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Should Wealthy Students Receive Athletic Scholarships?

UCLA recently offered music mogul Sean Combs' son a full scholarship, but because of the Iona Prep athlete's privileged background people feel his scholarship should be relayed to the less financially fortunate.

It’s hard to discuss anything relating to Sean "Diddy" Combs without mentioning legendary rapper Biggie Smalls, who famously sang "Mo money, mo problems.” It's a concept Combs is now learning on sports pages from coast to coast.

Combs’ son Justin is finishing up his senior year at Iona Prep and his prowess in the Gaels’ secondary has earned the young football player a. 

Even though Combs’ football talent speaks for itself, some people are questioning whether or not the son of a man worth half-a-billion dollars should receive a $54,000 scholarship. On his 16th birthday, Justin Combs received a $360,000 Maybach from his father. 

The cash-strapped UCLA recently issued a statement defending the school’s position saying that athletic scholarships do not come from taxpayer money and come from ticket sales, corporate partners, media contracts and private donations from supporters.

Sean Combs’ stature and bank account have people questioning if UCLA should give his football-playing son Justin the full scholarship. What do you think?

Allison Jaynes June 04, 2012 at 01:35 PM
His father donating the money back to the school does not take away what the kid earned! He earned the right to play for UCLA and he will get that opportunity. His father does not need the money they have offered him to do so and it would be morally right to offer that money back to a kid who maybe couldn't go and couldn't play because there were only X scholarships and that kid was ranked X-1. They shouldn't give the money back because they have to...they should give it back because they want to because it would be a wonderfully generous gesture and would enable another kid to get what he worked just as hard for.
Felicia June 04, 2012 at 01:36 PM
The concern should be that illegals are receiving aid, grants, scholarships and reduced tuition which should instead be going to help legal US citizens.
Donna June 04, 2012 at 01:37 PM
To peekskillman -- totally agree! My taxpayer dollars are going to students whose parents pay nothing! I have a hard enough time paying for my children's education...why should these students get handouts! I don't want to hear that it's not their fault that their parents are illegals either.
Felicia June 04, 2012 at 01:44 PM
Chanel Hernandez- in you scenario who gets to decide "if they can pay it on their own and still be well off"? Who creates the definition of "well off"? Is that a $200,000 home? A $400,000 home? 1 car, 2 cars? A cell phone? How many computers make you "well off". Flat screen tv vs an older model See the problem here?
Felicia June 04, 2012 at 01:45 PM
Chanel Hernandez- in you scenario who gets to decide "if they can pay it on their own and still be well off"? Who creates the definition of "well off"? Is that a $200,000 home? A $400,000 home? 1 car, 2 cars? What if they are 10 years old? A cell phone? How many computers make you "well off". Flat screen tv vs an older model. See the problem here?
George Datino June 04, 2012 at 01:46 PM
Our government is so stupid, or more than likely they are getting a lot of money under the table. We keep dumping more and more money making the carrot bigger and bigger and at the same time we spend money on protecting the border.
Walden Macnair June 04, 2012 at 02:29 PM
Athletic scholarships should go to athletes regardless of the income of their parents. One could argue that because college sports make so much money, giving them free tuition is actually a profit making strategy for the college. Good teams equal more tickets sold equal more income for the college.
Kimberly Greene June 04, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Isn't that what has always happened? What makes it any different for this celebrity's son?
Patricia June 04, 2012 at 03:22 PM
If you research college football it shows the expenses far out weigh the income it produces....that said I do believe that a sports scholarship should be based on sports ability not the subjects financial status.
margo brettauer June 04, 2012 at 04:41 PM
It is a scholarship based on merit not income. He earned it...why should he not get it? He worked hard and it is his .
Gillian June 05, 2012 at 11:10 AM
Would we be speaking about this if it were a full academic scholarship? I didn't think so. The scholarship was earned through his athletic talent and well deserved.
Allison Jaynes June 05, 2012 at 12:03 PM
Oh I would ABSOLUTELY be talking about this if it were an academic scholarship. The family is rolling in money and should return an academic scholarship exactly as they should return an athletic one. Not because they have to...just because its the right thing to do. I support UCLA rewarding the scholarship....they do not need to take into account need....but I do NOT support the family accepting it. Let someone get it who really needs it and would not be able to attend without it.
Walden Macnair June 05, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Patricia, you couldn't be more wrong. In 2010, UCLA made 22 Million Dollars on their football program which cost them 15 Million. That's a cool 7 Million in profit. Now you tell me, how does giving football scholarships cost more than they make.
Marie June 06, 2012 at 04:45 AM
Oh Allison - please don't assume that the family won't take care of UCLA. "The" family will have plenty of opportunity to reward/repay/pay forward and I am assuming that they will do so. Justin deserves and should accept the scholarship and I can't image that UCLA won't benefit directly or indirectly from this. Good luck Justin - hope you enjoy your next 4 years!
