Responding to the ridicule of teachers and the teaching profession by politicians and self proclaimed "experts"!
"Where is Albert Shanker now that we need him?" - Walt Sautter

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Paid College Athletes - But Who's Paying??

The current controversy is now whether college athletes should be paid. The NCAA of course opposes this while many others laud it’s coming to pass.
Now I think we need an objective look at the situation. A starting point might be the question as to why colleges and universities need or even should have “big time” athletics.  A second question might be – what purpose do athletics serve at colleges and universities and what purpose should they serve?
A constant cry from those supporting “big time” college athletics is that they bring revenue to the school primarily from bowl games and the alumni. Does the amount of revenue received exceed the expenditures? Well in some cases yes and in many other cases no!
If the revenues received are so vast then shouldn’t the tuition rates at “big time” sports institutions be exceedingly low because of the dollars flowing into them via the sports programs? Looking   at the chart below, I noticed that Penn State for example receives millions of dollars from their sports programs yet the in-state tuition is one of the highest in the nation? The same seems to be true at other institutions with high caliber sports programs.
Let’s pretend that rules are instituted that call for the paying of college athletes- who will do the paying? Will it be the NCAA? I doubt it since this could severely impact the lucrative salaries of its executives
Will it be the NFL or NBA?  They have had the advantage of no cost “farm teams” at the expense of college and university students for decades. I am sure they would sorely object to begin paying for these programs. They never have and I don’t think they would be about to start!
Well, then whose left? It looks like tuition paying students and state taxpayers.
Getting back to the actual purpose of college sports, I always thought that it was a mechanism to allow young people to participate and learn the lessons of competition and healthful exercise during their college years. Instead the purpose at many institutions has become the grooming of players (most notably in football and basketball) for professional sports careers (or at least for an attempt at a professional sports career).
In conclusion I believe the only way to justifiably begin to pay college athletes is to require the NFL and the NBA to sponsor the “big time” teams and contribute to the programs as they should have been doing all along!  Adding to this logic is the fact that not only are these organizations getting free “farm teams” from the tuition and fee costs of college students they are also registered as “non profits” which gives them a significant tax break on top of it. Allowing college athletes to be paid without the aforementioned changes to the system would just be another scam foisted on the public.
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According to the College Board, the average cost of tuition and fees for the 2013-2014 school year was $30,094 at private colleges, $8,893 for state residents at public colleges, and $22,203 for out-of-state residents attending public universities.

Many of these school list large financial aid packages but – “Financial aid packages typically consist of several components that make up the entire financial aid award. Often, the financial aid package will include components with obligations, such as repayment, that the student and/or student’s family will need to fulfill. Understanding these individual components will help you understand which financial aid package (if you are comparing multiple options) provides the best benefit for you. The most common types of financial aid are grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study. Certain states also offer their own particular financial aid programs.”

 Some “big time” college tuitions – out of state / in state 
(* higher in state tuition than average) p= private

Boston College  $43,878 p
Duke University $43,623 p
University of Notre Dame $42,971 p
Stanford University   $42,225 p
University of Miami        $41,220 p
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor $40,392/ $12,994 *
St. John's University - New York $36,450 p
UCLA     $35,570/ $12,692 *
Syracuse University        $36,300 p
Boston College  $43,878 p
Duke University                $43,623 p
Clemson University         $30,004/ $13,076 *
Penn State          $28,746/ $16,444 *
Indiana University - Bloomington              $31,483/ $10,033 *
University of Georgia     $28,052/ $9842 *
UConn - Stamford           $27,190/ $9358 *
University of Iowa           $26,279/ $8057
University of South Carolina $27,644/ $10,488 *




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