ADSactly Sports - Corruption, cheating and exploitation? Is this what college sports have come to?

in sports •  6 months ago

ADSactly Sports: Corruption, cheating and exploitation? Is this what college sports have come to?



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Spring can be an extremely important time of year for college athletes. For those who have excelled at their craft, it is a time when they will be drafted into the professional leagues and finally have a chance at that payday they had been dreaming of since they were little. All those years thinking about what it would be like to make it to the bigs and play with the best of the best. A feat that as we have talked about in a previous article is not easy. For many of these college athletes, they are coming to the end of their sporting careers. If they don’t get drafted to the pros then there is a good chance that they will not play sports at an elite level again. After watching the NFL draft I couldn’t help but think about all that encompasses the world of college sports and its athletes. There is a whole lot going on with college sports and not every fan truly understands the good, bad and the ugly surrounding it.

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At its roots, college sport is a wonderful opportunity for young athletes. It is a chance to get an education while continuing to play sports at an elite level after high school. Athletes get to develop their craft and get an education while gaining notoriety and the potential for a professional career. On the other side of the coin, the universities get to have positive attention to the schools and promote the school through the success of its athletes. This is how things were meant to be. Over time this has changed and college sports has become something else. Something bigger. College sports has become big business.

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College sports are widely considered to be some of the best and most entertaining sports to watch. There are many people that would consider themselves to be bigger college sports fans than pro sports fans. In fact, college sports has become a huge business in the United States with billions of dollars at stake. This has created a culture where the lines between right and wrong have become blurred. Money and profits have had an impact on almost all aspects of college sports. From recruitment to stardom and everything in between, money has its claws buried deep into the backbone of college sports.

With the rising demand for revenue and the fierce competition to be the best, there has been a rise in the negative publicity for college sports. Especially the big revenue earners. Football and basketball are far and away the leaders when it comes to revenue earning for a U.S University athletics program. These sports alone bring in millions and millions of dollars in revenue to their universities and athletic programs. Revenue has become such a driving factor in many of the current issues with college sports. The more successful a college team is then the more money they will get back in things like television and media revenue and through the sales of merchandise. Schools have become dependent on this revenue and are spending that money as fast as they get it to continue “building” the program. In some cases, even with the massive influx of revenue the athletic departments of many of these schools are operating at a loss.

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To critics of big-time college athletics in America, however, the persistent inability of programs to profit despite continually rising income is evidence of systemic, wasteful spending.
“College sports is big business, and it’s a very poorly run big business,” said David Ridpath, a business professor at Ohio University and board member for the Drake Group, a nonprofit advocating for an overhaul of commercialized college sports.
“It’s frustrating to see universities, especially public ones, pleading poverty . . . and it is morally wrong for schools bringing in millions extra on athletics to continue to charge students and academics to support programs that, with a little bit of fiscal sense, could turn profits or at least break even.”
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How is it possible for these universities to be losing money when they are receiving so much revenue? Where on earth is this money going? It seems that the more money you make then the more you need to spend in order to keep making that same revenue. The problem is that there are big inequalities to the spending of this money and this has lead to a lot of scrutiny of NCAA policies. Some of these school biggest expenditures are marketing, recruiting and coaches pay. In fact, in many cases the coaches pay is by far the biggest expense for these schools. A coach can be the difference in the efforts to recruit a star player.
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There was a time when I thought that the biggest expense for a school would be the amount of money handed out for scholarships. Scholarships are:

a grant or payment made to support a student's education, awarded on the basis of academic or other achievement.
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Universities use scholarships to lure elite athletes to come to their school and play sports. This means that not only does the player get to play sports at a high level and potentially attract professional scouts, they also get a free education. I was shocked to find out that there was such a low number of college athletes that actually get scholarships.

The odds of winning an NCAA sports scholarship are miniscule. Only about 2 percent of high school athletes win sports scholarships every year at NCAA colleges and universities. Yes, the odds are that dismal. For those who do snag one, the average scholarship is less than $11,000.

Full-ride sports scholarships are scarce. There are only six sports where all the scholarships are full ride. These so-called head-count sports are football, men and women's basketball, and women's gymnastics, volleyball, and tennis. In these Division I sports, athletes receive a full ride or no ride.
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This means that the majority of these college athletes are paying full price to attend these universities and on top of that there are athletic fees at a lot of these schools. How could I have been so naive as to think that most of these athletes were getting their education either fully paid for or supplemented? The reality is that most fans have a very similar misconception. This information coupled with the fact that only a minute percentage of college athletes will actually make it and go on to the pros makes me wonder if it is even worth it for these kids to play and give their all. I get that they all have the dream of making it to the pros but they risk injury all the time for schools that reward and glorify only the elite players and make millions of dollars off the backs of these athletes.

