1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Pay-for-play Sports Companies

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by young-gun11, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. young-gun11

    young-gun11 Member

    I have recently run across a number of pay-for-play athletic companies who are setting up (oddly enough, ingenious) plans for HS athletes to play in an all-star weekend where they pay to get into the tournament then a handful are chosen to play in the national tournament. www.internationalhsathletics.com is the most recent.

    A month ago I covered a football game put on by www.alumnifootballusa.com where old has-beens pay $90 to play a football game for their "high school" against grads from another area school.

    What do you think about these? Have you seen/heard of them? I think whoever comes up with these is making bank and I'm in the wrong business.
  2. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    How many people went to these games? I doubt many of these organizers make much money unless it's youth baseball or soccer.
  3. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    This stuff has been going on for literally decades.

    I remember 25 (!?!) years ago when I was working at my first daily sports job, the small parochial grade school in town got hooked up with one of these deals where they were "chosen" to be an "US representative in international basketball" to go on a 10-day European tour, and of course all the players had to go into a huge fundraising frenzy to raise the $50,000 or so it was going to take to send them all. We wrote a nice feature about the whole deal. A few days later they asked for another story, then another, then another (I think we cut them off after about the third go-round).

    They did eventually raise the money and go. I found out later from some of the parents and players the team played a total of four games in those 10 days. The rest of the time the players and parents just sat around the hotels. There was a little sightseeing, but basically that was all done at the parents' instigation and also out of their pockets.

    I also found out about a year later that pretty much all the local fundraising organizations were pissed as hell, because it was probably six months after the great European Basketball Tour that they were able to wring a dime out of anybody in town. Any time they asked anybody for donations, they got, "Jesus, I just gave $200 to the European Basketball Tour."

    As I vaguely remember, the paper's own holiday charity fundraising took quite a kick in the ass from it. (This was back in the days when newspapers used to do that kind of thing.)
  4. nmmetsfan

    nmmetsfan Active Member

    Throw in the power of Jesus and you could be talking about the NAIA
  5. HanSenSE

    HanSenSE Well-Known Member

    Very worthy of a topic outside "Dear dimwit ..."

    Another one that came our way last summer was asking kids to raise money to participate in a combine, where, if they were deemed good enough, they'd be asked to go to to another combine, then invited to play in a high school all-star game that would be televised (I think the broadcaster was even lower than ESPN8, The Ocho on some cable systems), and college scouts would be watching!

    I wish parents would learn. If your kid is good enough, he will attract attention somehow. If not, well, somehow he'll live with the same of having to pay for his/her own education.
  6. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    Those kids signing fake LOIs work as hard as the blue-chippers.
  7. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    That alumni football outfit hit us up for coverage a couple of years ago. Dude was flabbergasted when I said "Let me transfer you to the ad department." They never did put together a game here.
  8. I had a couple of local schools put one together through one of these alumni game outfits, and I ended up writing a column about it. The schools seemed pretty happy with the amount of money they were able to raise, which I believe went back to the prep football programs.
  9. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    If they'd been to the point of actual staging a game, I'd have considered some coverage. But they weren't. They wanted a story announcing the plans to put on a game to attract players.
  10. young-gun11

    young-gun11 Member

    We had a FULL stadium for our Alumni game. I mean, packed out. Probably sold 3,000 tickets to the game. It was great for the local schools and they put on a good show. I think this will be continued here through Alumni Football USA. We covered it like a preps game and did a full page photo spread since we're a weekly and people buy papers when their picture is in it.
  11. Oh, I see. I guess the comapny that was working with the local schools arranged for the game through them as a fundraiser, so by the time I wrote a previewy thing on it, it was all set in stone. FWIW, I definitely didn't go and cover the game, although, in hindsight there probably would have been a lot of interest.
  12. HanSenSE

    HanSenSE Well-Known Member

    I'd have no problem running a plea for players as a brief along with the youth baseball and swimming lessons signups, but a full-blown story? Afraid not.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page