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|03-29-2014, 05:49 PM||#1|
Join Date: Mar 2006
Column missed its mark
Interesting little deal going on here. An editorial critical of Das Dabo was posted, and then removed with an apology. Here is the apology.
And here is the column that was so bad.
Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney just doesn't get it.
Upon hearing Wednesday's news that a regional
director of the National Labor Relations Board ruled that Northwestern
football players can unionize, Swinney told reporters, "We have enough
entitlement in this country as it is. To say these guys get nothing
totally devalues an education."
If I'm a Clemson football player, I'm insulted by that. In January,
Swinney signed an eight-year contract worth $27.15 million. It's an
excessive amount for any coach, let alone a coach of Swinney's caliber.
And it's blood money earned off the sweatshop labor that is his players.
Swinney chalks up a group of football players trying to unionize to
better themselves as entitlement, yet there's no one on Clemson's campus
who feels he's entitled more than Swinney.
No? Then why did Swinney agree to his mega-million dollar deal that is
guaranteed for the full eight years even if he is fired within the next
If the Tigers fall flat next year, coach, and you get a pink slip, why
should the Brinks truck continue to drop off bags on the doorstep of
your mansion? Don't we have enough entitlement in this country as it is?
Your words, coach. Not mine.
Here's a little advice, Dabo. You've already gotten more than your share
of the pie. Don't begrudge another for trying to get his. Just shut up
These days, more cash flows into big-time college athletic programs and
conferences than some third-world countries. The top programs rake in
more than $100 million a year from football and basketball. The NCAA is
enjoying a 14-year, $10.8 billion ? with a B ? contract for its men's
basketball tournament, and the major conferences like the ACC and SEC
have a 12-year, $7.2 billion deal with ESPN for a football playoff.
Then there are the millions of dollars pulled down by the NCAA and its
athletic programs through tickets, jerseys, clothing, car flags, seat
cushions, bottle openers and any other trinkets rabid fans might buy.
And don't forget all the Benjamins from boosters and fundraising
breakfasts, lunches, dinners and golf tournaments.
So no, Dabo, when it comes to your players ? you know, those guys on the
field the fans really pay to see ? an education isn't enough of the
Three meals a day, a roof over your head, some books, lectures and a
degree ? if a "student-athlete" has time between two-a-days and road
trips to earn one ? might be sufficient for the no-names on your roster,
Dabo. But the guys up the depth chart ? you know, the guys who really
bring home the bacon for you ? surely deserve more.
What about Tajh Boyd, your quarterback who rewrote the Clemson and ACC
record books the past three years? His NFL prospects don't look real
good at this point. Is a $40,000-a-year job he might land with his
sociology degree all he should get for the riches he's helped heap upon
The Northwestern lawsuit isn't the first attempt to garner more for
college athletes, and there are more on court dockets across the land.
At some point, something will change.
One way to give athletes more would be to allow them to sign endorsement
deals like Olympic athletes do. Continue to give an athlete his
scholarship and have his true worth fulfilled by companies willing to
pony up cash for the athlete to pitch their products.
The top athletes would likely garner the most endorsement money as they
should, while players who rarely see the field would still have their
scholarships. It's a logical idea. And it's fair.
No matter how it's done, though, college athletes should be getting more of the loot. They earn it.
And for you not to see that, Dabo, when your cup runneth over is troubling.
If your worst fears come true, you no longer have anything left to fear.