Academic Essay

Brandi Thomas

ENG 131.01

Professor Lucas

7 May 2014

Should NCAA Athletes be Paid?


The average American works over thirty hours a week. How long do you think an average Division 1 football player devotes time into a week of practicing and conditioning? Marc Edelman averages out a total of 43.3 hours a week. On top of all the practices, these athletes have to maintain good grades in order to keep playing the sport and attend classes on a daily basis. For all the hard work these athletes do and all the money they bring to their schools, I believe that student athletes should be paid a percentage of the income that they bring in for their services.


The complicated subject to this paper is the NCAA figuring out how much each athlete needs to get paid. In my opinion, Division 1 athletes are the ones who mostly need to be paid. As  Division II athletes, we do not necessarily bring in as much income as those in Division 1. Division 1 athletes travel more than Division II as well. While we are traveling just across the state, D 1 players travel across the country, week after week. D 1 basketball players who earn a spot have to attend the tournament which started March 18th and the championship game was held April 7th. The players teams whose have a successful season and make it to the final game of the tournament, that is half a month of missing class. Football players who receive bowl invitations have to miss up to three weeks of classes.

Molly Block states that “athletes receive more scholarships than regular students and that scrambling for money is a way of life for college students”. However, regular students have a lot more time on their hands to obtain jobs. D 1 and not even D II athletes have time to work a job let alone a part-time job. Non athletes also have way more time on their hands to study and make good grades. Granted there are single mothers and other exceptions that certain people do not have any amount of time on their hands. Like I stated before, college basketball players miss up to a month of class during “March Madness”. In the article created by ESPN “Should College Athletes be Paid”, the writer made a comment saying “Everybody gets rich off the NCAA Tourney- the colleges, the conferences, the networks, the announcers and analysts, the coaches, the fans who win their office pools- everybody, that is, but the stars of the show: the players themselves”.  Lipsyte makes a statement saying the true Madness of March is the millions of dollars- generated by the kids who touch the ball- that goes mostly to the advertising hustlers, television suits, arena operators, concession hawkers, athletic gear manufacturers and retailers, university administrators, coaches and sports media noisemakers. No wonder they don’t want to share any of that money with the players. They’ve locked the doors on their sweat shop.

Non athletes, unless they are in the exception such as a single mother who work and go to school, also have time to be involved in internships. An internship prepares you for how the workplace is going to be and is also a ticket way into a full time job after college. Future jobs want to see the experience of hands on work and having put time into the career path and internships are a big part of that.

I believe that if a college athlete brings in revenue by himself- for example Johnny Manziel,  also known as Johnny Football- he should receive some of the income as well. While playing for Texas A&M, as a freshman he received the heisman award. His jersey is everywhere at Texas A&M football games. You will not watch a game and not see a jersey with the number 2 on the back. Ty Duffy makes a statement that Texas A&M reported that they made $37 million from just media exposure. The money that was earned because of him was kept by the NCAA and the school. Another football program that has brought millions of dollars to the NCAA would be the Alabama the Crimson Tide. Having made it to the National Championship two years in a row, the team brought in roughly $90 million dollars.

One way athletes can be paid is through endorsements. What I mean by that is if an athlete wears a clothing brand for a certain company, then he or she  should receive money for it. Secondly once a major college football player decides to go forth into the NFL then he or she should receive endorsements. For example Subway, Nike, and many other big companies asked Johnny Manziel to be in commercials, advertisements, etc.


I can understand why college athletes were not paid when the NCAA first started. It’s because no revenue was coming in. College sports are becoming so popular and the money that is made through media, advertising, and other things are being poured into the NCAA. But now that so much money has been brought upon this organization, student athletes are starting to realize how much they are being cheated out of the NCAA. Even though this is a very complicated subject and will take a long time for everyone to settle on an agreement, at least some little changes are starting to be made. Mike Emmert claims that while those teams are celebrating a national title, the real winners of the tournaments may be their corporate sponsors, broadcasters and ultimately, the NCAA itself. After all the evidence that have been given and all the hard work that have been shown by these athletes, they should be paid for their services. As a Division II athlete and how much time and hard work I put into volleyball, I would certainly like to be paid.

