This I Believe

Nic - Clarkson Valley, Missouri
Entered on January 28, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: sports
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I have strong beliefs about many things. One of the things I believe is that college athletes should have a salary just like professional athletes. Many people disagree with me. Although there would be some down sides to college athletes getting paid, I think there are some very good reasons for this to happen.

The first reason for athletes in college to get paid is the simple fact that they really are just college kids. Many of them need the extra money. They have to eat. They have to buy school supplies. They may even need new clothes. For some of the athletes, life would just be much easier with a few luxuries. It would be different if they had time to work a job, but they really don’t. Athletes nowadays are asked to train year round. During the season, they have practice every day. In the off-season, they have to lift weights to get stronger or work on their speed or skills or stamina. Many of them can’t even have summer jobs because they’re playing during the summer also. For sports that are played in the fall, practices start in the summer. Most spring sports have their seasons extending into the students’ summer vacation. The only athletes that really have the chance to work over the summer are those whose seasons go on during winter. Even with this opportunity, many of them are asked by their coaches to play for an extra team during summer. With everything they have going on throughout the year, college athletes don’t really have a chance to make the money they need to live off of.

Another reason I think college athletes should receive money to play sports is because of all they do for their schools. They make their schools more money than most people could even imagine. The first way athletes do this is by selling tickets to their games. Many fans will go to a game just because they want to see a particular athlete. If the athletes work together, and build a successful team, more people will go to games to watch the great team. Another way the athletes make money is by selling products. Almost every time you see a football or a shirt or a jersey, it’s because that person likes the team. They usually like the team because the team is good or has one of their favorite players. Prices for many of the products keep getting higher, but people are still buying them. That is how much they love the team, and that is what an athlete can do for a school. Some people will even go to a certain college because of the sports team. Not only do the athletes bring in money from all the schools’ products, they occasionally bring in tuition money. Considering all of the money the schools’ receive because of the athletes, I think it is fair that the athletes receive a little money from the schools.

Although many people think it would be a mistake to pay college athletes, I don’t think it would be a problem. It is true that some of the athletes would use the money in the wrong way, but I think that number would be small. If these students are smart enough to remain academically eligible, and smart enough to know what they are doing during a game, they won’t use their pay in an irresponsible manner. If nothing else, it would help them get through school and make kids who don’t think college is worth it want an education a little more.