Why Should We Be Paid

Should NCAA collegiate athletes be paid is the question that many Americans ask themselves every day. Most Americans’ fail to realize is that the NCAA is a business, and it generates a revenue of $10.6 billion a year. College athletes’ are figuratively employees of the NCAA and the university that they attend. All the hard work and commitment that athletes sacrifice is just for their team and NCAA to receive income. Although the upsides are that athletes’ have the opportunity to receive an education and gain exposure to obtain a professional contract, it still doesn’t compensate for the four to five years in college.

            I myself have been given the opportunity to showcase my talents for another four years on the football field. What learned from my redshirt/freshman year is that all collegiate athletes invest a good deal of themselves into their schools programs. For example, the football team is the biggest sport here at Lenoir-Rhyne University. Football is a very time-consuming sport, from August to December I participated in the 2013 fall season. From camp to the National Championship loss to Northwest Missouri in December, I was a committed student athlete. Because of our outstanding season my teammates and I had to sacrifice our Fall, Thanksgiving, and half of my Christmas break in order to contribute to some of our teams’ success. In my opinion there isn’t a sufficient amount of compensation for the amount of hours we invest into collegiate sports. So the idea that all athletes should be compensated for the hard work they perform for their team would not be a bad one.

            Many to Division 1 programs receive large amounts of income every year from their sports. Coaches make impractical salaries every season compared to people in the work force. Many coaches that are successful and unsuccessful in coaching their teams still make hefty salary:

John Calipari, the head basketball coach at the University of Kentucky, makes $5.5 million a season. That’s almost 14 times the amount made by the president of the United States. Calipari is not alone. Seventeen college football coaches and seven college basketball coaches make more than $3 million a year. The coaches, it seems, want to be paid (Bowen).

So why is it hard for the athletes to receive some compensation for their performance week in and week out? Every time players step out on to the field or court they risk sustaining a career- ending injury all for the love of their sport. The huge amount of money being made by the NCAA as well as the Universities sports programs could bring up the question that student-athletes can be considered amateurs. If coaches are being paid for their efforts, then athletes should receive the same form of compensation.

            Some progress is been made in the debate over paying collegiate athletes. Due to a comment made by Shabazz Napier UConn’s star guard of NCAA men’s basketball champion, changes have been made to Division 1 athletes’ meal plans. Napier said, “Sometimes, there’s hungry nights where I’m not able to eat, but I still gotta play up to my capabilities” (qtd. in Jessop). Now all Division 1 athlete have unlimited meals and snack to enjoy throughout the day because of Napier’s statement during an interview. Before, “NCAA rules allowed three meals a day for athletes on full scholarship but limited snacks, and limited meals for walk-ons and those on partial scholarships” (Bachman). The real question is would the NCAA had made changes to meal plans if Napier had not commented on it? We will never know and this is part of the reason students’ feel as if the NCAA should offer more than just scholarship money.

            Lately in the news this has developed into a common topic that is becoming popular, and is being discussed in a lot of universities. The Northwestern University Football players are currently dealing with players wanting to be paid, and are attempting form a union. Administrators’ within the university feel differently about the players feeling like employees and forming a union:

This is not the same thing as organizing a steel mill. This is a university, said Terry W. Hartle, senior vice president at the American Council on Education, which represents colleges and universities. We think that students are students. They are not employees.To call students employees, Hartle said, would raise “vast and unknowable” issues. If scholarship football players are employees, what about students in other sports with partial scholarships? What about students with scholarships in music or dance programs, or those with general academic scholarships? (Anderson)

This has been an argument that has been going on for an extended amount of time and I think it will continue to remain a controversial topic regardless if the athletes are paid of not. No matter how much time and effort we invest in competing for our athletic programs there will always be two sides: The players and the NCAA and athletic programs. The NCAA feels that “Clearly, paying players would cost money. It’s possible that the cash cows of college basketball and football would no longer be able to subsidize other athletic programs” Greenblatt). The players feel as if “It’s not about schools paying salaries to players” (Kirk). There will never be a solution to this, there is always going to be disagreements coming from both sides and also from the fans. Although it may not happen, I believe that student athletes should be compensated for the work they put in on the field or court.




Works Cited

Anderson, Nick. “Northwestern University football…Labor Rights.Washingtonpost.com. The Washington Post, 24 Apr. 2014. Web.

Bachman, Rachel. “NCAA to Allow Unlimited Meals for Athletes.Wallstreetjournal.com. The Wall Street Journal, 15 Apr. 2014. Web.

Bowen, Fred. “Should college athletes get paid?” Washingtonpost.com. The Washington Post, 9 Apr. 2014. Web.

Greenblatt, Alan “Would March Be Less Mad If Players Were Paid?NPR.com. National Public Radio, 29 Mar. 2014 Web.

Jessop, Alicia. “The NCAA Approves Unlimited Meals For…College Athletes.Forbes.com. Forbes, 15 Apr. 2014. Web.

