Rumblings continue in college sports

Sports Commentary

It might be time to get behind APU. And it has nothing to do with slow sales at the Kwik-E-Mart.

On Saturday, several players from schools such as Georgia, Georgia Tech and Northwestern wrote the letters APU — All Players United — on their gear in a show of solidarity. APU is being organized by the National College Players Association, a group started to look out for the best interests of college athletes.

What do they want? Well, a quick glance doesn’t show anything that’s too off the charts.

The NCPA said among the goals are to demonstrate unity among players, support players who have concussion issues, and direct a portion of television money to guarantee basic protections for players, for example, renewal of scholarships for permanently injured players.

The primary concern of the group appears to be health and safety. For those of you who want reforms in college sports, this may be the cause for you to get behind. It doesn’t appear to be a money grab by college athletes, it looks like a group looking out for everyone who plays college sports.

On the other side of the ledger, there’s Arian Foster. He doesn’t ask, “Where can I help?” He asks, “Where can I help myself?”

Foster, now a running back in the NFL with the Houston Texans, is appearing in a yet to be released documentary titled “Schooled: The Price of College Sports.”

In an excerpt released Friday, Foster admits he took money while playing at the University of Tennessee and he has no problem with it.

A little background on Foster. While at Tennessee, he was asked a question about an upcoming game against Georgia. Foster responded he would only conduct the interview if he could speak Pterodactyl.

For those of you who aren’t quite up to speed on Pterodactyl, they would be flying reptiles who lived anywhere from 65-220 million years ago that fossils have shown had wingspans as much as 30 feet. And evidentially could talk.

So this bit of wisdom came through Foster’s lips.

“Veeeek!, Veeeek!, Veeeek!”

At least he didn’t speak Klingon. Because that would have been silly.

I took one semester of introductory Pterdactyl at college, so allow me to translate, although my Pterodactyl might be a little rusty.

What I believe Foster said was “I am an idiot, don’t believe a word I say. Ever.”

Because, thankfully back to speaking English in the documentary, Foster said this:

“I really didn’t have any money. I had to either pay the rent or buy some food. I remember the feeling of like, ‘Man, be careful.’ But there’s nothing wrong with it. And you’re not going to convince me that there is something wrong with it.”

Either pay the rent or buy some food. College athletes receive a housing stipend every month. That’s rent money. And major colleges have a training tables for athletes. That’s better food than normal college students eat.

So Foster wants college football players to get paid because the stipend just isn’t enough. What about volleyball and tennis players? Track and cross country runners? Just because they don’t play in front of tens of thousands of people doesn’t mean they don’t need a place to live. And food to eat.

Where’s that money going to come from? The end is coming to college sports as we know them. And for a lot of schools, it’s not going to be pretty.

Even the long-extinct Pterodactyl can see that.

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