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Letter to the editor: NCAA rules separate student-athletes from normal students

Cody Cousino / Multimedia editor

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Letter to the editor:

College sports are a multi-billion dollar business, and the NCAA prevents college athletes from benefitting from more than a scholarship. This is not to say that scholarships do not provide enough for athletes, but that if other opportunities should arise, then athletes should be able to pursue those chances. I’m not advocating that colleges should pay athletes, but I do not believe it is fair for the NCAA to restrict a student-athlete from receiving compensation from sources outside of school when other students are allowed to pursue outside opportunities. Being in the thick of March Madness, players can become heroes, like Aaron Craft hitting the winning shot versus Iowa State to advance to the Sweet 16, or Tyrone Garland from La Salle University making a game-winning shot against Ole Miss to continue its season. With this recent success, why shouldn’t these athletes be allowed to be paid for an autograph session or to accept lunch from a fellow student? March Madness is a money-maker. In 2012, about 75 percent of the $860 million revenue for the NCAA was from basketball tournament multimedia right agreement. The schools participating in the tournaments also make money, but the athletes receive nothing. The NCAA says that student-athletes should be treated like any other student on campus, with student-athletes just happening to be athletes as well. Athletes have restrictions that other students do not, e.g., a music student could create a CD and sell it, while athletes cannot receive this sort of payment. So in reality, student-athletes are not just like other students. The idea of amateurism does nothing for the athlete or for the educational process. The NCAA has seen a struggle in recent years and is in need of a change.

Phillip Williams
Fourth-year sport industry
williams.3587@.osu.edu 

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