Washington, D.C. Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is calling for the elimination of college athletic scholarships, saying the move is necessary to “de-professionalize” college athletes.
“As we near the exciting conclusion of ‘March Madness’ — which would more accurately be described as the 2011 NCAA Professional Basketball Championships — it’s time we step back and finally address the myth of amateurism surrounding big-time college football and basketball in this country,” said Nader, whose League of Fans is proposing that the scholarships be replaced with need-based financial aid. The Associated Press obtained a copy of the proposal Thursday, ahead of its official release.
NCAA spokesman Bob Williams said that referring to college athletes as professionals defies logic.
“They are students, just like any other student on campus who receives a merit-based scholarship,” he said.