There are several ethical issues in the news lately about the treatment college athletes are receiving compared to the non-athletic students of universities. Is the practice of favoring athletes and bending the rules in the favor of universities to enable the best college sports stars to play ethical? Two major ethical issues that have been in the public eye as of late is cheating and grade tampering, and recruiting tactics. Both of these actions are unethical, but it still isn’t stopping universities around the country to discontinue in these manners.
Cheating and grade tampering is not allowed in any way for a normal student of a university. Why are teachers and administrators helping and giving alternate academic options to athletes? For example, last year, star running back Maurice Clarett, a student and football player at Ohio State University received alternate test methods, and was supplied answers to various quizzes by teaching assistants. An article on ESPN. com states that Maurice Clarett had walked out of a midterm exam last fall and ended up passing the entry-level course after the professor provided him with an oral exam.
Clarett was the only person of more than 90 students taking the class who received an oral exam (“Whistleblower: Buckeyes’ Test Scores Altered 2). I believe this is totally an unethical example of how schools are favoring athletes rather than their normal students. Clarett was apparently failing the class, and instead of Ohio State losing their star running back, they altered the rules so he could pass. The article then goes on to say that Clarett and other football players sat together and copied answers that tutors had supplied to the player before the quizzes had been administered.
Fresno State University has been alleged with a similar academic scandal in recent months. In February, former team statistician Stephen Mintz said he wrote 17 pieces of schoolwork in correspondence courses for three former basketball players in 2000. Mintz claimed he was paid more than $1,000 for his services. The coach’s academic adviser, Katie Felten, had organized some of the cheating for the team (Documents Link Adviser to Academic Scandal 1).
The special treatment these athletes are getting is unethical. It sounds as if these athletes are going to school strictly for sports, and that somebody else will take care of the academic aspect of school. It is not fair that sports players are receiving the same degrees that other students are when rules and class structures on not enforced upon certain athletes. Academic dishonesty is not the only ethical issue involving sports though. Another ethical issue involving sports and college are methods of recruiting. One college for example, the University of Colorado, has been under heat for their recruiting tactics for their football team.
College students are supposed to decide which college they will attend based on their likings and what they feel will suit their needs the best. It seems though that some schools are persuading potential students, especially athletic recruits, by using unethical recruiting tactics. Boulder county district attorney Mary Keenan stated, “The football program uses sex and alcohol fueled parties to interest recruits in attending CU. ” This has resulted in money of the football program being spent on strippers and escorts, and consequently, several girls have been raped while attending these recruit parties.
As a student, if I was a sports player and I was visiting schools, and some schools showed the campus and how the sports teams functioned, and one school let me go out with the team while they got me drunk and surrounded me with all kinds of women, of course I would go to the school that was a better time. I don’t know many guys my age who could refuse that situation. But in reality, those recruiting tactics are not morally correct. Not only is it not fair to other schools looking for their next sports star, but athletes will be coming to a university for all the wrong reasons.
In conclusion, it is a fact that athletes, especially at larger universities across the country get special treatment in regards to academic issues and lifestyle. Universities will go to any extent to protect their players from being academically ineligible to play, and seems they will do anything to get the best recruits in the country to give their team an advantage. It is hard for the NCAA to enforce strict rules, especially academically because schools have academic freedom which enables universities to make their own classroom policies.
The NCAA asks, “If a certain institution permits grade changes for students up through and even after the final exam, how do you hold athletes to a different standard? ” In reality, it is almost impossible to hold athletes to a different standard, and as long as this loop hole exists, colleges will be using any method enticing athletes to come to their school and continue to play through their college career, regardless of their academic status. It is unethical, but until NCAA rules change, who can dictate these procedures are not allowed? Works Cited Associated Press.
Documents Link Adviser to Academic Scandal. Retrieved October 26, 2004 from http://espn. go. com/ncb/news/2003/0528/1560284. html Associated Press. Tressel Doubts Clarett Will Be Ready For Opener. Retrieved October 26, 2004 from http://espn. go. com/ncf/news/2003/0820/1599853. html Associated Press. Report Resulted In One Indictment. Retrieved October 26, 2004 from http://sports. espn. go. com/espn/print? id=1892551&type=story Farrey, Tom. The ? Academic Freedom’ Loophole. Retrieved October 26, 2004 from http://espn. go. com/ncaa/s/2003/1007/1632676. html