I hope everyone’s bracket is as busted as mine. The round of 32 finishes today and halfway through the round of 32 not a single perfect bracket remains. This year’s March Madness tournament has lived up to the hype after last year’s edition was cancelled, and there have been no shortage of upsets. Although upset wins by Ohio, Abilene Christian, North Texas and Oregon State were impressive, none were more impressive than two consecutive wins by Oral Roberts University.

Oral Roberts University is a tiny private school in Tulsa, Oklahoma. It is named after famed Evangelical Christian Oral Roberts, a Choctaw American preacher that rose from faith healer to having his own congregation that grossed over $120M a year during the 1980’s. Roberts was one of the first televangelists ever and is credited with creating the ideas of seed-faith and prosperity gospel. The idea behind both is that in order to reach prosperity and wealth, you need to plant good karmic seeds into the universe that will one day manifest into positivity in your own life. This includes paying tithes, donations to charitable organizations, and other forms of good deeds. Which is ironic because Oral Roberts University is in lockstep with the rest of NCAA in regards to not paying their collegiate student athletes.

I understand its difficult to come up with the right formula of which student athletes to pay, how much to pay them, and other various questions that would need to be addressed, but its ridiculous to say that because there are tough questions no one should be paid. You should at least be able to begin the conversation and work out the kinks, similar to any other free market industry, and I think it should start with the 15-seed Oral Roberts team that pulled off two historic upsets. There has already been a uniting of some college basketball players who have their own list of requests that they’d like to see take effect for next season. There are millions if not billions of dollars being generated from this tournament and I think it’s only right to plant some good seeds in these young men and women in the tournament and share the prosperity.

What would Oral Roberts do?

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Author of The Powers That Be

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