By Mitchell Steinberg & Charlie Leimbach
Should college athletes make money off of their fame? This was the debate until a recent policy was imposed to let college athletes profit off of their likeness and fame starting January 1st, 2023. This policy came as a surprise to many people considering the fact that the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has been considering this, but never actually implemented it, until now.
The NCAA voted for this change of policy, which caused an eruption of emotions between people affected. Players are obviously in favor of this rule since they get money, while other coaches and staff at the university level think differently. According to the New York Times, there are some limitations to this change of policy, which the NCAA states are very important. For example, any policy changes must maintain clear distinctions between amateur athletes and professional ones. Athletes must be taking classes at the university and follow all other rules to be eligible for sports at the school.
Some believe that the NCAA’s policy will increase the number of athletes who attend college instead of going overseas before pursuing their professional careers. Max Pearcy believes that the NCAA won’t benefit as much from the policy change as, “The players will now be allowed to be paid to play at the school, and that money will be taken away from what the NCAA profited. ”In this policy change, college athletes have finally been granted the right to profit off of their own image, where the NCAA has been preventing athletes from achieving this for years. Pearcy is excited to see what this brings to current and future NCAA athletes, but the policy change will, “take the money that was made by the likeness of the athletes, and now that money will need to go to the athletes.” The NCAA still wants to continue to have athletes to come to get a higher education, and they are beginning to adapt in order to ensure athletes are getting that higher education.
This new policy is being looked at by many perspectives and opinions, both in favor of paying athletes and not. For example, Chris Retzbach, the kicker for Glenelg Varsity football, also plans to play his sport in college. He believed that it is fine for college players to get paid as long as everyone else in their teams’ system gets paid as well. Players will not get paid the same as endorsements come into play where athletes who are liked more, will make more money. This change in pay would actually help the NCAA because more students would have the desire to play since there is money involved, Retzbach believes. “There are negatives to college players being paid, like how it hurts the NAIA and NCCAA, as fewer players will want to play there, since the NCAA now has the opportunity for an income” Retzbach said.
This policy change remains controversial due to the fact this could lead to recruitment being surrounded by colleges offering money to athletes as an incentive to come to their college. The new wave is approaching for the NCAA and this policy is likely just the beginning of many changes to come.