The above video, which was uploaded by the Clemson Tigers’ official YouTube account, is a celebration of the massive amounts of gear a football player at the school can expect to receive over the course of the year.
It’s an impressive collection of shirts, jerseys, jock straps, pants, sweatpants, hats, beanies, towels, cleats, shoes, helmets, hats and more. But it can also serve as a useful litmus test for gauging your own views on the National Collegiate Athletic Association. So let’s play a game. When you watch the above video, do you think:
(a) “What an amazing amount of swag these guys get just to play the sport they love. Considering they presumably get all of that on top of a scholarship, room and board, it seems like these guys really live the life. How could they complain about not getting paid? They should appreciate that they get to play their way through college. It’s an experience they’ll cherish forever. Adding money to the equation would ruin that. And plus, a lot of these athletic departments already aren't making a profit anyway.”
(b) “For 40 hours of unpaid work per week, all these guys get is a bed, some food and the ability to become a walking advertisement for clothing companies? I mean, the football coach just got $3.15 million to coach these Nike-wearing kids, yet the NCAA and universities often won’t even pick up the medical bill if a student-athlete gets injured on the field. And that’s before considering the racial graduation gap between black and white football players. A pile of swag and talk of ‘family’ doesn’t make up for all that. Even one of the main guys behind Nike's takeover of college sports knows it."