The Bruin Voice

NCAA recognizes inequality in college athletics

Darius Livingston, Sports Editor

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For years Division I players across the country have stood by while colleges have reaped the rewards for the use of their names, images, and likenesses to add to their coffers.

Most of this profit has gone to support coaches who more and more frequently earn multi-million dollar contracts, while the athletes themselves scramble to pay tuition.

But in a game changing decision, those rules will be changing — and it’s about time. It is essential for student-athletes to receive income or some type of renumeration because they devote their blood, sweat, and tears to their school and sports program with little in return.

Being a high school athlete, I know how hard it is to balance my time between academics and sport activities. Applying for a job is out of the question because there is simply no time in my schedule.

In college where academics are twice as hard and the duration of practice is practically doubled that of high school, having a part time job is incredibly difficult.

With the new ruling, a federal judge has told the NCAA that not only can it not stop college athletes from selling the rights to their names, images, and likeness, but also that the NCAA cannot prohibit their athletes from receiving other forms of payment aside from scholarships and the cost of attendance at schools.

Most college athletes take a minimum of 12 units of study and then go to practice for a minimum of three hours on top of several hours of conditioning. The athletes argue that the number of hours committed to conditioning and practices almost equals a full time job.

Arguably, these student-athletes should be paid because of the media promotion and attention they bring to their school, not to mention the millions of dollars that they are making for their respective schools.

I applaud the NCAA for reorganizing the inequalities in the system — and it doesn’t stop there. In another ruling, the members of the Power 5 conferences now have authority over their respective athletes.

This authority enables colleges to give money to their athletes, most of which will be put into athletic scholarships to mitigate the cost of tuition.

However, the agreement focuses solely on college football players, which poses a big problem. Other athletes, such as wrestlers and swimmers, feel neglected because they believe that their sport is just as strong and demanding as that of football and basketball players. The NCAA will continue to look into this problem and address it in the next couple of years.

Unfortunately, there are only 65 colleges in the Power 5 conferences that will be covered. Similar sport conferences that are not in the Power 5, such as the Mountain West, will also be able to vote to benefit and pay their athletes within the upcoming months.

In due time, all college athletes are expected to be given at least $5,000 annually to help with their cost of tuition.

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NCAA recognizes inequality in college athletics