With one of his state’s most well-known universities once again embroiled in a national recruiting scandal, Kentucky governor Matt Bevin took time in an interview with radio station WKYX to address Louisville’s latest missteps and, opposed to his hollow, bullshit statements on gun control, addressed the problem in an insightful, thoughtful manner, reportedly issuing an unsolicited call to the NCAA and its profitable college sports leagues to finally do away with the concept of amateurism and pay the players. Per Insider Louisville:
“I think we should pay college athletes,” said Bevin. “I really do. This idea that they’re not professionals is nonsense.”
“They’re not there like normal students and we shouldn’t pretend that they are. Some of them, yes, go to class, but most of them are students differently because they’re there for athletics and not academics.”
As for how they should be paid, Bevin added, “I think we should maybe defer that comp — fair enough, they can defer it – but they and their families should be able to benefit from the sacrifices they make.” Bevin added that everyone else associated with college athletics is getting rich, except for the players who made all of this possible.
“The coaches are making millions of dollars a year,” said Bevin. “Shoe contracts are dictating what happens on our college campuses. Athletics directors and others associated with it that are making exorbitant fees. I don’t begrudge people making a high living. Good for them, and I mean that sincerely. But if that comes at the expense of those that are delivering the athletic prowess on the field, then maybe we should rethink the fact that this is really like the minor leagues for the professional sports associations, and they should be compensated and treated accordingly.”
Louisville effectively fired Pitino last week in addition to athletic director Tom Jurich, though Jurich’s since received an outpouring of support from various Cardinals head coaches and Louisville boosters. Like Pitino, Jurich’s lawyers have indicated his intent to take legal action with regards to his axing, claiming the school didn’t have just cause to dismiss him.
Bevin is generally not one to be counted on when it comes to issuing reasonable takes on hot-button issues—his administration is behind the legal attempts to shut down Kentucky’s only remaining abortion clinic—but, for once, it appears Bevin, for reasons of either self-preservation or a random flash of forward-thinking, said something worth listening to.