Texas Athletics To Pay Student-Athletes Directly Beginning In 2022

University of Texas student-athletes will begin receiving financial support from the school’s athletic department after a Supreme Court ruling in the Alston v. NCAA case, the school reported November 24.

Beginning with the 2022 spring semester, which starts in January, all student-athletes will receive the legally established maximum of $5,980 per year.

In the Alston v. NCAA legal case, the Supreme Court granted universities the opportunity to provide student-athletes with additional education-related benefits and direct financial support in the form of academic achievement awards.

“We’re excited to be able to provide our student-athletes with additional support, but as importantly, to continue to initiate programs that focus on their academic commitment and success,” said University of Texas Vice President and Athletics Director Chris Del Conte.

“Our student‐athletes have a wonderful opportunity to engage in a world‐class academic experience while pursuing athletic excellence at the highest level.”

All eligible Texas Longhorn athletes will receive $2,990 in the upcoming spring semester, with the second payment to be made in the 2022 fall semester. This money is payable on top of the assistance student-athletes already receive from athletic scholarships.

“This additional academic benefit will be another way to bring out the very best in our student-athletes,” Del Conte added. “I can’t thank President Jay Hartzell and our campus leadership enough for helping us make this happen.”

What determines whether an athlete is eligible to receive the payment depends on the criteria put in place by the school. In Texas’ case, the UT Athletics release indicates that it will only be for those that are already on scholarship: “Texas Athletics has worked with campus leaders to develop a plan and establish criteria to provide education-related benefits and academic achievement awards to scholarship student-athletes through the Academic Enhancement Benefits program.”

However, Sports Illustrated reports that Ole Miss athletes—who were the first to receive this payment—simply needed to meet academic requirements in the previous semester in order to be eligible, specifically noting that walk-ons were included.

This announcement has big-time implications in the grand scheme of collegiate athletics.

On the plus side, it’s a huge positive for the athletes, who now have some additional income to go along with scholarships.

From a school’s perspective, it’s great if you’re a major institution like Texas, which can afford to offer student-athletes this payment.

For other schools, they may try and keep up by offering the same, which could dig them into a financial hole. Over the last year we’ve seen how fragile athletics departments are after numerous program cuts due to financial issues caused by the pandemic.

This will also serve as a major recruiting tactic. Any school in the Power Five conferences that doesn’t offer this added incentive will likely fall behind in that respect.

The Big 12, SEC, ACC and Pac-12 have all announced that they will allow their schools to determine how much of this new benefit they would pay, so others could offer athletes a payment that’s not necessarily the $5,980 maximum.

Ole Miss was the first school to issue the $2,990 payments for the spring semester, SI reported on Nov. 20.

“Everybody is going to do this, for sure everybody in the SEC,” Ole Miss athletic director Keith Carter told SI. “We thought, ‘Let’s get ahead of this.'”

The Rebels will spend a reported $2.48 million each year on roughly 415 athletes, Carter said. Texas, which generated a reported $22.1 million in profit during the 2019-20 fiscal year, has just over 500 athletes, according to Hookem.com.

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This Guy
1 month ago

Schools that can afford to do this will have a nice advantage when it comes to filling out their roster. If your a walk-on quality swimmer especially in-state this could be substantial.

Redhawk
Reply to  This Guy
1 month ago

Yup, the rich will be getting richer.

Kids just outside of times needed to be offered a scholarship are essentially extended a $6,000 scholarship. Also allows big name programs to be more flexible in how much they offer their top recruits and bring in more top talent.

Ohio swim observer
Reply to  This Guy
1 month ago

I believe this is limited to scholarship athletes, so no luck for walk-ons.

I hope partial scholarship sports like swimming will get pro-rated $.

Swimgeek
Reply to  Ohio swim observer
1 month ago

That’s kind of a critical question here. The article says “anyone eligible to compete” – swimswam, can u clarify this??

Horninco
Reply to  Swimgeek
1 month ago

I have read that it extends past scholarship athletes, anyone named to a team can get this benefit Could be wrong.

Ohio swim observer
Reply to  Swimgeek
1 month ago

UT article says “Texas Athletics has worked with campus leaders to develop a plan and establish criteria to provide education-related benefits and academic achievement awards to scholarship student-athletes through the Academic Enhancement Benefits program”

There’s no way schools could manage to even identify/categorize all non-scholarship athletes, let alone pay them. It’s relatively straightforward for schools to manage adding $ to existing scholarship athletes using the current infrastructure.

