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"The Business of Amateurs" will examine and challenge the role of the NCAA from the perspective of a former student/athlete. Read more

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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on June 26, 2013.

"The Business of Amateurs" will examine and challenge the role of the NCAA from the perspective of a former student/athlete.

Bob DeMars
Project by

Bob DeMars

First created  |  3 backed

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About this project

*UPDATE - STRETCH GOAL: $40,000* 

We did it! We reached our initial goal of $30,000, and with time left to spare! A big thank you goes out to all the supporters that have gotten behind the documentary this far. 

We are setting a stretch goal of $40,000 with the hopes of increasing our licensing options in post-production. It is still going to be a bare bones production with a talented crew working for peanuts and justice. Any extra money past our initial goal will go directly toward licensing the rights to photos, video, and music in order to enhance the quality of the final product. Please continue to spread the word about the documentary

About The Documentary

The NCAA was originally founded on the principles of protecting and benefiting the health of the student/athlete.  This documentary will challenge NCAA's current role in the marketing and selling of their cheapest commodity: amateurs.

am•a•teur (n): A person who engages in a pursuit, esp. a sport, on an unpaid basis

As a former player at USC I saw the business side of college athletics first hand. From 1997- to 2001, I played football for three different coaches at the University of Southern California. I was an award-winning student/athlete and, for the most part, it was a dream come true. 

But recently, some of my old injuries have opened my eyes to the fact that my future medical costs will likely outweigh the monetary benefits of my free education by the time I’m a senior citizen.

Student/Athletes or Employees?

What many people don’t know about student/athletes from all sports:

  • They work over 40 hours a week on their sport alone 
  • They incur over $3,000 in debt per year
  • Their scholarships are renewable on an annual basis
  • The injuries they incur while at the school are are no longer covered once their eligibility is up
Matt Barkley tweets about the project
Matt Barkley tweets about the project

The NCAA - A Billion Dollar Non-Profit

The documentary will investigate what happens to the billions of dollars generated from March Madness and college football’s Bowl Games every year.

Where else does a sport exist where you wait 4 weeks to play a game that goes nowhere (Bowl Games), and then say it’s not about the money?

*THIS DOCUMENTARY IS NOT JUST ABOUT FOOTBALL AND BASKETBALL; IT'S ABOUT COLLEGE ATHLETES FROM ALL SPORTS.

Seeking Solutions

From the athlete’s perspective, we will discover how college sports and the NCAA evolved into the disproportionate model of today.  However, we won’t just shed light on the problems of the NCAA; we are going to search for solutions that will spark change in the NCAA and work towards moving the focus back to the health of the athlete. 

Meet the Team

Bob DeMars (Director/Producer) - Bob is an award-winning filmmaker with over a decade of experience producing, writing, and directing.   In 2009 he produced his first documentary “Adjust Your Color: The Truth of Petey Greene”, which was narrated by Don Cheadle.  The film was distributed by PBS’s “Independent Lens” and went on to win the program’s Audience Award for the year.  He received his degree from USC's Marshall School of Business.

What We Need and Why

This initial goal is only for bare bones production costs like travel, food, and equipment rental.  We are also able to keep the production budget low due to favors from many talented people. Any money raised beyond our initial goal will go toward improving the film in post production, such as acquiring additional rights (footage, photos, music, etc.).  

We Need Your Help

HOW KICKSTARTER WORKS: IF WE DON'T REACH OUR GOAL, THEN FUNDS ARE  NOT COLLECTED OR USED.  

Therefore, we need everyone's help to reach our goal and make a feature that could potentially create positive change for future student/athletes. 

PLEASE SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY!  

“Amateurism is not a moral issue; it is an economic camouflage for monopoly practice. The college player cannot sell his own feet (the coach does that) nor can he sell his own name (the college will do that). This is the plantation mentality resurrected and blessed by today’s campus executive.   This system is so biased against human nature and simple fairness in light of today’s high-dollar commercialized college marketplace that the ever-increasing number of NCAA infractions emerge as mostly an indictment of the system itself.”

Walter Byers, the first executive director of the NCAA (1951-1988)

Risks and challenges

Independent filmmaking is always a risky endeavor outside of the studio system. However, my past experience has shown that the quality of the final product will determine whether the film finds an audience or not. With the topic of NCAA reform on everyone's mind, the film will likely find it's place in distribution.

Documentaries require patience because there is not a clear defined ending to the process as the outcome of the final product is constantly evolving.

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    TEAM SUPPORTER - You will receive our sincere gratitude for supporting our film and will receive updates on the project.

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    SUPER FAN - You will be first to receive a digital copy of the film.

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    FRIEND OF THE PROGRAM - You will forever be linked to the foundation of the film with a SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT at the end of the movie. You will also receive a digital copy of the film.

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    FIELD PASS - With this level of support you receive a signed DVD with a personal note, Special Thanks credit, and a digital copy of the film.

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    LOCKER ROOM PASS - This all-access level of support will get you a SIGNED POSTER, signed DVD, Special Thanks credit, and a digital copy of the film.

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    HEY I'M ON ESPN! - This package will grant you the opportunity to be in the film with a FAN CAMEO interview (*we'll make every attempt to keep it in the film, but there's no guarantee with run-time demands). You will also receive a signed poster, signed DVD, Special Thanks credit, and a digital copy of the film.

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    FLYING WITH THE TEAM - This exclusive reward includes 2 tickets to the premiere (transportation not provided), a signed poster, signed DVD, Special Thanks credit, and digital copy of the film.

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    TAILGATE MASTER - This Special Reward grants you all of the gifts at the $1000 level; plus you will receive 2 tickets to the 2013 USC/UCLA at the Coliseum, and enjoy a tailgate experience in your honor.

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    BIG TIME BOOSTER - It's official, your on the team! You will receive all rewards at the $1000 level and one ASSOCIATE PRODUCER CREDIT on screen at the end of the movie.

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    NAME THE STADIUM AFTER YOU - At this point you can probably call plays for the team. You will receive all rewards at the $1000 level and one CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCER CREDIT on screen before the movie starts.

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Funding period

- (35 days)