We constantly have change in our life. Most are on the small side but on occasion, there are significant changes to our life. The NCAA the NO CLUE ABOUT ATHLETICS organization was just forced to change due to a court ruling. On June 21, 2021, the US Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the NCAA cannot ban certain payments to student athletes under the premise of maintaining amateurism. Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, writing for the majority, stated, “traditions alone cannot justify the NCAA’s decision to build a massive money-raising enterprise on the backs of student athletes who are not fairly compensated”
…This decision was followed a week later by a formal NCAA agreement described above. It has seen immediate changes to the pocketbooks, attitudes of NCAA players, fans & financial supporters. Despite A 2019 Seton Hall Sports Poll found that 60% of those surveyed agreed that college athletes should be allowed compensation for their name, image, and/or likeness, while 32% disagreed, and 8% were unsure–nothing had been done in the 2 years. The door had been knocked down for “paid” athletes” in some form or the other.
…As you’d imagine, there have been strong reactions pro & con. Some say…these athletes are enriching their schools by their play on the field/court and should be compensated accordingly.
…Some see that the majority of the NIL money goes to the players of the 2 major fund raising teams in the athletic department—Football & Mens Basketball. Sooo…some respond to the situation with an ”OK”…those are the 2 major revenue raising sports—it’s appropriate that they get paid. Others claim that Title 9 demands equal distribution for the women’s sports & the so-called “minor” sports. A few claim that it’s racial since it rewards (some say not enough) a high percentage of minority players who dominate the rosters of those 2 sports. It sounds to me almost like a “NO WIN” deal any way you look at it.
….Interestingly, the NCAA was formed in 1905 due to football scene which was basically unregulated. Gang-tackling was highly encouraged and the runner wasn’t down until he hit the ground. During the 1904 season alone, there were 18 deaths and 159 serious injuries on the field. At the college level, hired players not enrolled in school often filled out rosters. Some colleges/universities stopped playing football. Hence, in Oct 1905, President Theodore Roosevelt, a longtime football fan, called together athletics leaders from some of the top football schools — Harvard, Princeton and Yale (at that time)— and urged them to clean up the game. The 1st really dynamic leader of the NCAA was Walter Byers who took the reigns in 1951. He ruled for 36 years as the sports grew immensely primarily due to the involvement of televised games & bowl games.
…Only in the last couple years have approaches changed…and changed in a hurry. “Portal’s” were created for students to transfer @ any time with no “sitting out” a year penalty. Then the NIL which enabled student/athletes to earn money—sometimes “big money”. (“big” is relative, I suppose). Both of these actions really changed the landscape—Individual players are now in control since they can “walk away” at any time & demand “x” amount of money to perform. The NCAA (NO CLUE ABOUT ATHLETICS) has been shoved completely out of the picture.
… Some tax paying fans may now wonder why they’re “footing the bill” for housing & food, tutors, free medical care, etc, when these athletes are being paid more than the taxpayer earns! Others respond to this by saying that these players are entertainers and should be paid accordingly. One might respond, as a fan, we DO have the right to support a particular entertainer… but not every single entertainer that’s out there. Like most taxes, we really don’t have input in the expenditures.
…Some players…maybe many or most…sign NIL contracts in the low “thousand dollars” level. Some strike it rich! Bryce Young (Bama QB) received $800,000 for this year. Olivia Dunne, LSU gymnastics signed for $1m. Quinn Ewers, Ohio State football signed a $1.4m deal. Most other individuals have guarded the sum of their NIL deal. Taking it to the extreme, an Unnamed college football recruit from Class of 2023 signed an NIL deal for $8 million!! According to the Athletic on Mar 12, the contract will pay $350,000 immediately and payments will continue to rise to the level of $2m/year!! The deal is the largest NIL deal ever signed by a non-professional athlete, The Athletic reported, citing two unnamed experts.
…Closer to home, it was reported by Stu Durando in late fall, that dazzling SLU guard, Yuri Collins had been courted by Univ of Tennessee briefly. Apparently, the NIL talks would land him around the $200,000 level. Shortly thereafter, Yuri announced that he was staying @ SLU. Coincidental? Not likely from my view, SLU found some NIL contributors for Yuri (purely speculation-I’m not a SLU insider—in fact, I’m not an insider any place 😊
…Some schools are really intense! Auburn’s collective, On To Victory, raised over 10 million dollars this year. Last year, a separate NIL collective’s efforts distributed $6.4 million before they had to raise money to make it more sustainable moving forward.
….Being a “college student” has dropped off the platform. For years, many top-flight athletes (especially football & basketball) have played the “general studies” curriculum. The school guides them through the lowest classes in several different departments. Leading them to a “no where” plan of a real graduation. The NCAA (NO CLUE ABOUT ATHLETICS) has pretended not to know about this plan that caters to supreme athletes being fed the lowest of educational food.
…The NCAA seems to have been gagged & hands & feet tied together as they remain completely mum on the rapidly moving trends(NIL, portals, year round practices -counting the weight room, etc). The Cat’s out of the bag now….it makes one think… Is the NCAA they still necessary?
…Some wonder where the transferring will stop. In many cases, it seems to show that the student’s primary concern is his/her current “price”. Some speculate about the effectiveness of this student in the real world. (outside football/basketball) Most NCAA players career ends when they graduate.
….Others demand equality for both sexes & all sports. With the current set up, the boosters pick & choose not only the sport but the exact player that receives his/her money. These boosters probably think that if someone else want’s to support other sports and/or players of other sports—then do it.
…Several years ago, in one of my blogs, I purposed that the athletes be hired like entertainers who come in to perform. The NIL has brought us to that point. The NBA & NFL have used the NCAA as a minor league feeding system for 100 years now. It’s time that they form their own minor leagues (like baseball) and we all stop pretending that all of these players are really students. They won’t because fans won’t be as attached to minor leagues as they are to college games.
….I received a gift –a book on the 100 greatest players in MLB History written by Joe Posnanski ! Very good book. I thought that I’d begin to share a set of statistics about 1 player each week. This week, the #1 rated player of all time(by him) is the only player to be in the 30/30 club-30 HR, 30 SB! He’s also the only player with 400 doubles(523), 100 Triples (140), 330 Home Runs (660 HR-6th highest All-time) & 250 Stolen Bases (338).He’s Willie Mays!
…I’m very interested in YOUR thoughts. Please post on FB or on www.bobryansportsblog.com (or you can catch up on past blogs). If you prefer, just send to me & I’ll post it for you). Thanks for the read!! Please spread the word to family & friends. My only “pay” is getting more readers. Have a super week 😊