Under the law, college athletes in California could not be prohibited from earning money from outside sources for things like endorsements or autograph signings. College athletes put in a lot of hours practicing and playing for their universities, but they don't get to share in the billions of dollars made each year off of their hard work.
The college athlete debate, which has heated up in the last couple of years, is gaining steam.
Under the bill, college athletes could also sign agents and cannot be removed from a team if they receive money.
Engelbert sympathizes with both sides of this issue, however, she believes "the jury is still out on whether this is the right move".
To Engelbert, this issue is largely "about a fan base, especially a student fan base", emphasizing smaller Division I school's reliance on these loyal fans.
Introduced by state Senators Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) and Steven Bradford (D-Gardena), Senate Bill 206, otherwise known as the "Fair Pay to Play Act", changes decades of restrictions on student athletes and businesses in the state of California. Football, the most visible college sport, is very demanding, whereas getting an education builds a better future.
In order to play in NCAA-sanctioned games, players must abide by the organization's handbook, which restricts almost all forms of payment, outlines academic standards that must be maintained as well as a number of other rules to "ensure student success". Florida, Washington, and Colorado are also in talks of proposing legislation, and several federal lawmakers and presidential candidates announcing their support as well. The bill would prohibit the revocation of a student's scholarship as a result of earning compensation or obtaining legal representation as authorized under these provisions.
"This measure is about equity and fairness to our college athletes, who have essentially been used to generate massive profits for their schools, without receiving a dollar in return", Welch said in a press release. "But at the same time you're using them to draw money for your own good", said one Cleveland State University student who is divided on the matter. However, if other states follow suit and adopt this law, then athletes would be less likely to take the gamble of leaving college and going pro if they were being paid to play in college. It alleviates the pressure of having a 10 figure salary as a 20-year-old.
Some experts, however, said caveats built into the new law to protect California college team endorsement deals from conflicts with individual sponsorships minimize the potential for NCAA athletes, men and women alike, to market themselves.
Sweeney says that after graduating he wanted to maintain his privacy, but there were a number of businesses that asked him to come out and endorse their product. Newsom may be banking on the scale and popularity of California universities to keep the NCAA from taking such an action. "I don't necessarily take it to heart".
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