It seems that these days every day of every week brings about new developments along with new violators of the NCAA Rules of Conduct as well as new sanctions.
Just this week, Georgia Tech joined the list when the NCAA placed the Yellow Jackets on a four-year probation along with a fine of $100,000 and stripping them of the 2009 ACC Championship. We also had a look at the LSU Tigers and its relationship with Willie Lyles - the same person who could bring down the Oregon Ducks. Everyone is well aware of the Ohio State Buckeyes on-goings and while they have received some form of punishment, they are clearly not out of the woods yet. Let's not forget the Auburn investigation either.
Throw is some teams like the Florida State Seminoles, Michigan Wolverines, USC Trojans, and the West Virginia Mountaineers and we are looking at a can of worms that is continuously spilling over. But, don't forget about the Alabama Crimson Tide who are current conducting an internal investigation and the North Carolina Tarheels incident.
Six of the aforementioned teams have played in a BCS Championship Game in the past six season. One simple look at all of this tells us that the top programs have long cheated their way to the top without being caught. In fact it had become a game of cat and mouse with many teams flying under the radar. Now teams are staring down the barrel of a .45 unsure of when the thing is gonna go off.
Is there a fix?
Vacated wins/seasons and fines look bad to the public but carry little weight on the university and its football program. Many have thought that paying student athletes will quickly solve the problem that is rearing its ugly head in the world of college sports right now, but will it? There is a huge problem and divide that has been created by this idea. If one sport gets paid why shouldn't the rest?
Schools are pulling in far more revenue than they are handing out in scholarships to student athletes. It is something that is very feasible for schools to begin paying their players. The real question remains, if they pay players will it completely derail the violations that players are committing or are the players gonna continue to do what they are doing in order to double their pay?
Ryan Bower has come up with this proposal
It's simple… we pay the players. Not right away, but AFTER they've earned their degree from their university. The details would have to be looked at and policed rigorously by the NCAA, but the establishment of a trust fund for former athletes could end up being the right move.
If each athletic department set aside a certain percentage of money to be equally distributed to athletes upon graduation, you've done two things right. You've encouraged the athlete to obtain their degree (in my plan you only get paid if you graduate) and you've compensated them for the millions they've brought in.
I'm sure you're wondering about the athletes who leave early, right? Well, they don't get paid, it's just that simple. Those athletes are more than likely leaving to make millions of dollars at the professional level and if they can't make it on that, well then its their own fault.
Sounds like a simple plan that has the potential to work.
College Football has met a huge crossroads and people are calling for action. It is only a matter of time before something has to be done.