May 12, 2021 Feature

Delay of Game? The Time is Now for NIL Legislation

By: Jonathan Stahler, Esq.

Introduction

University of Wisconsin Athletic Director (“AD”) and former head football coach Barry Alvarez is the first major AD to warn student-athletes, employees, and fans of Wisconsin athletics that all Badgers’ seasons are at risk if the football season is canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. Alvarez stated “I believe we will reach a monumental crossroads in the coming days. We will have two choices: remain at the head of the class or fall behind.”1 Athletic programs “falling behind” due to the global pandemic may soon be experiencing what student-athletes have been experiencing for nearly 100 years. That is, they continue to help fund the National Collegiate Athletic Association “(NCAA”) and their individual institutions, and those in revenue-generating sports who are predominantly male African-Americans and other minorities also help fund many less-publicized sports, all while being treated essentially as indentured servants.2

The Barry Alvarez/Wisconsin scenario is one of many Division I athletic programs with a $100 million plus annual operating budget also forced to make significant concessions like athletic departments’ highest-paid employees taking voluntary pay cuts. Yet, it is another major example of a continued, evident problem in collegiate athletics that needs to be properly addressed now more than ever. The problem identified is the following: in the midst of a global pandemic that is having catastrophic effects on the American population, healthcare system, and economy, student-athletes continue to be exploited, treated unfairly on campus during both their collegiate careers and after college, are forced to make concessions over basic necessities, and are dramatically unfairly compensated when factoring in the level of revenue they generate for the NCAA, their athletic conferences, and own universities.

Enter the proposed and pending name, image, and likeness (“NIL”) legislation. As Jay Bilas put it plainly, “[t]he ability of every person in the college space to profit off their NIL is a right that is not restricted in any way, with the exception of the collegiate athlete . . .

The only thing the NCAA needs to be concerned with is whether the player is a full-time student in good standing . . . Period.”3

History

This problem has quite the history dating back to the 1920s. In the past, segregation was the primary problem, inhibiting minorities, including largely African-Americans, from even getting the opportunity to participate in athletics on all levels. Professor Kenneth L. Shrophsire studied and found the following: “The most obvious [reason] was simply the desire of whites not to associate with African-Americans. . . . Associated with this desire for separation was . . . the other broad explanation: a view that African-Americans were inferior.”4 Sadly, the view finds its roots in slavery and can be still found today, now affecting all student-athletes.

Informal Jim Crow laws prohibited African-Americans from playing sports for the schools that admitted them.5 The University of Kansas had its own informal rules of discrimination in the late 1920s and into the 1930s, which denied African-American students the right to participate in any of the school’s mainstream social and extracurricular activities, including athletics. Thankfully, this no longer exists, but it set a precedent for lack of opportunities for student-athletes.

Today, a convenient reason why many controversial decisions are made in collegiate athletics is because “it’s all about the money.”6 Evidently, that argument is nothing new when you look back over 100 years ago in 1916 at Rutgers University. Paul Robeson, an African-American on the Rutgers University’s football team and a two-time All-American, was prohibited from playing when Washington and Lee College threatened not to play in the game if he was allowed to participate. Washington and Lee College justified this by stating safety would not be a concern because there would be no threats of violence among fans if Roberson played.7 Rutgers did not seem to think long or hard and decided if “it’s all about the money,” Roberson would be benched so Rutgers would not lose revenue from playing one less game. While these ugly situations occurred at Kansas and Rutgers between 1916 and the early 1930s, there is still an element of discrimination and inequity existing today, now affecting all student-athletes and their true values.

NIL Legislation at the State Level

Fast forward to October 2019. The National Football League Players Association (“NFLPA”) and National College Players Association (“NCPA”) announced a joint effort to “explore opportunities for college athletes in merchandise, gaming, licensed products”, and “how recent developments impact television broadcast revenues in pursuit of fairness.”8 This partnership seemed to be a positive reaction of California’s Fair Pay to Play Act, which was the first state legislation passed to grant California college athletes the ability to profit off their NIL starting in 2023.9 The NCPA, which is made up of more than 20,000 former and current college athletes, and the NFLPA’s group licensing subsidiary, REP Worldwide, have been looking into marketing “the group licensing rights of college athletes of all sports (emphasis added).”10 The fact that the NFLPA has a subsidiary looking to help market all student-athletes are critical and addresses any Title IX concerns.

