There are two factors that give colleges recognition across the country. Academics and sports programs. A college becomes renowned by how competitive their school admittance is or by how great their sports teams are. However, there is a key difference between how a great sports program can affect a school than its academics. Great sports programs can bring in obscene amounts of money and publicity to the school. College sports are very popular among sports fans of all ages. As a result, people are willing to pay a lot of money to fund these programs.

The most popular sports programs across the country have an estimated value of millions of dollars, some billions. Coaches are paid very well for leading the program and the school receives national recognition. But what about the student-athletes who make it all happen?

Zero-income rule

Student-athletes are not allowed to get paid for any of the money they produce for their college. They are not allowed to be sponsored by companies, their likeness cannot be used for video games and they cannot use monetization tools like YouTube channels. I find it unfair how the NCAA and colleges could profit from student-athletes and the athletes do not receive a penny. The reason why they aren't paid varies.

Recurring arguments are College Students aren't adults like coaches, if one sport gets paid then they all have to get paid, or that student-athletes have scholarships to accommodate the lack of income. But is this enough?

The student-athlete background

College is relatively more expensive than it has been in previous years. In this age, the college student has been stereotyped as low-income millennials who are in debt with student loans.

These loans are taken out to pay for college tuition and subsequently paid for throughout years after graduation. Most student-athletes that play sports that generate the most money(i.e. basketball and football) come from backgrounds where the cost of college is outside the realm of possibility. Generally speaking, these athletes are minority children from low-income areas that used sports as a means to get into college.

Even with tuition paid, they do not have money to spend like most college students. Also, college is seen as an investment by most students for a career in the field being studied. College Athletes aren't completely there for the education. They use college as an opportunity to play their sport at a professional level. Most professional athletes don't even finish college by the time they enter the draft.


Student-athletes give schools millions of dollars and publicity. It may be unreasonable for college athletes to earn a salary from playing, but the limitations the NCAA has implemented show how money-hungry the organization is. Is it too much for video game companies to pay students to use their likeness?

Is it too much for popular college athletes to have a Nike deal? A lot of student-athletes who fit this description come from poor backgrounds where making money has always been the goal. Let them reach their goal sooner.