NCAA Football Is Now Openly Pro Football

Well of course many of us saw this coming. The Establishment sports media, including especially ESPN, are not quite sure how to cover this matter yet other than attempting to sweep it under the rug or defer the inevitable for years.

And folks who think the NCAA is watching this store too can perhaps buy another bridge from me or other bridge-dealers here on the East Coast.

Now let's see what happens via the record gambling be it legal or illegal.

Personally I am hardly a fan of college sports any more, having seen about as I thought as good as it would get back in 2018 under a system of corrupt haves, mostly in the South plus Ohio State, and have-less's and have-nots under the guise of "NCAA regulation" and all that hot air as if "student-athletes" was ever a real thing in the big-money college sports but for those few offensive linemen with high GPA's over the years.

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That is why I proposed that Canadian Universities start up their own sport channel when TSN and Rogers Sportnet have no desire to carry amateur sports. There is money to be made with a third sports channel

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The NCAA is the most corrupt sporting business in the western world, if not the entire world. It's basically one huge ball of anti-trust and really needs to be shut down or busted up.

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Just scanning the article now, interesting and disturbing. This line from the article reminded me of a book, and I read few books come to think of it, I read decades ago, "Meat on the Hoof" which was about this issue, about Texas football.

"“It was like a meat market,” says Bowden, then an assistant coach at Alabama."

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Dude that is insane - they are all getting into the game - I love that the NCAA finally got busted for their not paying players that make them billions - a shit storm on a grand scale - good luck sorting that one out -

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You know that you are fucked when Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh rips you for your business model - a GOP conservative who would sell his mothers soul for a quick dollar giving you a lecture on how far out of bounds you are -

"The NCAA is not above the law."

Kavanaugh's opinion tears into the NCAA's assertion that amateurism is, as he wrote, "the defining feature of college sports." Such "innocuous labels," as Kavanaugh called them, "cannot disguise the reality: The NCAA’s business model would be flatly illegal in almost any other industry in America."

He continued:

"All of the restaurants in a region cannot come together to cut cooks’ wages on the theory that 'customers prefer' to eat food from low-paid cooks. Law firms cannot conspire to cabin lawyers’ salaries in the name of providing legal services out of a 'love of the law.' Hospitals cannot agree to cap nurses’ income in order to create a 'purer' form of helping the sick. News organizations cannot join forces to curtail pay to reporters to preserve a 'tradition' of public-minded journalism. Movie studios cannot collude to slash benefits to camera crews to kindle a 'spirit of amateurism” in Hollywood.

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This discussion reminds me of how Russia back in the day were allowed to use military hockey personnel who all they basically did was practice hockey and not combat and call them amateurs. I'm sure many here remember those days. An Olympic farce at the time when countries like Canada weren't allowed to send their best to the Olympics because they played in the NHL.

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This has effects that spread way beyond college football, and the whole thing makes little sense to me.

In NCAA basketball, you at least have March Madness where every conference gets a slot, so you can at least pretend that some no-name team from the SWAC or Atlantic Sun has a shot at the title, but football will just become a bigger joke than it already is.

You realistically have about 20(?) schools at most that have a hope of the national title even now, so Kirby Smart's comments about the gap widening with NIL will just make it even more ridiculous. If the media and NCAA powerbrokers were being honest with themselves, they'd just create a 20-team, 2-conference "Elite Division" which plays for the national title, but instead you get the "romance" of a Group of 5 team that "might" make it - and I seem to remember as much opposition as support to Cincinnati being a semi-finalist.

Also, what happens to the non-revenue sports? Do they just die off? What about the "grey area" sports like gymnastics, where a "professional" gymnast is denied the chance of an NCAA place (and I assume scholarship) yet now turns around to see some high school "amateur" football player making hundreds of thousands of dollars?

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Running Back for Texas Longhorns showed up at school driving a brand new Lamborghini that a dealership gave him in exchange for him acting as a sponsor for their dealership. Like people who can afford to buy Lamborghini’s need reminding they can buy one :laughing:

Yup, smells of amateurism at its finest

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The NCAA and College football is the American version of European soccer - for the English Primier League how many clubs have a chance to win the Premiership? 4 or 5? Bundesliga? Three? Spanish League 2 maybe three teams? Then move up to the Champions League - same thing going in at the start of the Champions League Season only 5 or 6 teams have a shot -

NCAA Football has always been like this even though they play the lower tier teams in the same division those teams are just in there to give the big guys easy wins and inflate the records - The bottom feeders of the SEC need three guaranteed victories so that they can get to 0.500 for an overall record -

I don't think this is going to be the end of the world down there - if anything like Texas A&M, Miami and USC are going to be able to use their money to compete with Bama and others -

As far as the non revenue sports they will still exist - the travel budgets might get slashed so they play more local competitions than flying cross country for softball or track and field -

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I'm sure they have a rule about athletic scholarship students having only so many years of eligibility to play but if they didn't, you'd probably see some be lifetime students who see they could make more money from being a student-athlete than going pro if their pro career doesn't look too optimistic. They could rack up in such case a number of degrees earned academically of their own accord or otherwise. :wink:

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There are two issues here.

The first is that all the top programs are skirting the 'rules' (the NCAA's rules) to pay certain star players to play for their program.

The second is that the NCAA makes BILLIONS of dollars of profit and officially pays it's players NOTHING. There are 60 dudes on a roster (more in non-conference games?) and how many of them get not a dime? Furthermore, even though they may be allowed to make an endorsement, they're not allowed to even meet or speak with an agent! Then there's the whole letters of intent garbage where a player must fully commit to a program but the program has zero obligation to actually put the player on the field.

