The NCAA is a huge nonprofit association that regulates athletes. According to the NCAA website, NCAA is a membership-driven organization dedicated to safeguarding the well-being of student athletes. With this being said, there are three different divisions within the NCAA. These divisions are known as Division I, Division II and Division III.
The NCAA makes it very clear that athletes of all divisions are just as important to the association. However, the benefits are nowhere near the same and I can’t help but think the NCAA is severely flawed.
As a Division I transfer, I can say first-hand my benefits were extremely high I received priority registration and even got many doctor visits paid for. It’s very sad to witness the differences between the divisions.
What is so interesting to me is that the official website of the NCAA states, “Academics are the primary focus for Division III student athletes.”
Division III athletes are more than likely enrolled in just as many units as Division I or II athletes and probably have just as challenging practices. However is Division I and II receive priority registration, while Division III does not.
Why is this not fair you ask? Well, a Division III student athlete can not receive an athletic scholarship this puts even more pressure on them to graduate within the four years.
Having to work classes around practice times almost makes it impossible to accomplish a four-year graduation plan. Isn’t that the main goal of a student athlete, to graduate when you’re supposed to, while being able to enjoy the sport you love? It’s not fair if you ask me.
The most flawed situation of the different divisions’ benefits within the NCAA is definitely the health aspect. For instance, if a Division III student athlete needs to go see a doctor about a torn ACL that occurred during a game, everything is covered by the school down to the visit itself, the X-ray and possibly the MRI. Now take a Division III student athlete and put them in this position and you will see that nothing is covered by the school.
Hypothetically, these two athletes had the same injury within a school competition, why should one be covered and not the other?
Max Price is on the California Lutheran University baseball team and is a transfer from Moorehead State University, which is Division I school. Price has had injuries at his previous school as well as Cal Lutheran.
“At Moorehead the school’s insurance paid for all of my surgery, doctor visits and rehabilitation I needed but unfortunately here at CLU, I have to pay for the doctors visits,” Price said.
Visits to the doctors are never cheap. Even if you have great insurance you still will probably have a co-pay. With this being said, it is not fair the NCAA won’t take complete care of all of their athletes who injure themselves competing for their school.
Student athletes give up a lot to compete for their schools. I don’t think most of the outside world realizes that they are not only managing school, practices, games, etc but they are also taking on the mental stress of wanting to excel in all of those categories.
The divisions shouldn’t separate that aspect because division III is not less competitive than Division I or II. Even Shmoop’s website said, “DIII student athletes are still competing for a national championship.” So in regards to that, why should they not reap higher benefits from the NCAA?
Published February 10th,2016