Money, Money, Money: Forgetting the Spirit of the Game

Ryan ColleyCorrespondent IApril 22, 2008

When you grow up dreaming of your future as an astronaut or a fireman, is money truly a factor?

It’s obvious when you finally get a grasp of the concept, but we have gone too far with the salaries of current professional sports stars.

The question is this, why do we award Bengals wide receiver Chad Johnson millions of dollars for memorizing plays and catching a football? 

That money could be invested elsewhere in our world.  It could pay for local relief projects or help to pay the salaries of local teachers who actually matter more to the nth degree than our sports stars.

It's true that star wide receivers, centers, point guards, and goalies also earn money through product sales and other organizational income. But why can't we divert some of this money to a better cause?

I know that a lot of the organizations in professional sports are associated with charities, like the Red Cross or an autism foundation.  Diverting more money would allow an increased impact within local communities and around the world.

Another problem that I have with cocky people like Chad Johnson is the fact that there have been cases, maybe not with Chad specifically, where the player is demanding more money.  The millions he receives each year are not enough to feed his family?

I'm sorry that we can't increase your pay up to $15 million a year. Everyone knows that $10 million is just getting by!

The poverty line is around $10,000 for a single person per year, so having a salary of $10 million per year is something far from struggling.

The solution is to divert money to needy organizations through donations. We have some of the most profitable sports teams in the world.  We need to show what we can do with it besides just competing for a trophy.

The maximum salaries for many players need to be dropped to around $1 million per year, which is still a large sum.  All of this excess money can be used to benefit outside organizations that truly need the help.

It can add to the campaign of NFL Cares, which has made great progress so far. It’s one of those steps that could make a difference in the world, even make a better world.