Rewind to 1972. In 1972, 20 U.S.C.S. § 1681, which is more commonly known as Title IX, was passed to ensure equal opportunities for women. It provides as follows: Prohibition against discrimination; No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.11 And while Title IX has helped solve gender inequity through increased participation and opportunities for females, it has also resulted in increasing racial inequity. Congress has yet to provide some sort of protection for men’s basketball, football, and other male sports from any “adverse racial implications with gender equity efforts” when dealing with Title IX issues.12 Rest assured, the NCAA has recently looked to Congress for help, but not particularly with this issue; more as I like to call it, a financial and public relations bailout for itself, akin to the $25 billion one that the airline industry received in this country very early in the pandemic not too long ago in April 2020.13 More on this later.

Fast forward back to October 2019. Other states started to follow suit from California’s Fair Pay to Play Act. Pennsylvania State Representatives Dan Miller and Ed Gainey announced their proposed legislation, also called the “Fair Pay to Play Act”, will mirror California’s bill.14 Rep. Miller stated why he and Rep. Gainey are putting forth its own legislation for its state’s universities like Pennsylvania State University (“Penn State”) and University of Pittsburgh (“Pitt”): “Athletes are forced to give up their rights and economic freedom while the colleges [like Penn State and Pitt] make hundreds of millions of dollars off of their talent and likeness.”15

Rep. Gainey agrees and really broke it down for even the most narrow-minded, backward-thinking leaders at the NCAA and institutional levels: “If a college football head coach can earn $4.8 million for coaching ‘amateur student-athletes,’ and if corporations can earn billions of dollars using the players’ names and faces, then how is it not fair for them to earn some sort of financial compensation?”16 Rep. Gainey is right and echoing what several other NIL advocates like Jay Bilas and I have been preaching, but he really hits the nail on the head with the rest of his reasoning here: “The chances of a professional contract and thus a payout for all of their hard work and pain are tiny, and we owe it to them to level the playing field.”17

That is the key that is often overlooked. Many former athletes, who seek significant financial relief for alleged intellectual property infringement through class action litigation, do so largely due to current financial problems. ESPN aired a documentary film titled “Broke” in its “30 for 30” series back in 2012, which highlighted many former professional athletes who are facing serious financial troubles. Herman Edwards, current head football coach at Arizona State University and former National Football League (“NFL”) player, talks about how rookies become the “breadwinner” for family members and friends who they feel they have an obligation to. Edwards states, “Many times half way through the season these guys tap out because they’ve over-extended themselves and it ends up affecting how they play. Typically, after their third year, guys start to figure it all out.”18 But what if they do not figure out how to manage their money by their third season as a professional, especially since the average career is about three years? And why should it take them three years, after college? And what about the vast majority of student-athletes that do not turn professional in their respective sports? Given the current economic state of this country, rising unemployment claims, and uncertainty of more stay-at-home orders, should we not limit economic opportunities for anyone when we can avoid such limitations, and when those opportunities continue to exist precisely for student-athletes who have the potential to be hugely impactful in providing for their families right now when it is needed more than ever?

Let’s move ahead to June 2020. Florida followed California and Colorado and passed its own law allowing Floridian college athletes to make money from NIL-related endorsements as early as July 2021, eighteen months sooner than California’s and Colorado’s laws will go into effect.19 Florida’s law does have some restrictions, including that payments to athletes must be “commensurate with market value in order to preserve the integrity, quality, character and amateur nature of intercollegiate athletics…”, and that colleges and universities like University of Miami and University of Florida are not allowed to pay their athletes directly.20 Nonetheless, two (2) of the country’s larger, heavily populated, and politically centric states with great athletic competition in California and Florida have forced the NCAA’s hand. Oh, and 35 other states have proposed varied forms of NIL legislation, per Tulane University Sports Law Program Director and NCAA Compliance Associate Provost, Gabe Feldman.21

