College athletes should be paid more

Calli Venzon, Yearbook Editor

Many middle school and high school athletes think “I want to become a college athlete, I’ll get paid millions”. It’s not that simple. College athletes may get scholarships to go to college, but they don’t get paid. Coaches get paid and the school may make a lot of money thanks to the athlete’s skill, but the athletes don’t receive money for their efforts.

When athletes go to college, they have to have a backup plan, something to study to obtain a degree, like a veterinary medicine or a pharmacy. Obviously, the point of going to college is to get a degree.

As soon as an athlete joins a team, whether that’s football, baseball, or soccer, they basically work for that team. Sports start to dominate the student athlete’s life. Getting a degree becomes very difficult, but without a full focus on sports, many athletes could lose their scholarship.

That’s why college athletes should be paid.

According to, “to do great things with his team, a college athlete must make sport his first priority, which leads him to put fewer hours into studying than a non-athlete.”

This obviously has an impact on academic performance. Athletes take away a lot of time from academics to put effort into sports. They have to make a long-term commitment to their team.

There’s a reason why some players go bankrupt after college. If they decide they don’t want to continue sports, or they simply can’t, then what’s next for them? Without an income from academic schooling they can’t get a good job.

Coaches of these college teams get paid, sometimes even millions of dollars. According to “USA Today”, the highest paid college football coach is Nick Saban in Alabama, who makes 9.3 million dollars. Over 80 college football coaches across the country make at least 1 million dollars. Yet their athletes get paid nothing.

According to the Bleacher Report, “college football has become a multi-million dollar business. Universities continue to make money, while all athletes are given is a scholarship. The biggest issue with this is that the expenses required to attend a college exceed the amount that athletes are awarded in their scholarships.”

So, all that money goes directly to the colleges and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, or NCAA.  For years, the players got nothing. Is that fair? No, no it is not.

Colleges even make money off of their athletes’ faces. Video games, for example, have the actual likeness of college football players. Video game designers take the exact image and likeness, jersey number, and the name of players and program it into the game. The game publishers do have to pay a fee to be allowed to use these likenesses. Does the athlete get a cut of this money? No, they don’t

According to “National Public Radio”, the NCAA’s top governing body now says it supports a rule change that would allow student-athletes to profit from their name, image and likeness. That’s a great step in the right direction. Colleges are still not allowed to pay athletes, but this rule change would give college athletes a chance to earn some extra money.

College athletes should be paid. It’s time for colleges and the NCAA to start paying their players. They work really hard and devote a lot of time and effort to their sports. They deserve it.