I found myself in an interesting conversation last night and since it's a Friday, a Holiday and a SLOW news cycle I figured I'd toss it out there and see if anyone felt like kicking it around here at RCT.
Paying college athletes. Should it be done? Can it be done? And how could it effectively and fairly be implemented? Obviously the easiest one to answer is should it be done, that's a yes or a no. But once you start talking about who gets what and how doesn't it become far more complicated?
From an ESPN.com article on the subject in March
For - The true madness of March is the millions of dollars -- generated by the kids who touch the ball -- that goes mostly to the advertising hustlers, television suits, arena operators, concession hawkers, athletic gear manufacturers and retailers, university administrators, coaches and sports media noisemakers. No wonder they don't want to share any of that money with the players. They've locked the doors on their sweat shop.
Against - I'm pretty sure any student who is paying (sorry, borrowing) his or her own way -- or whose family is taking out massive, decade-crippling loans -- would trade the many hard hours of work and dedication it takes to be a college hoops or football player in exchange for that kind of "sweat shop" experience.
Those are your most common arguments. They generate so much revenue so they deserve it or they receive a free tuition which is a tremendous value. Let's flip both of those. Kansas track doesn't generate substantial revenue does it? For that matter neither did Terry Nooner, but fans sure did like him.
As for the scholarship providing value, well Josh Selby is a classic example of someone who receives ZERO value from going to a free college class. Yes that's a tremendous value to someone who feels they can improve their lot in life by going to college, but if that isn't part of the equation it's more an inconvenience than awarding something of value.
It's an argument and a discussion that tends to place people into two buckets, the pro vs. con. But when you get down to it, it seems that there are far more varying opinions on the subject.