Coach suggests plan to aid athletes

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DESTIN, Fla. --- South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier revealed a plan Wednesday to spread the wealth to football players.

South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier makes $1.75 million annually.   Associated Press
Associated Press
South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier makes $1.75 million annually.

It didn't have much traction, but the possibility of expanding scholarships to cover the full cost of attendance does.

At the Southeastern Conference spring meetings, Spurrier proposed a plan for league coaches to pay players $300 a game out of their own pockets for expenses they could use for travel, lodging and meals for their parents or a night out with a girlfriend.

"A bunch of us coaches felt so strongly that we would be willing to pay 70 guys 300 bucks a game," Spurrier said. "That's only $21,000 bucks a game. I doubt it will get passed, but the coaches in the SEC, we make all the money as do the universities with television. We need to give more to our players."

Spurrier's proposal was viewed as more of a symbolic gesture that players should receive more financial help than they are getting.

"That's part of a bigger conversation," Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley said.

That conversation will occur on a national level dealing with making a scholarship cover the true cost of attendance to include tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies and miscellaneous living expenses.

"I think that will probably gain some momentum," Foley said.

"I think we can do more for our student-athletes, but it can't just be for football and men's basketball in my opinion, either, which makes it a challenge for a lot of different institutions. I get that."

Spurrier said six other coaches voted for the $300 proposal: Florida's Will Muschamp, Tennessee's Derek Dooley, Alabama's Nick Saban, LSU's Les Miles and Mississippi State's Dan Mullen.

Georgia coach Mark Richt, who did not vote for Spurrier's proposal, said coaches would like more financial help for their players.

"We do believe that student-athletes ought to get more," Richt said. "We'd just like to see them have more money in their pocket. We're not saying pay them."

Reach Marc Weiszer at marc.weiszer@morris.com.

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Just My Opinion
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Just My Opinion 06/02/11 - 04:55 am
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Interesting that this comes

Interesting that this comes out after one of their own, Ohio State's Tressel, gets fired for simply knowing about payments to his players from boosters.

Craig Spinks
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Craig Spinks 06/02/11 - 05:22 am
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Jim Tressel "resigned"

Jim Tressel "resigned" because he did not report infractions to OSU compliance officials and made false statements to NCAA investigators regarding the infractions.

Carleton Duvall
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Carleton Duvall 06/02/11 - 07:25 am
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This makes me feel better

This makes me feel better about Spurrier and less about Richt and I am a Georgia fan. The cost to the coaches would be about half of their payments because of income taxes and would still leave them over a million and a half to live on. Richt should be ashamed.

DawgnSC69
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DawgnSC69 06/02/11 - 07:47 am
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Scooby, Richt did not vote

Scooby, Richt did not vote against it. He just did not vote and he is in agreement with players getting more financial compensation. He just may not have totally agreed with Spurrier's plan.
And if you actually think Spurrier is a better man than Richt, you don't know either of them and you're definitley not a Dawg fan.

DawgnSC69
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DawgnSC69 06/02/11 - 07:50 am
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I can just imagine what kind

I can just imagine what kind of trouble most of these players will be in with more money in their pockets.
These student-atheletes are getting a free education and a shot to a professional career in their sport. What else could they want?

Carleton Duvall
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Carleton Duvall 06/02/11 - 08:12 am
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Richt said he thinks the

Richt said he thinks the players should have more money but it should not be given to them. Where in the h---does he think it should come from. I am a dawg fan but I don't have my head stuck in the sand like many do. The coaches make millions, the schools make millions , all off the backs of the student athletes. As far as a shot at the pros, how many get there? As far as an education, many have trouble writing their names. Get real.

DawgnSC69
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DawgnSC69 06/02/11 - 08:23 am
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Found this over at

Found this over at blutarsky.wordpress.com. Amazingly well-written attack on the idea of paying college players.

