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College athletes don’t deserve to be paid

Imagine being a college athlete and getting a free college education, free housing, free food, and free travel in addition to many other  perks.

With all of this in mind, there is still debate on paying college athletes.

Several scandals have shaken the college sports world and college athletes are being suspended at a higher rate than ever before for being paid while still an amateur. Thus, the NCAA has more support for college athletes to be paid compared to any other time in history.

The average college graduate will leave school $22,900 in debt according to the Wall Street Journal. When did a full or partial scholarship become not enough to satisfy athletes?

College athletes that wish to be paid need to suck it up and join the rest of the student world. No non-athlete student is going to throw an athlete a pity party for not being paid in college for running a 40-yard dash in 4.4 seconds or being a 3-point shooting specialist.

Regular students are struggling to pay high tuition prices and high interest rates on their student loans, giving me zero sympathy towards an athlete who is not getting paid.

The University of Miami has serious charges against its football program for its actions in the past decade, and how important is its football team? The U.S. Department of Education’s Equity in Athletics reported Miami’s football team raked in about $6.2 million in profits in 2008, 50th among college football programs.

Remember all of the success of TCU before they decided to leave the MWC for the Big East? Although it went 11-2 in 2008, the program only made enough money to break even.

Football is a major moneymaker for some colleges, but most of the top teams in the country are barely bringing in profits, let alone enough money to be paying players.

If some football programs aren’t bringing in the big bucks, how can a school justify paying its quarterback and leaving its star softball player out to dry?

Football is the primary sport that has been under investigation from the NCAA for amateurs accepting money and gifts, but gaining the most support for athletes to be paid. One sport shouldn’t be given precedent over all of the others.

Another major part of football that is overlooked is players getting free gifts for making it to a bowl game. The Chick-fil-A Bowl in 2009 gave players a $250 Best Buy gift card, a Fossil watch, a Russell Athletic travel bag, a souvenir football and knit cap, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. It must be a nice surprise for a backup tight end that has yet to enter a game.

If a college athlete is an elite player, he or she will earn a living in the professional ranks anyway. Why do we have to pay them now?

An idea brought to the NCAA by Air Force football coach Troy Calhoun was to pay a $2,000 stipend after an athlete graduates. But why are we rewarding college athletes to graduate when every student is working for the same goal without a stipend?

I’m against paying college athletes. Remember the NCAA commercial that said 99 percent of athletes turn pro in something other than sports? Now the NCAA can show that it supports all of its college athletes, not just the one percent.

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The Scout is published by members of the student body of Bradley University. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the University.