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NCAA moves towards allowing student-athletes compensation by sponsors

The NCAA Board of Governors is moving towards student-athletes receiving compensation via third-party sponsorships and endorsements.

The NCAA Board of Governors is moving towards student-athletes receiving compensation for "third-party endorsements both related to and separate from athletics" and other ventures such as "social media, businesses they have started and personal appearances" so long as they abide by the guiding principles set by the board last October.

“Throughout our efforts to enhance support for college athletes, the NCAA has relied upon considerable feedback from and the engagement of our members, including numerous student-athletes, from all three divisions. Allowing promotions and third-party endorsements is uncharted territory.”

- Michael V. Drake, chair of the board and president of Ohio State University

All three divisions are expected to adopt new NIL (name, image and likeness) rules by Jan. 2021 and would take effect at the start of the 2021-22 academic year. 

Student-athletes would be permitted to promote themselves using their sport and school, but would not be allowed to conference and school logos and trademarks. The Board of Governors also "emphasized that at no point should a university or college pay student-athletes for name, image and likeness activities."

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The NCAA will also be engaging in congressional activities to ensure that NIL laws & regulations will be the same for every member and not vary by state. California signed the Fair Play Act into law back in Sept. 2019, and Florida proposed a similar bill that go go into effect as early as July 2021.

“As we evolve, the Association will continue to identify the guardrails to further support student-athletes within the context of college sports and higher education. In addition, we are mindful of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on higher education, college sports and students at large. We hope that modernized name, image and likeness rules will further assist college athletes during these unprecedented times and beyond.”

- Val Ackerman, commissioner of the Big East and working group co-chair

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