Horninco
Reply to  Ohio swim observer
1 month ago

So give a swimmer 0.1 of a scholarship and then the stipend

Dan
Reply to  Ohio swim observer
1 month ago

When I read this article the morning of 11/30 it stated this in a paragraph:

However, Sports Illustrated reports that Ole Miss athletes—who were the first to receive this payment—simply needed to meet academic requirements in the previous semester in order to be eligible, specifically noting that walk-ons were included.

It is not very hard for a school to know who could be eligible of not, it is already in their system due to registration deadlines for courses.

As the article states, it will be up to each school to determine who they will give this money too.

CollegeSwimCoach
Reply to  Ohio swim observer
1 month ago

Every school categorizes non-scholarship athletes – non-scholarship athletes still get access to priority registration for classes, letters excusing them for missed classes due to team travel, etc.

MTDAD
Reply to  Ohio swim observer
1 month ago

By paying their athletes I believe they have created an employer-employee relationship. They will have to pay all their athletes including walk-ons. It could trigger their states minimum wage laws also. Look at what happened to NFL cheerleaders.

2Fat4Speed
Reply to  This Guy
1 month ago

I wonder how much this will impact roster size? Texas has a lot of walk-ons. I worry the AD starts telling a coach, “hey, we can’t afford all these walk-ons. Your new roster limit is X.”.

Dan
Reply to  2Fat4Speed
1 month ago

When I read the article on 11/30 it said that Texas will only give the money to scholarship athletes while Ole Miss is giving the money to all athletes

SwimFan76
1 month ago

Definitely an entire SEC thing right now

Ghost
Reply to  SwimFan76
1 month ago

It is everyone in Power 5 thing! I think schools can make their own rules as to who gets it. Probably anyone on any scholarship (10% or more?) will be eligible. If they can pay football coaches $10 million a year, this money will not be a problem for Power 5 schools.

Dan
Reply to  Ghost
1 month ago

For Texas it is under $3,000,000 since they are only giving this to scholarship athletes, otherwise it could have been just over $3,000,000 a year. It seems that most bigger universities have around 500 student athletes in total so the total increase for the athletic departments will also depend on who they determine is eligible.

Kachow
1 month ago

I was born too early 🙁

Last edited 1 month ago by Kachow
Dave
1 month ago

When will the dam break? That’s a cool half million dollars a year just for the football team. Yeah, Texas swimming probably ranks a little higher within their department but some other schools…where do you think they are going to find that money? Non profit sports, especially at mid major or lower level power 5 better start planting those money trees

Braden Keith(@braden)
Admin
Reply to  Dave
1 month ago

Yeah…something radical is about to change in college athletics.

Man, if you’re a swim fan and you hate the attention that football and basketball get now…just wait. It’s about to get real ugly.

Joel Lin
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 month ago

We’re on the downslope now. This is bad. That these new gimmicks exist today because one district court judge in California decided to alter 1/2 century of NCAA standards out of pure cloth is repugnant. Happy for these student athletes, but what UT is doing just plays cards from the bottom of the deck. It’s going to go far worse right quick.

Kuta
Reply to  Joel Lin
1 month ago

The NCAA has been behind the times for a quarter century at least.

WestCoastRefugee
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 month ago

100%. From a balance sheet perspective, I don’t know how this doesn’t put an even larger target on the back of any male non-revenue sport.

Joel Lin
Reply to  WestCoastRefugee
1 month ago

Also important to note that UT is a comparatively cheap university, especially for in-state, versus their competitors that are also selective schools. How does USC, for example, as an expensive private institution compete with UT amortizing out tons of fractional scholarships with these stipends? They can’t. The more expensive the university, the more acute this variable becomes…especially for non revenue sports.

PASwimDad
1 month ago

What about the Big 10?

Ghost
Reply to  PASwimDad
1 month ago

All Power 5 schools are doing it. Definitely not just a Texas thing

Big Mac #1
1 month ago

Basically pro swimmer pay

Ghost
Reply to  Big Mac #1
1 month ago

It is based on “academics”. As long as you are eligible academically, you are qualified

Pez
1 month ago

This is wild, i echo others to wonder how this is a sustainable option, but for recruits, texas is looking real nice!

Ghost
Reply to  Pez
1 month ago

All Power 5 schools are starting this next semester….it isn’t a Texas thing!

Greg
1 month ago

Sounds as if this is different than the cost of attendance stipend that student-athletes are currently eligible to receive. This also has Title IX implications.

Jim
Reply to  Greg
1 month ago

A what is the cost of attendance stipend?

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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