by Dave Meggyesy
The question of whether colleges should pay their revenue-producing athletes — football and basketball players at the NCAA's top 120 college programs — is a no-brainer.
The amazing reality is that these athletes, the hired help whose performance generates hundreds of millions for these top programs, don't get paid. Who wouldn't want a business where the cost of your product is virtually zero? The performance of college athletes is the product!
Yet, as a marketing ploy, the NCAA defines college-revenue athletes as "student-athletes" and the games as contests among amateurs, creating a huge distortion. In these "big time" college programs, even the term "athlete-student" would be a stretch; athlete-employee is more accurate, young men and recently young women who work year-round at jobs and don't get paid.