Gators Survive w/o Floyd in Weeks 1&2, But Will College Sports Survive Ignoring the Real Change Needed?

Sharrif Floyd had to sit out this most recent game due to questions about money. Ah money … what some refer to as the root of all evil. Yet, Kiss’ Gene Simmons always says that it’s the lack of money that is the root of all evil. It’s time to STOP ignoring this “lack of money” issue and make some changes to the NCAA rules and scholarships.

Y’know, it sounds like an easy gig if you’ve gotten a “full ride” athletic scholarship. But, there is another side to attending college when you’re from a low-income environment. There are many kids across this country who get, what I’d call, an incomplete ride to the university of their choosing.

There’s an old adage by which I live: What I can buy and what I can afford may be two very different things. In other words, I could go out tomorrow and buy a Porsche – brand new. But, once it’s mine, so are the expenses related to that car; insurance & maintenance are the two expenses I probably cannot afford in the long run.

So, imagine this awesome opportunity to attend a great university on a full-ride scholarship and “all you have to do” is perform well academically & physically to keep that free ride.

But wait! What about if/when you become a star player – a celebrity – for your school’s team? The accolades you receive from the press, the extraordinary cheers from the crowd when your name is called as compared to other teammates, and the simple recognition as you walk around campus are all awesome.

Now jump to the odd situation where your friends want to go out for a bite to eat at Applebee’s or Outback … and you cannot afford it. It’s not covered in your free ride package. Regular living is not covered. How much more humiliating can it get than that? And, these are kids – not adults. Still very impressionable, managing humiliation is not any kid’s strong suit.

To add insult to injury, I’ve been told that these kids are also not permitted to get part-time jobs while classes are in session. Well sh!t howdy … did money start growing on trees outside these scholarship athletes’ windows?!

It’s time to give all scholarship athletes a stipend in the form of a managed debit card. They’d get $100/week while classes are in session. There would be someone/some group in the Administration Office who would audit the withdrawals constantly. The debit card could not be used for alcohol or tobacco (or firearms ;-). And, it cannot be used more than once in a 1-hour period for a purchase and not for anything more than what is a normal purchase (e.g.: to keep the card holder from buying lunch for everyone, a $50 charge at Mickey D’s would throw up a red flag).

It’s only fair – and barely fair, at that. I mean, look around at the kids who enter the ticket lottery for games solely to sell their tickets for the really big games. Funny (funny ironic, not funny ha ha) how the kids who have nothing to do with the success of the football team are free to make beaucoup bucks on the sale of tickets and team paraphernalia. But, the kids who have to juggle classes, intense practices and study time to make those game tickets so valuable & in-demand … they get nailed if they make a penny while on that scholarship? That is so “messed up, dude!”

It’s high time to realize that there is money and there is know-how to incorporate a well-managed stipend to all scholarship athletes. We should not be talking about this any longer; we should be incorporating this as of yesterday!

22 thoughts on “Gators Survive w/o Floyd in Weeks 1&2, But Will College Sports Survive Ignoring the Real Change Needed?

  1. Thanks.

    I should’ve put this in the article, but I’ll just mention it here, instead.

    The above idea is just an outline. Surely it needs definition, but it also needs maintenance … because it will surely be abused by some who can find a loop-hole or caveat by which to game that system. Everything intended to make a positive difference is tainted by someone who just can’t play by the rules. So, if such a system is enacted, expect – still – some to still screw up.

    Also, not that we need more laws from the gov’t (state or fed), but just like it’s illegal to bribe an elected official, or how it’s illegal to proposition a prostitute … it should be illegal to proposition/bribe a college athlete. I think these idiots, like Nevin Shapiro, should be prosecuted for committing a known NCAA violation. Or, at least, the NCAA should file civil lawsuits against these perpetrators.

    Thanks again for reading my opinions. 😀

  2. As much as I despise the players’ union (unions period) one good way to kick them in the n*ts would be to stop giving face time and stop doing the pregame announcements of their university.

    Then fund a good dirt vermin (lawyer) and get rid of the announcers, the refereeing crew, production crew etc etc.

    Basically, threaten to remove their ability to professionally broadcast professional produced games.

    The odds of it happening are slim and none, but if you get the right left wing judge, he/she could rule in your favor. It would get shot down the minute it was appealed up the ladder, but it would send a loud enough scare that there is at least one judge out there who feels that way, and it’s possible that there could be more down the road.

    The whole thing is ridiculous, crying about the disparity; they have already tweaked the scholarship counts and now have tweaked the signings.

    In the day and age of internet and cable tv, no one team really has a lights out advantage for broadcasting cred.

    Not to mention, the “football factories” ie the “haves” that people are worried about will be able to create an unlevel playing field, have their own disadvantages now magnified:

    The “big schools” also attract their share of players who wanted the payout and were declaring early, so they were in flux a little more often.

    They also reach a point where kids stop signing for fear of getting buried on the depth charts.

    Now, with the rookie salary cap, there will be fewer stepping stone kids. Sure that will mean less turnover overall, but it also means that fewer kids will shorten their lists to the “prime players” and be more likely to go somewhere that they may have a shot at having a 3-4 year playing tenure. There’ll always be the Will Hills of the world, but it will reduce the number of players jumping ship too quickly.

    That will also mean the talent will spread itself out more since now depth charts will stay clogged a little longer.

    Now, with the NFL cap stagnant and rookie salaries curbed, along with the increasingly frequent success stories of late round/small school/undrafted players, more and more players are going to be scooped up since the financial risks are minimized a bit. That means a player can choose to go to, say, a Northern Illinois for a shot at 4 years playing (perhaps a 5th year of working out with a redshirt) instead of going to, say, a USC or somewhere and get stuck on the pine for two years.

    In short, I am tired of the whining about players getting money. It’s typical Democrat nonsense – people worked hard, made choices with specific reasons, and then a collection of brainless suits want to punish them for working hard and catching some breaks.

  3. OK, I don’t want to get in a huge blowout over politics … but isn’t Orrin Hatch a Republican from Utah? And isn’t Orrin Hatch the [i]whining[/i] congressman who tried to pass legislation at the Federal level to force the BCS into a playoff-style system?

    Anyway, I’m not sure if your comment was truly intended for this article, but if it was, the solution is too far beyond the issue at hand – kids from less-than-average environments being thrust into a very middle-to-upper_middle class college environment w/o the means to keep up with their peers off the field.

    As I think about this more, it’s almost inhumane, of sorts. Sending a kid w/o much money to his name for a free ride at college, but not giving him any assistance to just go out for lunch or dinner, now & again. They’re almost penning the player up in a veritable [i]cage[/i] until it’s time to go to class, practice or the game of the week.

    And all the while – and don’t kid yourself about this – the college, the networks and a whole host of others are making sh!tloads of $$$$$$ off these kids’ hard work and restricted college life.

    “Brother, can you spare a dime?”

  4. Yes, because the BCS does teeter on anti-trust.

    I am referring to the players who’ve taken payoffs. Whenever Democrats are in office, all of a sudden the investigations spread like wildfire.

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