Big Ten Players Wonder Where They Fit Into $1 Billion TV Deal
Javier Johnson, point guard for the basketball team at Indiana University, echoed Stroud. Johnson said it would be fair for players to get a “small percentage” of the billion-dollar deal. “People only come to watch the players play,” he said.
Brooks supports athletes earning a portion of the multi-billion dollar deal. Still, she said, she’s not sure where gymnastics would fit in with sports like football and basketball. “Yeah, we can have a piece of that pie, but I think my thing is football and basketball should get it done before,” Brooks said, “Just because when you look at the numbers, They are the athletes who are bringing in. That’s all viewership. ,
The player’s salary is certainly far from a done deal. Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith told reporters Thursday that student-athletes are already paid “in total” in the form of support they receive from coaches, strength trainers, sports psychologists, nutritionists and academic advisors.
“Frankly, they’re already getting a slice of television revenue,” Smith said. “So they actually get a piece already. It may not be directly in their pocket, but it’s an investment in them.”
Although schools may choose to do more for student-athletes in the future, “not in the form of pay-for-play,” he said. “Otherwise, I’m out.”
Even though the Big Ten’s new deal may not result in direct payments to students, some athletes hoped it would increase the opportunities now available to capitalize on their name, image and likeness. Brooks thought more TV viewership could help athletes with their visibility, increasing their chances of zero deals.