It seems that everywhere a person looks these days for sports news the issue of whether or not NCAA Division I football and men’s basketball players should be paid for their services is constantly in the news. The calls to pay these players increase every time there is news of another scandal involving high profile NCAA programs.
Connecticut won the men’s Division I basketball championship just the other night. School administrators earlier this season self-imposed penalties on its men’s program for several major rules violations involving the recruitment of a player who enrolled at UConn but was dismissed before ever playing in a game. One of the penalties involves a 3 game suspension at the beginning of next season for Coach Jim Calhoun. The player involved just went on a radio sports talk show and revealed that he had been paid money by boosters and claimed that the head coach knew about it at the time.
Two articles recently appeared that take a somewhat new look at this problem. One appeared in a blog called Bleacher Report. The other is a piece that appeared on Bloomberg News. The former article looks at whether or not even a modest attempt to increase the value of athletic scholarships would result in a “haves and have nots” situation similar to that of the NBA, where a few superstar free agents tend to sign with a few teams and the competitive gap between the elite and also ran teams seems to be getting wider.
The second article reports on remarks recently made by NCAA president, Mark Emmert, who has begun talking about the need for some kind of increase in the value of an athletic scholarship.
Many people now believe that change in the makeup of college scholarships for athletes is inevitable. No matter what side of the debate you are on this is probably the single most important issue currently confronting the leaders of college athletics in this country.
The role of ethics in sport management and administration is an area of focus for all students at the United States Sports Academy. The first course taken by bachelor and master degree students is a course in contemporary issues in sports. For more information on Academy programs go to www.ussa.edu.