So, I have seen some of the complaints about the "unfairness" of the process by which you have to get to the NFL.
And what job that pays really well doesn't have barriers to entry? After all, to be a doctor takes over 10 years of education. And no one gives those people a full ride. Many doctors are into six figure debt before they ever get a job. That's a barrier to entry.
And the athletes want to blame the NCAA. Really? Maybe they should do a little research and find out that the problem is NOT the NCAA... it is the employer for whom they so desperately want to play. THe NFL.
The National Football League has an age limit to entry. That age limit has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court as a bonafide occupational qualification.
There ARE other ways to the NFL than college football.
First, there is the Canadian Football League which has no age requirement. It is a difficult road as CFL teams are permitted only a small number of foreign players on their rosters, but it IS an option available to any high school player who feels the system is unfair.
Second, there is the option to simply workout for three years and work where ever you want. If you can get an agent, you can do so. There ARE semi-pro leagues where you could play waiting to meet the age requirement of the NFL.
Third, Arena Football League. As with the CFL, the Arena football league has an 18 year old age requirement. Certainly not as restrictive as the three years out of high school requirement of the NFL.
There are several other professional football leagues that are available to all 18 year old players.
You see, there are absolutely other methods to reach the NFL. The reality is, though, that NCAA football is the best route to the NFL. If the rules of the NCAA are too daunting or restrictive, people are free to choose other avenues.
I find it quite disingenuous, though to complain about the system you willingly choose to create your career opportunity. Doctors don't complain about what it takes to get to their desired profession... and I would venture to say that their job has a substantially higher societal value.
Every profession that has high reward also has a difficult path to achieving that level. So, if you don't like the path you have to take, choose a different career.