By now, you’ve probably seen what Wisconsin Badgers men’s basketball forward Nigel Hayes did over the weekend. College Gameday was in Madison for the Ohio State-Wisconsin football game, and Hayes elected to take part in the Gameday tradition of bringing a clever sign.
Now, I have a lot of questions about this, but now’s not the time for that. Let’s just deal with Hayes’ sign at face value: He’s making a criticism of the NCAA and their policies on amateurism and the value that student athletes provide to their schools without a notable form of monetary payment.
On Monday evening, Marquette redshirt junior guard Duane Wilson took to Twitter with.... well, not a rebuttal, but his own personal viewpoint that appears to be an obvious response to the statement that Hayes had made with his sign.
Don't say you're broke unless your account says $0.00... I know people that's really out here struggling for a meal yet a dollar.— Duane Wilson (@SwaggyDu1) October 18, 2016
I got a son and I'm a student athlete yet I'll never complain or say I'm broke. Where I'm from it's a blessing to even get a free education.— Duane Wilson (@SwaggyDu1) October 18, 2016
Now, I want to make this clear: I am not writing this post to say “YEAH, DUANE, YOU TELL NIGEL THAT HE SHOULD LIKE WHAT HE GETS AND SHUT UP.” That’s not the case, not even close. I think college athletes deserve the opportunity to make a buck on their name and likeness. If Braeger Ford wants to give Wilson $1000 to do a radio spot for them in Milwaukee, then I think that should be allowed.
It is, however, nice, I guess the right word is, to see a 22 year old have the forethought and insight to speak out with intelligence about his life experience to this point and how it affects his world view. He might not have it completely made in life, but Wilson is using basketball to make himself better. As Al McGuire said, “Use basketball, don’t let basketball use you.”
Wilson did have a third tweet, one that came in the middle of the previous two. I’m going to let it speak for itself, and yes, we’ll come back to the point that Wilson is alluding to when Badger Hate Week rolls around.
It's a shame seeing people do these stunts for social media attention. That's really corny and sad. Our generation so unappreciative.— Duane Wilson (@SwaggyDu1) October 18, 2016