It has been an ongoing battle on whether or not the NCAA will allow college athletes to receive compensation. On Monday, California became the first state that will allow athletes to receive profit from endorsement deals. Gov. Gavin Newsom signed this into law despite the views of the NCAA.
This is something that other states have pitched to the NCAA but they will not have any of it. College athletes were never allowed to receive money for their image or likeness which led to the demise of the insanely popular NCAA Football games. Now, California has made a move.
“I have deep reverence, deep respect for the NCAA and college athletics,” Newsom said on Monday. “I just think the system has been perverted, and this is fundamentally about rebalancing things. It’s about equity, it’s about fairness, and it’s about time.”
Newsom signed the bill on an episode of “The Shop” that appeared online only. This is a talk show from sports media company Uninterrupted that airs on HBO. Newsom appeared on the episode with LeBron James, Diana Taurasi, former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon, and former UCLA gymnast Katelyn Ohashi.
Newsom played collegiate baseball at Santa Clara University so this is obviously a topic that he is emotionally invested in. The governor left the door open for discussion during the three years before the bill goes into effect.
“We recognize that we need to keep an open mind about the consequences of this legislation,” Newsom said. “We want to engage in good faith the NCAA and other states, but at the end of the day, we want to address this injustice in higher education. No other student is restricted in using their name, image and likeness. Not one. Only athletes.”
Reaction from Those in California
So the question on everyone’s mind is what’s next? Well, California is the first state but will not be the last to make this legal. Student athletes not getting paid for their likeness is wrong and making them wait to turn pro is just putting off the inevitable. Some of the most famous athletes in the world play college sports on any given year such as Duke’s Zion Williamson and Baker Mayfield while at Oklahoma.
The Pac-12 released a statement after the announcement. The conference said that it was disappointed that the bill was signed and it “believes it will have very significant negative consequences for our student-athletes and broader universities in California.”
UCLA head football coach Chip Kelly disagrees. Kelly said that signing the bill was right and that it will not cost the universities or the NCAA. The companies will pay the athletes.
This seems like a big step that will grow even bigger. California schools will now have a leg up when recruiting the best high school athletes. Other states will have to find ways to keep up.
This is an ongoing battle that will not end anytime soon. The NCAA has their set of beliefs and that does not match what athletes believe. Now, it will come down to what the states believe is right. Following Newsom signing this bill, expect other states to make decisions and make them quickly.