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Blog Entry

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

Posted on: August 16, 2011 1:09 am
Edited on: August 16, 2011 1:14 am

Posted by Adam Jacobi

Nebraska's brief flirtation with Kansas City-area wunderkind quarterback/baseball prospect Bubba Starling came to an end late Monday night, as Starling came to terms with the Kansas City Royals. According to Nebraska RapidReporter Brandon Vogel, negotiations between Starling and Kansas City went down to the last hour of the August 15 deadline imposed on MLB draft picks; Starling was the fifth overall pick of the draft

Starling had been on campus at Nebraska since July attending classes, but he never reported to practice, and Nebraska left him off its 105-man practice roster when it convened last week. This was a mutually agreed-upon decision, though, and even Peter Gammons' potentially damaging report that Pelini had lost his temper and threatened Starling didn't really jibe with the larger pattern of supportive behavior displayed by Pelini and the rest of the Nebraska staff in their handling of the Starling situation.

Here's what Pelini had to say in a statement issued after Starling's signing:

"Everyone associated with our football program at Nebraska wishes Bubba nothing but the best in his future with the Kansas City Royals organization," Pelini said. "I know this decision has been very difficult for Bubba and his family, as it would be for anyone in his position. In the end, Bubba was in a win-win situation regardless of his choice, and we respect the decision he has made. I personally will root for Bubba in every game except when he plays against the Indians!"  

Starling's deal is worth $7.5 million over three years. It's pretty hard to pass up that kind of money for the comparatively scant benefits college football offers its student-athletes.


Since: Dec 26, 2007
Posted on: August 16, 2011 10:30 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

Just wait for the NCAA to change the rules allowing kids who sign contracts in sports other than the one they are being offered a scholarship to return and play... 

And to the Husker Nation, what happens when gets crushed by a lineman and rips apart his shoulder or knee?  He gets tossed on the injured player pile and they move on to the next QB.  Right now, Baseball offers him the best chance at a longer career.

Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: August 16, 2011 10:27 am

Bubba Starling Uses Brain; Chooses Correctly

Frankly, I'm surprised it took until the final hour to make the correct decision. This kid would have been a fool had he decided to turn down the baseball payday. No doubt, playing in front of an eager 90,000 fans chanting your name would be an amazing experience. However there is no guarantee of future success playing QB for a NCAA powerhouse. Additionally, your chances for a (future) career injury are very high in comparison. Not only does the baseball option come with guaranteed cash, it comes with a much higher earnings ceiling AND a longer playing career.
Think of it this way, of the players in the NFL currently making over $10M, you would probably know every one of their names. Mainly because there are so few of them. In the MLB, there are so many at that level, the only way to even the numbers would be to compare players making over $15M. Hell, even Chris Johnson (RB Ten) is fighting tooth and nail for a chance at a $12M/yr salary and he's the best RB in the league! Then you take a peek at the MLB and see guys like Todd Helton (1B Col) making over $20M/yr. That dude has been playing in the bigs since '97. Sure he's pretty good, but is he the Chris Johnson of the MLB? No.
Does his bank account care? NO.
Bubba, you've made the correct decision. Sorry Nebraska.
*From CBS pro sports salary pages:
Major League Baseball
  • Major League Baseball's average salary per player in the 2010 season was $3,297,828. These numbers only encompass players on the major league roster, but all the teams in Major League Baseball also have an extensive minor league system, which would drastically reduce the average salary.
National Football League
  • In the 2009 National Football League season, the average player salary was $1.1 million. This number is severely skewed as there are several players on a team making a salary of around $7 million to $8 million, while a larger number make toward the league minimum. The league minimum for rookies in 2009 was $193,000.

Good luck, kid! Don't screw it up off the field and you could be the next Todd Helton!

