Proposal 3: College Athletics’ Evolution

For my third proposal, I will look at the societal impacts of the idea of collegiate athletes getting paid. In the late 1800s and the early 1900s, various professional sports leagues were founded. The culture of these leagues is that players are employees of the organization and are paid to play. Playing their sport is their profession, and more for the vast majority of sports, their only profession. Initially, playing sports in college, for the particularly talented athletes, was a transition time between youth/high school sports and professional sports. It was an opportunity for some athletes to receive a college education for free, while competing for one of the college’s sports teams.

Over the past few decades, the purpose of college athletics has veered away from the traditional amateur competitive atmosphere and has become an opportunity for schools to generate impressive revenue numbers. In order to keep up with competing schools, various schools have made decisions that are against the core values of the NCAA. Many people feel as if schools should be able to give star players incentives to go to their school because it will ultimately lead to an increase in revenue. On the other hand, many people feel as if the NCAA shouldn’t be all about maximizing their profits, and they should not give players incentives to join programs. In my paper, I will analyze both sides of this argument.


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