Physicist Isaac Newton’s third law of motion states that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. If it did take “more than a scholarship” for leading Heismann Trophy candidate Cam Newton to play for Auburn as allegedly admitted by his father, Cecil, then the NCAA’s reaction will be opposite and equal – equal to what happened to USC over the Summer, that is.
News reports first surfaced over the weekend that a former Mississippi State player by the name of John Bond spoke with a representative of Newton’s during his recruitment out of junior college who tried to procure money for Newton, saying the Bulldogs could get him for $180,000.
Newton had committed to Mississippi State, but his father allegedly switched his commitment because Auburn offered more money.
Then reports surfaced about alleged academic impropriety at Florida. Newton allegedly left Florida to go play in junior college not because he was buried on the depth chart behind Tim Tebow and wasn’t going to see the field, but because he allegedly wrote his name on tests taken by other students and handed them in as his own.
Newton is the leading Heismann Trophy candidate and his no. 2 Auburn Tigers at their highest ranking in school history and in the driver’s seat to play for a National Championship. If the NCAA finds any wrongdoing with Newton, Auburn head coach Gene Chizik’s season will have to be forfeited and Newton will not win the Heismann.
This seems like a common theme across college football the past couple of years. Just over the Summer, the NCAA started what some consider a witch-hunt, trying to eliminate all wrongdoing. Sanctions were handed down to USC in the aftermath of the Reggie Bush scandal, and North Carolina has suffered greatly from academic impropriety.
Every student athlete knows it’s wrong to take money from anybody before or during a college career. The problem is that when the university and the NCAA are making millions, sometimes even billions of dollars off the play of one person, like Reggie Bush, Tim Tebow, and now Cam Newton, what is a scholarship in comparison? How is it fair to a player who makes so much money for one of the biggest businesses in the country to not be able to get paid?
The NCAA will never be able to stop the academic violations that take place in the highest level of college football, but it may be able to help stop the payment of players. While getting a free ride to a top university may seem appealing to kids, the problem is that tuition doesn’t cover everything, and student athletes aren’t allowed to have jobs per NCAA regulations.
That needs to be changed. If players are allowed to get jobs in college, that money will help pay for all the stuff they need besides tuition like food, housing, clothes, gas, etc.
This would unfortunately be very difficult to implement. The NCAA would have to have even more watchdogs to make sure that student athletes who are working aren’t getting paid more than non-athletes doing the same job as them.
Unfortunately, this would seem nearly impossible to police, and is a farfetched dream at this point. But until something is done that improves the current system, you’re going to see more and more athletes getting paid to play college football.