Glass happy cost of attendance discussion brought to table

There’s are a number of questions Fred Glass would want to ask before he’d be willing to get behind any proposal that would lead to student athletes being paid better than they already are.

For instance, where would the money come from? Who would be receiving additional funds? If the Big Ten were to make the decision to start giving extra, how would that affect the rest of Division I?

Still, the Indiana athletic director said, he’s just happy Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany started the discussion.

At the Big Ten spring meetings last week, Delany told reporters that there was some talk within the conference about giving student athletes a stipend that lessens the gap between what they get now and the total cost of attendance. A full scholarship covers tuition, room and board and books, but studies have shown that the average student athlete has to spend $2,000 to $5,000 beyond that for clothing, transportation and other basic living expenses.

“I think it makes sense to look at that and what the costs are and to try to anticipate whatever outcomes there are,” Glass said Monday. “I think it’s too early to say whether I or Indiana would be for or against it. But to me, starting with the full cost of attendance is an equity issue that may make a lot of sense.”

Glass, though, said he might not support such a proposal if it meant cutting non-revenue sports in order to make sure that football and men’s basketball players were compensated with the full cost of attendance. It’s hard to imagine that it won’t at least cause some problems in that area. With 85 football players on scholarship and 13 men’s basketball players, giving each an extra $3,000 per year would cost each school $294,000. Compensating every scholarship athlete in the athletic department would take it closer to $1 million.

“The key part of this whole thing is, ‘Where does the money come from?’” Glass said. “Candidly, it’s a big issue in the Big Ten, because I believe the average number of sports we support is 26. We’re at 24, I think Ohio State is at the high end at 36. … I think the Big Ten has always stood for having the broadest amount of opportunity for student athletes. A lot of that could have some adverse impacts for the continuation of our sports, and I think if this leads to contraction of sports, it’s a non-starter.”

Glass said he would also be concerned about the effect of additional funds for student athletes on smaller conferences in smaller schools. The Big Ten started a trend with the Big Ten Network, as the major conferences have been able to sign megadeals for their media rights. Texas will have a 24-hour network for itself on ESPN starting this year.

Obviously, smaller conferences don’t bring in those kind of funds, and therefore would find it much harder to fund any sort of stipend or additional money beyond the basics, putting them at an even greater disadvantage.

That should also be considered, Glass said, but it’s still better that those concerns should be brought to the table than to not discuss the concept at all.

“I actually think whatever competitive consequences there are have to be taken into account,” Glass said. “We’ll try to evaluate it. I don’t think the Big Ten should say, ‘Damn the torpedoes, full steam ahead,” regardless of the economic impacts of all institutions. But frankly I’m proud of the Big Ten of being willing to look at that and at least considering putting it’s money where it’s mouth is in terms of student welfare. We could easily stay fat, dumb and happy and say we don’t have to do anything for all of these reasons including parity. I think the conference deserves a gold star for being out in front of this. But all those ripple effects have to be taken into account before there’s any legislation passed.”


  1. If this idea is intended to curtail the cheating that goes on they are sadly mistaken. If you give them $1000 they will go where they get $2000.If you give them $3000 they will go where they get $4000. And so on and so on. Someone is always willing to go around the rules.

  2. An idea designed by Pandora to establish and identify the highest bidders in each sport. @ IU we will pay for the annually obligated $300k to $1m stipend with an increase in ticket and other fan related expenses. No AD will give up that kind of cash every year, receive nothing gainful from it and not devise a way to recover it. Additional paid-outs require more paid-ins.

  3. God forbid these kids ever have to get a common mans job to pay for their own clothing and entertainment! I understand student athletes have hectic schedules but how will they ever learn how to fend for themselves when their athletic careers are over if they keep getting everything handed to them. Plus this will definitely breed more corruption. The John Calipari’s of the world will just find ways to give top flight recruits more money than the other schools recruiting the same player.
    I carried a full course load, worked 27-35 hours a week to pay my expenses, and now continue to pay my student loans into my 30’s and I’m still alive and well. Why shouldn’t “student athletes” have to do the same? I’m tired of privileged society always whining about wanting more.

  4. STLHoos,
    Part of the problem, I believe, is that there are actually NCAA rules forbidding athletes from having jobs during the semesters they play. I need to check my facts here, but I believe fall-to-spring crossover athletes like wrestlers and men’s basketball players are essentially not allowed to have jobs during the school year.
    Beyond that, if you think about it, how many hours in a 9-9 working day does the average student athlete actually have available, and therefore, how valuable could he or she possibly be to any place of business? If you’re putting together, say, a wait staff at a restaurant, wouldn’t you rather hire a guy whose only other responsibility is class? The truth is, their schedules make it so they’re only useful for a handful of employers.
    I’m not taking a side on the issue here, but it’s a lot more complicated than, “Why don’t they just get jobs like everyone else?”A lot of them do get summer jobs, but few can get much out of any employment during the school year.