NCAA’s Response to State NIL Legislation

Clearly seeing the writing on the wall and hearing clamors from first college athletes to now state and federal politicians, the NCAA, through its Board of Governors and Federal and State Legislation Working Group, put forth what it is calling a Final Report and Recommendations (“Final Report”). Per the Final Report, student-athlete NIL is to be modernized to account for the new media and promotional landscape available to the public22 Specifically, student-athletes would be compensated for third-party endorsements, including social media “influencer” activity, and by third-parties for use of their NIL. However, the NCAA has instituted several barriers, or “guardrails” as they like to call them, that still allows itself to keep that firm grip on student-athletes and their ability to profit off their own NIL.

Such “guardrails” include the following: (1) any compensation received by student-athletes for NIL activities represents a genuine payment for use of their NIL, and is not simply a disguised form of pay from third-parties for athletics participation; (2) colleges, universities and conferences play no role in student-athletes’ NIL activities, including the sharing of profits; (3) schools and/or boosters are not using NIL opportunities as recruiting inducements; and (4) the role of third-parties in student-athlete NIL activities is heavily regulated.23 The NCAA intended to draft such legislation by October 31, 2020, vote on it by January 31, 2021, and have it go into effect by July 31, 2021.24 However, the global pandemic may have other plans. To be continued.

Please keep in mind that those “guardrails” are in addition to the many barriers already in place at the institutional level for advertising, marketing, or sponsorships. Specifically, many universities like University of Nebraska (“Nebraska”), Louisiana State University (“LSU”), and West Virginia University (“WVU”) include specific clauses to protect their brand preemptively by outlining off-limits categories.25 Such categories that are excluded from endorsement opportunities include sexual enhancement and feminine hygiene products (Nebraska), tobacco, alcohol, casinos and political advertising (LSU), and gambling, firearms, explosives, and adult entertainment (WVU).26

While some of those categories like political advertising, firearms, and explosives may seem obvious and reasonable to be restricted, especially at the collegiate level, others like feminine hygiene products and (legalized) gambling are not and should be on the table for opportunities. Sports journalist and former University of Maryland gymnast Bonnie Bernstein said it best when she said “If Serena Williams can be Tampax brand ambassador, there’s no reason a female college student-athlete shouldn’t be entitled to those same types of opportunities.”27 Coincidentally, approximately 60% of these collegiate multi-media contracts with tight restrictions are up for renewal and/or renegotiation in the next two (2) years, in which many colleges and universities intend to revisit contract language in light of the global pandemic.28 Perhaps, the NCAA and its member institutions will loosen its hold and change with the times?

Effects of NCAA Recommendations

Many writers and economists continue to argue that the NCAA’s current governance is the best solution, so paying student-athletes would not work. Those who argue for a status quo advocate the importance of amateurism in collegiate athletics. According to Drexel University sports management professor Dr. Ellen Staurowsky, “What college sports did was take that amateur concept, which was so class-based, and broaden and democratize it. But they ultimately still made it favorable to the power-elite people who are running colleges and universities. It’s created an exploitative system.”29 Staurowsky further states, “The rules have been set up in such a way to avoid a public understanding that athletes are already paid. It’s just a matter of whether they are paid their value.”30 Ramogi Huma, a former University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) linebacker who currently heads the NCPA, was forced to take toilet paper and soap from hotels on road games, accumulated excessive debt on a credit card during and after graduation, and did not eat the recommended five or six meals a day based on the calories he burned while playing football for the Bruins.31 That, to me, is undervaluing Huma, especially when you consider what he meant to UCLA as a revenue-generator.

Despite Huma’s example above, coaches’ salaries continue to rise. The following five (5) reasons are why coaches’ salaries do not reflect free market forces: (1) no monetary compensation is paid to the workforce, the student-athletes; (2) intercollegiate sports benefit from substantial tax exemptions or benefits; (3) there are no shareholders demanding dividend distributions or boards demanding higher profits; (4) athletic departments are backed by university and state financial support; and (5) coaches’ salaries are negotiated by athletic directors, whose own salaries increase with the salaries of their employees, the coaches.32. Even if the NCAA has released its Final Report to the public, its position seems to not have changed and is parallel with the amateurism status quo argument stated above. Because of states like California and Florida, the NCAA is pleading for help from everywhere, including both Congress and the Supreme Court.

