Poll: 58 Percent of College Coaches Believe Players Should be Paid

by Eldon Khorshidi | @eldonadam

CBSSports.com recently surveyed nearly 100 college coaches, getting their thoughts on some of college basketball’s current issues. One question asked was, “Should college basketball players be paid, and if so, how would you compensate them?” The coaches spoke—anonymously, of course—and 58 percent believe college basketball players should be paid, while 42 percent disagreed. Some coaches had ideas for compensation—for example, providing the student-athletes with an end-of-semester stipend—while others simply wanted a change but didn’t have a solution.

Below is a complete breakdown of the poll, followed by some adamant opinions, all courtesy of CBSSports.com:

YES – 58 percent

NO – 42 percent

Suggested methods:

—Build compensation right into the scholarship package with a stipend at the end of each semester: 28 percent
—Players should be allowed to receive endorsement money (Olympic model): 20 percent
—Cost-of-living grants is the way to go: 12 percent
—Make leagues responsible for paying via their own profits: 8 percent
—Want change but don’t have a solution: 8 percent

Notable Quotes

“Absolutely not. They get free college, crazy amounts of free gear and glorified enough as it is. This isn’t pro sports, but if they get paid — even a small amount — it gives the players even more power than they already have. We would start to see more Dwight Howard situations at colleges.”

“Stipends are good. I think it would tough to start talking about someone’s market value.”

“No one is forcing these kids to play. College educations are already so expensive. In a lot of ways, they’re getting paid. I don’t think most schools can afford to pay basketball players, because then don’t you have to pay everyone else playing D-I? That’s not possible.”

“I would give them a piece of the money that the league receives for that league’s team making the tournament. For instance, if we make the tournament, our league gets money that is split between each school in our league. Some of that money should be given to the players.”

“I think athletes should be paid a few thousand a semester. To keep gender equity and Title IX out of the way, they should allow coaches to pay kids out of that sport’s summer camp fund. $2,500 or so per semester. That would be an easy solution for football and men’s basketball because the camps generate enough revenue. If not, boosters should be able to donate until each player receives the maximum amount of money.”

“Would be the possible way to eliminate lure of agents. Need to incorporate GPA and wealth level of family. Household income would be best way. Make the process similar to a college loan process — so there would be some hoops to go through. Maybe 500-1000 a month.”