see for the viewer. It would get more viewers for the collegiate sports and more money for the NCAA.
As a student-athlete I understand what you are trying to protect these students from because they are amateurs, but in my mind they are far from amateurs. I see all of these athletes being publicized, which was my dream at a young age. Now looking at it they get so much criticism for being athletes and have to go through that without being compensated in any ways. They are being branded by sports networks, but they dont get to be compensated for their actions. For example you see Zion Williamson on Sportscenter’s top plays every other day because of another dunk he did, but he is known for being super athletic but he gets publicised without being paid. This is immoral in a sense because of how hard the student-athletes work, but dont get paid.
There is no doubt that athletes are not professionals, but they make money for the college and increase the colleger’s publicities based on their athletic abilities. As said above amateurs are your leading reason why college athletes arent getting paid. Although these athletes excel in their sport and some of them are most likely going to be making money playing their sport, but their are athletes within the sport that use so much time that are not quite fortunate enough to make it into a draft, but they spent so much time preparing and could not make any money off of that. That is like working a job 20 hours a week and only getting paid for living expenses like food and housing. It only makes sense if you can give them something to work for.
Another reason that paying college athletes could be troubling is that the colleges may have to start fielding less athletic teams, but I see advancements that are being made throughout time that could lead to endorsements being added for the athletes. Just after the O Bannon v. NCAA case there was one point that stuck with me which was OBannon seeing himself in a video game, but he does not get paid for being publicised in the video game. He was astonished by how he paid for the video game, but did not get paid for being in it. And fifteen years later they are still making money off of his image(PBS News Hour). It doesnt seem fair to all of the athletes who are being made into a product where they dont make a profit.
We need to start by giving players the opportunities for incentives that the school would earn in the first place. For example they should be able to be compensated for achievements they would make during the season from making it to an NCAA tournament or being awarded all-conference first team. Not only would this keep athletes in the NCAA because they would be getting compensated for what they are doing, but it will not affect the problem of having to eliminate other collegiate teams because the colleges are already being compensated for their athletic abilities, why not give a small portion of that to the athletes who are the reason that the school is making all of this money. Just by the school making the NCAA tournament they earn their own conference a projected 1.67 million even if the team does not even win a single game, while a round of 16 appearance is up to 5 million, and a final four experience earns the team 8.3 million for the conference, so it seems feasible for the team to be able to be compensated for their performance (Hobson). Because you have so much power on this topic in this topic of issue you can be the person to spark change. This is what you will be remembered by, how you were the one to save athletes from not being able to be compensated for their hard work for the school.
After you allow collegiate athletes to be compensated for their achievements in their sport you can then you and the NCAA can begin to think about whether you would like to actually give the athletes a salary where they are able to get paid on a consistent basis, which I think will be something that should be happening in the far future where athletes can work for an actual salary. This will be a very hard thing to control, so thatr’s why the NCAA should not allow this kind of payment until later in the future because of how big of a change that would be for the NCAA. But once there is enough money within the schools that they can start compensating athletes that they can do it for all of the athletic teams then you can keep students away from going to having professional contracts like the G-League for the NCAA started doing just recently. You can start publicising and help the viewership of college athletes.
Thank you for taking your time to read my letter on my reasoning why you should start to pay collegiate athletes. I hope you will take a stance on the issue, and I would love a response if you could get back to me as soon as you can.
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