On June 29, 2021, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a bill into law that allows collegiate student-athletes to hire agents and sign endorsement deals effective as of July 1, 2021. This bill puts Illinois among a number of states which have begun to pass legislation allowing student-athletes to receive payment for the use of their name, image, and likeness (“NIL”). While these laws open opportunities for student-athletes, they also present several potential challenges to the NCAA, the governing body for collegiate athletics in the United States, and its member institutions barring any Congressional assistance.
Athletic scholarships pave the way for student-athletes to attend the schools of their dreams, yet serious injuries can turn their dreams into nightmares, regardless of whether the injuries have immediate or future effects. In the relentless pursuit of illustrious professional league contracts and national championships, athletes may fail to get properly evaluated or be less inclined to accept being sidelined for what they perceive as minor, short-term injuries. The unwary athlete may find themselves losing their scholarship and suffering life-long consequences as a result. While the NCAA was established in 1906 for the purpose of protecting athletes from a trend of injuries and death in college football, the governing body has seemingly veered off course of prioritizing student-athlete welfare.
Sarah Suddarth Associate Editor Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD 2021 The COVID-19 pandemic has caused disruption to everyone’s lives, and student athletes are no exception. The unprecedented situation has presented many questions and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) has attempted to answer many of those questions coming directly from the displaced …
In a previous article, I discussed the mental health crisis facing student athletes across the country. I called on the NCAA, individual universities, and all coaches to increase efforts to improve the overall health and wellness of their athletes. The stigma is slowly being tackled, making it more commonplace for athletes to speak out when they need help. But how can athletic departments make these services readily available and accessible for student athletes? The NCAA recommends a well-trained psychologist to be a part of athletic departments’ staff. There are, however, other models being utilized.
Sarah Suddarth Associate Editor Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD 2021 Student athletes across the nation are praised, admired, and in some cases, made famous for their athletic performances. Although, behind those athletes are young people dealing with the typical struggles of college and early adulthood. Student athletes face the pressure of recognition, high …
On October 25, 2019, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) unanimously voted to begin changing the rule to allow colleges athletes to profit off their name, image, and likeness. This progressive move is a big deal for the organization, which has previously kept an extremely firm line between amateurism and professionalism for their athletes. Despite opposition by some to change the current model, public opinion is strongly in favor of these types of changes.
In February, California State Senators Nancy Skinner and Steven Bradford presented SB-206, titled the Fair Pay to Play Act, to the California State Senate. Founded on the principle of amateurism, which prohibits paying participants, the NCAA has never allowed intercollegiate student-athletes to earn any form of compensation. This bill seeks to end that prohibition in California and provide student-athletes the rights to their names, images, or likenesses (NIL). In May, the State Senate voted in favor of the bill, 31-5. After the necessary committees reviewed and amended the bill, the State Assembly unanimously passed the Fair Pay to Play Act in a 72-0 vote. Due to the changes, the amended bill went back to the State Senate, where it was unanimously approved, 39-0, on September 11. Governor Gavin Newsom has 30 days to sign, veto, or take no action and allow the bill to become law.
In March 2019, charges were brought against a number of National College Athletic Association (“NCAA”) athletic department personnel. These officials were found partaking in a fraudulent scheme which allowed affluent young adults to gain admission to elite universities under false pretenses, like fake test scores and phony athletic prowess. The actions of these athletic directors and coaches call into question the effectiveness of the NCAA monitoring and reporting methods to combat misuse and abuse of the athletic system. The NCAA and their institutions must learn from this most recent scandal to identify the problems in athletic compliance that allowed this fraud.
Last month Josh Rosen, a junior at UCLA who plays quarterback, was quoted by a national sports news website saying, “Football and school don’t go together.” Within hours UCLA’s coach and Stanford’s coach each tried to paint the young man as unenlightened.
Research shows that Rosen is more correct than the coaches admit, but that’s only part of the story. What’s news is that a twenty-year-old—not a university trustee or president, not a U. S. District Court judge or an antitrust lawyer—put his finger on a regulatory reality that higher education may not be able to ignore for much longer.
Meghan Murphy Associate Editor Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD 2018 In January 2017, Connecticut joined the list of states seeking to implement new safety protections for their student-athletes by proposing a new bill, No. 6870, establishing an athletic protection commission. While the law might be appealing on paper, both the NCAA and …