Let’s start with Congress. Now that Florida’s law is official and set to take effect by July 2021, the House of Representatives and the Senate have less than one (1) year to pass federal legislation if it is going to preempt such state law.33 That is not a lot of time, especially when Congress may be preoccupied with an upcoming presidential election and the global pandemic with its lasting effects well into 2021. The NCAA has threatened previously to challenge such state laws like California and Florida based on the argument that they violate the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution. However, NCPA President Huma says the NCAA is able to conduct its interstate business while dealing with varied state laws that result in unequal situations for college athletic programs.34 This includes the NCAA’s recent decision to support some of its member institutions like Clemson University and University of Texas resuming sports activities sooner than others based on how individual states where some of those institutions are located lifted coronavirus-related restrictions.35 That seems a bit hypocritical, does it not?

The NCAA is not the only group asking for Congress to bail itself out. The Power 5 conference commissioners, comprised of the Atlantic Coast’s (“ACC”) John Swofford, Big Ten’s Kevin Warren, Big 12’s Bob Bowlsby, Pac-12’s Larry Scott, and Southeastern’s (“SEC”) Greg Sankey, are right in line with the NCAA soliciting the assistance of Congress to enact federal legislation for NIL compensation in late May 2020.36 In its signed letter to Congress, all five of the Power 5 commissioners stated “[a] critical aspect of the college model has been and remains that student-athletes are not paid for playing sports,” and that payments should come from “third parties, not universities, and boosters must be kept out of the recruiting process”. 37 The Power 5 are indeed aligned with the “guardrails” set by NCAA’s Final Report: regulate third-parties and keep boosters away from student-athletes and close to the NCAA and its Power 5 institutions.

Let’s move to the Supreme Court. Immediately following the July Fourth weekend, the NCAA released a statement that it would request that the Supreme Court of the United States (“SCOTUS”) hear its case, Alston v. NCAA, No. 19-15566 (9th Cir. 2020), in which U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken and the Court of Appeals have ruled that the NCAA “cannot have associate-wide limits on education-related benefits that college athletes can receive.”38 In this case, former WVU football player Shawne Alston led a class action against the NCAA for its rules restricting education-related benefits that its member institutions, like WVU, may offer to students who play Division I football and men’s basketball. The case is very similar to O’Bannon v. NCAA, 802 F.3d 1049 (9th Cir. 2015) (O’Bannon II), in which the Court of Appeals affirmed that the NCAA illegally restrained trade in violation of the Sherman Act by preventing those same Division I football and men’s basketball players from receiving NIL compensation. However, the same Court of Appeals declined to broaden U.S. District Judge Wilken’s ruling, as Alston and the party plaintiffs requested, which allows the NCAA’s limits on compensation not connected to education to remain…for now.39 But why, you may ask, is the NCAA then still seeking to take the case to SCOTUS? Well, NCAA maintains the case has such merits because “intercollegiate athletics as overseen by the NCAA is a major feature of American life.”40

Student-Athlete Advocacy

What better way to answer federal litigation than with some more federal litigation? In House v. NCAA, et al., No. 20-cv-3919 (N.D. Cal. 2020) filed on June 15, 2020, Arizona State University swimmer Grant House challenges that the NCAA’s restraints are not necessary to serve any alleged procompetitive purpose. More specifically, the NCAA’s restraints are not necessary to preserve consumer demand for college sports, education and NIL compensation are not mutually exclusive, and the NIL restrictions do not prevent exploitation. In fact, House goes on to argue that there is significant support for allowing athletes to receive NIL compensation, in that local, state, national, and global corporate sponsors value student-athletes’ NIL and would compete for the rights to use their NIL absent the NCAA’s anticompetitive restraints. Does this sound familiar? If you’re thinking of Alston v. NCAA outlined earlier, then you agree with U.S. District Judge Wilken’s order that found House v. NCAA and its antitrust challenge against NCAA’s NIL rules is necessarily related Alston v. NCAA and its challenge against NCAA’s broad limits on compensation, thus consolidating the two cases.

