HBCUs Working to Create a League to Pay Student Athletes a Salary

Say goodbye to the days of college athletes not seeing any paper for their hard work and hello to the days they do. Antitrust economist Andy Schwarz shared his intentions on creating a means to allow college athletes to get paid for sports in a recent sit-down with VICE Sports.

The San Francisco native sated that he wanted to detach HBCUs from the NCAA, which would then allow the universities in that hub to pay players a salary.

The proposed business model would be as follows:

“The way Schwarz and his HBCU league co-founders—Ohio–based sports and entertainment attorney Richard Volante and Washington, D.C.–based author and historian Bijan Bayne—see it, the NCAA is a bit like a traditional taxi company, while their concept is akin to Uber or Lyft. The league would consist of at least 16 members drawn from the four current NCAA Division I and II HBCU conferences, institutions such as Howard University and Florida A&M; its athletes would be full-time students.”

“They also would be paid to play basketball, between $50,000 and $100,000 a year. Moreover, they would be allowed to endorse products, sell autographs, sign with agents, accept gifts from boosters, declare for the NBA draft, and even be drafted by NBA teams without losing their eligibility.”

There are some people that feel that because student athletes often times receive a free education, room and board, etc., that they should be happy with that and not require a salary. However, Schwarz’s proposal offers a solution to the severe inequity that a lot of people feel between players and the schools that benefit off of their backs, but don’t present any money to them.

A lot of athletes have a full workload when you take into consideration the fact that they have a full time course load in addition to needing to practice, study, attend and play in games, travel for away games, etc. Athletes ordinarily do not have time to fit a job into the equation if the need for supplemental income becomes apparent. Even if it wasn’t, some might take issue with schools like UCLA who just signed a 15-year $280 million deal with Under Armour which the players obviously don’t get to share in monetarily.

Sheriden Chanel is a twenty-something writer, Beyoncé enthusiast, and lover of all things visual art. Keep up with her and her musings on social via @indiebyline.