American University’s Stephen Lumpkins is returning to school for the 2012-13 basketball season after a brief stint in the Kansas City Royals’ farm system in Arizona. That brief stint included a 2-1 record in 10 appearances as starting pitcher for the AZL Royals in 2011, and 0-0 record with a 19.64 ERA in 3 2/3 innings this season. It also included a $150,000 signing bonus and what the Washington Post described as “the life of a pro athlete” in July of last year.
Jay Bilas doesn’t get it.
AU’s Stephen Lumpkins returns to college hoops: wapo.st/mR9qrd $150K bonus from Royals, but not a pro. Enes Kanter was a pro. Get it?
— Jay Bilas (@JayBilas) August 14, 2012
Unlike Enes Kanter’s situation, Lumpkins amateur basketball status went unscathed because he was collecting checks for playing professional baseball. NCAA rules allow a student to pursue a pro career in one sport while maintaining amateur status in another. That’s why Brandon Weeden was driving around a brand new truck (courtesy of the New York Yankees) while chasing a Heisman trophy at Oklahoma State.
Oh, and don’t even get Bilas started on Missy Franklin. The swimmer took home $100,000 from the Olympics and will be eligible to swim for one lucky NCAA school once she graduates high school.
I wonder the NCAA stance if Missy Franklin swims for Kentucky? Glad NCAA protected its integrity from Enes Kanter, but not Graham Spanier.
— Jay Bilas (@JayBilas) August 13, 2012
In case you forgot… Enes Kanter turned down money in order to keep his amateur status so he could attend college in the States. The NCAA ruled him ineligible for accepting roughly $33,000, that was used to cover educational and travel expenses. That’s a little more than one-fifth of Lumpkins signing bonus with the Royals.
I think we all agree with Bilas: Fix it.
No Consistency At All.