Can we discuss action outside the courthouses? Let’s move to the campuses then. On June 1, 2020, the University of Colorado (“CU”) announced the “Buffs with a Brand” program that will provide CU student-athletes with new educational resources related to personal brand management, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy.41 CU AD Rick George supported the program and stated “building a personal brand, and developing the skills to be a successful entrepreneur will help other student-athletes capitalize and build on their time at CU and beyond.”42 Sounds like a great model to better prepare its student-athletes for their futures, right?

In March 2020, Nebraska and athlete marketing program Opendorse, led by former Nebraska linebacker and chief executive officer and co-founder Blake Lawrence, announced its “Ready Now Program”, which will have an entire team dedicated to helping every Husker student-athlete build and maximize their personal brands.43 Every student-athlete there will be given a valuation of their brand, insights into how to boost engagement and augment their social media followings, content calendars, and performance benchmarks. And much like it was acknowledged in the NCAA’s Final Report, influencer marketing via social media will be the primary moneymaker of today’s student-athlete per the Ready Now Program.44 Being told as an eighteen or nineteen-year-old that I could garner five figures worth of endorsements, which could go to improving my living conditions for my family and me, especially during a global pandemic, and setting up myself for post-college life, is awfully appealing when considering which school to attend. I suppose that is why as of May 5, 2020, Nebraska head football coach Scott Frost has tendered 214 scholarships for the class of 2022, leading the nation and more than the rest of the Big Ten West Division combined.45

The Georgia Institute of Technology (“Georgia Tech”) partnered with J1S, a creative agency that will consult with the Division I football team on branding as of April 2020.46 To give the Yellow Jackets credit for promoting its student-athletes’ brands even sooner, last season in 2019, a dry-erase board was added to the football sidelines for players to write their Instagram handles for public and television viewing if a player accounted for a turnover.47 Perhaps those at Georgia Tech saw the aforementioned ESPN film titled “Broke” and paid attention to director Billy Corben’s two staggering statistics: 78 percent of retired NFL players are bankrupt within two years; and 60 percent of retired National Basketball Association (“NBA”) players are broke within five years.48 Perhaps Georgia Tech is starting to implement changes on campus like at CU and Nebraska to better its student-athletes and not have them end up becoming another one of those unfortunate statistics.

That sounds great for the football and men’s basketball players, but what about the rest of the student-athletes in other sports on campus? Enter Brown University alum and former ultimate frisbee player Zachary Segal, now founder of StudentPlayer.com, a concentrated crowdfunding platform allowing fans to contribute to future sponsorships for student-athletes even before they step foot on campus.49 Each amount pledged as well as the cumulative contribution totals to a particular school, sport, and/or student-athlete at any given position is made available to the public and held in escrow until the straightforward and seamless sponsorship obligation is fulfilled. As of June 2020, StudentPlayer.com has already raised more than $100,000 in contributions made to more than 25 schools and 10 sports.50 Duke University’s men’s basketball creative director Dave Bradley acknowledges that for as many as 95 percent of college athletes, their college careers will be their prime to grow and maximize their personal brands. Bradley stated “Unless America knows you on a first-name basis like Zion [Williamson] or Kyrie [Irving], fan affinity and networking opportunity peaks in college, [so], it’s crucial for athletes to understand and maximize their brands from day one.”51

Going back to Lincoln, Nebraska and its Ready Now Program as a prime example, the top student-athlete per sport by estimated potential annual earnings just through social media branding may surprise you. Of the top eight (8) student-athletes, four are men (1st, 3rd, 5th, and 7th) and four are women (2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th). Adrian Martinez, starting quarterback of the Nebraska football team, has the first spot with 79,531 total Twitter/Instagram followers, an average earning of $1,501 per post, and $153,147 in potential annual earnings. Lexi Sun of the Nebraska women’s volleyball team is second with 70,857 total Twitter/Instagram followers, an average earning of $1,160 per post, and $39,438 in potential annual earnings. Comparing Martinez and Sun with the seventh and eighth spots, respectively, Alex Thomsen of the Nebraska wrestling team has 14,808 total followers, $207 per post average earning, and $1,859 potential annual earnings; and Emma Worley of the Nebraska women’s tennis team has 1,992 total followers, $56 per post average earning, and $1,124 potential annual earnings. All of these projections are based on potential deals done at the professional level, in which football players generate significantly more promoting opportunities than volleyball players when comparing Martinez with Sun. 52

