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Should College Athletes Be Paid?

This is a question that is uniquely American but I'd love to hear ideas from all.

In America college sports is a multi-billion dollar generating business. The athletes do not earn a dollar. They are considered amateurs and lose their amateur status (ability to compete) if they accept any money related to efforts as athletes. To go even further they have limited ability to earn money personally as the NCAA regulates how much they can work, how much they can earn, and of course the commitment of athletics, particularly at the highest level, is akin to a full-time job.

That said many (for from all though) are getting a free education.

Do you think athletes should be paid (ex. a salary, stipend, etc from the school)?
Do you think college athletes should be able to earn money as a result of their on field exploits (ex. sell autographs, endorsements, etc)?
Do you think the status quo is most fair?
Do you have other ideas/resolutions on the matter?


**i'd like to rebuff one argument. the notion that they will make tons of money as a result of their college exploits applies to only about 2-3% of all college athletes. the VAST majority will not as a result of their college sports careers earn big dollars in a professional sports career**
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My feeling is the system needs an overall. i think especially with the bigger collegiate sports a system similar to the world soccer academy system would work best. these players are paid, these players are educated but there is no doubt that the goal is to prepare them for life in the professional ranks. Universities could still be in the picture operating these "academies".
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The pay is relatively marginal in most academies (a few thousand dollars per year) but at least it recognizes that these athletes are revenue drivers and compensates them for their efforts to an extent.

There also little doubt that pro soccer players come out of these academies better educated and specifically are educated in areas that best serve a professional athlete (like money management)

Should College Athletes Be Paid?
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