Paper Type

Master's Thesis


College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Practical Philosophy and Applied Ethics (MA)


Philosophy and Religious Studies

NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Mitchell R. Haney

Second Advisor

Dr. Alissa Hurwitz Swota

Third Advisor

Dr. Jonathan D. Matheson

Department Chair

Dr. Hans-Herbert Koegler

College Dean

Dr. Barbara A. Hetrick


The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is the nonprofit governing body of college athletics. They oversee three distinct divisions of competition containing over 430,000 student athletes and over 1,000 member institutions.[1] Their primary task is to ensure all student-athletes and the universities they attend adhere to the extensive rules and regulations outlined in the Associations manual, namely, to abide by principles of amateurism, defined by the Association as agents that do not receive any payment above travel expenses or a grant-in-aid scholarship for competing in sports endeavors.

The problem is the NCAA is currently financially and academically exploiting college athletes. The Association possesses an inordinate amount of control over young men and women, and they exercise this power to exploit their unrecognized labor force and generate billions of dollars in revenues, while restricting the amount of compensation the athletes receive to a number well below what the free market will bear. College athletes are not receiving any of the money they produce, and most will not benefit in any real way from the educational product they are provided. The system must be reformed.

The first step will be to eliminate financially defined amateurism along with the NCAA’s expansive rulebook. Second, student athletes should be allowed to set their own course load. This includes not taking any classes if they choose, thus ending the charade that athletes are recruited to campus as students first, even when it is clear many have no interest in academics. Third, courses should be tailored to pique the interest of athletes, namely offering majors in sports. Finally, university athletic departments need to be scaled down to truly comply with Title IX requirements and stop wasting exorbitant sums of money. The hypocrisy and deception must end.

[1] “About the NCAA,” National Collegiate Athletic Association, 2013,

Included in

Philosophy Commons