The NCAA has announced that starting in Spring 2014, qualifying student-athletes will receive a monthly stipend of 20 “NCAA Buckz” — a token-based currency the NCAA hopes will help alleviate some of the financial burden faced by many players.
“College athletics have evolved into a multi-billion dollar industry,” explained NCAA President Mark Emmert in a morning press conference. “And though we feel $30,000 a year in tuition and room-and-board is more than adequate compensation, we understand that the needs of modern student-athletes necessitate some form of extra payment system.”
Emmert then nodded off stage and a huge curtain fell behind him, unveiling the new “NCAA Buckz” logo and planned coin design.
“Now, with NCAA Buckz, we can do just that,” he continued. “Tokens may be used on anything an athlete desires from the clearance section in the NCAA‘s online store. This means everything from irregular NCAA sweaters to some non-irregular sweaters to shower sandals is available for purchase.”
NCAA Buckz tokens can also be used for 10-percent discounts at concession stands during NCAA games.
Critics of the new payment system say that this is just another example of star athletes receiving beneficial treatment.
“It’s a slippery slope, and one I don’t think the NCAA should be going down, explained Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski. “Sure, it’s only marked down visors and 2002 East Regional champions t-shirts, but soon they’ll expect to buy non-clearance items, and then you’ve got a real problem on your hands.”
To qualify for NCAA Buckz, a student must be a matriculated Division-I scholarship athlete from a two-parent household or, in the case of jail time for a parent due to a white collar crime up to and including hedge fund embezzlement, a household with one parent — if that parent’s annual salary amounts to at least $95,000 a year.
The NCAA also announced it had already begun a trial run of the new program at Morehead State that “has gone very well.” But reports out of the school say that 16 players will be suspended for selling their NCAA Buckz on eBay.