” The easiest way to fix the problem is to address the problem. Beginning in middle school, kids should be told by their coaches, teachers, and parents that they are going to be held to a higher standard. Athletic ability guarantees a free ride. It doesn’t guarantee an open door. If the adults involved in the lives of these kids adjust their mentality from “this is what you need to do to deal with it” to “this is where you need to be to be successful,” all of these problems go away. It’s time to stop saying that a kid from the wrong side of the tracks needs a paycheck because football is their way out and start saying that a kid from the wrong side of the tracks gets an education because football is their way in. Without athletic talent, a lot of the kids we continue to talk about, black or white, would only view a college campus while dropping off a pizza. If perspective is appropriately represented, these kids, given the opportunity of a four year free education, would embrace it, utilize it, and succeed because of it.
Fact is, college athletes graduate with degrees at nearly the same rate as the general student body. They’ve already proven they’re equal to their peers. Why continue the argument that these players, given free educations and equal opportunity, need yet another leg up on the kid who will pay student loans until they’re 40?
Every job has an entry level requirement. The NFL’s entry level requires a player to be three years removed from high school. Players have a choice. They can go to college and build their resume, or hope that three years removed from high school and without experience will get them drafted. How many have you seen skip college? Let’s be real. Let’s be accurate. Paying players creates more problems than it solves, regardless of what Jason Whitlock accepts as his current reality. The solution is as simple as realistic expectations and proper preparation. Can we be realistic for once?
I’m sorry that Ed O’Bannon didn’t cut it in the NBA. I’m sorry that Tyrone Prothro’s injury limited his NFL potential. Heck, I’m sorry that someone told Maurice Clarett when he was 16 that he was destined to be the next great pro running back. Most importantly, I’m sorry that the gravy training jerk-offs who told all these kids that millions of professional dollars were going to be easy ever existed in the first place. If you want to fix the problem, focus on the problem. If you wan’t to put a band aid on reality, pay college athletes and wait for the next problem to surface. I’d bet a healthy sum that paying college players creates more Antoine Walkers than Michael Jordans. Of course, Antoine Walker lacked the funds to pony up for that bet” Dan Wines

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 08:33 am
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scooby, I have no idea if you

scooby, I have no idea if you are a Dawg fan or not, but you certainly need to reflect on your comments regarding MR. In a interview on why he sold his second house he said this: "I'd challenge anybody to read this book and not be affected by it, Richt said. "We just live in such wealth here in America. And I'm talking about everybody. Anybody who's making 30 grand a year is extremely wealthy compared to rest of the people in the world. These kids, these families will walk two or three miles, half a day or more, to get water that's really not healthy. They're drinking stuff that's not safe for them. Then children die of AIDS, they die of malaria and they die of dehydration. Kids end up dying or the parents die and they've got nothing.

"This book just talks about how much of that is going on around the world and, if it was sitting right outside our door, what would we do about it? It's a very compelling book. Compelling enough for me to say, 'you know what, I don't want to pour money into a home like that when I can use it for better things, for eternal things.' It was just very alarming to find out what's going on out there and we need to do something about it."
In addition, he spends time every year in impoverished countries doing whatever he can to help people less fortunate than him. And you think this issue is about money to MR?? If you really are a Dawg fan, then I'm ashamed of you.

csrareader
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csrareader 06/02/11 - 08:33 am
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Unless I'm mistaken, they are

Unless I'm mistaken, they are already being paid. It's called a scholarship.

woodymeister
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woodymeister 06/02/11 - 08:55 am
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So we give these kids a full

So we give these kids a full scholarship to attend college and now we need to give them cash as well? If that is the case, can I get a small stipend for my kids in college? Spurrier and/or USC are both ridiculous. If my kid can keep the HOPE scholarship, should he or she get a cash allowance for us parents, or his or her girlfriend/boyfriend? Insanity...

DawgnSC69
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DawgnSC69 06/02/11 - 10:07 am
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Scooby must not be from

Scooby must not be from around here. Columbus OH. perhaps? Auburn or Southern Cal. maybe?

SECGirl
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SECGirl 06/02/11 - 12:08 pm
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These kids are out on the

These kids are out on the field risking life and limb for what?? Yes they get a free education and maybe a few meal tickets. But NCAA and the colleges that they are playing for reap a TON of money because these kids are out there playing their hearts out for a very minuscale chance at the pros. I am not saying these players should bring home a fortune, but like Spurrier, I think it would be nice for them to have some pocket money. I think it might actually keep them out of trouble with the NCAA, since maybe then they wouldn't have to sell their game jersey to make an extra buck!!!

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 11:22 am
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SECGirl, I do not totally

SECGirl, I do not totally disagree with your comments. I only wish to point out that nobody makes these guys play football. It is entirely their choice. Just saying...

SECGirl
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SECGirl 06/02/11 - 11:38 am
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jtf..I understand that noone

jtf..I understand that noone MAKES them play. But, they are KIDS and most of them come from low income families and are playing for the "dream" of actually making it to the NFL and the wealth that this brings. The reality is that few actually live the dream. Some of them even get injured to the point of disability. What then? At least they got a free college education and earned someone else a paycheck I guess...