Nonetheless, student-athletes on the women’s volleyball, women’s basketball, baseball, track and field, wrestling, and women’s tennis teams, or simply the non-revenue-generating sports, still stand to make four (4) to five (5) figures on NIL deals when focused solely on social media platforms. It is worth noting that Olympic athletes, given their amateur status, are awarded roughly $37,500 per gold medal, $22,500 per silver medal, and $15,000 per bronze medal from the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).53 Besides football and men’s basketball players, NIL deals will simply create a larger pool of potential Olympic sport student-athletes to endorse brands interested in reaching more of its target audience, and inevitably lead to compensation numbers similar to the USOC over the course of their collegiate careers.

Conclusion

Did you know that per a recent study by the NCPA, more than eighty percent (80%) of student-athletes on full scholarships are left below the poverty line?54 On the flip side, in 2016, the NCAA negotiated an eight (8)-year extension through 2032 of its media contract for the broadcasting rights to March Madness, the annual Division I men’s basketball tournament. The NCAA stands to receive $1.1 billion per year, an annual increase of over $325 million from the prior contract, just from March Madness.55 Let those figures sink in.

The NCAA’s chief purpose is supposed to “create a safe, and equitable environment that allows student-athletes to reach their full potential in academics, athletics, and life, … united around one goal: creating opportunities for college athletes.” Consider that with the fact that it has spent millions upon millions of dollars pursuing various legal avenues to avoid giving student-athletes one (1) cent all while lobbying Congress, the NCAA and the Power 5 have unjustly enriched themselves and their for-profit business partners.

Enter NIL legislation. But what about Title IX implications? Title IX does not apply to NIL compensation paid by third-parties. Why? The NCAA lacks jurisdiction as a private entity to regulate agents or third-parties in general directly, so any penalties it tries to impose for rule violations fall disproportionality on student-athletes based on archaic legislation and outdated rules before its recent Final Report acknowledging the modern, new media landscape.

Let’s not wait for the NCAA to prolong various legal battles while waiting for Congress and/or SCOTUS to bail them out. Jay Bilas puts it pretty simply that even the NCAA can follow without applying an unconscionable, antiquated rule: allow student-athletes the same economic rights as every other student with zero restrictions on what they can earn or accept.56

If it deems that school officials cannot be involved in recruiting, then let restrictions be set at the university level for its own employees. And “overzealous” boosters are not “overzealous” when donating money to the schools or its employees, so student-athletes should earn or accept compensation without the NCAA’s opinion in the matter. Recruiting battles have long existed over school history and tradition, playing time, and “professional” opportunities, so why not add NIL valuations to that list in 2020? Allow the proper guidance of both an attorney on behalf of the university’s compliance department, and a private attorney and/or registered agent that the student-athlete may choose on his or her own review NIL deals so the student-athletes are legally protected, and the schools can determine whether they wish to allow the use of its brand or mark in any such deal involving that student-athlete, including group licensing.57 Even if a portion of the monies accumulated from NIL is temporarily held in trust until (1) graduation, (2) the student-athlete turns professional, or (3) the option to access such funds in emergency situations is exercised so long as he or she is a full-time student in good standing, a sum of these earned funds will be set aside for their future reserves.

Today, if student-athletes can sign waivers to participate in their respective sports, all while the rest of their classmates are not on campus doing distance/virtual learning with the ability to make money from their own social media “influencer” activity, then those same student-athletes should be allowed to sign their own NIL deals. Of course, we do not know exactly how much student-athletes will be able to truly make for their NIL, especially in such an uncertain economy with the continued global pandemic. Yet, from sponsorships with local businesses, to appearance fees for autograph sessions, to social media influencer marketing, all provide a wide reach and potentially immediate fiscal return. Come on, NCAA. No more delay of game. Be a team player and play ball.

