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AAC commissioner Mike Aresco: ‘We will not pay players’

Mike Aresco

In this photo taken Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco answers a question during an NCAA college football game between Connecticut and Rutgers in Piscataway, N.J. Aresco has to be smiling heading toward the midpoint of the football season. He has three ranked teams, and they’re all unbeaten. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)


Speaking at the inaugural American Athletic Conference media day down in Memphis, AAC commissioner Mike Aresco didn’t hesitate sharing his feelings about properly compensating collegiate athletes.

“We will not pay players,” Aresco said.

Ok, then.

There’s more, from the AP: “We will not establish an employer-employee relationship. That’s not what college sports is about, and it is the road to ruin. The amateur model may be strained. There’s no question there’s issues. But with intelligent work and revisions, it can continue to work. It has to work.”

The road to ruin, eh? For who? The athletes who generate the billions of dollars of revenue that is created by their on-field and on-court exploits, or the high-powered suits at the conferences and the NCAA that are cut six and seven figure checks?

To be fair, Aresco said that his conference is willing to consider a stipend for full cost-of-attendance scholarships. Two years ago, a proposal was passed that allowed schools to pay their athletes a $2,000 stipend, but it was eventually shot down by the smaller schools that couldn’t afford it.

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