In a time when many student-athletes are being questioned for accepting illegal bribes, National Collegiate Athletic Association President Mark Emmert wants to get them more money -– legally.
USA Today reports that Emmert wants to distinguish between “paying for play” and providing student-athletes with financial support to help them with day-to-day expenses like laundry and public transportation. He added that he plans to discuss this financial upgrade at the NCAA board meetings in April.
Emmert is suggesting putting some of the revenue generated from college sports broadcasts toward an increase in athletes’ scholarships. This past season, the football Bowl Championships alone made close to $125 million from television deals. This past June, NCAA basketball signed a deal with CBS worth at least $10.8 billion. The NCAA president wants some of that money to be put to good use for the athletes.
According to the current NCAA mandate, colleges and universities are allowed to provide scholarships to student-athletes which cover fees for tuition, room and board, food, books, other school supplies and any other random fees that might arise, Bloomberg.com reports.
“If you add $2,000 or $3,000 or $4,000 to the cost of an individual scholarship and multiply that by all the athletes in Division I, that’s a lot of students, so many universities look at this and say, ‘Gee, we couldn’t afford that,'” Emmert said. “I just want to put it on the table as a conversation topic.”
Emmert said that he cannot guarantee any changes, but he will be happy to get the discussion started.