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The Amateurism Model

Learn about the history of the NCAA and the NCAA’s amateurism model.


I. NCAA Amateurism Model

Since its inception, the NCAA has promoted the use of an amateurism model in college sports. The NCAA defines an amateur athlete as an athlete who doesn’t have an agreement with an agent, hasn’t profited from athletics above his or her actual and necessary expenses, or hasn’t gained a competitive advantage in his or her sport. The NCAA maintains that student athletes are “students first, athletes second.” Because the NCAA views student athletes as amateur athletes,...