Barry Switzer only okay with coaches paying college athletes

Considering he was a ground-breaking visionary when it came to paying college football players in the 1970s and 1980s, you’d think Barry Switzer – the disgraced former OU football coach turned wealthy Norman drunk who brought shame and embarrassment to his program – would have a soft spot for allowing college athletes to profit from their name or likeness like any other individual over the age of 18.

It would make sense.

Barry Switzer was famous for being a “players coach” who, thanks to his own difficult upbringing, could identify with some of the challenges and financial hardships many college athletes face, so he’d obviously be all for them making money… right?

Well, because we live in a golden age of hypocrisy, that answer is “No.”

News 9 recently caught up with the guy who made millions and millions and millions of dollars off the backs of unpaid collegians – and is infamous for endorsing any product or politician for the right price – to get his thoughts on the growing movement to allow college athletes those same freedoms. These were his thoughts:

“I’m totally against it,” former OU and Dallas Cowboys head football coach Barry Switzer said. “What’s a scholarship worth? $100,000 – $150,000?”

Seriously, how can Barry Switzer not want to pay college football players?! I’m pretty sure he wrote the book on it! Not only is it the right and sane thing to do, but it may prevent some players from selling crack cocaine, robbing their drug dealers or pimping out cheerleaders just to earn a little bit of money.

Here’s more:

Switzer said athletes are alreadycompensated through full ride scholarships. The former coach told News 9 he fears the promise of paid endorsements will disrupt the recruiting process.

“I don’t want others outside the athletic department involved in it, the kids having agents,” Switzer said. “When you bring other people into the fray, the kid being recruited in Dallas, Texas has got a better chance than a kid in Stillwater, Oklahoma, doesn’t he, to market his likeness. That’s not fair, is it?”

Hey coach, know what else isn’t fair? Not allowing 18 – 22 year-olds to profit off their likeness while they serve as glorified indentured servants for Universities, all while their coaches, administrators and lots of other people and institutions make out like bandits. Then again, I’m not an old, washed-up hypocritical college football coach who spends each day desperately clinging to the past with his jock-sniffers, so what do I know.

Anyway, I think it’s virtually impossible to make a logical and reasonable case that college athletes in revenue-generating sports shouldn’t be allowed to earn endorsement deals, sell autographs, etc. That being said, I also know some people – especially the conservative, white types who have greatly profited from the inequities of the collegiate athletic system– love to try to perform that mental gymnastics routine. If that’s you, give it a shot in the comments.

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22 Responses


  1. You dare dis the King?


  2. Wow! I;m making popcorn, can’t wait to see the comments.


  3. Football and men’s basketball players are hardly indentured servants; gymnasts, wrestlers, cross country runners, on the other hand, are. Nevertheless, if Lincoln Riley and Mike Gundy can make millions for the product they put out, then why shouldn’t the athletes who actually do the work and get their bodies broken for them profit?

    And, of course, Switzer thinks college players should earn their money the old fashioned way—by selling cocaine and stolen championship rings.


  4. Switzer sure isn’t stitt, he’s the King, was and always will be. I certainly hope the Pope is off limits, if there are any.


    1. He IS the KING!!
      Then & NOW‼️


  5. The issue with college sports is that there is just so much money out there for the schools to take in while leaving the athletes out of the mix financially. Coaches get millions, schools get hundreds of millions for facilities, and you have kids working like crazy to make this happen.

    The kids have a dream that they will be professional athletes if this all goes well, and maybe it does for the .01% of them who can get professional contracts. For those it was worth getting a degree in “University Studies” or something else you really can’t get a high paying job after college. Sure the university gave them a degree, but they also made sure athletics were the priority, as opposed to their studies.

    The schools sell these kids a dream, as it is highly profitable for the school, in the same way they also sell the benefits of future earnings with a degree. A school is a business and they sell the promise of a degree, or a sports pro career when they recruit. Odds of a pro career from college athletics are pretty slight, so the athletes do need to be compensated, and not just with their “free ride” scholarship.

    The system needs to be revamped, and the colleges aren’t really interested as they like the way it is working right now. But the ship has sailed, college athletes are going to be paid, some states have passed laws allowing it that will take effect before the end of the year.

    Now it is just up to negotiating out the details, which is going to be a bumpy ride, and you are going to start seeing a lot of changes as to which are the elite sports schools.


  6. During the 2016 prez campaign his daughter hosted grump at her castle, which is directly across the street from his starter castle. I tell ya’ll, he hasn’t been his normally open-minded old self ever since that episode.


  7. Did Switzer ever sign players who he knew damn well weren’t ever going to be able to earn a “$100,000” college degree? Players of highly questionable “character”? Did he sign otherwise poorly-qualified “student-athletes” because they had great athletic skills? Hell yes he did!

