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Athletes Deserve High Salaries Essay, Research Paper

Andy Huckabay

PE 401

January 24, 2001

Missy Frost

Are athletes getting paid too much? Maybe they are, but I don’t really believe that athletes are over paid. People don’t understand how the lifestyle of a professional athlete really is or who would get the money we spend if the athlete’s didn’t get it. They just see those astronomical numbers and think that it is unfair that us working class people don’t make that amount of money.

Pro athletes are some of the most dedicated, hardest working people in world. They don’t just play during their season, they have to train year round or they will lose their job. The psychological stress placed upon athletes is overwhelming. They are constantly worrying about their bodies, because if they get hurt, their career may be over. They get paid to compete, that in itself is stressful. It is a business, just like lawyers, salesmen, and companies. You just don’t hear about the kind of money those people make.

According to Nathan Durkee, it truly is a business and he breaks it down on his web site. Here’s how it works: Fans pay to watch the game. Numerous companies pay the team to endorse various products. Clothing and apparel companies pay the team to make jerseys, shirts, hats, etc. Different broadcasting corporations pay the team to cover and air the game. All of this money goes to the owner of the particular team. The owners, in turn, then pay their players their salaries. The truth of the matter is that the owners actually make the most money, and only distribute a small portion of it to their hard working employees.

Sam Felsenfeld pointed out in one of his articles that it is a simple matter of supply and demand when it comes to fans paying ridiculous amounts of money for tickets. Owners, with a little help from economists and accountants, have figured out they can charge $30 a seat and fill the stands Sunday after Sunday. So why in the name of capitalism charge only $29. As the system works now, players’ salaries depend on the size of the revenue pool. About 95 percent of revenue in the NFL comes from gate receipts and television contracts.

In closing, athletes are not at fault for getting paid the amount of money they get. Most will even tell you they get paid too much. But don’t try to make them feel guilty about making that kind of money when we as a society worship them like we do. Most athletes give back to the community and donate to charities. The NFL and the United Way have been working together for years. Athlete’s salaries must stay high to keep the level of competition where it is, and keep striving to get better. Why not complain about Hollywood actors getting paid astronomical amounts of money for making a movie. How are they different, they are in the entertainment business and don’t have to deal with anything close to what athletes have to endure.

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