Loving the Lambo… Texas running back Bijan Robinson shows off his sixth NIL deal with Lamborghini Austin.
Loving the Lambo… Texas running back Bijan Robinson shows off his sixth NIL deal with Lamborghini Austin.
KXAN Austin

NIL should not be induced in NCAA sports

The Price of Paying

by Madeline Piazza, reporter

As the debate around Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) rights in NCAA sports continues to heat up, it’s crucial to take a step back and consider the potential implications. NIL should be taken out of college football. While some argue that NIL rights would empower student athletes, others, including me, believe that inducing NIL with sports could disrupt the equilibrium of college athletics. 

There are already advantages for NCAA athletes. So, do we really need to add NIL to the mix? Let’s delve deeper into this discussion.

A primary reason against the induction of NIL in NCAA sports is the fact that many student athletes already enjoy the benefit of free college tuition. 

Scholarships awarded to these athletes often cover, not just tuition, but also room and board, textbooks and other fees. This essentially makes their education free, a privilege not enjoyed by all students.

Making the deal… Both parties are expected to take NIL contracts seriously. Submitted photo

According to the NCAA, about 2% of high school athletes are awarded athletic scholarships to compete in college. This translates to nearly 180,000 student athletes. 

This might not seem like a large number, it’s important to note that these scholarships often cover the full cost of attendance. This means that these athletes are receiving a free education valued at tens of thousands of dollars per year.

Another significant concern is the age and maturity of these student athletes. At just 18 years old, they’re suddenly handed a significant amount of money. This can be overwhelming and may lead to poor financial decisions due to their lack of experience. 

Adding to that, it’s important to consider the psychological aspect. The sudden influx of money could create an imbalance in their lives, potentially leading to stress and distraction. This detracts from both their athletic performance, which are the primary reasons they are in college in the first place. 

Fox Business conducted a study revealing that a staggering 83% of teenagers lack money management skills. 

Picture these same teens, barely 18, suddenly tasked with handling over a million dollars. 

Despite their talents on the field or court, these athletes are still teenagers. They’re suddenly navigating a world of big money and even bigger responsibilities, without the necessary financial judgment. It’s a daunting and potentially risky situation. 

Lastly, the lack of regulation in player compensation can also lead to a decrease in team loyalty. When athletes are primarily motivated by money, they may be more likely to switch teams if they feel they’re not being paid enough. 

Shift in priorities could fundamentally change the spirit of college sports. The focus might shift from the love of the game and pride in one’s school, to purely financial considerations. This could erode the sense of unity and loyalty that’s often a key part of a team’s success. 

College football running back Quinshon Judkins played at The University of Mississippi. He requested to be paid more money and the company who was paying him did not have enough. So he walked out, leaving his team and coaches, without any remorse. 

Also in professional sports, we’ve seen instances of players leaving teams for higher paying contracts, which made the NFL more about each player and not really about a one team. This trend has trickled down to college sports, disrupting team dynamics and camaraderie, which are essential elements of college athletics. 

Overall, NIL should not be allowed in college sports. First, it creates an unfair payment system for regular students. Many young athletes, still in their teens, may struggle to manage large amounts of money. The lack of regulation leads to decreased team loyalty. These factors combined significantly alter the spirit and dynamics of college sports. 

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