University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team forward Nigel Hayes joined the crowd of students at ESPN’s College GameDay Saturday to protest the lack of pay for athletes and to raise money for the Boys and Girls Club of Dane County.
Hayes held up a sign that read, “Broke College Athlete, Anything Helps,” along with a Venmo account name BrokeBadger1.
Hayes recently used his Twitter account to call out the lack of college athletes getting paid while in school.
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) October 15, 2016
This is not the first time Hayes has spoken out about controversial issues. Just last month, he sent out 44 tweets during a period of six hours discussing #BlackLivesMatter.
[UPDATE] Hayes blows up Twitter with #BlackLivesMatter discussionFor six hours Thursday evening, University of Wisconsin star basketball forward Nigel Hayes tweeted 44 times supporting the Black Lives Read…
This most recent protest raised money to the Boys and Girls Club of Dane County. All of the proceeds from the Venmo account listed on the sign were sent to the organization, said Boys and Girls Club of Dane County CEO and President Michael Johnson.
Johnson said as of Saturday Hayes raised $700 for the organization. He said Hayes has a history of speaking out on social justice issues in the past.
You make a company millions. They "pay" you with only a college education (estimated UW $160,000).
Fair, right? https://t.co/Hy3yKP42hH
— Nigel Hayes (@NIGEL_HAYES) October 14, 2016
Johnson said he applauds Hayes for taking an opportunity to express himself so publicly.
“I’m proud of him,” Johnson said. “I’m pretty sure there’s people who support him. There’s some people who are probably making him feel uncomfortable and that’s when you know you’re leading and doing the right thing.”
When Hayes visits the Boys and Girls Club, Johnson said, it’s encouraging for the students who get to see him. Johnson said Hayes is someone who the kids get to see on TV and in newspapers. He said taking the time to see them is not something Hayes does for the spotlight.
“He truly wants to support kids and this community,” Johnson said. “It’s a reflection of somebody of his age to be thinking about those things right now.”