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 12:36 pm
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"At least they got a free

"At least they got a free college education". Are you diminishing that? If so, you haven't paid for a college education lately. BTW, they also got free room and board, free meals ( any idea how much a 300 Lbs lineman eats?), and free clothing. I mean, it's not a bad gig.

SECGirl
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SECGirl 06/02/11 - 12:52 pm
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I am absolutely not

I am absolutely not diminshing that they got a free college education, but my point was if they are disabled due to a serious football injury then how much is that college education going to actually mean in that athlete's future. Sure...this isn't the everyday case scenario, but it IS what is on the line. You are right it is not a bad gig..but I don't see any harm in paying them a couple hundred dollars per game so they can maybe take a girl to see a movie or out to dinner.. these are college kids and if they are playing football. Football is their JOB...no time for anything else.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 01:11 pm
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Supplying them with some

Supplying them with some walking money is OK, but I don't think the coaches should be the ones providing it. It could easily get out of hand. Our only disagreement was, it seemed to me anyway, your implication that these athletes had nothing to gain. Anyway, I would never cross a SECGirl. Ya'll are too cute.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 06/02/11 - 01:39 pm
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These players work

These players work unbelieveably hard and make millions for the schools, yet get nothing in return. I'm reminded of the case of John Smith, the running back at Ohio State years ago. He wanted to become a physician and tried to study hard. He had a lab class one day that would go until about 6 pm and told the coaches he would have to miss practice. They told him NO. They said football came first. These kids barely get enough time to eat and sleep, much less study.

Carleton Duvall
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Carleton Duvall 06/02/11 - 01:47 pm
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No, I am not a Dawg fan. I

No, I am not a Dawg fan. I made my comments just to see how many of you would get worked up about it. You guys think that the only thing that is important in life are them Dawgs. SAD.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 02:08 pm
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river, "nothing in return".

river, "nothing in return". How can you say that? You can't be serious. BTW, I think you mean ROBERT Smith. His Buckeye team lost to the Dawgs in the 93 Citrus Bowl.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 01:56 pm
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scooby, you were not talking

scooby, you were not talking about the Dawgs, you were slamming Mark Richt.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 06/02/11 - 02:11 pm
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Justthefacts, they don't

Justthefacts, they don't really get educations because the coaches don't give them time to study. Half of them are not capable of doing true college work is the truth. They get diplomas because tutors have notes taken for them with underlined parts to be memorized and tested on. Remember the tutors have been there a few years and know the professors' tests.

My dad played football on a scholarship at a pretty big school that I won't mention because I don't want to make them look bad. Aiken County has had some good players over the years. They beat Clemson and Carolina every year he played back then. He said he never studied and was given special tests if he couldn't remember the answers he was given. He got a degree and never learned a thing to be frank.

Let's be honest. Bigtime football players are not real students. They should be paid as employees.

PS...thanks...Robert Smith. Yep, you know the story, too.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 06/02/11 - 02:16 pm
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Trivia question for you

Trivia question for you guys. Anyone know the name of the Clemson football player Woody Hayes hit on the sidelines that led to his firing? Bonus question do you know what the Clemson player told the press?

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 02:18 pm
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OK river, I realize there are

OK river, I realize there are problems. But, you are painting with a pretty broad brush. I think the college experience received by these kids far out weighs the alternative of no college experience. I don't believe your dad was worse off for having attended. We have Football played by paid players. It's called the NFL.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 02:20 pm
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Chambers? Or something like

Chambers? Or something like that. I didn't cheat. No clue on the bonus question.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 06/02/11 - 02:21 pm
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bauman..damn.

bauman..damn.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 06/02/11 - 02:26 pm
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Charlie Baughman. Now here is

Charlie Baughman. Now here is the interesting thing. He told the press. "Nobody hit me. Woody Hayes is a great coach."

But, of course, from the TV pictures it was obvious and Hayes was fired. That hit made Baughman famous for life.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 06/02/11 - 02:30 pm
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Ooops...it is spelled Bauman.

Ooops...it is spelled Bauman.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 06/02/11 - 02:38 pm
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Justthefacts, I just read

Justthefacts, I just read something about Bauman. He lives in Ohio now if you can believe that. Here is another quote from him a couple of years ago: "Quoted in Florida Times-Union as saying, ""Maybe someday, this will all go away. I hope so." (referring to the incident)

Boogaloo
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Boogaloo 06/02/11 - 02:43 pm
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You start paying only

You start paying only football players or male basketball players then you are more than likely going to get law suits from all of the other sport scholarship athletes. Won't happen unless it is for all sports athletes.

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