$2,000 Stipend: Is the NCAA on the Verge of Allowing Payments to Players?

Posted by rtmsf on October 24th, 2011

Perhaps the winds of change are in the air after all.  Not a month after Taylor Branch’s opus in The Atlantic excoriated the NCAA for its stubborn adhesion to the twin tenets of amateurism and the “student-athlete,” and not five months after Big Ten commissioner Jim Delaney floated an idea to provide a “full cost of attendance” stipend to its players, the NCAA’s president, Mark Emmert, appears to be on board. Emmert told the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics Monday that he feels the time is ripe for addressing such an inequity for the first time in a couple of generations.  What does the NCAA say the gap between the value of tuition, fees, room, board, and books versus the full cost of attendance amounts to?  Try $2,000 per year.

Emmert Appears Willing to Open the Floodgates

This week, I’ll be asking the board to support a proposal to allow conferences — not mandate anyone, but allow conferences, not individual institutions — to increase the value of an athletic grant in aid to more closely approach the full cost of attendance. [...] We are going to create a model that would allow — probably… up to $2,000 in addition to tuition, fees, room and board, books and supplies.

Interesting.  A couple of grand may not seem like much considering the astronomical dollar figures that schools make on the backs of these players, but it’s not insignificant either.  A two-semester school year encompasses roughly nine months for an athlete: dividing that figure by 39 weeks results in an allowance of roughly $51 per week. What college student couldn’t use a little shy of ten bucks a day to buy pizza, fill up his gas tank and occasionally join his buddies for an evening out to the movies and some greasy spoon afterward?  It seems a pittance given the figures going into the coffers of the power conference schools, right?  But therein lies the problem.

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Morning Five: 05.25.10 Edition

Posted by rtmsf on May 25th, 2010

  1. Some transfer news from the weekend…  Two of the bigger names in college basketball from a celebrity perspective are leaving their respective schools.  Guard Jeff Jordan (MJ’s son, in case you hadn’t heard) is leaving Illinois for his senior season a mere year after he quit the team and returned the first time.  We’re not sure what exactly the deal is with the somewhat indecisive Jordan, but the word is that he’s looking for more PT than the fourteen minutes per game he received last year for the Illini.  The other big transfer name belongs to Percy Miller, aka Lil Romeo, the hip-hop star who presumably sold a lot more albums than he scored points (5) in his two-year USC Trojan career.  The subject of one of RTC’s first-ever posts (#3 actually), it’s not clear whether he will try to continue playing college basketball elsewhere or give it up completely.
  2. Moving to players that actually matter at this level, former Washington guard Elston Turner will re-surface at Texas A&M beginning in 2011-12 and LSU star guard Bo Spencer will be ineligible for the fall semester next season as a result of academic problems.  Turner will have two years of eligibility in College Station, while Spencer will have an opportunity to return to his team next winter if he can get his books in order.
  3. The final notable piece of news with players leaving is that Florida’s Nimrod Tishman is leaving the Gator program after only one year in Gainesville.  He is returning to Israel to play professionally, causing mass lamentations throughout the SEC fanbases from Fayetteville to Columbia.
  4. Is the one-year renewable scholarship a bigger problem than we, or anyone, knows?  If you buy USA Today’s report that over 20% of athletes on the 65 NCAA teams leave the program in a given year, it just might be.  We’d never really given it much thought other than when a new coach comes into town and runs everyone off (see: Calipari, John), but maybe we should start paying attention to this a little more.
  5. We always thought something didn’t smell quite right with the universally-liked and respected Tyler Smith being caught with a firearm in a rental car on New Year’s Day.  Smith finally came out and said that he purchased the gun based on death threats that he was receiving about his three-year old son.  He didn’t go into details as to whom was making the threats or why they would be making them, but he’s now back in Tennessee after playing professionally in Turkey for a few months and waiting to see if his name is called next month in the NBA Draft.
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MJ Just Saved Himself $63,426 (or, a fully loaded E-class Benz)

Posted by rtmsf on January 23rd, 2009

You may have heard that Mike Jordan has a kid who is a sophomore guard at the University of Illinois.  You may have also heard that this son, Jeff, is a little smaller than his dad and not quite as gifted with the rock in his hands, but that he occasionally can wow folks with a highlight-reel dunk replete with tongue-wag after the flush. 

Jeff Jordan MM

What you may not have known is that Jordan the Junior was a walk-on for the year-plus he’s been a member of the Illini program.  No longer.  Citing Jeff Jordan’s tenacity on defense and willingness to be a team player, Bruce Weber announced yesterday that he would receive a scholarship as a product of his hard work.  From the St Louis Post-Dispatch:

“He’s proven to us that he belongs,” Weber said. “He’s done a nice job of having a niche, a role. He’s a pest on defense. He pushes the ball on the break as well as anyone — better than Chester (Frazier) and Demetri (McCamey). He’s just a quality kid and a good team member.”

But wait, haven’t we heard this story before?  Young pup gets denied by coach only to come back stronger than ever the next year en route to taking over the marketing and basketball world for a generation?  Well… that story is true, but the parallel ends because it involved MJ’s high school tribulations, and JJ is already in college.  Even so, JJ’s numbers (1.4 ppg/1.3 apg on 53% shooting in 10 mpg) suggest that has risen to the level of contributor in his college career, and mayb he has another 5-inch growth spurt still in him. 

Well, even if he doesn’t grow any further, we figure his dad owes him a new one of these based on the $25k or so a year he saved the Company. 

benz-e-class

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