Furthered education hinders instant profit for athletes

Before the Buzzer


Sports Columnist Tyler Simons

  In today’s day in age, money rules the world. It’s no surprise; everyone wants to have nice things and be able to take care of themselves and their loved ones. Without money, those things are very hard to be made possible.

  As it is today, college basketball players have to attend school for at least one year to be able to be drafted into the NBA and college football players must stay for three years to be eligible for the NFL draft, according to theatlantic.com and outkickthecoverage.com. This rule is controversial because of the fact that it restricts these athletes from going pro and making a profit off of their hard work and talents as soon as possible. It should be up to the athletes whether they want to attend college or not before moving to the professional level.

  Both sides have strong arguments, but both have holes in them.

  Athletes forced to attend school will receive the college experience and have time to mature further both mentally and physically. Taking college courses on how to budget and invest the money that comes along with professional sports will allow these athletes to avoid bankruptcy. Not only this, but by taking college courses, these athletes will gain knowledge to be able to be successful past their physical prime.

  However, there are advantages to going pro immediately too. The time spent in college allows for injuries to occur, many of which can drop draft stock (the ranking in which a player is expected to be drafted) and even end entire athletic careers. Being forced to go to college also takes away from earnings, as it can take one to two more years for a rookie contract to get fulfilled and a newer, bigger contract to take its place. Athletes having access to bigger contracts also benefits the public, as many professionals look to give back to their communities in charities or organizations, improving the chances for better and more entertaining future athletes to flourish with such aid while they’re young. The MLB allows for its athletes to go directly to the major leagues if they wish to do so, college or not, one example of this being baseball superstar Bryce Harper, right fielder and slugger for the Washington Nationals.

  Athletes such as Kobe Bryant and Lebron James went straight from highschool to the NBA, and have arguably paved careers to make them two of the top ten players of all time. Not to mention, Kobe retired with $680 million and Lebron James had a net worth of $275 million as of 2016, along with a lifetime contract with Nike that is worth over $1 billion.

  Ultimately, this choice should be left up to the athletes and them alone. Athletes are people too, just like everyone else, and therefore have the right to make their own decisions and learn from them, whether they end well or not.