There has been an increasingly brewing argument about whether or not college athletes should get paid. Under the current rules, college athletes are considered amateur athletes and are forbidden from receiving payment for their playing outside of the rewarding of scholarships. This has lead to a number of high profile scandals in the NCAA as schools have attempted to recruit high-level players by offering them “gifts”. These gifts are often arranged through a third party supporter of the school who is willing to pony up some money in order to help keep a potential star happy and playing at a particular school. There have even been cases where coaches are the leaders of this corruption.

In 1989 University of Oklahoma Sooners head coach Barry Switzer was caught offering illegal cars and money to players.
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Schools have been caught faking test scores and having students pass classes without doing the work or even attending class at times. There have even been findings of players being recruited through the use of prostitutes and drugs. Students have even been caught up in gambling and shaving points in NCAA sports. Manipulating scores of games to ensure a certain bet wins can be a way to supplement your income if you are an athlete struggling to get by. This type of corruption is a tragedy when at the end of the day these players will do 4 years at school and then be moved along and forgotten while the schools continue to reap the rewards.

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There have been several films documenting the corruption in college sports. One of the most notable is the movie “Blue Chip” starring NBA stars Shaquille O’Neal and Larry Bird as well as well renowned actor Nick Nolte. The film is a scathing example of how corruption can play a part in the creation and development of teams. From cheating to boosters rewarding players through gifts “Blue Chips” demonstrates the worst of what college sports can be.

Blue Chips Trailer

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The reason professional athletes make so much money is the fact that they are the product. Owners and teams are able to charge high prices for tickets and merchandise as well as sign massive television deals because the public wants to see these players. This same phenomenon has occurred in college sports as well and yet a measly 2% of players are rewarded in any way? How can it be considered fair in any way that these schools are able to bring in these obscene revenues while the majority of players are getting very little in return? There has to be a better way. The efforts of these players should be rewarded in some way. Many people believe that players should be getting paid to play college sports and there is a feeling that players are being taken advantage of. In 2013 Sports Illustrated printed an article titled "Pay for Play" where all the reasons to pay college players for playing college sports are outlined.

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College sports have even been described as:

exploitative and immoral, replete with lies, scandal, and corruption, denigrating the academic mission of universities.
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This is a scathing statement about an institution that is supposed to be setting the standard for the growth and development of tomorrow's leaders. What are we teaching these young people about how the world works. Forget about sports for a moment and just think about the inequality and negligence of this whole system. I personally don’t know if paying players in the right answer but I do feel that something needs to change. How can we continue to support these programs? Does the entertainment value supersede our moral compass? Why can’t these huge revenues go towards providing more scholarships and assisting with the cost of education for more of these athletes? Should universities be making profits while student tuitions continue to rise?

I would love to hear how you feel about the issues of corruption and cheating in college sports. Do you think the system is fine the way it is or does there need to be a fundamental shift in how these schools operate?

Authored by @broncofan99

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finally have a chance at that payday they had been dreaming of since they were little.

Just like you mentioned! Colleges help these talented athletes their dreams to come true and at the same time these students having a great opportunity to get a great education. It’s a win win situation for athletes and colleges as well since these talented kids represent them. At least that’s how it supposed to be, that’s how it was meant to be.
We were wrong! They were wrong! With student getting just a minimal portion of the entire budget while being “aware” of this much money being involved, it eventually leads only one direction “greed & corruption”.
I agree with you! Something has to change and to be honest with you after reading your article, it’s hard to say what exactly must be changed. In my opinion the main problem is too much money being involved. That is the main reason colleges, coaches and eventually even students forget about their real purpose and get corrupted because of their greed. It’s like a domino, everyone follows.
Before reading your article I thought these kids get paid for almost everything and some extra. I guess I was wrong. In my opinion if there wasn’t that much money involved we wouldn’t be talking about this issue at all. It worked before, why wouldn’t it work now.

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The reality is that as with most things in life, money changes everything!! The other reality is that not enough of these players are getting the "education" they deserve out of this.

The system in developed countries allows young and talented players (students of colleges or students of schools) to prove themselves. A person who dedicates his life from an early age to sports has the opportunity to connect his life with the career of a professional athlete.
It is necessary to accept the fact that Sport in its various forms has become a way to make money. But if earlier it concerned "the higher league", now sports in college became a way of earnings for the organizers. It's business. The way to monetize the efforts of players and the interest of fans.
It is natural that where there is "big money" there is a blurring of the notions between the right and wrong. And where there are big incomes there are also big expenses. Often you can see the abuse of the system.

I liked that you gathered the facts together and brought the evidence. In fact, this is an investigation that opens your eyes to what is really happening. Many fans come to enjoy the game and get pleasure. Not everyone of them is able or wants to see in this trick. Before that, I was little aware of the functioning of this entire system. Now I know more. Well done, thanks. Interesting stuff.

