NFL Player: Student Athletes Deserve To Get Paid

Sports By: Tad Lumpkin 6:37 pm

(Vice)- Jake McDonough is a former All-Big 12 First Team defensive lineman from Iowa State. After going undrafted in the 2013 NFL Draft, he signed with the New York Jets. After spending training camp with the Jets, he signed with the Indianapolis Colts in December for their playoff run. Now, McDonough is a free agent, with many teams looking to bring him into camp. Today, he chimes in to break down his opinion on student athletes getting compensation from the NCAA.

The notion that student athletes shouldn’t receive compensation for their likeness, their marketability, nor the countless hours that they put in for their respective sport from the NCAA or their schools, sparks a fire inside me. The fact that an organization that had a revenue of $871.6 million (as of 2012) continually brings in millions of dollars to this day (and the coaches become multi-millionaires), while athletes are suspended for receiving a free meal seems a little off to me.

When I was a student-athlete at Iowa State University, I both witnessed and endured some of the struggles in dealing with the draconian rules of the NCAA. Going into college, I never thought I would need another job, nor would I have a worry in the world. After my freshman year, I realized that there was no way to hold down a job while attending classes, film sessions, working out, or going to practice. I had no idea how some walk-on student athletes did it. With a scholarship check of $600/month, the cost of living on the rise, food, gas, and anything else that was needed, I had to reevaluate my stance on getting a job.

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