Revenue sharing already exists in the form of the Bowl committee, and the individual conferences. The rich schools are going to continue to find ways to pay their players, and that will NOT stop. It needs to be decriminalized. Just like prohibition created a hotbed for mob activity, the presence and/or protection of “amateur status” creates the issue of cheating in college athletics.
The NCAA is once again totally astounded and surprised about allegations out of Miami. Oh the horror, how could this happen with our meticulous scrutiny? The only thing I am sure of when I hear the term NCAA investigation or inquiry is that there is no limit to their hypocrisy. For the millionth time I call Bullshit. My take on the whole issue after the jump.
The problem here is perception. Once we’ve all gotten used to the idea that the cheating will not be stopped, at least by any known solution at the present time, the best thing to do is manage it. The NCAA is not the institution to use to enforce these policies, they have a conflict of interest. The university Presidents, Deans, etc. will always be accountable to their supporters.
The NCAA should, out of need to reacquire some integrity, create a plan which implements fundamental change in the way they do business, starting with admitting that it IS a business. Then restructure as a business model. Plan for a period of controlled instability while they restructure. Include replacing as much personnel in the NCAA office and the administrations of its' members as necessary to accept the need for the change. The NCAA needs to spend alot more money on the compliance budget, mostly in the form of compliance officers and staff.. Failure to do that would thwart this and any solution, IMHO.
Reorganizing the college divisional levels according to financial support, rather than the current divisional level requisites, which, by the way are kind of subjective anyway. Hold each school in any given level to a salary cap similar to the ones in the respective pro leagues for each sport, and do away with playing for scholarships altogether. The scholarships can go to more academically deserving students or those with financial need. Student athletes can choose to get paid in the form of scholarship if they desire. Room and board can be covered under the auspices of the athletic departments business model.
Like many other industries administrative corruption will exist, but it exists already. The athletes that are on the revenue generating teams can earn the cars, parties, yacht trips, tattoos, hookers, (just kidding) but salaries based on their individual ability on the field. They also get all the exposure to agents’ fringe benefits and should be held to the same legal standards their professional counterparts are starting to be held to. This would cut down on the exploitation of players before they are drafted by increasing their exposure to the agents who are competing with each other. The players would have more honest opinions of their worth by what they were already getting.
The athletes that aren’t making money could be on teams aligned with each other on a division II type level and accept their scholarships and other campus advantages just as they all pretend to do now. Reviews could be done periodically to maintain schools eligibility for the lower level(s) or to make sure that the money schools are complying with the salary caps and reporting honestly.
This sounds simple but the important thing to remember is that cheating already exists and it’s not going to stop. We have decades of proof that it can’t be stopped. They are getting paid anyway. Don’t look for an ideal solution to such a massive and saturating condition when we could settle for a managed improvement. These kids make money for their schools and that won’t change. It can’t. To expect this to be fixed completely is to prolong any chance of managing it.
No poll with this but, by all means, let me know what you think.