This article makes the argument in a pretty clear and persuasive manner.
The fact of the matter is that everyone is making money off of the athletes except the athletes themselves.
The athletes are doing the work — in the case of particularly talented athletes, they’re risking an injury that could prevent them from having a professional career. One broken bone or joint injury would turn them from a potential millionaire to just another physical education major in a second. Additionally, if they get injured, they’ll lose their scholarship for the next year — so — really, they’ll have a portion of a college degree.
As it is, being a college student means you’re an adult — you probably need a car, (insurance and gas..), a cell phone, and some spending money. You may have other financial obligations as well — like a family at home to help out, maybe even a child or parent depending on you.
Having an actual job is impossible if you’re on a competitive team. In theory official practice time is limited by the NCAA — BUT, in order to be competitive there’s time in the weight room, unofficial practices and a whole host of other obligations to your team and your fans. That’s not even including the time it takes to travel for competitions. Who is going to employ someone who has about 5 hours per week to spare, and how much could they make in that time anyway? And, really — why should they when they can sign some of their gear and sell it on ebay? The only people who think this is unreasonable is the NCAA… why? because they aren’t getting the money, plain and simple.