An NCAA decision Tuesday means college athletes nationwide could soon be allowed to earn compensation for endorsement deals.
The landmark decision is a stark reversal of the collegiate sports association’s decades-long stance against compensation for athletes. The NCAA’s governing board directed its three divisions to make changes to compensation rules by no later than January 2021, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Some top-tier college athletes may secure lucrative endorsement contracts and some might look to buy homes for themselves or family members.
The decision comes a month after California lawmakers passed a law requiring schools in the state to allow their athletes to receive compensation for endorsements and other uses of their likenesses. The NCAA fiercely fought the bill and threatened to bar those students from its competitions.
But many pro and former college athletes strongly supported California’s bill, including NBA superstar LeBron James. The NCAA has annual revenues above $1 billion and many believe that money is made off the backs of athletes.
Kofi Nartey, a Compass agent in Los Angeles and a former University of California, Berkeley football player, supported California’s bill. He told The Real Deal that he thinks colleges should help prepare students for their new financial responsibility, adding that agents have an increased responsibility if they find themselves representing a young athlete searching for a property.
“We have a built-in responsibility because we are dealing with the largest financial decision of most people’s lives,” Nartey said.
The NCAA hasn’t yet hammered out the details of their new rules. California State Senator Nancy Skinner, who co-authored California’s bill, called the move “great progress” but said any rule that limited what an athlete could make would be “unacceptable.” [WSJ] — Dennis Lynch