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Friday, July 10, 2020

NCAA responds to California’s new student-athlete image rights law

California governor Gavin Newsom signed into law a bill that allows college athletes to profit off their name and likeness. No surprise, the NCAA is not particularly happy.

The NCAA released a statement in response to the bill becoming California law, stating that they believe such changes can only be instituted nationally through NCAA rule-making. The organization said the law was “creating confusion” and added that further efforts by other states would make fairness and equity among student-athletes “unattainable.”

The NCAA was never going to like this, since they had no say in the bill’s passage. Their point about confusion created by inconsistent laws on a state-to-state basis is a fair one, though as of now, no other states have passed similar laws. California’s law is also likely to face court challenges, so it may not foster immediate changes.

There was legislation introduced in Congress with similar aims, and it earned the support of at least one prominent student-athlete. However, progress on its passage has stalled.

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