Works Cited

Block, Molly. “College Athletes Should Not Receive Payment for Playing.” The  University

Star. np.,nd.Web.27 Mar. 2014.  

Duffy, Ty. “Johnny Manziel Heisman Run Generated 37$ million in Media Exposure for Texas

A&M.” The Big Lead. np., 18 Jan. 2013. Web. 27 March. 2014

Edelman, Marc. “21 Reasons Why Student-Athletes Are Employees And Should Be Allowed to

Unionize”. Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 30 Jan. 2014. Web. 12 Mar. 2014

Emmert, Mike. “Should NCAA Athletes Be Paid?” US News. U.S.News & World Report,

n.d.Web. 29 Apr. 2014.

Lipsyte, Robert. “ Page 2 : Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Page 2 :

Should College Athletes Be Paid? N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2014



One-Act Play

Taylor Johnson, Kimberly Ndombasi, Vince Njoku, Brandi Thomas, Jordan White

English 131.01

Professor Lucas

2 April 2014

Fast Food in Kentucky

Character Guide

Michelle Obama: She is the first lady and the dean of student services at the University of Chicago. She is also the Vice President of community and external affairs for the University of Chicago Medical Center.

Susie Orbach: Chair of the Relational School in the United Kingdom, she has published many books on women’s health and emotional well-being. She has worked exclusively as an author and therapist on weight issues.

Charlie Rawlins: A young man living in Manchester, Kentucky. Charlie weighed two-hundred fifty-one pounds and had to undergo knee surgeries from his weight. He managed to drop his weight down to one-hundred eight-five pounds and works in a small physical therapy office in Clay County.

Carlin Robinson: She is the daughter of Scott Robinson and the younger sister of Britney Robinson. Although she is the youthful age of twelve and has a stellar academic record, she struggles with her physical body, weighing at least twenty pounds over the recommended nutritional guideline.

Scott Robinson: A coal miner raised in Manchester who is a single parent raising two daughters.


It is a fine Saturday afternoon in Manchester, Kentucky many people find themselves making their way to the local food court to encounter a plethora of motion by exuberant costumers. Scott Robinson and his daughter Carlin can be seen down, engulfing on their juicy grease filled Big Macs. Susie Orbach, Michelle Obama, and Charlie Rawlins are approaching them ready to join for lunch. They already notice how Scott and his daughter are devouring the unhealthy food.

Scott Robinson: “Are you enjoying your food Carlin?”

Carlin Robinson: “Yeah dad thanks for buying it, it’s delish.”

SR: “I invited some friends to join us for lunch, they should be on their way”

As they continue to eat their food, the guests arrive shortly after Carlin has finished her burger.

SR: “Michelle, Susie! Such as pleasure to have you guys here today. I would like you guys to meet my daughter Carlin… My apologies I didn’t seem to notice the young man behind you ladies. Nice to meet you my good man, I am Scott and you are?”

Charlie Rawlins: It is a pleasure to be here sir. My name is Charlie Rawlins and I am simply here to assist these ladies with the intervention.

C. Robinson: “Intervention? Dad, what exactly are they here for?”

C. Rawlins: I’ve been in your shoes before while living in Manchester. The inadequate amount of resources we have here promotes obesity and lack of exercise. “I realized that no one was going to listen to me (regarding how fast-food negatively can affect health). I started going in for the fruits, the asparagus, making my own salads. The kids around here, they’ll eat cornbread and taters for lunch. They’ll get a 20-piece chicken meal. It’s killing them” (410).

C. Robinson: “Sometimes, I think they give us too much food” (414).

C. Rawlins: “So when is the last time you all weighed yourselves?”

C. Robinson: “I don’t want to weigh myself” (414).

SR: “Lord, I couldn’t tell you, Two-seventy, two-ninety. I don’t remember the last time I weighed myself” (415).

