Why Offering a College Scholarship Could Do Wonders for WWE and Its Image

The Doctor Chris MuellerFeatured ColumnistJune 26, 2012

Photo: ssm.nwherald.com (Someone from my old high school putting down another wrestler)
Photo: ssm.nwherald.com (Someone from my old high school putting down another wrestler)

WWE is a world-wide brand which specializes in producing wrestling shows as well as numerous other products such as films, promotional merchandise, music and more.

They are considered the greatest success in the history of the wrestling business, but even with all those fans and all those dollars, WWE still has to deal with a negative image on occasion.

There are many reasons why people will attack WWE—from the way they portray women to being a product based solely on violence.

Vince McMahon and company have done a lot to try and change these perceptions in recent years, and even though they have made great strides, they still get criticized.

The most recent criticisms come from Linda McMahon's Senate opponent, Chris Shays.

Despite the Senate race, there are still plenty of reasons WWE would want to make their public image a little better, and there are several ways of doing that.

One big thing WWE could do to not only look better to their critics, but help ensure their future, would be to offer a college scholarship to amateur wrestlers or athletes in general.

According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (Via WrestleScoop), WWE wants future talents to be educated.

FCW brought in 23 to 35 athletes this past week—some experienced independent wrestlers but mostly successful college wrestlers that were recruited by Gerald Brisco. The wrestlers were told if they are signed by WWE, they would value them more if they continued and finished their studies in college as opposed to quitting school and starting in developmental right away. 

WWE is no longer just looking to the wrestling business to churn out their next stars, but rather, they are looking for people they can mold into stars on their own.

WWE scouts people in various sports who look like they have potential to be stars, and if that person is interested, they may end up getting a developmental deal.

The sport which WWE is most likely to recruit from is amateur wrestling, simply because wrestlers in college have a lot of the fundamentals that pro wrestlers need to know.

Looking through the annals of WWE history, we see many superstars who started out in a singlet for a university.

Established veterans like Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar made names for themselves in both the Olympics and NCAA respectively before joining the world of sports entertainment.

Current stars like Jack Swagger and Dolph ZIggler were standout college wrestlers. Every one of those names is a former World Champion. Coincidence?

By offering a scholarship to wrestlers/athletes looking to go to college, WWE is not only going to improve their image, but they will be building a rapport with that athlete so they may end up in the company some day.

While it cannot be expected that every person who gets a scholarship will sign a deal, it would also give WWE a pool of people to recruit for their office positions.

In the past we have seen many wrestlers get into the business without going to college, and then if it did not work out, they ended up in a dead-end job.

The landscape of wrestling has changed, and WWE must change with it. Having a college degree may not make you a better wrestler, but it does show that you have the ability to finish what you start, which is a valuable trait in a wrestler or any athlete looking to go pro.