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‘A big step’ - reaction to NCAA move on athlete compensation

October 30, 2019
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FILE - In this Sept. 11, 2019, file photo, state Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley and state Sen. Steven Glazer, D-Orinda slap palms in celebration after her measure to let athletes at California colleges hire agents and sign endorsement deals was approved by the Senate in Sacramento, Calif. The NCAA Board of Governors took the first step Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019, toward allowing athletes to cash in on their fame, voting unanimously to clear the way for the amateur athletes to "benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness." (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)
1 of 5
FILE - In this Sept. 11, 2019, file photo, state Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley and state Sen. Steven Glazer, D-Orinda slap palms in celebration after her measure to let athletes at California colleges hire agents and sign endorsement deals was approved by the Senate in Sacramento, Calif. The NCAA Board of Governors took the first step Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019, toward allowing athletes to cash in on their fame, voting unanimously to clear the way for the amateur athletes to "benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness." (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

The NCAA Board of Governors voted Tuesday to allow amateur athletes to “benefit’ on their name, image and likeness “in a manner consistent with the collegiate model.” It clears the way for the NCAA’s three divisions to draw up new rules by January 2021. Some of the comments and reaction included:

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“The board is emphasizing that change must be consistent with the values of college sports and higher education and not turn student-athletes into employees of institutions.” — Board chair Michael Drake, the president of Ohio State.

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“It’s a big step heading in the next direction. ... I’m overwhelmed. I can’t even ... I’m excited, excited for the future. I’m going to be gone, but I’m excited for the young guys coming up. ... Most players agree, yeah, we should get paid for our likeness. So just seeing them making steps in the direction and not ignoring us, that’s a good sign.” — University of Florida receiver Tyrie Cleveland, who clapped his hands together four times in approval upon hearing the NCAA board’s decision.

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“The landscape of collegiate athletics has changed significantly over the last several decades and the NCAA definition of a student-athlete needs to be modernized. If a student-athlete has the capacity to benefit financially from his or her NIL (name, image, likeness) this should in no way jeopardize his or her amateur status.” — David Benedict, UConn athletic director.

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“I wish they had implemented it earlier in my college experience. I only have this year and one year after that. I wish it was installed when I was a freshman so I could make a little amount of profit.” — Syracuse defensive lineman Josh Black, a redshirt junior.

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“The idea that student-athletes should be treated different from non-athlete students is an interesting thought. The fact is, they are very different because of the recruiting. That’s the biggest concern of the (athletic directors), that this has to be above board, fair market value and it can’t be sort of a backdoor recruiting device.” — Tom McMillen, former Maryland and NBA player, president and CEO of the LEAD1 Association, which represents the athletics directors and programs of the 130 universities of the Football Bowl Subdivision.

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“Its a beautiful day for all college athletes going forward from this day on!” — tweet from NBA star LeBron James.

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“If college athletes are going to make money off their likenesses while in school, their scholarships should be treated like income. I’ll be introducing legislation that subjects scholarships given to athletes who choose to “cash in” to income taxes.” — tweet from U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, Republican from North Carolina.

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“All that’s coming out of this is proposals, this working group saying it’s OK for the membership to pursue this, or should, under very broad parameters that are a little difficult to define right now. When you hear something like it needs to be a manner consistent with the collegiate model, what does that mean? That is open to various interpretations. I don’t even think the NCAA can say exactly what the collegiate model is or what amateurism is. Does this mean institutions still will be able to place unreasonable restraints on athletes?” — B. David Ridpath, associate professor of sports management at Ohio University and president of NCAA watchdog The Drake Group.

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“California has made it clear that we won’t accept any arbitrary limitations on college athletes’ right to their name, image, and likeness.” — tweet from California state Sen. Nancy Skinner, co-sponsor of law set to take effect in 2023 that would that would make it illegal for NCAA schools to prohibit college athletes from making money on endorsements, autograph signings and social media advertising.

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“Why they waited so late? I could’ve been a millionaire in college.” — tweet from Leonard Fournette, former LSU running back now with Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL.

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AP Sports Writers Eric Olson, Mark Long, John Kekis and Pat Eaton-Robb contributed.