"Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel"

My new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" is the follow-up to "Illegal Procedure" and "Roughing the Passer" and is now available in print and in e-formats at amazon.com, smashwords.com and iBooks. Follow me on twitter @kevinkrest.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

THE NCAA JUST CAN'T GET IT RIGHT

In what appeared to be a move in the right direction, the NCAA has allowed universities to provide to athletes, as part of an athletic scholarship, additional compensation that covers the full cost of attendance. Previously, they were entitled to tuition, room, board, books and fees. That didn't do much to provide the student-athletes with walking around money. Now, as I've been advocating for quite a while, scholarship athletes that come from less affluent families won't be treated as second class citizens on campus from an economic perspective. But instead of coming up with an across the board figure that all schools can provide, the NCAA lets the schools themselves determine what the total cost of attendance is. That figure varies, with the extra compensation at Boston College totaling $1500, while it's $6,000 at, you guessed it, Alabama. So in an effort to even the playing field, all the NCAA did was to give the big football schools an additional recruiting tool to attract players. Really?

I find it hard to believe that the smart guys at the NCAA couldn't have come up with a better solution than one that enables athletic donors to funnel additional money to players. I'm not saying that it's easy, but that's a difference of $22,500 over a five year period, assuming a player ends up red-shirting a season, which is a common practice, especially for non-skill positions players. True, I guess BC and the other schools at the lower end of the spectrum could report a higher number, but the additional cost could be prohibitive.  An annual stipend of $6,000, for those that need some help with the math, is a whopping $500 per month. That sure sounds like a lot of walking around money to me. In fact, it appears to be more like running around money.

There have been a lot of ideas thrown around, one of them that proposes putting money in a trust account that the student-athletes will have available to them upon graduation. I like the idea, except that it doesn't solve the walking around money issue. At the end of the day, maybe the big money football schools are going to have it their way no matter what, but I'd have liked to see the NCAA give it a better shot before capitulating so early.

Don't forget to check out my new book, "Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel" and my first, "Illegal Procedure - A PK Frazier Novel", available in print and e-formats at Amazon.com, iBooks and Smashwords. The third installment, "Offsetting Penalties" is due out in the fall.