The Kentucky Wildcats Should Refuse to Play in the Final Four. Here’s Why.

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The Kentucky Wildcats have the opportunity to become the first team since the 1976 Indiana Hoosiers to win the NCAA basketball championship as an undefeated team, and I believe they should squander it. On purpose. Here’s why.

The NCAA, which could very easily stand for Never Cared About Athletes, stands to make an estimated $700 million from the TV rights for broadcasting “March Madness” this year. NCAA President Mark Emmert will earn roughly $1.7 million in 2015.

Uber drivers will earn “surge pricing” fees by shuttling tons of spectators between tournament games and their hotels.

The guys selling beer in the arenas the games are played in will make a few bucks.

The players? Well, they’ll get a few pats on the back and a chance to say ‘Hi Mom’ with millions of people watching, but as far as cash goes, they won’t be receiving any of that.

The NCAA has stated over and over again that so-called “student-athletes” are amateurs and it would be “utterly unacceptable” to compensate them for their efforts.

This lack of compensation is precisely why the University of Kentucky basketball players should refuse to play in this year’s NCAA Basketball Tournament. They’re being exploited.

I felt the same way last year after UConn star Shabazz Napier admitted that there were “nights he went to bed starving,” even though his coach makes $2.8 million per year.

If that’s the case, why not do something about it?

Mr. Napier could have leveraged the amazing platform he had of playing in the national championship by refusing to play in the game on the league’s biggest night in an effort to bring awareness to the shameful financial practices of the NCAA.

Alas, he played the game, earned Tournament MVP honors, and we had to settle for his comments in the locker room and the ensuing blogs and articles that came about from those comments.

But what if he had refused to play? What if his teammates, in solidarity with him, also refused to play on college basketball’s biggest stage?

If there was no game played because the players decided to take a stand, together, it certainly would have gotten the attention of the people that matter most: the people who pay money to the NCAA.

Sponsors who paid to advertise during the game would have been irate. Fans would have demanded refunds for their tickets, and their travel expenses. The facility would have sued the NCAA for loss of revenue, after people left without buying enough $12 hot-dogs.

These brave players would have finally forced the NCAA to act by hitting it in the only place that matters, the bank account.

The young men would have finally proven to every other Division I basketball and football player where the power truly lies.

See, without the players the NCAA has no product. Without the product, there is no advertising. Without advertising there is no money. And without money the huge salaries for coaches, athletic directors and administrators, all of whom never make one basket or score one touchdown, vanish into thin air.

Extremely absurd situations require extreme measures. It would have been a wonderful sight to see.

But it didn’t happen.

Now, the Kentucky Wildcats, who also played in last year’s championship game against UConn, are the number 1 overall seed and prohibitive favorite the reach the title game again and win it all.

They are currently undefeated and it would be a giant feat for them to run the table and win the championship.

But what’s more important?

Should they look the other way while the machine keeps running on the backs of the players who are forced by the NCAA to sign away the right to any financial benefit from the skills they have worked most of their lives to develop?

Should they allow the NCAA to make millions of dollars from restaurant sponsors only to be told that they will become ineligible to play if someone treats them to a meal at said sponsor’s restaurant?

Should they continue to accept the fact that their coach has a $52 million contract with their school while some of their fellow players around the NCAA have been suspended for signing $25 autographs?

Without a doubt, the Kentucky players have squarely in front of them a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make history.

They can choose the play the game, or they can choose to change the game.

Either way, the ball is now firmly in their court.

MoneyMonday – Why Should Olympians Have All the Fun?

All eyes, and tweets, are on the Summer Olympics in London. Sure, if you could win one of those “gold” medals over there, that would be sweet. But what if your talents include things other than running fast or jumping high?

There are many other ways to be just as successful as those top athletes. Here are tips on how to “go for the gold” in your own field of endeavor.

Enjoyed this video? Let’s Connect!
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MoneyMonday: JP Morgan Chase Loses More Money Than Terrell Owens

Lots of financial tomfoolery last week in money:

JP Morgan Chase makes a $2 Billion trading blunder

Mother of Terrell Owens’ child received $1 million in child support, still wants more money, appears on Dr. Phil show.