Who cares about the first issue? These are corrupt programs cheating each other. Bust up the SECOND issue so that players are treated fairly and PAID what they're worth during their developmental years and the first issue will go away.

While it might be true that the NCAA is the greatest training ground for football players in the world, that is only because it is the ONLY major training ground for football players in the world and the ONLY profitable training ground for football players in the world. Football training could be far far better without all the restrictions put upon players by the rotten NCAA that doesn't give a damn about it's players any more than it can use them for profit. It's disgusting.

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Yes. And that's how it is in hockey and baseball. These sports have extensive minor-pro systems where a player can play and develop at his pace and be paid at his level for as long as the system has a job for them. NCAA football and basketball gives their players only 4 years to show the world what they can do, often stuck as a backup with limited ability to transfer to find the best place to play, while paying them nothing.

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Justice Kavanaugh and any given Supreme Court Justice and federal judge certainly have their rightful critics, but when that is who it takes to point out what many knew and went along with and profited from for years, and more than the players involved by a large margin such that those caught are usually pinned as if the only bad guys, well that says something about such a system of "justice" and a "society" once again does it not?

Don't shoot the messenger even when it's the bad guy in one's opinion or another's.

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Government WILL be weighing in here on at least three fronts in time for what cannot be swept under the rug any longer:

  1. The IRS for player income
  2. RICO for any given scheme by a conspiracy (i.e. two or more wittingly collaborating parties) that is unlawful so as to sway players involved in unlawful acts let alone violate any contracts on a systematic basis
  3. Gambling regulation

or all of the above. Just watch. You bet there will be change.

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This is exactly what will happen in lieu of the Johnny Manziel "personalities" and the like hyped up especially from the profiteering trash at Disney / ESPN for years now.

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I have no respect for any Kavanaugh opinion but even a broken clock is right twice a day.

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Additionally these sports and/or the authorities behind them seem to do a better job of spelling out exactly what the costs and benefits would be in choosing between NCAA and minor league, so a player is at least going in with their eyes open (unless they're terminally stupid).

Take ice hockey, do you go down the junior route for a semi-pro salary or play at a big-name NCAA school and vault straight into AHL/high-level European leagues when you do finally get paid?

Baseball, do you want to slog in the very low levels for peanuts rather than nothing, or play NCAA for nothing knowing that you'll make much faster progress up the Rookie/Single A scale that someone fresh out of high school?

At least with basketball the sport is played worldwide, so even if you played at a not great school, the status of simply being an NCAA D1 player means there will be a team SOMEWHERE in the world waiting for you - you might get the perk of a higher wage (or possibly be the team's only fully pro player) for being the "star North American import", obviously the downside is you're the star import in the Uzbekistan Premier League.

But football, I really wonder what - how can I phrase this? - "life coaching" or "dose of reality" players get, if they ever do at all? The simple fact is you either crack the NFL or CFL or get stuck playing in some indoor league that hardly qualifies as even semi-pro. The XFL and USFL, even if they stick around, are going to be looking for those "fringe players" who've been NFL roster bottom/practice squad fodder or the 3rd string QB who pops up in pre-season then disappears. Even if a NCAA grad makes it, surviving on $50,000 is a very different life to their belief they were going to make the NFL and have $500,000 to spend.

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What an outstanding post and summary. To your point here on especially gridiron football with the least good alternatives, it's only in about the last decade that the NFL has reached out more to the rookies to offer them more practical wisdom and training from former players and coaches. When a few more listen, as many still don't, so much the better.

As one example, former head coach and player Herman Edwards gives a speech about "one car" and "one house" (beyond paying off the house or buying one for your parent or guardian) and so forth.

Between tax bracket and agent and advisors - legal, sports agent, and accounting - even with the minimum NFL salary of far more than $500K now it is easy to blow through the rest of it at the elevated lifestyle after half is gone to all of the above.

I ran into a former CFL player here in 2019, who later went to the NFL but was injured and cut, who explained that with endorsements, the agent takes 25% and whenever offered if you decline, the sponsor never will ask you again. Now 75% minus whatever taxes you owe is some heavy gravy, but I can only imagine what many of these young players do with that "bonus money" as soon as they get their hands on it!

The point at hand is hardly unique to professional athletes when coming into far more money. We see about the same happen often with heirs of large inheritances and lottery winners.

ESPN did a great 30 For 30 called "Broke" a decade ago on which many a former athlete spoke about their ultimate financial troubles including Andre "Bad Moon" Rison.

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For basketball we still have the farce of a "1-and-done" rule thanks to the meddling NBA.

When it rolled it and still the case, I remember in the age before sports blogs pointing out the hypocrisy amongst the sports media, including ESPN first and foremost as usual, of not questioning the rule for any given American player yet Tony Parker at age 19 from France gets to play in the NBA without any such restriction. What!?

Then came Brandon Jennings who challenged the rule, played a lacklustre season in Italy, then came back to be All Rookie First Team in the NBA with the basketball media all too timid to say much (courtesy of the ruthless David Stern) in 2010 after he shoved the rule up ...

Level playing field for the young extreme talent via the NCAA and NBA my assets!

Now to be fair as you cite @JSC , in baseball the NCAA requires a 3-year deal as is fair for scholarship. I do believe NCAA hockey has a similar arrangement.

I don't see why the same should not be offered in basketball in the NCAA with otherwise any given few players 18 or older giving the NBA a shot or at least the G-league and going from there while they are still young and able.

It's not like there is a rescue plan offering anything at all, beyond the education, should a player injure himself in the NCAA. In the pro leagues, it's dealt with via an injury settlement as in a workers' compensation case or relevant contract provision at the very least. And then said player can still go to college or to an apprenticeship.