The athletes don't end up getting a piece of the action. The NCAA will still pull in all that money, coaches will still make 8-10 million. And that 8-10 million is justified when they put a product not he field that generates hundreds of million in revenue.
No disrespect, but I don’t understand this reasoning. I have no qualms about a great coach getting paid a market rate salary, but no coach puts any “product on the field.” I watch games to see the players, who are the ones actually competing. If Saban coached my local HS’s football team, they might win a few more games, but 50,000 people aren’t going to come to watch them play.
For most athletes in most sports, a full scholarship is likely worth more than they could earn on the market. (Of course, many athletes get partial or no scholarships, and most sports generate negative net revenues.). But I have yet to see any commenter here even try to explain why players who generate outsized revenues for their schools (“name” players in basketball and football and a handful of Olympians, basically) shouldn’t be able to earn what they are worth. Are you opposed to capitalism in general? If not, then why is it ok for college sports to permit capitalism for literally everyone involved except the “workers” who create the “product” people pay billions to watch? It’s like arguing that every actor on a movie set should get $50k salary, including the big-time stars, even if the movie earns $300M after expenses. There is a reason this doesn’t happen: because markets don’t work that way.
There are all kinds of potential problems and pitfalls to changing the current system. But IMO the current system has to change. I don’t pretend to know what the answers are, but “pay everyone except the star players” just doesn’t sit right with me.
When HS athletes enter college there is no guarantee they go pro, there is no guarantee they are even successful at the collegiate level. They receive full tuition, free books, free housing, apparel, backpacks, free meal plans, and basically non prescription healthcare coverage. For about 300 athletes, their worth exceeds this value. They are worth millions and college did hold them back financially, with the tradeoff to that being that they got a head start on a free degree or are almost done with it. Now for every other college athlete they need that degree and will never be worth anything more than a potential successful alumni to the school.
As for the money here is the problem. Athletes can receive money from boosters and companies for their image, great. Mike StudQB goes on recruiting visits. On the visits, the pitch isn't about the school or the facilities, it's about which booster has the biggest paycheck. Now Mike StudQB is making a decision based on money. When Mike StudQB gets to college and isn't the starter the endorsers drop their contract. Now Mike StudQB is looking for a new school that will pay him, now it has nothing to do with the education. What happens when Nike tells Joe StudRB that they'll give him more money and a shoe deal when he is the first pick in the NFL draft. But his stock is already thru the roof, just sit out the last 5 games because you can only get injured. Johnny Touchdowns will get a nice paycheck for the car dealership. They'll also set his mom up with a nice job if he attends the school of their choice and make 4 more commercial appearances. What happens when Andre All Star starts missing class to go to he mall for a poster signing and can't stay eligible, but likely won't be drafted this year? What happens when Zion tears thru a shoe and decides he doesn't like Nike anymore. Does he leave his school and go elsewhere? Do brands still get to pay to supply apparel for the schools? These are very lucrative deals for the institutions that supply the full scholarships and pay coaches.
Athletes do not need a piece. Things are structured the way that they are so things like this do not happen. Athletes enter into contracts in which all the things listed (tuition, food, etc) are all supplied and the only rule is they must remain amateur. The other option is to not take the bad deal (college) and go pro in another country or league. That is capitalism, deciding your worth and getting your true value in the market. Not entering in a contract that explicitly states you can't make money and then complaining that you're broke. These kids know that the NCAA provides the biggest platform for them to raise their stock, they know that if they are injured for 3 straight years that they will have a degree to fall back on, which is why they pass up other options - because they are not as good. They can wait 3 years and take the big money because the CFL does not give them the platform to do that. If you want to blame somebody blame the NBA for not allowing kids to come out of HS. Blame the NFL for not having a minor league/developmental program.
The only alternatives I see to athletes being able to profit is to forfeit the tuition and all the benefits and pay out of pocket. Gamble on yourself if you feel you're worth it. If the education is worthless for the top athletes then why don't they go to Australia for a year and make some money while waiting for the next NBA draft? Because they know they are one injury away from having no money and no education.