Originally written on Losers Bracket  |  Last updated 11/14/14
There now appears to be 4 teams in the hunt for the BCS title. Kansas State who continues to dominant Big 12 competition behind the leadership of Collin Klein and Bill Snyder. Notre Dame whose dominance on defense is second only to Alabama. Oregon who continues to score at a Playstation clip. And the reigning champ in Alabama who appears to be invincible. However, the topic this week is the injury to Marcus Lattimore and what it should mean for college football players, fans and the NCAA. Nearly 15 years ago I wrote a paper about why college athletes should not get paid. As I remember it received very high marks. That paper was written by a young man that saw the world in black and white. From my standpoint the player was getting a huge benefit of a college education and I even went as far to say that if they left college early they should payback the institution the scholarship money because they never completed their college education. Maybe it is age, experience, fatherhood or simply my occupation but I rarely see many things in black and white anymore. As so today I come to the realization that escaped me in my youth. A realization that players are simply assets to the NCAA and if they aren’t going to be paid (which I’m still not in favor of) then at a minimum they need to be protected. You see Marcus Lattimore was a sure fire NFL 1st rounder and then he tore his ACL. After a year of rehab Lattimore returned to the field for the University of South Carolina lugging a huge kneebrace. He wasn’t the same…a step slower but still all-conference good. On Saturday Lattimore suffered a knee injury that you wouldn’t wish on your worse enemy. Tears of pretty much every ligament that protects your knee and a dislocated knee cap. The image that still runs through my head is seeing his leg at such an awful angle that I had to look away from the screen. So what is next for Marcus Lattimore? Steve Spurrier indicated that “Marcus will be successful in any profession he pursues.” But that probably won’t be football Mr. Spurrier and therein lies the problem. Lattimore is talking about returning next year and although I wish that young man the best his plans for playing in the NFL are likely dead. One person quoted that “Hopefully Mr. Lattimore is a true student-athlete.” Really….Marcus Lattimore is a football player who was not allowed to pursue his NFL dream because of the framework of the NFL and the NCAA. I’m okay with the NFL not allowing 18 year olds to declare for the draft but their interests should be protected. And those interests are protected by a $200 stipend every week. They should be protected in the same way I protect my son and wife if I get in a car accident tomorrow and die; through an insurance policy. It is real simple – let the NCAA protect the athlete that they profit so much from by providing an insurance policy for those athletes that are viewed by the NFL as 1st-5th round picks. Their policy would be based on how good they are and the premium would be paid by the institution for which they play. To me this does two things (1) it protects what is left of the integrity of college sports and (2) it protects the young man or woman that is prevented from pursuing a dream because of service that is “required” by the NCAA. From my perspective this resolution appeals to both the 35 year old father and the 20 years old ideologist.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Australian cricket player dies from head injuries

Wrigley Field bleacher renovation may be delayed

Yankees wanted Rollins but Phillies' price was too high

Pop misses game for medical reasons; Messina takes over

John Beilein upset with ESPN for late start time to game

Tyson Chandler felt like Knicks' scapegoat at times

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Fred Jackson has 'no respect' for Donte Whitner

Devon Still responds to unpaid child support allegations

Diamondbacks sign Cuban slugger Yasmany Tomas

Josh Gordon felt alienated by some in Browns organization

Jerry Jones: I'm a big admirer of Robert Griffin III

Raiola fined for uneccesarily striking Pats' Zach Moore

CM Punk opens up about leaving WWE, says he'll never return

Steelers turned down chance to be called 'America's Team'

Report: Small chance Raiders-Rams could be moved to Indy

Todd Gurley begins rehab after surgery on knee for torn ACL

Brodeur to practice with Blues

OSU player posts Michigan player's girlfriend as his 'WCW'

Jim Harbaugh's family may not eat turkey thanks to NBC

Ole Miss' The Grove threatened by Mississippi State fan

Is it time for the Redskins to move on from Robert Griffin III?

Top 10 fantasy football turkeys for 2014

WATCH: Coyotes lose in ugly fashion, score own goal in OT

Warriors are having tons of fun on team plane

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

CM Punk opens up about leaving WWE

Wrigley renovation may be delayed

Steelers could have been America's Team

John Beilein upset with ESPN

Should Washington move on from RG3?

Dominic Raiola fined for cheap shots

Game of the week: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Rose leaves with injury again

WATCH: Pierce signs for fan during game

Report: McCoy to start over RG3

Braxton Miller headed to Oregon?

10 most one-sided college football rivalries

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.