One of the players expected to go in the first round of this year's NFL draft revealed today that he would have stayed in college an extra year if he had been paid to play.
After Northwestern football players registered interest in gaining union representation recently, the debate surrounding whether college athletes should be paid has resurfaced.
And in an interview with Jim Rome, the 20-year old Clowney was asked about his thoughts - and whether being paid would have affected his decision to leave college a year early to enter the pros:
"Yeah. It would have helped me take care of my family, it would have made a difference.
"If I had got paid, and had a chance to take care of my family through college I probably would have stayed and finished," he told the TV host.
At present, college athletes are barred from receiving any payment, but Clowney voiced his support for future monetary compensation to be awarded to players:
"They are selling jerseys with your number and people are making money off of the ticket sales.
"I think college athletes should get paid."
The defensive end finished his college career with 85 solo tackles and 24 sacks in total, choosing to forego his senior year at South Carolina in favour of the NFL.