Tuesday, November 26th, 2013 at 2:25 pm  |  19 responses

College Player and Thunder Fan Might Not Keep $20K for Making Halfcourt Shot

In case you somehow aren’t convinced yet that college athletics are the absolute worst, let us help you out. 23-year-old Cameron Rodriguez is one of the dudes who knocked in a halfcourt bomb at an OKC Thunder game last week; Rodriguez also happens to be a college hoops player, and his school doesn’t want him to keep the dough he won. Per Bloomberg News: “Rodriguez, a basketball player at Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas, made the shot Nov. 18 during halftime of the National Basketball Association team’s game against the Denver Nuggets. Now he and his school are asking the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for a rules exception that would allow him to use the money as a scholarship to help pay his tuition. ‘I didn’t really think about it at first because I was way too excited,’ Rodriguez said in a telephone interview. ‘After things settled down, I realized we might have an issue because I was receiving a large amount of money.’ [...] The NAIA student guide says athletes cannot use their sports ability or fame for financial reward. John Leavens, the executive director of the NAIA Eligibility Center, said rulings on these cases typically take one to two weeks. ‘It would certainly hurt his cause if he had tried to circumvent the rules,’ Leavens said in a telephone interview. ‘The fact that he connected with the right officials to make sure that he understood the proper application of the rule is something that we expect, and we’re glad to see.’ Every one of Southwestern College’s 1,700 students receives financial aid through institutional grants to help with the $23,000 annual tuition, according to Brenda Hicks, the school’s director of financial aid. Rodriguez, who is on a $4,000 athletic scholarship, said he pays roughly $33,000 per year when he adds room, board, books and other fees. If the NAIA says he can’t use the money as a scholarship, Rodriguez said, MidFirst Bank offered to donate it to a charity in his name. Rodriguez said he probably would choose between a non-profit set up to help the Southwestern basketball program, or a group through the Thunder’s work with local children — ‘a thank you for the opportunity and the experience,’ he said.”

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  • patrick

    um, why can’t he just keep it? who cares about those stupid rules?

  • Austin

    Because rules are rules for a reason, Patrick.

  • Blarmac

    Kid’s got a good head on his shoulders. He should be allowed to keep it, he’s not likely to play in the NBA or anything and he’s already footing a major portion of his own money to the school to go there.

  • bike

    Let him donate about 5K to an agreed upon charity and he keeps the rest. Jeeze, can just for once college athletics do something sane for once?

  • Dfrance

    I know I didn’t just read that NAIA won’t let him use the money to help pay for his education… that can’t be what I just read… nah.

  • Anthony

    In the words of the great Bill Walton…”Absolutely Horrible!”
    College Sports Authoritarians and Administrators…you suck! May you all jam your fingers and twist your ankles the next time you recreationaly play the sport that you so horrendously cripple with your rule making.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yep, you can’t take part in anything that even involves prize money and play college athletics

  • JMO

    man I would drop out for a semester just to keep the 20 g’s

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    What the fuccccck?!

  • Fitzy

    As a college student myself, I would quit basketball for 20Gs I only pay 7Gs plus books and fees and I can’t afford that

  • Cortez Mack

    Please, kill yourself.

  • Above_You


  • Evan Boland


  • JL

    The math… He only gets 4k a year, it’s 20k, and after taxes say 10k. How many more years is he going to be in college? He’s 23 already. I’d give up the 4k.

  • Mathias


  • http://signup.divinerenergy.com/ Anthony Dixon


  • Harley

    I guess he has practiced it more than the average joe but they don’t give him that much for the scolarship anyway so give him his money like c’mon man.

  • jaycee

    Blatant and obvious corruption of the elite 1% and their institutions. The only possibility of him keeping the money involves it either being accepted as ‘scholarship money’ in which case it goes straight to the school and he at least gets credit for tuition payment, or b) it goes to the school sports program.

    Either way the school is getting paid.

    This is another example of what is wrong with American and the world.

  • John Michael Taylor

    It’s a stupid rule, people SHOULD be able to profit from their talents and skills, period. I don’t care about preserving the communism/socialism in college sports. Let the best rise to the top, and the others be left wanting. It’s the way the real world works, it’s human nature, not everyone should be equal, and when we attempt to force it to be so, it always results in unforeseen consequences, some of which can be disastrous.