Endnotes

1. Mark Schlabach, ESPN.com: College Football, Barry Alvarez warns Wisconsin athletics ‘at risk’ if football season canceled, https://www.espn.com/college-football/story/_/id/29526443/barry-alvarez-warns-wisconsin-athletics-risk-football-season-canceled (accessed Jul. 24, 2020).

2. Doug Bandow, Forbes, End College Sports Indentured Servitude: Pay “Student Athletes”, http://www.forbes.com/sites/dougbandow/2012/02/21/end-college-sports-indentured-servitude-pay-student-athletes/ (accessed Feb. 21, 2012).

3. Jay Bilas, ESPN.com: Men’s College Basketball, NCAA stance on name, image, and likeness amounts to lip service, half-measure, https://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/29113994/ncaa-stance-name-image-likeness-amounts-lip-service-half-measure (accessed Apr. 30, 2020).

4.Kenneth L. Shropshire, In Black and White: Race and Sports in America, 31 (1996).

5. Rodney K. Smith, Racial Equity Issues in Athletics ch. 10 (2012).

6. Matt Hayes, Sporting News NCAAF, Student-athletes’ best interests? It’s all about the (TV) money, http://aol.sportingnews.com/ncaa-football/feed/2011-08/1stand10/story/student-athletes-best-interests-its-all-about-the-tv-money (accessed Sept.. 20, 2011).

7. Smith, Racial Equity Issues in Athletics at 4.

8. Dennis Dodd, CBSSports.com: NCAA FB, NFLPA partners with college players group in pursuit of name, image, likeness rights from NCAA, https://www.cbssports.com/college-football/news/nflpa-partners-with-college-players-group-in-pursuit-of-name-image-likeness-rights-from-ncaa/ (accessed Oct. 28, 2019).

9. Id.

10. Id.

11. 20 U.S.C.S. § 1681 (Lexis 2012).

12. Rodney K. Smith, When Ignorance is Not Bliss: In Search of Racial and Gender Equity in Intercollegiate Athletics, 61 Mo. L. Rev. 329, 370 (1996).

13. Alan Rappeport and Niraj Chokshi, NYTimes.com, Crippled Airline Industry to Get $25 Billion Bailout, Part of It as Loans, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/14/business/coronavirus-airlines-bailout-treasury-department.html (accessed Apr. 14, 2020).

14. Rep. Dan Miller, PAHouse.com, Miller, Gainey to introduce legislation that would allow student-athletes to get paid, https://www.pahouse.com/Miller/InTheNews/NewsRelease/?id=110743 (accessed Oct. 1, 2019).

15. Id.

16. Id.

17. Id.

18. Shannon Cross, ESPN.com, Athletes on being broke at http://espn.go.com/espn/story/_/id/8436355/athletes-being-broke (accessed Oct. 2, 2012).

19. Dan Murphy, ESPN.com: NCAA, Florida name, image, likeness bill now a law; state athletes can profit from endorsements next summer, https://www.espn.com/college-sports/story/_/id/29302748/florida-name-image-likeness-bill-now-law-meaning-state-athletes-profit-endorsements-next-summer (accessed Jun. 12, 2020).

20. Id.

21. Associated Press, ESPN.com: NCAA, Coaches of non-revenue sports fret over athlete NIL compensation, https://www.espn.com/college-sports/story/_/id/29251627/non-revenue-sports-fret-athlete-nil-compensation (accessed Jun. 1, 2020).

22. Stacy Osburg, NCAA.org, Board of Governors moves toward allowing student-athlete compensation for endorsements and promotions, http://www.ncaa.org/about/resources/media-center/news/board-governors-moves-toward-allowing-student-athlete-compensation-endorsements-and-promotions (accessed Apr. 29, 2020).

23. Id.

24. Id.

25. Emily Caron, Sportico, College Sports Dealmakers Treat Tampons Same As Porn, Politics And Tobacco, https://www.sportico.com/2020/leagues/college-sports/college-athletics-departments-marketers-restrict-tampons-like-tobacco-1234608367/ (accessed Jul. 2, 2020).

