What is a good thesis statement for an essay about college athletics?

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pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

There are many possible thesis statements, some in favor and some against.  Here are some examples.

If you want to argue that college athletics are bad you could say things like:

  • Although people argue that college athletics build character, the many scandals in college sports show us that this is simply not true.
  • At a time when colleges all over the country are having to cut back on educational expenditures, we cannot justify spending huge amounts of money on college sports.

If you want to argue in favor you could say

  • By providing scholarships to many people who would not otherwise be able to attend college, college athletics do a great service to our country.
  • College athletics are important and worthwhile because they contribute immeasurably to the pleasure that students get from attending college.
carolynosborne's profile pic

carolynosborne | College Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted on

A good thesis statement would be on a topic that you care about and also one that you can see both sides to the story, even if you much prefer one side to another.

Writing an essay is an exercise in logic. Your goal, as a writer, is to persuade someone to share your opinion, but there are specific ways of doing this.

The first persuasive device is to back up your arguments with facts. So, you would want a thesis statement related to something you have facts about. For example, if you are concerned with money and college athletics, you would want to make sure you have facts about this.

Likewise, if you are concerned with coaching practices or academics for college athletes, then you would want to have those facts. For example, you could argue that it is important for college athletes to do well academically. Some facts you could employ would be:

  1. Not every college athlete makes it professionally, which means that many athletes need to prepare for a career in something else. You could even look up statistics to this effect.
  2. Injuries cut athletic careers short, even among those who become professional. Again, you can back this up with statistics.

The second way to be persuasive is to take an argument from the other side and refute it. You might consider the perspectives of people who think college athletes do not have to be good students. They might say that academic work takes away from a focus on doing well in a sport. After you reflect on that perspective in your essay, then you write something that argues against it. An example would be that college athletics take place in the context of higher education and therefore education needs to be a part of what college athletes do.

Whatever thesis you select, make sure you can use facts and refutation to support your opinion so your essay will truly be persuasive.

litgeek2015's profile pic

litgeek2015 | College Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted on

This is a very relevant topic right now, so you should have a lot to write about.

Some possibilities are:

  • College athletes devote much of their time and energy to their teams, and in return the teams often receive a great deal of money, so the student athletes should be paid.
  • Student athletes are given scholarships to cover most or all of their tuition and expenses in college, so it is not necessary to pay college athletes additional money.
  • More needs to be done to make sure that student athletes are students first and athletes second so that the degrees they earn in college really benefit them after graduation.

Because so few college athletes go on to play professionally, more needs to be done by colleges to prepare them for the workforce.

gsenviro's profile pic

gsenviro | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Here are some examples that would be good thesis statements on college athletics:

  • Should College Athletics Programs share their revenues with athletes in addition to the athletics scholarships?
  • Should athletes pay back the scholarship amounts once they sign major deals with a team?
  • Given the recent cuts in government spending, especially on critical areas such as research, is it justified to spend so much money on College athletics programs?
  • Many colleges and universities provide separate training and gymnasium facilities for the athletics program. Is it justified that better facilities are being provided to students who don't even pay fees? Should these facilities be shared, since the university is spending on the facilities and hence should be a shared unit?

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