Family reimbursements for football playoff raised (along with Final Four)

Submitted by justingoblue on January 10th, 2015 at 3:04 PM

This story is four days old but didn't get a thread or mention on the front page. Earlier this week I posted about OSU introducing legislation allowing schools to pay for a bigger share of player's parents travel expenses for the College Football Playoff, and the NCAA managed to temporarily resolve the situation in two days.

There's now a pilot program in place to allow the CFP to reimburse up to $3,000 and the NCAA to reimburse mens and womens Final Four participants family's up to $3,000 with an additional $1,000 for championship game participants. No other sport is affected by this pilot program, and it needs to be codified before becoming perminant.

Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith then quickly made a push on Twitter saying he would seek NCAA legislation to make it happen. On Monday, Smith and Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens got calls from the NCAA about trying to make the reimbursements happen this year. By Tuesday, the CFP announced it would provide $2,500 per player's family in reimbursement money as a pilot program and the NCAA would provide a similar amount for the men's and women's basketball Final Four.
In less than 48 hours, the NCAA found an interpretation in its bylaws to make this happen, blunting the blow of the optics of more Ohio State parents publicly complaining about their travel costs compared to the money being made off the backs of their children.
“I was shocked,” Smith said of the speed in which the NCAA acted. “I was frankly shocked when I got the call from the NCAA office. Then I have to always step back because (NCAA president) Mark Emmert gets it, (NCAA vice president) Mark Lewis gets it, the staff gets it, so they were responding to the needs and the cries of an institution that was crying for help. I don't know where they found the interpretation. The interpretation is back from the 1960s, I'm sure.”…



January 10th, 2015 at 3:52 PM ^

In other words, if the NCAA wanted to stop sham-ateurism and let players take money from endorsements, boosters, etc as any other scholarship student would be allowed to do, they could do it in less than a week.  

I wish they would realize they are digging themselves into a hole that is becoming increasingly more difficult for them to escape.  The O'Bannon settlement put out one fire, but there is too much opportunity for antitrust and restraint of trade lawsuits for the current system to survive much longer.

I wish the NCAA would stop dragging their feet and stop stealing opportunities from players.  I would love it because Michigan football could compete on a level playing field with USC, OSU, Oregon and all teams SEC.  Michigan basketball could compete on a level playing field with teams like UK, OSU, UCLA, Duke and UNC.

The secret is out: they could do it this week if they really wanted to.


January 10th, 2015 at 5:19 PM ^

you do realize that no matter the amount of compensation / revenue justly diverted to student-athletes, certain programs and certain people will always pay above and beyond in order to gain further competitive advantage?  

kentucky and florida and those type programs you referenced will applaud revenue sharing enactments and then simply continue shelling out more money than other programs to buy best athletes.  always and forever


January 10th, 2015 at 4:03 PM ^

As someone who has worked in athletics, it's hard for some of the families of players to afford to travel. This stuff makes a lot of sense to me. 


January 10th, 2015 at 5:23 PM ^

Just a matter of time. The NCAA money citadel is beginning to crumble. The power 5 conferences will increasingly dictate the outcome of these issues or they wiil take their conferences (and their revenues) elsewhere. This is where the NCAA is most vulnerable - follow the money. There is no legal requirement to belong to the NCAA. It's only power is the ability (and willingness) of its member institutions to self impose the NCAA rules and sanctions. The NCAA has no separate legal enforcement powers. That is why individuals can refuse to cooperate with NCAA investigations - the NCAA has no legal ability to issue subpoenas. The NCAA is increasingly becoming a paper tiger.


January 10th, 2015 at 5:24 PM ^

This is such a gray area, this will cause all kinds of problems. I understand bball and football make the money but how are those parents any more important than the other sports?