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That is the world we live in. If there is an opportunity to monetize something then people will take it. I don't see how the current system has the students (players) best interest in mind.

Wow... This is an interesting one.
In my country we barely or do I say never have such project ongoing in universities...

Sport has always been an extra curricular activity and nothing more than that.
If a team crosses to play with another university team and receive a token for winning or anything, that token becomes the income of the team and they spend it within themselves on their sport equipment and individual expenses.

Also, the school never recruits or admits students who they feel are good players to enhance their winnings because we do not have a course of study that basically focuses on sport activities just the Physical and health education and that is a general course for alot of things. So sporting is just an activity that good players from different faculties engage in and represent the school.

We barely even have standardized equipment for knowledge, where on earth do we get such huge amount of money to invest on college sports?

It's a good thing to know that other countries do differently in their sport activities and see it as a way of earning income.

I think I'll have to research properly on this. Thanks for sharing this vital information.

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This is such a huge issue. When it comes to college sport in the US the education side of things is secondary. Players often are taking simple courses just to show they are in school. All this while tuition for regular students goes up every year. College sports has become a huge business.

Wow, I knew college players got less than pro athletes buy not to this scale. Matter of fact I'm one of those people that believed that once an elite school chooses you, you can live an easy going even lavish lifestyle as long as you get the grades and score those touchdowns.

But this is appalling, they get scraps for entertaining the glutons, its almost like we're back in the days of gladiators fighting for their freedom/fame only to be forgotten when a new prodigy shows up or death comes knockin.smh

But I still dont think commercialised college sports should be completely eradicated, but those scolarships should be spread among more talented students, the school should get less and the coaches paychecks along with how much power their views/biases hold should be drastically cut too.

More pro athletes should talk about these things, then maybe their fans can take a stand against the system and things will change.

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Yeah, I think that the majority of people think that making it to college means that you have it set. I was personally not aware that these players actually paid athletic fees. Such a small % of these athletes are getting any rewards at all. I think that the players don't complain because this is their best ticket to get a shot at the pros. That is the end game for the majority of them and there is a large number that never actually graduate.

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Its sad really, the students chase the glorified lifestyle and the schools just take advantage of their position. Hopefully that system is made fair and the revenue is distributed proportionally to each party's contribution on the team. Doubt that would happen soon tho :(

You know I'm a fan. I love college athletics. Go Cougs!

You should know that I am also aware of the shame of college athletics. Generally speaking, the coaches salary at a top tier school costs the program way more than the total of the scholarships. Excuse me?

I do not know what the answer is. The management of big time sports programs at universities is often left to people directly involved in the sports side. Horrible choice.

I could go on and on and on. I think it stinks, but I don't think there is an easy answer. Sad stuff, really.

Thanks for a great article. Really well written and thought.

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Yh
Sports management is different from the game itself. I think nothing can be done. The money involved is too big and tempting.

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Some of these coaches are making millions and millions of dollars. This is about having the best coaches to lure the best players. The best programs get the best TV coverage and more coverage is more $$$. It is sad but the chance of getting a pro deal makes it worthwhile to the players no matter how wrong it is.

I love sports very much.But nowadays corruption make sports worse.It's actually very bad, I don't even understand why some people are doing this kind of shameful things? Ayway, nice post sir.Thanks for sharing.

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Money breeds corruption

The only players who should be paid will being playing in revenue sports. This means for the most part Mens basketball & football programs. If you start paying these players, the cuts will impact the non- revenue sports. Yes, players should be compensated. But, be careful what you ask for.

Or get rid of scholarships in all college sports. Let great athletes play in minor leagues. Problem solved.

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So well said!!! This call to pay athletes is not directed at the field hockey team or the volleyball teams.

The irony is that the "student athletes" aren't even getting an education. Most are squandering the opportunity they are given on the party lifestyle while getting a degree in Basket Weaving 101.

They might as well get paid for their efforts.

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This has been a complaint for years. Rumours that some of these great players are getting into colleges without earning it and taking joke courses.

I love sports, especially basketball!

This is a beautiful write up and very detailed.

A fundamental shift will be difficult; reason being that where there is good inflow of money corruption/corrupt people lurk around. They will fight dirty to have their way, and most times they do.

It is a big shame that the institution which was designed to help the students is doing so in reverse. Exploiting them for personal gains.

I will support pay for play as that will concentrate the funds in the hands of the players and push some of the corrupt shots aside.

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It is too bad because there are a lot of great people involved in college sports but the bad stuff has a way of rising to the top.

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Thanks for you adsactly sir...

No.its far far worse. All sports; music, content, teachers, corporations institutions and gouvernment. Essentially society as a whole is in complete breakdown and many are blind to the fact. Pat youselves on the back and get back in your little box....

