The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is an organization that regulates student athletes in athletic programs of most of the colleges and universities in North America. Yes, including Canada.
Consider the organization the middleman for the athlete and Divisions I, II and III programs.
But there is about to be a huge shift in the NCAA after California just pulled this shocking move. And what is likely to happen?
This age-ole debate about whether to pay student athletes for their services when the NCAA reaps all of the profit has been going on for decades. Some argue that the scholarship is enough and others think the NCAA is a greedy organization, that uses these athletes to profit like they’re slaves.
But on Thursday, was the first stepping towards a massive shift because California passed a new bill unanimously allowing student athletes to profit from their name, image and likeness. To be clear, this doesn’t mean the school has to pay the players directly.
The NCAA had a meltdown, of course, and wrote in the a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom, “It would erase the critical distinction between college and professional athletics. These outcomes are untenable and would negatively impact more than 24,000 California student-athletes across three divisions.”
They even claimed it was “unconstitutional” and said that if Gov. Newsom signs the bill into law they would consider legal action.
But the threat was even more substantial by the NCAA Board of Governors who said they would threaten to not represent any California school.
California is home to 58 NCAA-member schools, the NCAA said, including powerhouse programs at USC, Stanford and UCLA. Newsom has 30 days to sign or veto the legislation. If he does nothing, the bill becomes law.
That means the Pac-12 will likely be dismembered and California teams will likely play each other and obviously not be involved in the championship circuits across all NCAA athletics.
California Assemblyman Kevin Kiley said of the bill, “Forget shoe deals and video games, NCAA athletes can’t make a little money over the summer coaching youth sports, can’t promote their social media, can’t model athletic wear, can’t accept groceries or help with rent or equipment. When a line in the sand is enforced obsessively, excessively and to the point of absurdity, that’s usually a sign it doesn’t belong there.”
This is a capitalist country after all right?
So at this point there is a gigantic elephant in the room that needs to be addressed.
What will the top recruits in their respective sports do? Do you think an athlete like Zion Williamson would’ve still gone to Duke University when he could go to UCLA and profit off his image?
Will all the top recruits flood to California? Or would it only be the top recruits?
Would this new bill irreparably damage the NCAA? Or will this have little effect?
If Newsom signs this bill into law then this may be the beginning of the end for the NCAA altogether and that’s probably why they’re all furious right now.