Big Ten Officials and Commissioner Jim Delany Discuss Paying Athletes
The constant and persistent cry for NCAA athletes to be paid has resulted in an interesting development. Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany, with the approval of NCAA president Mark Emmert, discussed potentially paying student-athletes to help cover living expenses on top of their scholarships. The meeting recently took place between Big Ten school officials and athletic directors.
“Forty years ago, you had a scholarship plus $15 a month laundry money. Today, you have the same scholarship, but not with the $15 laundry money,” explained commissioner Delany.
In theory, the idea of paying student-athletes thanks to growing TV revenue sounds brilliant. But the fact of the matter is, most NCAA programs outside of elite college football programs lose money every season. So essentially, for the Big Ten, paying student-athletes isn’t a far-fetched idea due to the amount of revenue generated through schools such as Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, etc. However, when you consider smaller conferences — like the C-USA, MAC, WCC, etc. — they would not be able to cover their expenses.
If there were a way to pay student-athletes beyond their scholarships, occurrences such as Jim Tressel and his five players at Ohio State might be less likely to occur. Also, questioning the integrity of athletes like former Auburn quarterback Cam Newton, would likely be evaded more often since everyone is getting paid.
The thought of paying student-athletes is awesome, but since most school athletic program’s lose money, it just wouldn’t work at this point in time.