The highly paid head of the NCAA's testimony, that is;
National Collegiate Athletic Association PresidentMark Emmert testified Thursday that paying college athletes a share of the revenue from commercial use of their names and images, the goal of a lawsuit by former football and men's basketball players, would alienate fans, damage competition and ultimately harm the athletes.
"People come to watch college sports because they're college sports with student-athletes," Emmert told a federal judge in Oakland who is conducting a nonjury trial on the suit.Filthy, filthy lucre!
"To convert college sports into professional sports would be tantamount to converting it into minor-league sports," with a much lower fan base, he said.
Schools would lose revenue, cut scholarships and drop sports programs, and athletes would flock to the colleges that offered the most money, Emmert said.The way the coaches, athletic directors, sports' information directors, peanut vendors, and groundskeepers do now.
Emmert painted a different picture of the student-athlete - "successful in the classroom" while learning "enormous lessons in life" from their coaches on subjects like teamwork, responsibility and leadership. He said NCAA rules limit organized practice time for athletes to 20 hours a week, but acknowledged that they're encouraged to do more on their own.Without pay.
Disputing Emmert's claims, William Isaacson, a lawyer for the athletes, displayed a poster of basketball players promoting the recent NCAA tournament with logos of corporate sponsors Coca-Cola, AT&T and Capital One, and a photo of a football team entering a stadium with a banner bearing a Nike swoosh logo.
Isaacson also read a series of pronouncements by NCAA officials that said the influence of big money was blurring the line between college and professional sports - including Emmert's own warning, in a 2011 article, that "commercialism is overwhelming amateurism."That's different!