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WILLPOWER: IMPROPER EDUCATION FOR COLLEGE ATHETES?

william WILLIAM RODRIGUEZ
Staff Writer

Every year there are high school seniors who receive athletic scholarships to attend a certain university. These students are usually given the offer because they have exceeded both academically and athletically, catching the interest of many collegiate teams and universities. Consequently, it is also assumed that the student will fulfill both of these standards at the collegiate level. However, a recent issue has been brought up, as the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) claims they are not responsible for the academic development or overseeing the education of athletes.

At the University of North Carolina (UNC), a lawsuit between UNC athletes and the NCAA arose in which the athletes claimed they were not receiving proper education at the school. However, the NCAA claimed they do not have any legal obligation to ensure the education of the athletes. Although the NCAA is mostly responsible for the athletic part of the student-athlete’s career, the statement made was slightly false in that the NCAA watches over the activity of the collegiate athletes—including their education.

On the NCAA website, in the academic tab, the association states, “It’s our commitment—and our responsibility—to give young people opportunities to learn, play and succeed.” Therefore, they are responsible for giving collegiate athletes the assets to learn, implying that the athletes are entitled to a proper education. Now, the NCAA ultimately insinuates that their concern goes only as far as making sure they are receiving a bare minimum education. By doing so, however, they contradict their goal as an athletic association of the collegiate level in encouraging academics. After all, the NCAA’s purpose is to ensure quality education for the athlete, but they are now denying what they have promised.

Being an athlete myself, education is taught to come first before anything else. The NCAA saw that UNC neglected the athletes’ education by enrolling them in classes where they rarely had to show up and kept them eligible for athletics. It is wrong that the NCAA denies any responsibility, but as an association which monitors all athletes, they should also ensure that education is properly given to the athletes. Overall, the NCAA should take the initiative to stop this lack of proper education for athletes at universities before it occurs more often across the nation.

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