NCAA board votes to let student athletes endorse brands, accept sponsors
U.S. college athletes can profit from brand sponsorships and endorsement deals under a new rule approved on Tuesday by the governing board of the NCAA, the organization that regulates U.S. collegiate sports.
In what could be a milestone decision for super-star student athletes, the NCAA governing board approved in a unanimous vote on Tuesday - a new rule that would allow U.S. collegiate athletes to profit from brand sponsorships and endorsement deals.
Student-athletes would also benefit from the use of their name, image or likeness.
Pressure was mounting after California last month became the first U.S. state to give college athletes the opportunity to earn endorsement money with Governor Gavin Newsom signing legislation into law that would take effect in 2023.
Other states quickly followed suite.
New Jersey just last week introduced the New Jersey Fair Play Act, to allow student athletes compensation for use of their names or likenesses and also the ability to hire their own agent or lawyer.
This change in NCAA rules will likely benefit athletes in high-profile sports such as football and basketball, which drive billions of dollars in advertising and revenue for media outlets, schools, coaches and the NCAA itself.
The NCAA said in a statement that "modernization" of its guidelines should "reaffirm that student-athletes are students first and not employees of the university." NBA superstar LeBron James, himself never a college athlete, reacted to the news in a Tweet, saying "It's a beautiful day for all college athletes going forward from this day on!"
Playing tackle football at a young age may not affect a player's ability to recover from a concussion as they age. A new study published Wednesday in the journal Neurology showed no evidence of increased risk for young players. According to UPI, the study included more than 600 NCAA college football players. The study also found that concussions did not negatively impact players' balance or increase risk for psychological problems.
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