Central New York, Sports, Syracuse

Student-Athletes Help Schools Make Millions and They Don’t See a Dime

Ernie Davis statue in front of the dome (c) Matt Dzenawager

Listen here to listen to a former college football player, an athletic department intern, and a sports podcast host give their arguments for and against paying college athletes.

Audio Transcript: Pay for Play?

By Matt Dzenawager SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) — College athletics help schools around the United States bring in millions. Twenty-seven division one schools bring in over $100 million of athletic revenue. This immense amount of money fuels the debate on whether or not college athletes should receive pay.

Samuel Clausman, a former Syracuse football offensive lineman, personally feels that when he was playing football it was considered more important than his academics.

“I was never verbally told that football was more important than school,” Clausman said “but there were definitely sometimes were I felt that there was more of an emphasis on what we were doing in football and that it was prioritized over school”

On the contrary, Jason Herman, communications intern for Syracuse’s athletic department understands that the time commitment for athletes can make school difficult. However, because of the time commitment, the athletic department ensures the athletes have the help they need.

“They have professionals within the athletic department that are there to make sure the student-athletes are on top of their academics,” Herman said.

In training camp after his redshirt sophomore season, Clausman got sent to the hospital after being knocked out at practice. When he went to the hospital they told him the dire news.

“I was told in the hospital if I got another concussion that the effects would be a lot worse than the one I had and the one I had was pretty bad, so yeah that’s the reason I can’t play anymore”

Clausman was medically disqualified from playing the game of football. He thinks this is a far too common situation for young football players.

“With my case I don’t know if I would have gone to the NFL, like who knows,” he said “but someone who like started their freshman year, was a really high recruit, like talked about going to the NFL their Freshman year like if they get hurt their sophomore year on the like the college’s terms their body could be worth hundreds and millions of dollars that they’ll never see”

In the 2016/2017 academic year Syracuse athletics brought in just over $90 million, Clausman never saw a dime. Although the school still grants him his scholarship and the NCAA gives him a cost of living check, Clausman will never know how lucrative his football future could have been.

721 Sports podcast host John Macce does not believe college athletes should get paid, as they are already getting paid with a scholarship to cover or help with the cost of tuition. However, Macce does think the athletic department should help student-athletes in their professional futures.

“They shouldn’t be paid, but they should be given opportunities through the sports programs.”

Aout two percent of college athletes make it to the pros in their respective sports, so most student-athletes are never paid to play.