  5. For a kid going to an instate public university the time commitment amounts to a minimum wage job. Dustin also hit a big sticking point. My daughter has a job at Best Buy but, between classes and sports, her available time is at a minimum. Apparently, the regional manager sent out a message that the current part timers had to make themselves available more hours if they want to keep their jobs. This kid has zero time. Every waking hour is booked.

  6. Clearly it’s more complicated than them just getting a waiter job at Macri’s Deli like I had. I was merely pointing out that I found a way to pay my way with no handouts (other than a $1500 working student grant). If the NCAA won’t allow them to have jobs then what about low interest loans that they could pay back once they graduate? The interest could even be reduced depending on academic standing at time of graduation. Not only would this help out the student with expenses but also provide incentive to complete their course work for a degree.
    I just don’t agree that someone who gets a free education, meals, and boarding also deserves a little spending cash with no obligation for repayment.

  7. the more i read about why athletes should not be paid, I agree. If a student doesnt appreciate and understand the opportunity they are provided through a sports scholarship, they shouldnt come, or try their luck at the pros.

  8. I’m feelin ya STLHOOS. The student athlete, key word student, gets paid well enough. 2-5K on other expenses? Seriously? 2k on clothing expenses? For what? Heck most athletes can live in the apparel they are given by the school. No way I could or would spend that much on clothing during my college days. As far as transportation, I’m still not seeing the expense. You mean to tell me the parents can’t afford to get the kids back and forth to school? Heck, they don’t have to pay for anything else. Yeah, I know many come from poor homes, wah, wah, wah. If all I had to pay for when going to college is clothing and transpo, I’m fairly confident I could make that happen without any extras. Might as well just not make them go to class andthe charade now. Pay them a salary and not require them to be students. This is ridiculous to even consider.

  9. My last post should have included the word end between the words and and the charade. Sorry.

  10. I tend to look at it like the kids are already getting paid, the scholly, and all the perks like an easy summer job through IU, food, clothes, free help with classes, you name it, they have it. I had to work almost full time to make it through college and then it took me almost 8 years to pay the loans back. I know these kids work hard but look at how much that scholly and all the perks are worth!

  11. Another thing to keep in mind, the rules that are set for a football/basketball player on a full scholarship are also applied to a wrestler or track athlete on a partial scholarship. So, some kid getting a $4000 scholarship for a winter sport that crosses both semesters can’t get a job during the school year. My daughter competes in a conference that doesn’t allow athletic scholarships so she’s allowed to get a job. Sweet deal.

  12. I used to have work study & part time jobs available on campus that regularly went unfilled. We paid $10 an hour. I would have loved to have 6-8 kids come in & work 5-10 hours each per week.

  13. Our society’s trend toward an ever growing sense of entitlement would suggest that this idea of providing Student Athletes with increased assistance will gain momentum. I could imagine a day when someone tries to implement a “progressive” assistance scale based on the athlete’s family’s financial means, providing more money to athletes whose families are poor and less assistance to athletes whose families are “wealthy.”

    It’s coming folks. And if that’s the case, I’d prefer they change/relax some of the rules about athletes getting jobs. Reward and reinforce work and productivity and resist the expansion of entitlements.

  14. Tough situation for all. My daughter works 20 hours a week, takes 17 credit hours, has student loans, and I am ponying up. She doesn’t have extra money to buy clothes and other stuff. She misses most b-ball games because of work and studies and has ZERO time to herself.
    Can someone tell me what the difference between her efforts to get a degree and a scholarship athlete?? I don’t have and sympathy or suggestions for either case. College is just expensive and hard!! Get on with it, work hard, and get through!

  15. Tom, I empathize with you. My daughter played two years of soccer in college. She made use of summer school so that her class load during the season was managable. You forgot to mention that these athletes also have to deal with injuries. Being a collegiate athlete is definitely a character building experience. And when they graduate, no one can call them lazy.

  16. Tom, it’s so much harder now. I competed in a sport, no financial aid, and had a part time job. I was able to graduate in 5 years without any debt. Can’t do that anymore. If I remember correctly, I paid $360 a semester for tuition. My daughter’s annual cost of attendance at her school is $57,000/year. College is becoming out of reach for the average family.
    My oldest graduated last year. He has a good job as he is a mechanical engineer but he owes $100,000.
    Lords vs serfs.

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