College Athletes: Amateurs or Paid Professionals?
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There's big money in all those college bowl games, but none of it trickles down to the people who bring in the audiences who watch on TV. Is it time for the players to get a piece of the financial action? Also, Russians plan extreme security measures for 2014 Sochi Olympics, and a new documentary that offers a street-level view of two years of rebellion in Cairo's Tahrir Square.
Banner image: Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel playing against the LSU Tigers on October 20, 2012 at Kyle Field in College Station, Texas. Photo: Shutterbug459
Russians Plan Extreme Security Measures for 2014 Sochi Olympics ()
The slopes of the Russia's Sochi Mountains will be covered with the world's best bobsledders, downhill racers and ski jumpers during the February Winter Olympics. Hovering over all of their heads… drones. They are just "part of a package of security measures that are severe even by standards of recent Olympics." That's according to Maria Antonova, Moscow correspondent for Agence France Presse.
Should College Athletes Be Paid? ()
Who works 40 or 50 hours a week without salaries? Student-athletes -- or athlete-students, as more have been calling themselves. Colleges say football and basketball players are "amateurs" who play for the love of the game, but they mean big business for major institutions. The holidays bring another season of bowl games, with a difference. TV contracts are into the billions. Top-level coaches make millions, but when Texas A&M's Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback, Johnny Manziel, was suspected of selling his signature, he was briefly suspended by the NCAA. As America sits down for another season of bowl games, billion dollar TV contracts and embarrassing questions, are young people who risk career-ending injuries being exploited? (We invited the NCAA, several sports conferences and schools to participate, but they declined our invitation.)
- Sean Gregory: Time magazine, @seanmgregory
- Gregg Easterbrook: sports author, @EasterbrookG
- Bob Foley: Virginia Commonwealth University
- Jeff Locke: Minnesota Vikings, @jefflocke18
- Andy Schwarz: OSKR, @andyhre
Today's Talking Point
'The Square:' Filming the Egyptian Revolution as It Happened ()
In January of 2011, Egyptians took to Cairo's Tahrir Square to lead what became a revolution. One experienced documentary filmmaker was there, and she kept filming for more than two years, shooting away during several unexpected transformations of the Arab Spring. Jehane Noujaim, who grew up in Cairo, documented the fall of dictator Hosni Mubarak in 2011, the election of the Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi, and then his removal from power last summer. Her documentary, The Square, is now getting Oscar buzz. Kim Masters, host of The Business, KCRW's weekly program on the movie industry, sat down with Noujaim and actor-and-activist Khalid Abdalla, who appears in the movie.
- Jehane Noujaim: documentary filmmaker, @JehaneNoujaim
- Khalid Abdalla: actor and activist, @KhalidAbdalla
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