Kirk, Jason “No, college football players aren’t unionizing for pay-for-play.Sbnation.com. SB Nation, 28 Jan 2014 Web.


Fast Food in Kentucky: A Collaborative Play

Character Guide

Michelle Obama: She is the first lady and the dean of student services at the University of Chicago. She is also the Vice President of community and external affairs for the University of Chicago Medical Center.

Susie Orbach: Chair of the Relational School in the United Kingdom, she has published many books on women’s health and emotional well-being. She has worked exclusively as an author and therapist on weight issues.

Charlie Rawlins: A young man living in Manchester, Kentucky. Charlie weighed two-hundred fifty-one pounds and had to undergo knee surgeries from his weight. He managed to drop his weight down to one-hundred eight-five pounds and works in a small physical therapy office in Clay County.

Carlin Robinson: She is the daughter of Scott Robinson and the younger sister of Britney Robinson. Although she is the youthful age of twelve and has a stellar academic record, she struggles with her physical body, weighing at least twenty pounds over the recommended nutritional guideline.

Scott Robinson: A coal miner raised in Manchester who is a single parent raising two daughters.


It is a fine Saturday afternoon in Manchester, Kentucky many people find themselves making their way to the local food court to encounter a plethora of motion by exuberant costumers. Scott Robinson and his daughter Carlin can be seen down, engulfing on their juicy grease filled Big Macs. Susie Orbach, Michelle Obama, and Charlie Rawlins are approaching them ready to join for lunch. They already notice how Scott and his daughter are devouring the unhealthy food.

Scott Robinson: “Are you enjoying your food Carlin?”

Carlin Robinson: “Yeah dad thanks for buying it, it’s delish.”

SR: “I invited some friends to join us for lunch, they should be on their way”

As they continue to eat their food, the guests arrive shortly after Carlin has finished her burger.

SR: “Michelle, Susie! Such as pleasure to have you guys here today. I would like you guys to meet my daughter Carlin… My apologies I didn’t seem to notice the young man behind you ladies. Nice to meet you my good man, I am Scott and you are?”

Charlie Rawlins: It is a pleasure to be here sir. My name is Charlie Rawlins and I am simply here to assist these ladies with the intervention.

C. Robinson: “Intervention? Dad, what exactly are they here for?”

C. Rawlins: I’ve been in your shoes before while living in Manchester. The inadequate amount of resources we have here promotes obesity and lack of exercise. “I realized that no one was going to listen to me (regarding how fast-food negatively can affect health). I started going in for the fruits, the asparagus, making my own salads. The kids around here, they’ll eat cornbread and taters for lunch. They’ll get a 20-piece chicken meal. It’s killing them” (410).

C. Robinson: “Sometimes, I think they give us too much food” (414).

C. Rawlins: “So when is the last time you all weighed yourselves?”

C. Robinson: “I don’t want to weigh myself” (414).

SR: “Lord, I couldn’t tell you, Two-seventy, two-ninety. I don’t remember the last time I weighed myself” (415).

C. Robinson: “Sometimes you get picked on for your size” (414).

Susie Orbach: Carlin, you are absolutely correct society has a large influence on one’s appearance. “The message is loud and clear— the woman’s body is not her own” (451).” Fat is a social disease” (449).

Michelle Obama: “But it’s important to be clear that this issue isn’t about how our kids look. It’s not about that. It’s about how our kids feel. It’s about their health and the health of our nation and the health of our economy” (420).

SO: “While this preoccupation with fat and food has become so common that we tend to take it for granted, being fat, and feeling fat and the compulsion to overheat are in fact, serious , and painful experiences for women involved”(448).

MO: “ It’s about making those little changes that can really add-up simple things like taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking instead of riding in a car or a bus, even something as simple as turning on the radio and dancing with your children in the middle of your living room for hours”(428).

SR: “I mean I don’t have any time to really exercise with the girls.” “There’s a basketball court out back of the house’ (409). I honestly feel ashamed “There are no full length mirrors in the front rooms of their home that might reveal an image of anyone” (415).

MO: You are just living by your means… “For many folks, those nutritious family meals are a thing of the past, because a lot of people today are living in communities without a single grocery store, so they have to take two, three buses, a taxi, walk for miles just to buy a head of lettuce for a salad or to get some fresh fruit for their kids” (423).

SR: Truthfully, our family has been struggling; I hardly get hours at my main job which forced me to get another job. I hate this job more than anything. “Just started this last December.” “Trying to make an extra dollar” (415).

C. Robinson: It is a matter of motivation, neither I nor my sister feel comfortable discussing our weight or overeating. No woman is every going to be completely satisfied with her size or shape. We always find ways to distinguish our imperfections.

SO: “A feminist perspective to the problem of women’s compulsive eating is essential if we are to move on from ineffective blame the victim approach… feminism insists that those personal experiences derive from the social context into which female babies are born and within which they become adult women”(449).

