Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Once again, Clemson is paying players. Thing is, the NCAA says it's okay.

CLEMSON, S.C. -- Clemson received permission Monday from the NCAA to provide assistance to a freshman football player who is taking care of his younger brother.
Ray Ray McElrathbey, 19, has temporary custody of his 11-year-old brother, Fahmarr, because of his mother's continuing drug problems and his father's gambling addiction. The brothers have moved from foster homes and now share an apartment near the Clemson campus. ...
The brothers had been living solely off McElrathbey's scholarship, but Clemson plans to establish a trust fund to coordinate financial contributions to help pay for normal living expenses, Clemson athletic director Terry Don Phillips said in a release.

Now, as much as I would like for anyone named "Ray Ray McElrathbey" to be able to remain in college football, and as much as I feel for his family, let's look at who we're dealing with here. Clemson doesn't have what you would call a sterling record in this department. Indeed, "pay-to-play" is more than just a part of the New Jersey political system.

I have no problem with the NCAA allowing coaches and their families to provide child care and transportation, etc. But the trust fund bothers me just a touch. The NCAA is essentially saying, "Yes, program with a bad record, you can pay another player, even though there are probably other students across the country in a similar situation whose schools don't give a rip about them because they don't play football."

Myles Brand: Allowing payola, but cracking down on Native American-themed mascots.

Maybe he can help us get some justice.


Anonymous Josh Centor said...

I'm surprised you see it like that. McElrathbey is raising his 11-year old brother while playing a Division I sport. It seems to me that he is doing the right thing, and this waiver allows him to be a student-athlete and take care of his brother at the same time. I am confident our organization would have had the same response for any student-athlete in a similar situation.

Josh Centor (jcentor@ncaa.org)

9:38 AM


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