NCAA on Name, Image, and Likeness

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Julia Craig, Staff Reporter

On Wednesday, April 29, 2020, the NCAA announced that it will consider allowing collegiate athletes to make money off their name, image, and likeness (NLI), after decades of staying away from the topic of sponsorships.  As of right now, athletes competing in the NCAA cannot make money or receive sponsorships.  It has been a hot topic since the NCAA was created in 1996, with athletes believing they should be able to make a profit off their sport.  The new recommendations for athletes to make money off advertisements will be pending approval in January of 2021 and is a significant shift to how stubborn the NCAA was about it up until this point.  Many people believe the NCAA is late to the party and the NCAA has been called out for “exploiting” their athletes.

The reason why the athletes are not allowed to get paid right now is that the NCAA considers them “amateurs”.  One factor the NCAA avoids is how much money they make off “amateur” competition.  Some coaches for the big sports, such as football and basketball, are multi-millionaires, while their players are penniless.   As the exploitation by the NCAA has become a bigger issue among the sports world, several states have passed laws allowing collegiate athletes to make money off their talents.  With these laws being passed, the NCAA has been pressuring Congress not to pass national laws about this, but it won’t be avoided for much longer.  As of right now, Wednesday’s events were just recommendations that will be considered in January.  Come January, the NCAA could easily decide against it, but they know that it will only make their image look worse, so they could also put it off and delay the decision.