While We’re Waiting… Paying College Athletes, Bentley Sues Browns, and Rogers 911 Audio

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com

On paying college athletes: “Ohio State football is a religion in this state. Don’t believe me, go to a Walmart after they lose and tell me what you see. We love to root for Ohio State and root against teams like Florida, USC, and Texas don’t we?  I’m also a die hard Cavs and Indians fan. I haven’t missed a Browns game since I was about 12. So, what’s the difference between amateurs and professionals?  A group of one of the categories gets millions upon millions of dollars a year, while the other group is exploited by a group of money hungry bureaucrats.

Nonsense, you say, college athletes receive scholarships and a chance to play on national t.v.  Nonsense, I say, college football players bring in millions upon millions of dollars to their universities. They spend 5-10 hours a day practicing and have little to no time to spend on studying. The vast majority of them aren’t going to the NBA or NFL, they’re going to the real world. A world in a severe depression that doesn’t look kindly on college dropouts.  Meanwhile, a group of college higher ups get their lush 6 figure salaries off of a 9 to 5 work day and free tickets to see their exploited workers.” [Cleveland Hope]

One-snap member of the Browns LeCharles Bentley decides to place a lawsuit against the team. [Pat McManamon/NFL FanHouse]

Chili’s gets opportunistic: “Ever since Steve Carell announced during his spoof of “The Decision” at this year’s ESPYs that he would be taking his appetite away from Chili’s and over to Outback Steakhouse, Chili’s has taken this PR opportunity and ran with it. First it was the humorous letter written by Chili’s president Wyman T. Roberts in similar fashion to that of Dan Gilbert’s, and now the restaurant is taking things a step further. On July 23, five participating Chili’s locations will be giving away one free “Sweet Shot” dessert per entree ordered to comfort us depressed Cavaliers fans following LeBron’s departure.” [’64 and Counting]

Magic Johnson may or may not be a hypocrite [TrueHoop]

And finally, audio of the Shaun Rogers 911 call that we discussed yesterday [TMZ]

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • MrCleaveland

    If they start paying college athletes, is it only a matter of time until they go on strike for more money?

  • Stinkfist

    On the discussion of paying college athletes, do you pay a quarterback the same as a center midfieler, a shortstop, a shooting guard, a discus thrower, a diver? Does each athlete in every sport get paid the same? at all? Each sport certainly doesn’t bring in the same amount of money, and I would imagine there are enough programs that are losses financially, but are only in place because of football. Why should a swimmer make as much as a football player? Maybe a better question, why shouldn’t they?
    Sticking to football here, as it is the major moneymaking program for most schools, who determines how much these guys get paid? Is it the same at each school? Does a USC, OSU, Texas player get paid the same as kid from Toledo? If the answer to that is no, then that creates a very crooked Yankees/Indians kind of scenario for recruiting.
    I am very against it. What I described is way, WAY, worse than schools making money for their academic programs off of their students. Similarly, having great engineering students at a MIT, CalTech, Purdue, Michigan brings in millions in grant money for facilities and research more so than a Cleveland State could possibly bring in for their program. Same with medical. Hell, same with almost any field. Why dont we just pay our best students more than just scholarships, because they bring in money too… NO.

    This took me a while to write, so someone may have already said the samet things.

  • JNeids

    What is it with people whose name starts with “Le?” Lechuck was as happy as Kosar when he signed with us – he even wore a jersey under his sport coat to his presser! One freak accident and one year later, he leaves on bitter terms, and now he’s suing??? I hope we never sign another Leplayer or athLEte.

  • MattyFos

    Pay the kids. Not based on performance. But pay them a universal amount.

  • MattyFos

    LeCharles Bentley deserves to get something from the Browns. The medical center for the Browns used to be one of the dirtiest places in the NFL. I can think of three staph infections. Bentley, Winslow, and Joe Juri. I’m sure there are more, but Bentley’s staph was a career ender.

  • JNeids

    Braylon Edwards almost caught staph, but dropped it.

  • Lyon

    Spielman was on Mike n Mike today and had a good point. He suggested giving the kids enough money to go out and do stuff on weekends, a la movies or eating at a restaurant.

    Wouldn’t have a problem with that and it could be applied across all sports.

    He also suggested an economic need program so poorer families could get aid to travel and see their kids’ games. That would work too I’d think, no harm in paying for family to watch their kid play.

    Being a former walk-on, I would’ve loved to have been paid at least some going out money. Spending all day in class/practice/film study and not being allowed to work doesn’t do to well on paying for school and being able to go out.

  • Dan C.

    Matty…other staff infections on the Browns include Kellen Winslow, Braylon Edwards, Ben Taylor, and Brian Russell.

