|Photo: Sandra Sovick - AP Images|
Nothing sucks more than seeing promising college athletes ruin their careers by doing stuff that violates NCAA rules.
This is very much the case with former Auburn Tiger and (now) former Arkansas State running back, Michael Dyer.
After an immensely successful freshman season at Auburn that included a National Championship, Dyer was suspended indefinitely for violating team rules. This was the first strike against his once-promising career.
Dyer, then kicked out of AU, decided to follow his former offensive coordinator to Arkansas State for a fresh start. It seemed to be a promising match, and despite having to sit out a season due to NCAA rules, his future was bright once again.
Then, news breaks that Dyer has been dismissed from the Red Wolves for breaking team rules.
Rules that have ruined many a career in college football — the smack-down of improper benefits.
In an ideal world, what happened with Dyer (he was basically given a pass by a state trooper for not only speeding 26 MPH over, but also the possession of marijuana and a gun), would not allow him to stay on the field. His actions, or the state trooper's lack thereof, do not deserve to be rewarded, and without a doubt suspension should have been on the table.
However, the reason that Dyer was even given that break with the ticket, and that he was even breaking team rules is quite simple — lack of player compensation in college athletics.
It's roundabout, I know.
And before I continue, I also know that had Dyer been being paid for his performance in-game, he would likely still have been speeding and he still would have been smoking pot and carrying a weapon.
Yes, this seems to be a common issue with college athletes. Welcome to the real world.
However, one would have to believe that a state trooper would have felt less-compelled to knock down a ticket a few notches had Dyer not struggled immensely to pay that hefty fine. Maybe that's a reach, but at the same time it may not be.
Outside of speeding tickets being wiped and a violation of team codes, this incident with Dyer prompts the same — should student athletes be paid?
The reason is not because I feel that these players deserve to make millions before making it big in the professional leagues, and it's not even because they work as hard as they do. My logic is simply based in the fact that compensating players (not with millions, but with thousands), would put a kabosh on improper benefits.
Players wouldn't have to sell rings and used jerseys to pay rent. There wouldn't need to be free cars given away. There wouldn't even need to be under the table deals to recruit players. Forget about ruining futures with money, these kids are already wasting their lives in desperation for money.
Just pay every player in college athletics with the pay increasing per-year by tenure, the same amount.
Alright, legally there might be a few more issues. But overall, this is a petition that has been knocking on the door of college sports (the most prevalent being college football) for quite some time. We've passed rules about transfers, drug use and everything else — when is compensation going to be on the table?
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