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Andy Hodges

Players should have say in playing if we expect them to handle NIL

Some in the media wanting it both ways saying it’s too dangerous to play football without players’ input, then wanting them to have input over NIL.



It’s almost reached the point where you wonder if some of the fear mongers in the media that think college football should be cancelled think the players should have a voice at all.

After all, they are the same ones who are pushing paying the players.

“There’s a lot of people out there in the national media that are basically lobbying,” said Tom Murphy of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on¬†Tuesday morning with Tye Richardson and Tommy Craft (The Morning Rush) on ESPN Arkansas. “‘Oh, it’s too dangerous, too risky, to play football.’ These are the same people who are arguing vociferously for name-image-likeness … for giving athletes every advantage.

“I also think there should be some advantage for athletes, but if you think the athletes are smart enough to make money and profit off their image, do that wisely and all, then they are smart enough to make decisions for themselves about playing football.”

That may confuse some of the fear mongers who simply refuse to look at “the science,” which really is just interpreting the numbers like the “experts” that are the medical equivalent of weathermen.

“I don’t think you can have it both ways,” Murphy said.

He’s right about that, especially when players have been back on their campuses for several weeks now. Not one player has died or even been seriously ill.

The numbers show healthy kids under the age of 25 are at virtually zero risk. Yes, I’m well aware everyone worries about spreading it, but they aren’t close enough to people at risk until they get away from the football facility and then they are like everybody else.

If they aren’t responsible enough to follow the rules, that’s an issue for coaches and administrators to handle, but so far it is not something anyone has heard about.

In the Arkansas, any person testing positive in any kind of physical condition has a 99% chance of living. The long-term effects right now are guesses at best, but limited to people with pre-existing conditions being damaged.

“If they can have a voice on those matters, they can have a voice on this matter (playing),” said Craft at one point.

This isn’t everybody, of course. But the knee-jerks who only look at positive test results without actually looking at the details want to shut everything down.

Vaccines only reduce deaths and symptoms, which is how the efficiency of one is determined.

“There is some in the national media who, because of their agenda, think it’s too dangerous but want [the players] to have all their rights in other ways,” Murphy said. “You can’t think of them as children that can’t make good decisions about covid and have it the other way on other issues.”

With the players, athletics director Hunter Yurachek noted last week how much they’ve noticed the players improving off-the-field with social distancing, wearing masks and things like that.

Playing is not just a decision for administrators.

The players should have a say, too.


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