|Photo credit: Forbes.|
They're schools first, and sports programs second. Perhaps the single point uniting Democrats and Republicans is a shared tendency to ignore this fact.
That's why I'm obliged to continue reminding you.
NCAA Players Should Strike at the Final Four, by Dave Zirin and Etan Thomas (The Nation)
They have the power to force a change, but only if they refuse to be pawns in someone else’s game.
... One common argument against paying these athletes is that the cost of their tuition and room and board is already covered. But NCAA is a billion (with a b) dollar annual industry. The idea that players should just be grateful for what they get is in line with the contention that workers in a multi-national corporation’s sweatshop should be grateful to earn pennies for their labor. Free market proponents argue that those workers are better off because they have been given the “opportunity” to make those pennies, but that doesn’t change the reality of exploitation. That’s what’s going on in the NCAA. The NCAA sits on a cash cow, a Scrooge McDuck-type gold mine, and they are very happy with the system working the exact way they designed it to work ...
... Whenever the topic of paying college athletes is brought up today, forecasts of the death of college sports flood the airwaves. Yet the only thing that will destroy intercollegiate athletics is continuation of the current system, a system without a moral center that careens from one scandal to the next and is rooted in rank exploitation. This system will either be wrecked by its current minders or remade by the players themselves.
The NCAA is not going to change anything if they are not compelled, just as the NBA and MLB weren’t going to change anything back in the day without the push of people like Oscar Robertson and Curt Flood. The players have the power to force a change, but only if they refuse to be pawns in someone else’s game.