C. Rawlins: I have pretty much spent the entire conversation silent and analyzing each and everyone’s opinions. I hate to be critical but Scott you have to stop being an enabler. There are a plethora of inexpensive meals that can be made at home. I also believe that everyone needs to take responsibility for their actions. Let’s have a fresh start; I’m not saying immediate change will happen overnight but it takes time and patience.

MO: “So if anybody here, after all this talking that I’ve done, who feels a little overwhelmed by this challenge— because it can be overwhelming—if there is anyone here who might even be already losing hope thinking about how hard it will be to even get going , or giving up, I just want you to take a look at all the things that are already being accomplished, because I want folks to learn from each other and to be inspired by each other , because that’s what we’ve always done”(431).



Works Cited

Haygood, Will. “Kentucky Town of Manchester Illustrates National Obesity Crisis“They Say/I Say”: The Moves Matter in Academic Writing: With Reading. 2nd ed. Ed. Gerald Graf, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 406-416. Print.

Obama, Michelle. “Remarks to the NAACP National Convention” “They Say/I Say”: The Moves Matter in Academic Writing: With Reading. 2nd ed. Ed. Gerald Graf, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 417-433. Print.

Orbach, Susie. “Fat Is a Feminist Issue” “They Say/I Say”: The Moves Matter in Academic Writing: With Reading. 2nd ed. Ed. Gerald Graf, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 448-453. Print.

**This play was a collaborative process.  Special thanks to my group members:

Taylor Johnson, Kimberly Ndombasi, Brandi Thomas, and Jordan White.**

An Evening with Sherman Alexie

I had the chance to hear Sherman Alexie speak at Lenoir-Rhyne University on Thursday March 27th. My First thoughts were that he was a very funny and sarcastic person who doesn’t take himself seriously. These characteristics make him a very likeable person. He started out talking about the auditorium being full and how everyone else had to go sit in a hot room down the hall, and I happened to be in that room. He talked about growing up on an Indian reservation in Spokane, Washington, being Catholic, and some struggles he faced as a child on the reservation. When Sherman was a five months old he was injured in a swing accident and at the hospital, there he was diagnosed with Hydrocephalus and was operated on and had slim chances of surviving the operation. Sherman faced a lot of obstacles on the reservation due to growing up in poverty, having limited resources and poor Indian health service also. Sherman was plagued with seizures at a young age and he once had ten teeth pulled in on day since Indian health service only did major operations once a year in the 1970’s. He also talked about the poor school system and how he used a math book with mothers name in it, and how he had to attend a school that would allow better opportunities to excel in life. He talked about sensitive topics like religion, racism, 9/11, and immigration. Sherman said “the nature of our American culture is based on poor people working hard”, which makes sense because most of the successful figures in America come from humble beginnings. He ended on saying that he was an ironic indigenous immigrant” meaning by indigenous he means we didn’t start in the Americas, Alexie said we started in Africa and migrated to the Americas. What I took away from his visit is that Sherman is regular person who has some fascinating views on our society and today.

To find out more about Sherman Alexie visit the Visiting Writers Series website, http://visitingwriters.lr.edu/the-authors, or Sherman Alexie’s, http://fallsapart.com/.

Watching Television Makes You Smarter: An Annotated Bibliography

Many people watch television every day and don’t think about the actual content that they are watching. Being able to understand and pick up references and relations made in the show would be helpful to TV watchers.

This bibliography contains a Television show:  Family Guy, and two academic essays from ‘They Say / I Say”, each about different points of view on the way you view television shows. I believe in today’s society there are a lot of good and bad TV shows so being able to analyze the content of the show is a helpful skill, that will help viewers understand the show.

Annotated Bibliography

Johnson, Steve. “Watching TV Makes You Smarter.” They Say I Say (2012): 277-94, New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2005. Print

This article highlights the pros of watching television and it explains what the average person can pick up from watching any TV show.

Steven Johnson is the author of seven books. Johnson is also a Contributing editor for Wired, writes a monthly column for Discover, and teaches journalism at New York University. The Piece included here was first published in the New York Times Magazine in 2005: it is an excerpt from Everything Bad Is Good for You.

MacFarlane, Seth. “Family Guy” (1999 -Present), 17 Feb. 2014. Television

Family Guy is an American adult animated sitcom created by Seth MacFarlane for Fox Broadcasting Company. The series centers on the Griffins, a family consisting of parents Peter and Lois; their children Meg, Chris, and Stewie, and their anthropomorphic pet dog Brian. In a wacky Rhode Island town, a dysfunctional family strives to cope with everyday life as they are thrown from one crazy scenario to another.

Peacocke, Antonia. “Family Guy and Freud: Jokes and Their Relation to the Unconscious.”     “They Say/I Say” 299-311, New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2008 Print                                    


This article from the textbook highlights the relation of the television show Family Guy to the unconscious TV watcher and shows how references are made that most people don’t pick up on.

Antonia Peacocke is a student at Harvard University, where she is majoring in Philosophy. A National Merit Scholar, she wrote the essay here specifically for this book, using the MLA style of Documentation.