Yesterday, SEC commissioner Mike Slive took part in a roundtable Q&A session with a number of other conference commissioners and media members. In addition to discussing playoff plans and the future of the BCS, Slive also tackled the idea of athletes being paid.
You might remember that it was Slive last summer who began a national discussion regarding full cost-of-attendance scholarships. But that doesn’t mean he’s in favor of turning college athletes into semi-professional athletes:
“There’s a very tender line. We are in the world of academia. One can get cynical. But we are in academics. Therefore, universities are not interested in having professional athletes as a subset of its academic mission.
(But) we are talking about an academic enterprise that has culturally become a phenomenon in a way in which it probably never was designed to be as a form of entertainment, and significant entertainment in football and basketball.”
According to Jon Solomon of The Birmingham News, “Slive said if the day ever happens when college athlete are paid, they will be unaffiliated with the universities.”