NCAA Basketball Tournament

PBS did a great job giving background information and providing an interactive look into the NCAA Basketball Tournament as well as its hypocrisies. The video provided was especially interesting, as was the line of questions presented to NCAA president Mark Emmert. There’s no denying it, the NCAA makes the majority of its money off the NCAA tournament off of huge television contracts and endorsements. Emmert himself is assumed to make a sizable six-figure salary, while the NCAA refuses to pay their athletes, even after they leave college. Many have an issue morally with the NCAA continuing to make money off of someone’s legacy and image long after they leave NCAA sports, while giving no royalties or a mere cent to these ex players.

In the ‘Legacy’ article, PBS gives you the figures, gives you the facts on what is going on, and even gives you insight from those in the industry, ex players, coaches, even recruiters. From this one thing is especially clear: There is money to be made, lots of it, and even at an early age players can be exploited and bled for every single cent of their value. Should athletes be paid? Maybe. Should it be based on the school you go to, a player’s performance, or even how far you get in the tournament? It’s a tricky idea, one that won’t be resolved soon, but it is definitely an issue that needs to be discussed.

Acknowledging that there is a disparity between the athlete and the facilitator is one thing, but to get to the heart of the issue we must also acknowledge that each program and athlete is unique and that there is no overarching solution or way to group all athletes together. The PBS article and our own discussions opens the door to finding answers, and this in all of it’s cliché meaning is half the battle.