Have you ever had a job but never gotten paid for it? No, obviously not, because that’s not how it works. You work, you produce and you get paid for it. This is exactly what student athletes do, but without the pay.
As a student athlete going to school full time and playing basketball, life is basically like having two jobs, but with no income coming directly to me.
Sure, as athletes we get stipend checks and scholarship money, but none of that goes directly to us. It is used for school, books and housing- so what about the other needs?
I have a few friends that are athletes that don’t get/have any other money than what comes from the school. So how do they eat? How do they get groceries? How are they supposed to get clothes, toiletries and other necessities?
The only solution to this problem is to give student athletes a little extra money to live off of. The reality is that as a student athlete, our lives consist of school and whatever sport we play. That’s it. There is not enough time in the day to go try to find a job to get extra money.
We have come to the school to be a student and to represent the school and student body in the sport that we play, so finding time for a job is pretty much out of the question.
Another reason that we should be paid is because we are bringing in revenue to the school from our performances at games. Now I know that ACU’s sports programs are nothing like Duke’s or Alabama’s, but we sacrifice to put on a performance to get people to pay to come watch us play.
At Big 12 schools, there are jerseys sold with players’ names on the back of them. This is a big accomplishment for them, but the athlete doesn’t get any of the profit for any shirts being sold; the athlete is sacrificing their time to build the program and ultimately help keep the school’s image up.
Let’s be honest: sports are a huge thing for most people when choosing a school. The better the sports team, the more fun the university seems. The more fun the school looks, the more people attend that school. The more people that come to school, the more money the school gets. So in some cases, it all starts with the athletes on the team and how well they are preforming for the program.
I get that there is a lot of debate concerning pay for student athletes, because this would technically render them professionals, but in the eyes of most student athletes, that is not the case.
Some athletes cannot afford the cost of all the needs that come with living. Giving athletes a little extra money for the things they require to keep them healthy and to keep performing at a high level would not only make their lives a little less stressful, but would also continue to help the university.
The men’s and women’s basketball teams won their conference tournaments (which hasn’t happened in a very long time) and both played at the NCAA tournament (which has never happened in ACU history). That’s a huge stage that ACU is represented on.
I was talking to one of my professors whose husband works in the Hunter Welcome Center and he said that any time a team makes it to the NCAA tournament, enrollment spikes up the next year.
I am not saying that we as athletes get nothing, because we do- we get a lot of benefits. We are all so grateful for that, but I am saying that getting paid a little bit of extra money that goes straight to our pockets would make the lives of student athletes a little easier.