Bill 206 stirs controversy in NCAA

Hope Schulte, News Writer

A controversial    discussion  about the line between amateurism and professionalism takes a new turn. 

A new law puts California at the center of the playing field in the national debate on whether college athletes should be paid for the use of their representation.

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed State Senate Bill 206 into law on September 30, while appearing on LeBron James’s show, “The Shop: Uninterrupted”.  The law will allow college athletes to make money off of their name, image and likeness in California beginning in 2023. The law will also prohibit governing bodies of college sports, such as the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), and schools from banning the paid athletes. Athletes will be allowed to make money from endorsements and from hiring agents. 

“Colleges reap billions from student athletes but block them from earning a single dollar.  That’s a bankrupt model,” Newsom said. 

Newsom continued commenting that college athletes will benefit from this new law with the opportunities it presents. 

Since 1910, the NCAA has expressed that college athletes should earn a degree, not money, when playing sports in college. There has been disagreement across the nation as to whether this new law is a step in the right direction for college sports, and if other states will consider this law. The NCAA stated certain rules will need to change when it comes to aiding college athletes and that California’s new law will not help. 

“As  a  membership organization, the NCAA agrees changes are needed to continue to support student-athletes, but improvement needs to happen on a national level through the NCAA’s rules-making process,” the organization said, according to NBC News. 

There is also a probability that schools that are forced out of competition by the NCAA could form their own leagues as reported by NBC news. Schools and leagues that make a lot of money, such as the Big Ten, SEC, Pacific-12, Big 12 and ACC, could break away and take the NCAA  out  of  the  business  in  college sports .

There is uncertainty across the nation when it comes to allowing college athletes to get paid from their image and likeness and Americans will have to see how it plays out in 2023.