Sen. Marco Rubio will introduce new legislation before the Senate, which could pave the way for college athletes to be paid for use of their name and likeness.
Rubio’s Thursday bill would force the National Collegiate Athletic Association to revise its standards before June 30, 2021, so that college athletes can be paid for marketing and advertising revenue directly linked to their person.
“The only people on campus that are prohibited from benefiting from their name, their image, and their likeness are student-athletes,” the Florida Republican told USA Today. “And that’s just not a sustainable position … given the fact that many of these college athletic endeavors are now multibillion-dollar industries that are generating a lot of revenue for corporate sponsors and for university programs.”
The debate over paying college athletes has captivated the sports world over the past decade as the gap between how much universities rake in from certain sports programs has raised questions about the amateur status of such programs.
Rubio said providing payment to athletes whose performance goes above and beyond that of their peers is the only way to stop the NCAA from collapsing.
“It protects the athletes. It allows them to be compensated. These kids deserve to make a little bit of money while they’re in college, and at the same time, it will prevent the implosion of college athletics,” he said.
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