    Did he know that his boosters were paying his athletes under the table, or hiring them to work at no-work or attendance-optional jobs? Hell yes he did!

    So what’s his angle now? Perhaps he doesn’t want programs who play it straight to be able to compete with the cheaters. Where would that have left ol’ Barry when he was coaching at OU?

    Was anyone surprised when Switzer’s Dallas Cowboys dissolved into a goo of criminality – kinda like what happened at OU near the end of his tenure?


    1. I’m not here to defend Barry, especially on his limited view of the current college football player environment BUT YOU CAN’T BLAME HIM FOR DALLAS’S DEMISE.

      That environment, lack of success falls directly on Jerry Jones. Barry has the highest regular season winning percentage of ALL coaches in the history of the Cowboys franchise (40-24) .625, he was 5-2 with a Super Bowl win in the playoffs. Since Barry’s firing (which was actually at an ideal time-Cowboys needed to go in a new direction and Barry was pretty much done with working that hard) Jerry hijacked the draft process and the coaching tree became a joke-Chan Gailey? Dave Campo? Bill Parcels-when he was obviously done? All Barry did in Dallas was coach, he didn’t try to be the GM, he didn’t try to be a media mogul/star and he didn’t let Jerry interfere during games-which along with his desire not to coach forever spelled his demise.

      Barry’s done a lot of bad things, may not be the greatest of persons, but he was a great football coach and football mind-and like others with those same credentials we give them way too much adoration and way too little scrutiny.


  8. The thing that was lost in Bswitzie’s comment was, the schools in the larger markets may have an advantage in recruiting over schools such as Oklahoma State. But…for every 5 star recruit who chases the best compensation deal there will be 5 other 3 star recruits with chips on their shoulders waiting to kick some 5 star butt. By the way in his younger days ‘ol Barry liked to stick it to the “man”. Nowadays he is the “man”


  9. Should college athletes be even doing endorsements to begin with? NO!

    Between classes, studies, practices, games, travel to and from games, they’d have to then do photo shoots, interviews, etc all related to the endorsement. Then what about patches/stickers/etc that they have to wear on uniforms for the product they are endorsing. They just can’t slap that on the uniform without NCAA approval – and they won’t allow it without getting their cut from the student athlete and/or company.

    The only thing student athletes should be paid for is their likeness/image while being playing on game days and any video games (there used to be a slew of college games for consoles yrs ago but stopped because of this very issue).


  10. You think Switzerland is bad, you should have heard the stuttering hillbilly Pat Jones’ take on his radio show. Dude had Thurman Thomas and Barry Sanders but no Big 8 title.


    1. Jimbo Fisher at Texas A&M makes $100 million…. guaranteed over 10 years. And players shouldn’t make anything beyond their scholarship?


    2. Wuh… wuh… one day people are going to speak in hu.. hu.. hushed tones about Pu.. Pat Ju.. Jones.


      1. OK, if I could take that one back, I would. Apologies to all and any I offended.


  11. Cowboys fell apart under Barry because he never had a salary cap at OU.


  12. Barry Switzer worked hard for the Brad Henry campaign 20 years ago. I was shocked to find out he sponsored a Trump-athon at his house. Makes me fear old age.


  13. I’ve known Barry Switzer for more than 40 years. I abhor the fact that “The Family” threw in with Trump; that Barry now supports both Republicans and Democrats; that some of the student-athletes he recruited didn’t remind us of choir boys and you wouldn’t either if you had been raised in the environment some of them were. I also know about his generosity to many; his speeches of support all over America for an underclass that needs to hear from him; and many other large and small gestures of compassion and kindness. But some scribes and TLO commentators feel the need to highlight only the failures and frailties of a guy who has done a helluva lot more good that bad for so many. In politics a guy needs only 51% to be called a winner. For others in different professions it seems the bar is so much higher.


    1. Wish you’d comment more, Cal.


      1. Thank you Z. There are other places full of comments that wish I couldn’t even comment anymore at all no matter what I might profferer. So just to spite those nimrods I’ll honor your request by writing more here in The Ogle. This is the first one today and more to follow. Always dangerous though to stroke an egomaniac’s ego or most anybody’s anything made for stroking…until at least the second date.


  14. I played at OU. Most of us are disturbed by the comments. Him and Patty Jones make a career off the name and likeness of talented people. Thats all they do and skirt rules. Still do when not hocking roofing jobs. The coaches get jealous of the players. It is a control issue. Its America. They are adults working. Unless he wants to get paid in scholarship money too and have club type frat players; It doesn’t matter what he thinks.


    1. It matters.

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