Should College Athletes Get Paid?

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Should college athletes get paid? This question has been on the table for discussion, ever since intercollegiate athletics became mainstream in American culture during the late 19th century. However, the possible routes to the answer have been shut down because the pioneers of intercollegiate athletics described a college athlete an “amateur” and “amateurs play for the love of the game” (Smith 10). Intercollegiate athletics were not as serious these days; education was the number priority of institutions and sports came as a supplement. Institutions were responsible for providing the “free education” to prepare students for the future. Well, gone are those days when education is the number one priority of big-time institutions. In fact,…show more content…
Despite all the effort an athlete contributes to the team, at the end of the season the athlete will be fired and their scholarship is gone. Sometimes situations force athletes from poor backgrounds to resort to corruption, in order to support their families. Athletes who never make it to the pros, due to injury or lack of talent, find it difficult to get a job after college because they never took courses that prepared them, or they never acquired a legitimate education. Since the creation of the NCAA in 1905 by President Theodore Roosevelt, the NCAA has been hidden under the shadow of amateurism in order for them to implement their monopolistic practices (Werner). The NCAA definition of an amateur, which never existed in American intercollegiate sports due to its professionalized and commercialized nature, was placed in the NCAA’s constitution and bylaws in 1916: “An amateur athlete is one who participates in competitive physical sports only for the pleasure, and the physical, mental, moral, and the social benefits derived therefrom” (Smith 61). How ironic can this definition get when the NCAA allows its member institutions to commercialize and professionalize college athletics. If pure amateurism is their goal, then why allow member institutions to compete with professionals by building humongous stadiums that will attract huge number of spectators even with high ticket prices? Why allow

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