When I was growing up one of the stereotypes or surefire signs that you were becoming an old man was that you were standing on the front porch of your house yelling at the kids to get off your lawn or yelling at people, who were driving too fast, to slow down. Today one of the signs that you’re getting old might be that you think the youth of today are soft, coddled too much, or feel too entitled. I think the big difference between then and now is that today we are more right than at any other time in history.
We’ve seen things that we never thought we’d see such as safe spaces for people so that they do not have to be exposed to words, images, other opinions, or even Western culture. Since the late 60s we’ve created an entitlement culture that has progressively gotten worse. Don’t get me wrong, there are great young people today with ambition, a strong work ethic and backbone, but I think the number of people that fall into the opposite category has grown.
Josh Rosen is the quarterback for UCLA. Josh very well could be the stereotypical big man on campus. He has been the top athlete his whole life and grew up in a very well-to-do family. The prevailing opinion about Josh is that he has underachieved because so much has been handed to him but that he still has the talent to be one of the best football players not only in college but he could be the number one draft pick in the NFL next year. To say he is the hardest worker on the team would probably be a lie. Josh is best known for having put a hot tub in his dorm room his freshman year. That probably tells you everything you need to know about Josh.
Rosen is already also well known for making statements that are controversial. This week he said that playing college football and going to class are not compatible. It is too demanding to expect a football player to compete at the highest level and to succeed in the classroom. He believes the amount of time that college athletes have to dedicate to their sport prohibits them from putting in even minimal effort in the classroom. He is expanding upon the argument that college athletes should be paid by saying that not only should they be paid they should also be exempt from going to class.
There are people coming down on both sides of the argument with the lines being drawn very much based upon age. Younger people tend to side with Josh while older people say buckle up Buttercup, we did it you can too.
You should know that college athletes are limited to a maximum of 24 hours a week dedicated to their sport. This includes game time and some sports are limited to 20 hours a week. To me that’s a part-time job. In fact to the federal government that also is a part-time job. Going to school is a part-time job. So basically Josh and his supporters are saying that 18, 19 or 20-year-olds should be expected to work a full-time job.
Of course Rosen said that normal students who do not compete in a sport don’t understand. I would argue that many of them are working part-time jobs in order to help put themselves through school. They have to make time to study just like athletes do. My daughters have both worked while going to school. It’s difficult and at times they felt like quitting but they realized the benefits of what they were doing and kept going. And what about the nontraditional student, like many we see going to our local university? People who work full-time jobs and go to school in the evening or take online classes. They’re probably spending 60 to 70 hours a week minimum in order to get their education. Rosen would probably blow a gasket if he had to do that.
Don’t get me wrong, we would all love to have a lot more free time to be able to sit in our hot tub and crack open a cold one. The funny thing is, that you’re more likely to have the opportunity to do that if you get an education or develop the skill that allows you to be compensated in such a way that you have a lot more free time. I wonder what Rosen is going to do when he gets to the NFL and realizes that he’s going to spend 70 to 80 hours a week playing football in order to be one of the best? I’m hoping my Vikings don’t draft him because I have a sneaky feeling he will not put in the time that Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, or any of the other elite players do.