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The Romans did invent the colosseum to distract the general public, and how often do we see sports? Year round and while people outrage over LeBron vs MJ we hardly hear any outcry over laws & bills that are unjust.

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That is an interesting point

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I'm not super against sporta or anything I love my sports but the gov. is most certainly shady just like that NC bill where everyone flipped over the bathroom portion there was all sorts of other stuff in that bill including some gerrymandering rights so we just see the headlined garbage and then the NBA and NFL push NC over the bathroom issue on top of that so the rest goes unnoticed

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It is so much bigger than sports for sure.

This is teaching young people to do the wrong thing.

Wow this is really bad, it is not helping the students at all. They should be a team that will be able to check out all this bad things going on in college sports, if found they should be seriously punished. Thanks for sharing another wonderful post I really like it

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There are a lot of people complaining but there don't seem to be any changes on the horizon.

Great article
There's nothing wrong with the system. The problem lie with humans who must find a way to exploit whatever system is in place for money.
The truth is, there's so much money in sports, its almost irresistible.

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You are right. Humans are more often than not going to choose the path of greed.

We live in an era of fraud in America. Not just in banking, but in government, education, religion, food, even baseball... What bothers me isn't that fraud is not nice. Or that fraud is mean. For fifteen thousand years, fraud and short sighted thinking have never, ever worked. Not once. Eventually, you get caught, things go south. When the hell did we forget all that? I thought we were better than this, I really did.

Quoting from Mark Baum's dialogue in the movie The Big Short, it really is just the way the world works. Hard to change, but still possible. It just needs to take little steps, even in ourselves, we can stop this. I really do hope one day this would end. And well, we are still the ones who will take the consequences.

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It is unfortunate and people are entertained and willing to buy tickets to it.

My favorite aming them is football because its the moat famous passionate and rhrilling among all these. There is adorce in it which attracts others towards football. It is lije contagious one you watch it or play it you ll.become its die hard fan.

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It's the sport of kings.

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Fame and money can drive anyone so crazy that they can decline their moral values.

Good game

It is incredible to see how corruption and exploitation in University Sports has grown, is a reflection of the situation we live in venezuela, these @broncofan99 doing a great job and once more congratulate you for your great effort. God bless you always. I hope some day become part of the family of @ADSactly.

Regards

I think as long as its in the College system the corruption will exists. The best way to get rid of the corruption is to seperate the team from thr school and create a semi pro league to train the potential pros. Schools of course won't want to do this and I feel that there may be a lot of disagreement from all sides. Its real hard to change a system this big and succesful.

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This would be a solution that might also create a problem. How many players would then skip school altogether and go straight for the Semi-pro leagues?

wow really was unaware of all the cheating and corruption that exists behind college sports. I am a basketball lover and although unfortunately I could not practice it at a high level, I still love it. I'm from Venezuela and the system to recruit athletes here is terrible and has always been taken as an example to other countries that develop world-class athletes. It is regrettable that corruption damages something as beautiful as the sport that has made many young people leave the streets to do something good in their lives. I believe that strict measures must be taken regarding this. I believe that if they use the scholarships correctly, giving them to those who need them, a greater number of high-level athletes would be obtained. The goal should not be to create a great publicity but thousands of young people can fulfill their dreams of being professionals, without a doubt that would be the greatest publicity they can have. Excellent post friend congratulations.

It really is astonishing that the NCAA makes as much money as it does and practically none of it filters down to the athletes themselves. I am currently pursuing a career in collegiate sports as an Athletic Director so I will be faced with this ethical dilemma on a daily basis.

I would like to see a future where all NCAA athletes regardless of sport receive free college tuition. Though this may be harder to accomplish by smaller schools who do not profit as much off of their athletic programs. I am now even more interested in the issue and will definitely be doing some research into current proposed solutions.

i think the premise that college atheletes should get directly paid is ridiculous. colleges are around to make sure that their students have a way of life beyond sports. if colleges formally start paying money (which i am sure they are already illegally doing), then there is no incentive to study.

Most of the money raised by the universities from these fat contracts is supposed to go towards enhancing the academic program.

It is only now that lots of student athletes are realizing the value of education after the disappointments of pursuing professional sports careers. for most of them, success is a mirage.

The system is glorifying the sport so much that athletes treat colleges as a watering hole. The sport has become a madness with so much money filling the coffers of universities.

if you look Alabama football, no one talks about the university anymore. it is only about the athletes and Nick Saban. Look at Ohio State, Urban Meyer and their star athletes. there is way too much money and it is not healthy at an academic level.

If the intent of universities is to distill and extract the top 50 athletes every year, then what about the 1000s who dont make it. by giving more money, you are guaranteeing a future that does not exist

maybe scholarship amounts should be raised and university spending severely audited?