Skip College! Big East Commr. Says High School Players Should Go Straight to NBA

March 7, 2018
Updated 7mo ago

An FBI probe reignited the debate over whether collegiate basketball players should be compensated. But Big East Commissioner Val Ackerman has one suggestion that could fix the issue: let top athletes go to the NBA straight out of high school.

“I think that if these top players can start earning those big dollars more quickly, that would be an instant correction,” she said Wednesday. “And that would help, as well, in the kinds of issues that were surfaced in this criminal investigation.”

Her argument echoes the sentiment of ACC Commissioner John Swofford, who on Tuesday told Cheddar there should not be a pay-for-play system in college sports.

The statements come as the federal government investigates recruiting agents and more than 20 Division I schools for giving players under-the-table bonuses or other perks, violating NCAA rules.

Some say that the NCAA, which generated more than $1 billion in revenue in the year ending in August 31, 2017, should pay student athletes. But Ackerman told Cheddar that players get other kinds of compensation.

“I was a student athlete at the University of Virginia. I got my education paid for, we didn’t make any money,” she said. “There’s a quid pro quo that I don’t think gets talked about enough.”

For the full interview, click here.