The “pay-for-play” debate has raged on as intensely as ever this summer, but the question of whether or not universities should pay their student-athletes has taken a back seat.
Instead, much of the talk has centered around an athlete’s rights to his or her own name or likeness, with Johnny Manziel‘s autograph scandal standing at the forefront.
On Thursday, reigning NFL MVP Adrian Peterson became the latest of the players who do get paid to weigh in on amateur player compensation, and the Vikings star seems to be a big supporter of Team Manziel.
“I think so,” Peterson told FOXSports.com when asked if student-athletes should be allowed to profit off their name. “The universities are making a lot of money off of student-athletes in general. So, yeah he should be able to make money. I think so. They make millions off of these college athletes and they made millions off of the guys I played with as well. Yeah, he should be getting paid.”
Peterson did not address the issue of equal compensation for all collegiate athletes, but his basic stance was this: If you’re good enough that people are willing to pay for your autograph, you should be able to profit from it.
“I think if you are in a position to where people want to pay you for your autographs or signatures then you should be able to do that,” he said. “[Manziel's] a young man and he should be able to sign his name on a helmet or wherever without it being an issue.”
Manziel, the defending Heisman Trophy winner, is under investigation for allegedly being compensated for signing thousands of items for autograph brokers. If the NCAA finds evidence of this, he could face suspension.