By Guest | Published 08/11/2022 | USF Bulls Athletics
THIS POST IS NOT ABOUT DREAMFIELD OR THE FOWLER AVE COLLECTIVE OR EVEN USF
Ok, with that out of the way I’d like to talk about the man behind the curtain. He’s pulled a bit of a trick on us, and we were too busy looking at one hand while he was pulling off the trick with the other. Feels like just yesterday the battle cry that was the injustice of the sport sounded like, “this is a billion dollar industry and the kids don’t make any money. It’s their bodies on the line. They should get a slice!!!”
The demand was a slice of the pie.
But what did the man behind the curtain give us? NIL. Let the kids make money off their name, image, and likeness. It’s only fair right? (It is) But wait a second… What happened to the pie we all thought the kids deserved a slice of? Hmm sounds like the rich old boys at the TV networks, conference offices, 9 million dollar coaches, and some of the high dollar athletics departments got to keep their pie. Untouched.
In fact their pie is growing. The B1Gs new TV deal is reportedly going to be in the neighborhood of 1.5 billion… per year. That’s around 90+ million per school per year. And yet even schools like Ohio State have collectives that have their hand out to the average fan to “chip in” to “compensate these Athletes for their brand.” Even running a nice little scam where they get tax protected status to pay athletes to market for charities. They could just donate it all to charities but heck that ain’t gonna bring in talent. How is the pie getting bigger and yet they still need a little bit more from us. The fans. The fans who buy the tickets, pay for the parking, buy the merch, pay for the TV packages, buy the [insert brand who will sponsor this blog] beer that advertises on the TV during games.
Yes it’s us who need to come up with just a bit more to pay the players… to play for our university… because if we don’t “we’re not keeping up” and they’ll just go to where the fans/donors will pay more? That’s the sport we fell in love with?
Feels like the relationship has changed, and not for the better. The dirty side of NIL has not been reigned in. And I know what you’re going to say - this has always been happening it’s just legal now. (See Cam Newton). Well you know what, I kinda liked it better under the table and “illegal.” At least I could pretend it was fair. It sure felt more fair.
Even worse the 4 team playoff decided by a committee of people who work for the TV company who godfathers the entire sport made competing for a title a borderline popularity contest. It’s so top heavy only about 4-5 schools realistically compete for the title. Then they have the stones to tell you the fans “well you all can pay the kids, but a 12 team playoff is just too much to ask.”
So that’s where we’re at. The fans get conference realignment with UCLA playing Rutgers in order to formulate a TV deal so massive that it cannot seem to compensate the players. Maybe that’s where it’s going. But for now, the sport needs more of your money. Somehow the people we wanted pie from have more pie than ever. And everyone’s got their eye on NIL while the sport slowly reforms into 2 mega conference controlled by guess who - TV companies who cannot bear the burden of paying these kids.
All that being said the genie isn’t going back in the bottle. And I don’t think athletes getting a little money to be on a billboard or money for their autograph is a bad thing. And I knew it would only set USF back further in the hunt. But right is right. Somehow that’s turned into “if you ain’t payin you ain’t playin.” And I just wonder what the plan is for Rutgers and that 93 million dollars a year, and why their individual fans need to “help those athletes maximize their brand.”
1) I know Rutgers can’t pay them - but that goes back to the man behind the curtain
2) Is this bastardization of the sport worth getting the NCAA Football video game back…
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