Nancy Leonard June 06, 2012 at 08:14 PM
They have plenty of money and can well afford college. Give the scholarship to someone in need.
Ross Revira June 06, 2012 at 09:24 PM
Hey Nancy maybe you can't read but it is an ATHLETIC scholarship not a financial aid scholarship. I would not want someone like you recruiting for my football team, you have no clue.
Allison Jaynes June 06, 2012 at 09:35 PM
yes, they will take care of UCLA and I am sure that is why he was recruited. its not UCLA i am worried about, its other kids who need that scholarship more than he does. Let him play football and give the money to someone who needs it so THEY can get the benefit of a UCLA education.
Nancy Leonard June 06, 2012 at 10:05 PM
You have no clue. It's a full scholarship. That means he pays no tuition. Give the money to someone who needs it. They can pay for his education 100 times over.
Joseph Baker June 07, 2012 at 03:00 PM
Why are you discussing sport scholarships. Why not all scholarships. If a kid works hard in school (academically or sportswise ) and earn a scholarship, parents wealth should have no bearing on it. It's a reward for hard work and determination. If the student is from a rich or poor family doesn't go in to the consideration by the colleges.
Francis T McVetty June 07, 2012 at 03:07 PM
If he, Sean Combs, had any CLASS this would NOT be an issue. He would have reached down into HIS pockets and paid for it. Unfortunately that is not in his DNA. He probably thinks that it is owed to him like so many others in our society. Be the man, stand up for what is right.
Allison Jaynes June 07, 2012 at 03:29 PM
The issue (to me) is not whether it should have been rewarded. The question is whether or not it should be ACCEPTED. The kid earned it, fine, but the family does NOT have to accept it when they are rolling in money and someone else who needs it to be able to attend the school at all could get it! I agree with Francis..if he had any class, he'd thank the school for honoring his son with a financial scholarship and promptly return the money!
Theresa June 07, 2012 at 04:16 PM
Francis is right.
Francis T McVetty June 07, 2012 at 07:56 PM
Ross , I posted what I did BECAUSE I'm a conservative. He did not need that scholarship. He and his family could have made a magnanimous gesture in turning in that scholarship so that a needy family could get it. Talk about a PR moment missed.
jeff meyer June 07, 2012 at 09:37 PM
Can anyone ever disagree with you without it becoming a Magna Carta?? Francis has a differing opinion than yours; so be it. Your real name is not even ross revira. If you expect your viewpoints to be taken seriously then sign your real name. For all I know you could be a 90 year old lady bickering in her rocking chair. Jeff Meyer Tuckahoe, NY
Aidan June 07, 2012 at 09:53 PM
Nonsense. Wealthy athletes receive scholarships all the time. Former Senator Bradley was the child of a bank president who received a scholarship from Duke. He chose not to go, but was accepted to Princeton ... despite absolutely dreadful SAT scores that would have disqualified almost everyone ... unless they could shoot and dribble with the best of them. Funny. No one thought that odd. Now the Combs kid does not need the money ... but that isn't the point of the scholarship in every case. They could have rejected the offer ... and that might be considered a rather classy thing. But the scholarship is a representation of his perceived excellence. It's a statement by the college of their genuine interest in the athlete. Do others need the money? Of course. But the larger issue is this: is excellence the measure? Or is need the measure? Life's not fair. Never will be. Stop takin' an iron to every wrinkle in life.
jeff meyer June 07, 2012 at 10:06 PM
What I am sincerely tired of is reading your constant critical, immature, incoherent and anonymous comments on the PATCH. JM Tuckahoe, NY
jeff meyer June 07, 2012 at 11:10 PM
LOL!! How do you compete? You can't even use your real name. JM Tuckahoe, NY
Nancy Leonard June 07, 2012 at 11:22 PM
Gratefully accept the recognition, and then pass on the money.
Chris Clement June 08, 2012 at 09:56 AM
@jeff meyer's reply to Ross Revira. Story is about wealthy students getting athletic scholarships. Stay focused, and please stop going after others others. You even attack our elderly citizens with "For all I know you could be a 90 year old lady bickering in her rocking chair. Jeff Meyer Tuckahoe, NY" This asinine comment is unnecessary, and adds naught to the discussion.
clark gable January 10, 2013 at 11:39 AM
the fact that he has a decent gpa doesn't even matter because it is an athletic scholarship. the problem is that there is a limited about of scholarships a school can offer. it doesn't matter how much money the combs' family donates. the only benefactors in this case are ucla and staff. it is all about financial gains for the school. do you really think he was the best high school athlete(at his position) trying to play for ucla, or do you think he did he has one of the more wealthy situations and uncla saw this as a way to improve it athletic facilities? you have to understand that colleges are businesses and if they have a the choice between an outstanding athlete from a lower class or the offspring of money the choice simple(although it may be immoral). Hey what do you expect in the "land of opportunity?" "The land of the free unless you were a slave......" before anyone say anything, i don't care for a lesson on grammar.

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