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Commentary: NCAA won’t go down easy in student athlete profit fight

The NCAA ruled in late October it would " permit students participating in athletics the opportunity to benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness in a manner consistent with the collegiate model." | File photo

The NCAA ruled in late October it would “permit students participating in athletics the opportunity to benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness in a manner consistent with the collegiate model.” | File photo

When the NCAA announced it would finally allow student athletes to profit from their name, image, and likeness in late October, it stumbled on a perfect solution to a problem that has clouded its existence for decades now.

The ruling came down shortly after California and New York pushed bills to give student athletes to profit off themselves.

While there has been a public outcry for academic institutions to directly pay their student athletes, it’s an unfeasible plan that would create more issues than solutions.  

Most athletic departments barely profit after it’s all said and done, anyway. 

Allowing players to profit off of their name, likeness and image though? That means players can sell an autographed jersey and use the money for groceries, gasoline or whatever they’d want. 

It doesn’t hurt anyone. It means that athletes who put their bodies on the line can now claim a rightful percentage of the revenue their colleges rake in because of them.

It’s insane the NCAA has gotten away with the exploitation of labor on a great number of young people, making astronomical profits from it, while also denying the basic rights of capitalism to them at the same time. 

This is America, after all.

Unfortunately this groundbreaking ruling by the NCAA is clouded with ambiguous phrasing that could change the entire landscape of this progressive step forward. 

Taking another look at the statement, the use of “in a manner consistent with the collegiate model” is incredibly frustrating knowing the NCAA and their inability to get these things right.

The organization is more than likely going to use their corrupt and greed infused definition of “fairness” when releasing the final guidelines to this policy change. 

One policy that can be put in place is some sort of limit or cap regarding how much money these athletes can make, and it’s going to be so incredibly stupid of them to do so. 

A great number of professional athletes have expressed their disdain for the NCAA and its totalitarian rules regarding any sort of compensation. 

Many collegiate athletes have socioeconomic backgrounds some people in this country don’t even realize exist. 

Miami Heat star and former Marquette star Jimmy Butler spent a portion of his youth homeless. 

Minnestota Timberwolves Shabazz Napier claimed he went to bed starving on numerous occasions before UConn basketball games.

All while playing in a nationally televised basketball tournament that generated a billion dollars, one which he and Huskies won.

Los Angeles Lakers superstar Lebron James claims he had to go straight to the league, because his family’s financial situation didn’t allow him to take a year off. Money was urgently needed.

These are just some of hundreds of thousands of stories that can be told about the conditions student athletes have had to endure.

Nobody should be counting chickens yet. The NCAA has shown time and time again it’s nowhere near as interested in the well-being of collegiate athletes as it states. 

This entire situation is about power, and the NCAA will not go down without a fight.

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