26. Id.

27. Id.

28. Id.

29. Mechelle Voepel, ESPN.com: College Sports, College athletes are already getting paid, http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/columns/story?columnist=voepel_mechelle&id=6739971 (accessed July 18, 2011).

30. Id. at http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/columns/story?columnist=voepel_mechelle&id=6739971.

31. Associated Press, ESPN.com: NCAA, Report makes case for paying players, http://espn.go.com/college-sports/story/_/id/6962151/advocacy-group-says-top-college-athletes-worth-six-figures (accessed Sept. 12, 2011).

32. David Berri, Huffington Post, What Sports Illustrated Didn’t Tell You About Paying College Athletes at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-berri/paying-college-athletes_b_1089102.html (accessed Nov. 11, 2011).

33. Dan Murphy, ESPN.com: NCAA, Florida name, image, likeness bill now a law; state athletes can profit from endorsements next summer, https://www.espn.com/college-sports/story/_/id/29302748/florida-name-image-likeness-bill-now-law-meaning-state-athletes-profit-endorsements-next-summer (accessed Jun. 12, 2020).

34. Id.

35. Id.

36. Associated Press, ESPN.com: NCAA, Power 5 conferences ask Congress for college compensation law, https://www.espn.com/college-sports/story/_/id/29242205/power-five-conferences-ask-congress-college-athlete-compensation-law (accessed May 29, 2020).

37. Id.

38. Steve Berkowitz, USA Today, NCAA will ask Supreme Court to take case about benefits that college athletes can receive, https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/2020/07/06/ncaa-ask-supreme-court-take-college-athletics-case/5387858002/ (accessed Jul. 6, 2020).

39. Id.

40.Id.

41. David Plati, CUBuffs.com, CU Announces “Buffs With A Brand” Program, https://cubuffs.com/news/2020/6/1/general-cu-announces-buffs-with-a-brand-program.aspx (accessed Jun. 1, 2020).

42. Id.

43. Josh Planos, FiveThirtyEight, Student-Athletes Will Soon Be Social Media Influencers. And One College Program Is Helping Them Do It, https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/student-athletes-will-soon-be-social-media-influencers-and-one-college-program-is-helping-them-do-it/ (accessed Jun. 8, 2020).

44. Id.

45. Id.

46. Id.

47. Id.

48. Shannon Cross, ESPN.com, Athletes on being broke, http://espn.go.com/espn/story/_/id/8436355/athletes-being-broke (accessed Oct. 2, 2012).

49. Id.

50. Id.

51. Adam Rowe, 247sports.com, @DukeMBB’s social media dominance could mean $$ for its athletes, https://247sports.com/college/duke/Article/duke-blue-devils-basketball-name-image-and-likeness-athletes-147406166/ (accessed May 22, 2020).

52. Josh Planos, FiveThirtyEight, Student-Athletes Will Soon Be Social Media Influencers. And One College Program Is Helping Them Do It, https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/student-athletes-will-soon-be-social-media-influencers-and-one-college-program-is-helping-them-do-it/ (accessed Jun. 8, 2020).

53. Kathleen Elkins, CNBC.com, Here’s how much US Olympic medalists get paid, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/16/how-much-olympic-athletes-get-paid.html (accessed Feb. 17, 2018).

54. Josh Planos, FiveThirtyEight, Student-Athletes Will Soon Be Social Media Influencers. And One College Program Is Helping Them Do It, https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/student-athletes-will-soon-be-social-media-influencers-and-one-college-program-is-helping-them-do-it/ (accessed Jun. 8, 2020).

55. Frank Pallotta, CNN.com: Business, NCAA Extends March Madness TV Deal with Turner, CBS until 2032, https://money.cnn.com/2016/04/12/media/ncaa-march-madness-turner-cbs/index.html (accessed Apr. 12, 2016).

56. Jay Bilas, ESPN.com: NCAA stance on name, image, and likeness amounts to lip service, half-measure, https://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/29113994/ncaa-stance-name-image-likeness-amounts-lip-service-half-measure (accessed Apr. 30, 2020).

57. Id.

Entity:
Topic:

By: Jonathan Stahler, Esq.