Since: Apr 5, 2007
Posted on: August 16, 2011 10:12 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

Spurns ?  Why not say slams the door in Neb's face, or flips them off as he heads to the Royal's. Why does it always have to be a put down, by a reporter, to juice up a story.
Bubba chose to" accept" the money, and know one can blame him. If Neb could offer him the same money for 3 yrs, you think he is playing baseball ?  "NO".
The need to make it look like Neb was left waiting at the alter, is funny. There are 105 players on the team, and more than enough very good QB's. Would it have been nice to see him try to win a backup or a starting role, sure. He choose whats best for him and his future, at this time. The offer at Neb will still be there after 3 yrs, if things don't work out for him in baseball. Whom will "spurn" whom then.


Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: August 16, 2011 9:53 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

unforgivien: "it is sad when a completely free college education is considered a "scant " are thousands of kids in this country who would think that was a great opportunity ..but not prima donna athletes who want the whole freakin world handed to them..glad for starling and KC but this article is just so stupid..." This is an utterly retarded comment. What is being HANDED to Starling? Hasn't he worked his butt off through high school to be good enough to be drafted #5 overall? He didn't just wake up as an elite level player. Don't be jealous that the kid is better than you, he has simply worked harder than you.

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: August 16, 2011 9:39 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

High Plains,  get over yourself and NU. Kid is set for life and if baseball doesn't work out he can still go to college.College was fun but I would rather of had the 7.5 mil when I was 18 - 19 years old.

Since: Apr 13, 2007
Posted on: August 16, 2011 9:39 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

Pretty much a given that Bubba Starling would sign considering he was such a high pick & the amount of money that he was likely to be (& was) offered.  It might have been interesting had he been picked somewhere in the teens or later though where bonuses (though still considerable) would have been less. 

I hope he does well.  His ceiling is reportedly sky high but there are some concerns about his present day ability as a pure hitter.  Time is on his side though & he is certainly toolsy & athletic to say the least. 

Since: Oct 16, 2006
Posted on: August 16, 2011 9:12 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

Nothing "scant" about a college education, not to mention all of the incredible experiences we get in college.  That said, we wish the best for Bubba and his family!  The money was a big deal, but over the next three-four years he could have played in the Big House, the Horseshoe, on Rocky Top, and in front of 90,00ish fans in Lincoln.  You CAN'T buy those experiences.  Instead he will be on long bus rides on the tail end of nowhere!  If it doesn't work out Bubba, you can come home to Lincoln again.  If it does work out, you'll have a great career as a Red Sock, Yankee, White Sock or somewhere else!!!!

Since: Jan 11, 2009
Posted on: August 16, 2011 8:57 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

We are always criticizing athletes in regards to huge contracts and chasing the money. But the underlying fact is that these kids are talented and are only attempting to enter their field of expertise. They participate within the system. If I was a multi-sport athlete that was capable of being offered a full scholarship for football while being offered millions to play baseball, I would try baseball first. Baseball has a far less likelihood of sustaining a major injury that could end the possibilities of playing either sport. In three years, he should have a grasp on his future as a baseball player. If the opportunity is not there at that point, then he is still young enough to try football and will have enough money in the bank to help him in case he should not have what it takes to get to the next level in football. I can't fault him at all for his decision. These days, the only thing a college degree will get you is a chance to get a good job. How many unemployed college grads do you know? Good luck kid!

Since: Oct 21, 2007
Posted on: August 16, 2011 7:43 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

Unforgiven, you forgot the word comparatively! I know colleges are getting expensive but not 2.5 million per year expensive. Comparing a full boat to NU vs that $$$ is a no brainer.....  Article is stupid enough for you to not only read but to then post about. I detect a bit of jealousy..... 

Since: May 21, 2007
Posted on: August 16, 2011 2:45 am

Bubba Starling spurns Nebraska, signs with Royals

I think they are referencing "scant" in comparison to $7.5 million over 3 years.  He can play for 3 years, pocket the $7.5 million and then go back to college with, in all possibility, a free ride to some college to be their quarterback.

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