    That’s a lot of killer bacteria going around.

  • 5KMD

    Matty,

    Take a look at this:

    http://www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,1853828,00.html

    As someone in the medical field I can tell you staff is everywhere. It’s on your hands, on everything you touch, on the ground. Football is a game of cuts. I don’t think it is just the Browns that are having this issue, we just think it is because we care more about our teams than other teams.

    I could be wrong, but I never remember seeing any actual evidence to say the Berea facilities or the Clinic were “dirtier” than other places. Again, I could be wrong on that and would be happy to admit it if I was. Personal hygiene plays a role as well, as the article implies. The statement about players shaving arms and legs before taping them up was interesting.

    I think the Browns will settle, but I think it would be hard for LeChuck’s team to prove something was amiss.

  • Stinkfist

    Was Winslow’s “staph-infection” a different incident that the staph infection you’re talking about. I thought the “staph-infection” was actually some incredibly swollen… Nuts, I forgot what it was, oh well. Well, whatever his nutty problem was, was that actually caused by a staph infection, or am I thinking of two separate instances?

  • MattyFos

    Stink I think Kellen may have gotten two staph’s. On on his nether regions. The other in his knee. Maybe not.

    @5KMD-
    I understand the threat of staph infections are everywhere. But I seriously doubt that other teams would have 2 staph a year in their facilities. This used to be a routine thing under the Savage/Crennel Browns. Maybe it was a coincidence. But I think LeChuck has got a point. His was a career ender. Joe Juri’s may have been too, I’m not positive about that. But Juri was old and declining. LeChuck still have 8-10 years of football in his legs.

  • MattyFos

    Maybe pay the athletes off of the NCAA video games performance. That would work for the football players. But, for the rest of the schools athletes. Pay them off of the Football revenue. This should come from the NCAA not individual schools. OSU makes like a hundred Million off of it’s football program. NCAA could take 5% revenue from each school and give it out, evenly, throughout all NCAA athletes.

  • MattyFos

    The kids don’t need to be payed ridiculous amounts of money. Maybe like $5,000 a semester. $10,000 for the whole year. That isn’t enough to live on. but they will have room and board paid for. And it could help them pay for a car, and live off of when the season is out. So, they can practice and workout during the summer holidays without having to get a 30 hour a week job. Don’t give them the $10,000 in one lump check. but break it out over a year long period. So, if the player gets cut from the team or his grades aren’t up to par (Cris Carter’s son!) the NCAA wouldn’t have paid them money they didn’t earn. It would be a $384.00 paycheck on a bi-weekly basis.

  • http://waitingfornextyear.com Denny

    Why would I go to a Wal-Marte after an OSU loss –

    Can we start calling Andy Marte “Wal-Marte” –

    Is Wal-Marte going to come up big in 2k11 -

  • A-O

    Student athletes should nto be paid! They get full tuition, books, free tutoring, and generally a stipened. If you are going to pay them 5k then they need to pay for tuition like the other students. If you are an athletic training student you are at their practices, games, rehabs, before the athletes and after they leave and they do not get scholarships- paying student athletes is a bad idea, most of them already have an elevated self perception- dont pay them, make them study and be a contributor to our society and not just an athlete

  • Stinkfist

    I guess I could understand a small stipend of some sort. I was picturing a working-salary for these kids, which would be insane. If the NCAA wanted to take 2% or so of revenues from every D-1 sport (every sport pays same percent, obviously different amounts) and distribute it equally over every student athlete in NCAA, it would seem fair. As long as big schools or certain sports don’t have leverage in recruiting by being able to pay more, it seems reasonable.

    If anything is to happen, it should definitely be handled through the NCAA, and not each school. If a school had to shell out 80-100 grand a year for a 20 man soccer roster, it might just feel like cutting the sport completely, yet if the NCAA paid, the college doesn’t feel pressured or tempted

  • 5KMD

    Matty,

    If you look at any surgical consent form it is going to cover the surgeon and facility for infections. You sign a consent before any operation saying you are aware you can get an infection as a result. Unless there was some obvious negligence somewhere, I don’t think they have a leg to stand on. I still think they will settle just to avoid more bad press.

    I think it was a coincidence. But the outcome of having a post surgical staph infection is not that uncommon at all. Bentley could be suing for his post op CARE which allowed the infection to get worse and worse but that would be different than suing for the infection itself. Big difference.

  • 5KMD

    And I promise guys, the “not having a leg to stand on” was a pun that was truly unintended.

