The Supreme Court of the United States unanimously voted, that incremental increases in how college athletes can be compensated could deal a much more significant blow to the NCAA’s current business model.
Now we know why despite the yelling from fans, schools and networks that the college football playoff is looking squarely and not only adding four more teams for an eightteam playoff, but went ahead and proposed a 12-team tournament.
Could that be any more transparent on the part of the NCAA? They’re still trying to line their pockets and pushing this playoff increase is only to keep their pockets lined.
Athletes have shouldered the burden of building multi-million dollar, programs at universities across the country and the NCAA has profited through the roof. Now with the basic complaint by the athletes being backed by the Supreme Court, the NCAA and the universities will have to address everything from increasing stipends to the actual crux of the matter which is “name and likeness” payments.
The NCAA has long profited off of video games, sales of jerseys and other team paraphernalia, along with the universities themselves, and now they will have to compensate the athletes for using their names and likeness.
As fans, when you purchase a jersey from the college store which has the number and name of an athlete for, let’s say, $79, none of that money heads to your favorite quarterback or linebacker. It all heads to the school and the NCAA.
Basically, the Supreme Court has ruled that’s illegal and the athletes must be compensated. The decision allows schools to provide their athletes with unlimited compensation as long as it is some way connected to their education.
The schools and NCAA can’t hide behind “we are providing them with an education” any longer. Now schools must figure out how to make this something that not only works inside their school, but across the country.
So besides the greed of the NCAA over the last century, more importantly the last 30 years, now the spoils can be divided, but it comes with a cost.
If anyone thinks Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State or any of the bigger schools are going to run into trouble, forget it. Those schools will flourish as they have the deep pockets to keep players in the fold. If you think the Crimson Tide won’t continue to get the cream of the crop, you’re wrong.
My concern is the third best diver on the swim team. I can’t see him or her getting a boost from a car dealership, nor do I see the women’s volleyball team showing up on an American Express commercial.
The “haves” will continue to “have” and the “nots” will continue to be the “nots,” but the most important thing is that fat, bloated old men won’t be pocketing money off 19 and 20-year-old athletes.
I have long been against athletes being paid, but as time changes, so do my beliefs and concerns over how things are run. I do believe we make our country weaker by paying people more to not work than to have gainful employment and I also think our government has put a system in place now that means honestly, hard-working people are almost penalized for their efforts.
I think the efforts of the athletes, in all sports, should share in the wealth and profits they create and the NCAA will have to just live with the fact that they have to compensate those that produce. Maybe the Supreme Court’s ruling will also show the way for our federal government to find a way to reward those who produce and not keep shoving money into pockets like those of the NCAA.
If you see me say, “Hey!”
Dee McLelland is Publisher of the Coastal Courier and the Bryan County News.