Should college athletes get paid?

Adam Orozco, Writer ; Photographer

As we’ve seen in the sports news and many media outlets lately, a major problem in college sports, mostly NCAA basketball and football, has been the NCAA corruption and violations cases involving top programs and players in Division 1 programs. With the constant investigations and what seems to be a never-ending process the question remains “should college athletes get paid or receive extra benefits?”

As it seems the investigations are a year round process and penalties that tarnish careers and never stop, the NCAA committee seems to always be hassling and having major programs under high scrutiny for even the most minuscule problems such as “ extra meal tickets for players” to “acquiring used furniture from a coach” which leads to suspensions and expensive fines.

There has numerous reports of professional athletes who claim in college, they sometimes wouldn’t have food to eat after long days at practice or after big nationally televised games where as, the NCAA profits and school make millions. For example, former NCAA basketball national champion Shabazz Napier from the University of Connecticut said “Sometimes, there’s hungry nights where I’m not able to eat, but I still got to play up to my capabilities” and he’s not the only one. There’s such high expectations of the players and for the student to not get the necessary nutrition is ridiculous.

Sports programs shouldn’t face damaging consequences because they are rewarding the athletes for their hard work and success. Ofcourse, most college athletes get a free education and are debt-free unlike regular students but they should be rewarded when struggling, due to the hard work and dedication they put in for the school and its image. On the other hand, I understand the NCAA committee has to keep an overview of all actions committed by schools but it seems half of the time players and coaches don’t even have a clue they are violating NCAA rules.

Recently, as the 2018 NCAA basketball tournament began, reports started to surface about violations committed by many players participating in the tournament.
For example, the scandal involving University of Arizona basketball where the FBI wiretapped Arizona head coach Sean Miller discussing paying $100,000 to ensure star freshman Deandre Ayton signed with the Wildcats. Coach Miller was eventually fired, but all over the country, each year former players admit to receiving extra help financially or physically. In contrast, sometimes programs can’t avoid the problem as it involves only the player and the agent who commit the crime, so it’s a tough situation to avoid.

Lakers Rookie point guard lonzo Ball recently weighed in on the basketball scandals during the NCAA tournament and commented “Everybody knows everybody’s getting paid. That’s just how it is. Might as well make it legal.” It shows the NCAA can’t keep up with all the shady business.