Recently, at a news conference in New Orleans for the Final Four, NCAA president Mark Emmert fielded some questions on comments made by Coach Cal. Take a look and discuss.
Q. Going back to Coach Calipari's suggestions for things that the NCAA might do to keep players or incentivize players to stay in school longer. I know you said you don't have any clear ideas yet. One of them was a stipend beyond 2000, which you're already dealing with. Another one was schools covering the catastrophic insurance. The third thing was allowing them to borrow against future earnings. Can you address the feasibility of those beyond the stipend?
PRESIDENT EMMERT: We do, in fact, provide catastrophic insurance right now on top of the insurance that's provided by the institution. So I'm not exactly sure what Coach Calipari was meaning in describing that.
They're always opportunities to improve those programs, I'm sure. But that is in place and, indeed, it gets exercised fairly routinely when there's an insurance issue around an injury that exceeds the insurance provided by the institution.
There's a lot of discussion around various ways in which you can provide money to student?athletes. There's people that would like us to do direct compensation, just pay them. There's people I've heard that would like to pay them like professionals. The quarterback makes as much as the quarterback can get. If University X can pay more than University Y, fine, the person goes there.
There's the sponsorship model. There's a model where every kid gets $20,000. I mean, all of those things are simply different models of throwing away the collegiate model of athletics.
The whole principle of the collegiate model of athletics is these are college students who play sports. If they want to be professional athletes, those options are available to them and I would encourage them to pursue them and I hope they do well at them.