By GREG MINOR, Student Writer
Over the years the comments have arisen about student athletes being paid. Receiving a scholarship to play the sport you love is an honor. Students sometimes say, it isn’t fair that athletes get money to go to school, that’s more than what anyone else gets. We as athletes don’t necessarily receive money, we receive scholarship money that go towards our schooling. Being a Student-Athlete is tough, it’s not just putting a ball in the basket, running from one side of the field to the other or hitting home runs. This lifestyle is a full time job. Waking up every morning for conditioning at 6am, shower, go to classes, then weights and still have to manage your GPA so that you stay eligible, so that you can play is tough business. It takes a special type of person to manage that. In my opinion with all the hard work, managing school, traveling and putting your university on the map by winning games student athletes should get paid. We are constantly viewed as role models, as the groups of people that set a positive tone on campus and within the communities.
Scholarships don’t equal to cash in pocket and that’s with any scholarship. At the end of the day after all the hard work in the off seasons, pre-season and actual season college athletes are typically broke. Athletes are the face and symbols of programs that bring in hundreds of thousands of dollars through athletics each year from ticket sales, donations, media rights, advertising, and anything sold with a price tag.
The question as to why the best players of teams or the highly recruited players out of high school leave to go professional is because of the money. The “one and done” players go pro to support their family and loved ones. The most recent one and done player Ben Simmons out of LSU stated “Everybody’s making money except the players” on ESPN. Dealing with young talented athletes in college, paying them would decrease some of the rush to chase contracts and go professional but will also allow them to continue their pursuit towards their degree.
Dropping out of school at 19 years old and being giving a $3 million salary, most aren’t going to save it and manage their money. There has been several cases, where these elite athletes have made millions of dollars and are now filing for bankruptcy. With students being paid and not only finishing school they’d also learn how to manage their money more wisely before going out into the real world.