Division I-A football players reported spending an average of 44.8 hours per week on their sport. That doesn't include the hours involved in taking care of their academic responsibilities.The general recommendation for time spent on academics is class hours * 3 and usually kids take around 15 credits. The same study found that football players spent around 40 hours a week on class. Since sleeping is usually encouraged, that takes up another 56 hours a week, leaving a football player taking a normal class load 26 hours a week to shower, eat, and do, like, anything else at all.
Football players spend 85 hours a week on work-ish obligatioons. By comparison, other professions:
- Union guy: 40 hours
- French guy: 36 hours
- Software coder on a deadline: 80 hours
- New York medical interns, as limited by law: 80 hours
- Sports columnist: 45 minutes spent on Blackberry.
This is also why graduation rates at many institutions are pretty sketchy and what kids do graduate usually do so in the easiest major available. Keep it in mind the next time you rip on collegiate athletes for being dumb: they are so obviously working harder than you did in college.
As you might expect, the heavy workload reported by football players has spurred concerned quotes:
"It's an early warning signal that we've got a problem," said University of Hartford President Walt Harrison, chairman of the NCAA's committee on academic performance. "I think we need more safeguards."The NCAA will no doubt politic on this issue and either do nothing or impose easily avoided regulations that do nothing to stem the problem but are cheap.
"Once you get past 40 hours, you're really pushing things," NCAA President Myles Brand said.
How about something else? Revenues (and, not coincidentally, coaching salaries) continue to skyrocket, but the men largely responsible for the skyrocketing revenues have seen not a dime's worth of it because of NCAA amateurism restrictions. Without getting into the "they should be paid" argument, -- a nasty one -- wouldn't it be possible for the NCAA to offer collegiate athletes an extra year of scholarship after their eligibility has expired? No 45 hours a week spent on other tasks, an eased workload when you are eligible, and a path to a degree for everyone even if their pro dreams don't work out.
Expensive? Maybe, but in the face of millionaire coaches across the country "expensive" doesn't fly.