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Gotera: Idea of paying college players is absolutely absurd

Gotera: Idea of paying college players is absolutely absurd

by Daniel Gotera / 11 Sports

Posted on December 23, 2010 at 6:19 PM

I am a huge fan of college athletics. The pageantry, the excitement, the school spirit makes it one of a kind in the world of sports.

However, as we all know, nothing is perfect.

There are several sports related things that really just get under my skin. Teams playing down to the level of their competition, celebration penalties, a bullpen pitcher coming in throwing balls…you know, the normal stuff.

But, above all of those things, the one topic that gets me fired up is when people suggest that college players should get paid or receive some form of compensation from each university.

Absolutely ridiculous.

This issue has come to the forefront once again after we learned Thursday that five Ohio State players, including starting QB Terrelle Pryor, have been suspended 5 games NEXT season for selling everything from championship rings to jerseys to awards AND for receiving improper benefits from a local tattoo parlor.

First of all, do you really need a tattoo that badly? Second, championship rings? Really? Have you no pride in what you’ve accomplished? Third of all, how are these guys allowed to play in the Sugar Bowl?

The last question has an easy answer. Money.

Arkansas fans must be livid, but I digress.

When asked why he sold off all that merchandise, Pryor allegedly said he did it to help his family. That comment has led to many to bring up the point that college athletes should receive payment for their services.

I’m sorry, but does a free ride to a 4-year university not qualify as payment? Does receiving countless amounts of school merchandise (sweat-suits, hats, shirts, etc.) not qualify as payment? How about using top-notch facilities?

I get it. Universities make a lot of money of some of the student-athletes. And, as a former student myself, kids need a little spending money. But at the same time, the STUDENT-athletes are getting a lot, maybe even more, from the university as well.

It’s called an education. I know that is a foreign concept for some, but if you choose to throw that away, that is a "you" problem.

These players are getting a free ride at a university which a lot of people would only dream of attaining. That is way more valuable than any form of payment that you can receive, at least, in the long run. A 4-year degree, whether you finish it in that time or later, will pay itself off.

Athletes that go off and sell their own, and what should be, valuable merchandise is a selfish move.

These players know the rules and they were trying to make an extra buck. Well now they’ll get the chance to do that when they go to the NFL.

The NCAA is not without fault, but this falls on the players.

So to suggest that athletes need to be paid on top of all the things they are already getting, legally and illegally (see SMU in the mid-1980’s as an example) is just stupid.