C. Robinson: “Sometimes you get picked on for your size” (414).

Susie Orbach: Carlin, you are absolutely correct society has a large influence on one’s appearance. “The message is loud and clear— the woman’s body is not her own” (451).” Fat is a social disease” (449).

Michelle Obama: “But it’s important to be clear that this issue isn’t about how our kids look. It’s not about that. It’s about how our kids feel. It’s about their health and the health of our nation and the health of our economy” (420).

SO: “While this preoccupation with fat and food has become so common that we tend to take it for granted, being fat, and feeling fat and the compulsion to overheat are in fact, serious , and painful experiences for women involved”(448).

MO: “ It’s about making those little changes that can really add-up simple things like taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking instead of riding in a car or a bus, even something as simple as turning on the radio and dancing with your children in the middle of your living room for hours”(428).

SR: “I mean I don’t have any time to really exercise with the girls.” “There’s a basketball court out back of the house’ (409). I honestly feel ashamed “There are no full length mirrors in the front rooms of their home that might reveal an image of anyone” (415).

MO: You are just living by your means… “For many folks, those nutritious family meals are a thing of the past, because a lot of people today are living in communities without a single grocery store, so they have to take two, three buses, a taxi, walk for miles just to buy a head of lettuce for a salad or to get some fresh fruit for their kids” (423).

SR: Truthfully, our family has been struggling; I hardly get hours at my main job which forced me to get another job. I hate this job more than anything. “Just started this last December.” “Trying to make an extra dollar” (415).

C. Robinson: It is a matter of motivation, neither I nor my sister feel comfortable discussing our weight or overeating. No woman is every going to be completely satisfied with her size or shape. We always find ways to distinguish our imperfections.

SO: “A feminist perspective to the problem of women’s compulsive eating is essential if we are to move on from ineffective blame the victim approach… feminism insists that those personal experiences derive from the social context into which female babies are born and within which they become adult women”(449).

C. Rawlins: I have pretty much spent the entire conversation silent and analyzing each and everyone’s opinions. I hate to be critical but Scott you have to stop being an enabler. There are a plethora of inexpensive meals that can be made at home. I also believe that everyone needs to take responsibility for their actions. Let’s have a fresh start; I’m not saying immediate change will happen overnight but it takes time and patience.

MO: “So if anybody here, after all this talking that I’ve done, who feels a little overwhelmed by this challenge— because it can be overwhelming—if there is anyone here who might even be already losing hope thinking about how hard it will be to even get going , or giving up, I just want you to take a look at all the things that are already being accomplished, because I want folks to learn from each other and to be inspired by each other , because that’s what we’ve always done”(431).


Works Cited

Haygood, Will. “Kentucky Town of Manchester Illustrates National Obesity Crisis” “They Say/I Say”: The Moves Matter in Academic Writing: With Reading. 2nd ed. Ed. Gerald Graf, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 406-416. Print.

Obama, Michelle. “Remarks to the NAACP National Convention” “They Say/I Say”: The Moves Matter in Academic Writing: With Reading. 2nd ed. Ed. Gerald Graf, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 417-433. Print.

Orbach, Susie. “Fat Is a Feminist Issue” “They Say/I Say”: The Moves Matter in Academic Writing: With Reading. 2nd ed. Ed. Gerald Graf, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 448-453. Print.


Annotated Bibliography

Brandi Thomas

English 131.01

Professor Lucas

19 February 2014

16 and Pregnant: Annotated Bibliography

        The annotated bibliography that follows this introduction includes two essays from “They Say I Say”: “Watching TV makes you Smarter” by Steven Johnson and “Thinking Outside the Idiot Box” by Dana Stevens focuses on the popular TV show 16 and Pregnant. My purpose for compiling this bibliography is to address on the advantages and disadvantages of watching this hit TV show on MTV.

Johnson, Steven. “Watching TV makes you Smarter”. “They Say I Say. The Moves that Matter  Academic Writing. 2nd ed. Gerald Graff, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012.Pg. 295-298.Print.