  • CLEFAN4LIFE

    Here we go again with the pay the kids argument. These kids are paid with a free education, especially to universities that are upwards of 25k per year in tuition, books, room & board. Try telling kids that work 40 hours a week to pay for their room and board and food, along with graduating with 75K in student loans that their athlete fellow students should be getting paid. Being a college athlete is a choice, if you don’t like the schedule then don’t play, but certainly don’t cry about not getting paid. If you can’t take that education(free) and make something of yourself, then that’s your problem. You can’t tell me that college athletes, especially football players don’t have every opportunity in the world placed in front of them, especially in the Big 10. They have tutors, are placed in classes with the easiest professors and are given lists of contacts upon graduation for employment opportunities. They are certainly compensated (paid) for their contribution to the school.

    Besides, do you want our athletes to be driving hummers like #6 at a young age and feel entitled to everything, only to turn out to be a self involved, take the easy route, nothing’s ever good enough bum? Where have the days gone that we teach the lesson that hard work and sacrifice is a good lesson as opposed to instant gratification without the life lessons?

  • MattyFos

    lol

  • MattyFos

    @CLEAN-
    Yeah, and those athletes driving the Hummers and getting houses (BUSH) is what’s wrong with the current system. These kids get exploited. They don’t go to college to get an education. They go to college to make it to the pros. They get exploited, making handfuls of millions for their schools and the NCAA. All they get in return is a degree they could care less about, which is why they leave after 1 year for the NBA or 3 years for the NFL.

  • MattyFos

    Even squeaky clean/ ultra responsible Jim Tressel had a player (Maurice Clarett) taking money/perks from boosters.

  • CLEFAN4LIFE

    @Matty
    Maybe they should rethink their priorities. Do you honestly feel bad for a kid that could care less about getting a great education and getting that education for free? Do some research about the statistics about how many professional atheletes end up going bankrupt. THe number is staggering. That’s why it’s so important they do take their education so seriouisly. SO many of these guys want to hurry up and make all this money only to blow it and end up in a low place. You can’t force people to take advantage of their situation and paying them early won’t make a difference. They will focus even less on their education and even more on their athletics so that they “get paid.” Priorities!!!! Life isn’t about money. These kids need life lessons, not money at an earlier age.

  • bobby

    I agree with CLEFAN. No way they can start paying athletes across the board at any school other then OSU, USC, Florida, etc. Look at the MAC schools. They are struggling to make profits with their athletics. All schools in Ohio are raising tuition because they are getting more in debt. I agree though, they should get paid… like around 20k plus a year. Like their tuition, tutors, training, weight room facilities. If these athletes were smart they would take adv. of all of these.

  • MattyFos

    Well, why does the accredited Universities provide some type of “life management” lessons. For credit. For student athletes. Because, even though you wish it were so. These Universities do not care about these kids. The coaches do. But the Dean, and the School boards or whatever only care that these kids are earning the money and p.r.
    The best thing for these kids is a strong family, which isn’t always the case. And a Coach who will try to teach the students reliability, responsibility and respect.
    But I think the kids should be paid. This is something I have felt for a long time. I have an idea to hurt the colleges, by taking all of the recruits from the NCAA (football) and putting them into a NFDL.
    National Football Developmental League. Where the kids would play in NFL systems, with aspiring NFL coaches, helping them progress along the way. No more of these 18 year old kids, playing in the spread offense, disrupting their drop backs and never learning to be under Center. The kids would be paid obviously not as much as NFL players. But they would drafted to these teams out of high school. It’s be a pay scale based on drafting status. They would play throughout the season and after three years in the NFDL they would have the option to enter the NFL draft or the option to stay and work on their game.
    See, I do not care about College Football. So I wouldn’t mind seeing the Terrell Pryor’s and the Maurice Clarret’s of the world entering the NFDL. The football would be better than college and the players would be NFL ready when they come out of the league. No more Tim tebow’s needing work on his mechanics. The NFDL coaches would have sorted that out over his three years with in the league. No more Cornerbacks who can’t play man coverage. The NFDL coaches would have taught them that over the years.
    Maybe set the league up like MLB farm systems. Where NFL teams have affiliates and hire coaches for the NFDL, to prepare the kids for their system after their 3 year commitment in the NFDL.

    I’ve been working on that idea for quite some time. Everyone on WFNY is going to hate the idea, because there are a lot of College fans. I know we all, for the most part, love the Browns. But they would hate the idea of College football be lost in obscurity.
    If College is about the Education, then the NCAA wouldn’t mind. Because they are still educating the players they recruit.

    /lol

  • bobby

    Matty the is an interesting idea actually. the NCAA is too powerful to really allow it to happen I think, but it would be cool to see it develop. I wouldnt mind if it were a seperate thing from NFL teams either… just have it be more like NFL football. Then these players can enter the Draft with college players. A lot of schools would be crushed by that though because they truly rely on the football revenue to run the school.

