Highly Questionable: NCAA Edition


Dan Stedman and Isaiah Morrissey

Money: it’s a necessity for life and something that everyone strives to have more of. Some people get their money more easily than others. Working long hours, an overtime shift, being a successful entrepreneur, and for few, being an athlete are means to financial security. Athletes come from all over the world. An example of some are Ichiro Suzuki, from Japan, Zdeno Chara, from Slovakia, and Michael Carter-Williams, from Massachusetts. For those athletes that do go to university and do get an education, money plays a great role. The greater question to all of this has to do with the National Collegiate Athletic Association: should the NCAA pay the athletes that are playing for the 1,281 institutes that they represent?


Every school that is represented by the NCAA has multiple sports teams. And on each of those sports teams, there are many athletes. It is understandable that not every athlete gets compensation; however, there are some athletes in college that come from poverty and are given a chance to play at the college level. With that being said, along with the chance to play sports at a high level, each institution is allowed to give out a certain amount of scholarships for each sport at the division one and division two levels of the NCAA. But a scholarship is never a guarantee.


There are nearly 8 Million High School athletes in the United States alone, and only 17% play at the college level. The NCAA reports that less than 2% of that actually make it to the professional level. This means that almost 10,000 of the 460,000 athletes will be able to pay off their debt somewhat easily depending on how their career plays out. For the few that have the high skill level, it will be easy to make it pro, but for the vast majority that don’t, the debt of college plays a huge role. This being because these athletes are putting a large amount of stress on their bodies by playing these sports for their school, and an injury just leads to more debt.  


Freshman point guard for the Creighton Bluejays, Marcus Zegarowski had some input on this situation. He was asked, “Do you think NCAA athletes should be paid?” Marcus responded by saying “ Yes, I think we should get paid because we don’t get time to find a job due to our basketball schedule.” We got into more depth by asking, “Do you feel that since teams make money off of players that it is unfair to players that they aren’t paid?” Which he says, “Yeah I think it is unfair because they are using us for publicity so getting paid can make it fair for us players.” Lastly, for our final question, we asked him, “Do you as a division 1 athlete get any pay of some kind at all from anyone”? He follows with, “Yes basketball college athletes get a cost of attendance. I get $430 every month. It is different for colleges depending on how big the college is.” A take away from this is that yes, these athletes do get some sort of money from their school, but they should be getting much more because of how much they do for the school. And the NCAA should be where the money comes from. This is because the NCAA makes the rules of college athletics so it only makes sense it comes from there.