In Watching TV makes you Smarter Steven Johnson uses the hit TV show “24” to support his thesis stating that TV makes you smarter. He thinks that to keep up with an intense TV show like “24” you have to “pay attention, make inferences, track-shifting social relationships”(Pg. 279).  Johnson disagrees with the popular notion on that the “sleeper curve” is the single most important new force altering mental development of young people today. Johnson believes that shows against teen pregnancy and intolerance have an actual positive role in society. Steven Johnson takes a roll of teaching journalism at New York University and serves as a contributing editor for Wired. He also writes a monthly column for Discover. One of his pieces was published in the New York Times Magazine in 2005. This piece is an excerpt from Everything Bad is Good for you.

Stevens, Dana. “Thinking Outside the Idiot Box”. “They Say / I Say”. The Moves that Matter in Academic Writing. 2nd ed. Ed Gerald Graff, Cathy Birkenstein, and Russell Durst. New York: Norton, 2012. 277-294. Print.

Dana Stevens Thinking Outside the Idiot Box  is a reading that is a response to Johnson’s essay that she disagrees with completely. Stevens quotes “I could make no sense of Johnson’s piece” (278). She says that as long as Johnson defines intelligence strictly in quantitative cog-sci terms then his thesis and writing would have more of a foundation. She claims that Johnson’s case for television being a tool for brain enhancement seems “deeply, hilariously bogus” (297). In Thinking Outside the Idiot Box Stevens brings up the idea called TV turnoff week. The title basically says what it is, no TV for a week once a year. Stevens thinks that no TV for a week is a smart idea. Stevens also questions National TV turnoff week by saying “shouldn’t grown men and women be trusted to judge their own dosages, just as they would decide on the number of drinks they can handle at the bar?” (298). At the end of the reading Stevens kind of has a sarcastic remark towards Johnson’s theory by saying “turn off the TV for a week and see if you get any dumber” (pg. 298). Stevens is for slate movie critic. She has written articles for New York Times, Bookforum, and the Atlantic. She received a Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of California at Berkeley.

16 and Pregnant. MTV. 11, June 2009.

16 and Pregnant has been a major controversy for MTV for years. The show focuses on teens and their journey through pregnancy. It gives you a sense of how hard it is to raise a child at sixteen years of age. Some people think that it is a good show to put on the air and also a bad show to put on TV. 16 and Pregnant  will make a viewer really realize how hard it is to raise a child. From the financial issues to family issues as well, it is a struggle. The show also shows viewers that safe sex is very important as a teen and if you have a question about sex then you need to ask. 16 and Pregnant will lower birth rate due to the show being a reality. Viewers can also have a bad perspective towards the show. They might think that the show would want or encourage people to have sex and realistically depict teen pregnancy. It is also a show that no young twelve-year-old would need to be watching. The writer and director of this show is ” Morgan Freeman. He earned his MFM at NYU’s graduate program in 1993. He also wrote shows like The Dollhouse and Hurricane Streets.

Being a College Athlete

When I first got to LR, my feelings were from each end of every spectrum. I was excited and sad and nervous and happy and anxious all at the same time. Not only was I scared about being a student, but also joining the women’s volleyball team gave me a wide setof emotions. Since I have been here I have learned a lot about handling being a college athlete.

Athletes have to make their priorities sports and school at the same time. I have learned that you do not have very much free time on your hands to have a successful social life. From all the workouts and homework it starts to catch up with you. Since partying is a huge thing in most colleges, athletes don’t get to go out very much. I’m sure almost all athletes can agree that practicing with a hangover is not everyones cup of tea.

Time management is the key to being a successful student athlete. In High School I was one of the worlds worst procrastinator. Once classes started to pile up homework and papers, Irealized that planning ahead will help me get through my classes. Planning ahead comes with contacting your professors on what assignments you will miss and need to turn in early. I have come to learn that I talk to my professors more than my family members.

After all the stress that sports and school puts on you, when I go to bed every night I know that I am at the right school and that I do not regret my decision committing here as a college athlete.