  • http://waitingfornextyear.com Denny

    Nobody answered my questions :[

  • Lyon

    Denny… I’m all for calling him Wal-Marte. Let the bandwagon begin!

  • MattyFos

    @bobby-
    That’s the brilliance with the NFDL. It completely bypasses the NCAA. It is part of the NFL and the NCAA would have no say in the matter at all. I’m sure they could attempt to sue the NFL. But, that would only show their true colors that the only want to make money, not educate the students who go the these colleges.

  • MattyFos

    @Denny-
    As much as I love Marte. I don’t think he’s up to Wal-Mart standards. We should call him K-Marte

  • MattyFos

    Or Kwick-E-Marte*

    Where Apu works from The Simpsons

  • Lyon

    K-Marte is a good one, especially if he strikes out.

  • bobby

    Matty- Do you think the NFL would take any heat by people claiming the NFL doesnt care about the athletes that would join the NFLPA? By care, I mean they dont want to see their athletes get an education. I mean most certainly there would be money management courses by this league, but I dont kno.. its an interesting idea. I would also wonder if it would get a good pull of athletes. Im sure there are loads of Mo Clarett’s out there that would go right to this, but Im sure there are just as much that want an education and the college experience.

  • Stinkfist

    Wow, Matty really loved this WWW. 3-triple posts, a double, and an essay.

  • Rich

    I love all of the ESPN people somehow finding ways to call Magic and Jordan hypocrites. The guys have won 11 combined titles, but because they are telling a narrative that most at ESPN don’t want to hear for obvious reasons, then they are hypocrites. The problem wit hthe arguement is that there is no evidence to base their accusations on. They didn’t leave their teams. They didn’t try to team up. So when trying to argue about them being hypocritical, the only thing you can argue is some hypothetical situation if this, this, and this had happened. Well, it didn’t. And they didn’t team up. hard to deny what we know as fact.

  • MattyFos

    @Stinkfist- lol

    @bobby- If the NFL cared about the education of its players. There wouldn’t be a 3 year wait after High School, there’d be a 4 year wait… I do understand that it would make the NFL look worse in the media. Because they would have a “Who cares about Education” posture. but they could compare it to a trade school.
    You know, If you don’t go to college you can go to trade schools, or become an apprentice somewhere. It’s a job preparation school. lol..

    /Nicely spun

  • CLEFAN4LIFE

    Generalizing “These Universities do not care about these kids” is completely uninformed and shows a lot of ignorance. Many college lose a lot of money on their athletic programs, including the Florida Gators, who lost 5.4 million in 2008-2009, which was arguably the most successful program in the country. USC lost 1.6 million the same time span. There are more sports in college than just football and basketball and most of them lose a ton of money, which is paid for by the higher profile sports. Paying players would likely cause colleges to eliminate some of the lower profile sports. In doing so, you’re probably eliminating a scholarship for an individual that only made it to school because he or she was a good tennis player. Many of those athletes become doctors, lawyers, teachers, accountants and hundreds of other jobs that benefit our country, economy and communities. So pardon me if I don’t jump on the train that Terelle Pryor deserves to get paid in college. He may generate a ton of money for the OSU athletic program, which in turn provides the opportunity for some other student athlete in another sport to get an education and make an impact in the world. It may be the only time in Pryor’s life he does something for someone else.. The kicker is he probably doesn’t even realize. Think about what you’re asking for and what it will take away from someone else. It may impact your community and your economy. It’s not as cut and dry as just cutting someone a check.

  • Alex

    Matty, why not just go all the way and adopt the European football model? Sign kids in their youth to the development program of an NFL team. If all you want to do is prepare kids for the NFL, this is what to do. Screw getting a quality high school education, let alone college. If all they’re going to do is play in the NFL some day, then their entire lives should be focused on it, right?

    The only way this would work is if the NFL teams are the development teams. Nobody would watch developmental football, for the same reason that nobody watches any developmental sports – we just want to see the finished product. Sure, some people would watch it (like those that watch minor league baseball games), but no entities would make money from this unless they’re tied with individual NFL teams. You’d go from college football, where the objective is to win, to developmental football, where the objective is to improve technique. This system would likely be doomed from the start – no TV ratings, little advertising revenue, etc. Nobody would watch it.

    How many people watch NFL preseason games religiously, start to end, every single one? Now imagine NFL preseason games without any of the veterans and at a much lower level.

    Your model of an NFDL would not provide better football because, again, the point is not to win. It’s to develop. It could provide better NFL football, but not in the D league.