CLOSE

Now Commenting On:

There always have been have and have nots in the NCAA. The thought that Texas had anything in common with Texas State is one of the more naive notions about the NCAA. They never have, athletically, and never will.

The current Power 5 conferences are now searching for autonomy, and make no mistake it's coming, and with it the inequality gets codified.

 The Power 5 wants to offer some kind of stipend to its athletes -- cost of attendance -- and the SEC, ACC, Big 12, B1G and Pac-12 are going to be able to do it. Where does that leave the rest of college athletics?

You can join them...or not.

AAC commissioner Mike Aresco reiterated on Saturday in a 15-minute press avail before the start of the UConn-Memphis game that the American will do what the Power Five does. The American wants to compete at the highest level and the conference is committed to it – all of them.

AAC commissioner Mike Aresco reiterated on Saturday in a 15-minute press avail before the start of the UConn-Memphis game that the American will do what the Power Five does. The American wants to compete at the highest level and the conference is committed to it – all of them.

"As a conference we’ve already committed to provide a full cost of attendance stipend if that’s passed," Aresco said. "It’s unclear what that’s going to be, whether it’s going to be based on federal guidelines, what the cost of attendance is for each individual school and that can incidentals like laundry and travel. …Whatever it ends up being, whether it’s a fixed amount, we have committed as a conference, pledged as a conference that we are going to do it."

That is easier said than done. Aresco talked about the dynamic that is coming and how the high resource schools have the ability to offer stipends. UConn remains one of the bigger non-P5 schools and should presumably be able to handle a stipend.

There are other smaller schools in the American, Tulsa, Tulane and East Carolina coming in. Can they offer stipend at the levels needed to compete? How about in sports other than football such as men's and women's basketball?

Will the AAC allow some to offer stipends, and some not offer?

“We haven’t yet decided on that yet," Aresco said. "But we are wondering if we’ll let individual schools make those decision or if we’ll have to do it as a conference.”

There are a lot of issues to work out. Not every school with every sport can afford a stipend (example, UConn women's basketball can, how many others?) and whether conferences will allow some teams to offer and some don't is open room to debate.

The AAC can off a stipend, even in men's basketball. Can teams in the Northeast Conference or American East Conference do the same? That's the issue going forward.

Aresco's answer was that the field was never equal.

As conferences move into this brave new world, that couldn't be anymore clear.

 

Tags: Football, Women's Basketball, cost of attendance, Men's Basketball, UCONN, Mike Aresco
Login with Facebook Login with Twitter Login with SNY.tv