Yahoo CEO fired for lying on his resume.

What is the world is wrong with these people? Find out in this week’s Money Monday.

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March Money Madness in the Pittsburgh Business Times!

March Money Madness in the Pittsburgh Business Times!

Check out this great article from the PBT on how firms are putting March Madness to work for them.  They included a lot of info on my March Money Madness Bracket Challenge…and a great picture if I do say so myself!

Sign up for the Bracket Challenge TODAY!  The entry fee is only $5 and the winner will walk away with 50% of the total entry fees!

CLICK HERE to register!

From the article:

Companies are finalizing their March Madness lineups in preparation for college basketball’s NCAA Tournament tip off.

Financial adviser Rob Wilson, for example, is set to unveil an online competition, March Money Madness, on March 12.

“It works just like filling out a bracket for the NCAA tournament, only instead of using 64 college basketball teams, I use 64 stocks,” said Wilson, vice president at South Side-based Blazer Capital Management. He didn’t increase the field to 68 as the NCAA did this year because of “technology limitations.”

Participants, who register on the website, www.marchmoneymadness.net, can compete with everyone who signs…
Read more: March Madness: Firms put tournament fever to work | Pittsburgh Business Times

MoneyMonday – Giants Win Means Buy Facebook?

The New York Giants win over the New England Patriots in Superbowl XLVI could be good for the stock market.

Should you get in on the Facebook IPO?

Are you ready for March Money Madness?

Join my March Money Madness Bracket Challengeand you could win $250,000*.

For details go to:

http://www.marchmoneymadness.com

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Terrell Owens Upset About Financial Problems

[youtube=http://youtu.be/3jhP1qBPUsI]

If you’ve ever wondered why I do what I do, here is a good example. Even superstars with Television shows are susceptible to financial problems.

It’s important to surround yourself with individuals that have your best interest in mind. Can’t get your advisor on the phone? Fire him immediately.

Former Vick Advisor Guilty of Ponzi Scheme

 Uh, I’m guessing that as long as athletes are paid large salaries, the business will continue to attract a lot of shady individuals.  What would make someone believe that they could get away with something as foolish as this???

OMAHA, Neb. — An Omaha financial advisor, whose clients once included pro football quarterack Michael Vick defrauded investors of more than $3 million over a four-year period, according to the U.S. Attorney for Nebraska.

 Mary Wong, 46, pleaded guilty to Securities Fraud in U.S. District Court.

 According to a U.S. Attorney’s news release, Wong acted as a financial advisor and solicited millions of dollars under false pretenses. Then she failed to invest the money as promised, instead spending the money on her “lavish lifestyle”, and businesses under Wong’s control.

view the full article here

Think Outside The Office #MoneyMonday

There are skills that you can develop outside of the office that can help to differentiate you and accelerate your career so that, ultimately, you make more money.

I’ve teamed up with The Dance Cafe in Pittsburgh to help teach you one of those skills.  Here are the details:

FREE Salsa Lessons

Tuesday, July 27th

CLICK HERE to RSVP!

The Dance Cafe, 805/807 Liberty Avenue, Downtown Pittsburgh

Session 1: 7:30 pm – 8pm

Session 2: 8pm – 8:30pm

Here’s a quick preview!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eeUetvsTNfw]

The Fortunate 50!

Tiger still on top of the list of highest paid athletes!

You can’t stop them — you can only hope to re-sign them. Extracurricular scandals, contract holdouts and ugly labor negotiations seem to have rocked professional sports more than any other point in recent memory. And yet financially, athletes seem nearly bulletproof.

For the seventh consecutive year, SI.com has compiled a list of the 50 top-earning American athletes by salary, winnings, endorsements and appearance fees. The average earnings of those on the list have reached an all-time high of $26.2 million (up 11 percent from ’09).

In a year in which Tiger Woods’ image has been forever tarnished — costing the perennial No. 1 tens of millions in endorsement dollars — he still stayed ahead of the curve. Tiger’s earnings were down more than $9 million from a year ago, but he still earned nearly $30 million more than the No. 2 athlete, fellow golfer Phil Mickelson.

Read the full article at SI.com