Dear Free-marketeers: How much of your company's corporate profits do you see?

First off:  Merry Christmas Everyone!

After this Ohio State debacle, I have been seeing more of this 'Lets go ahead and play players' and 'don't give me the get a free education and room and board crap' on message boards and comment sections.  I say 'Bullcrap!  Get your head out of your ass.'  First we all know that the majority of schools could never afford it.  That includes a large portion of D-1 FBS schools.

As some of you may have seen me discussing before, I am a 2nd year IMBA student at USC.  While this in no manner means that I know everything, I did write a report on this subject for my Law and Economics class discussing the financial viability and legal theory involved with current player contracts.  A large section of my research involved looking at the athletic budgets of D-1 FBS schools.

Looking solely at football budgets, 32 current FBS schools lose money on their Football programs.  If ONLY football players were paid minimum wage ($7.25/hr) for only the NCAA allowable mandatory practice times (does not include 'voluntary' workouts, meetings and film-study) the number of Football programs in the red goes to 36.  This includes 2 ACC schools and 4 Big East schools.  If you look at the athletic department as a whole, 38 FBS programs are in the red and would increase to 61 programs, or 53% of FBS schools.  That's right... over half of the FBS programs would lose money if we paid players minimum wage for mandatory practice time.  This would include 5 ACC schools, 4 Big 12 schools, 3 Big East schools, 3 Big 10 schools, all 8 public Pac-10 schools, and 2 SEC schools.

I want to address the comments that got me started on this little rant here on Christmas Eve.  'Schools make big money off the kids, its not fair to them'.  Let me ask you one question:  How much money does the corporation you work for share with you?  As follow up:  what does your salary pay for?  The money you make for your work pays for your living conditions, your food, an allowance for entertainment.  In return you are expected to provide a service. Some people are lucky enough to work for a company that provides bonuses, others aren't, but the company is not required to provide the employee a share of profits beyond the agreed salary amount (with the exception of employee owned corporations or other such enterprises, of course).

Lastly, from a contracts point of view.  The school solicits the athlete to play for them for a year, the athlete accepts the offer, and in return the school agrees to provide certain things that have a monetary value as consideration. Namely, tuition, room and board, and an allowance.  These 3 aspects are what constitute a legal contract.  The athlete enters this contract voluntarily, with full knowledge of what is expected and what is to be afforded, and what the restrictions are.  As such, these athletes are not being taken advantage of.  The market has set the rate, albeit it is a regulated market.  The problem comes from an inconsistent regulator, not from the nature of the contract.

That's all I really have energy for tonight.  My paper was 10 pages long, And I am not against putting it up somewhere if you guys want to debate it, critique it, or tell me I am legally retarded.  I may want to look it over once first before I do so, however.  I hope you all have a very merry holiday.

Merry HoHo Everyone!!


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