Washington Update

NCAA Rules on Name, Image and Likeness

May 01, 2020

This week the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) moved closer to allowing college athletes to cash in on their name, image and likeness (NIL). The NCAA also said that student athletes will be allowed to receive compensation for their social media influence and businesses they start.

The NCAA started this process last October, instructing each of its three divisions to immediately develop updates to bylaws related to student compensation to reflect the state of play in the 21st century. The new rules were to take effect no later than January 2021. At the time, the Board of Governors provided a set of guiding principles to which any new rules must adhere. 

The rules proposed this week go beyond those originally envisioned, by allowing student athletes to receive compensation from third-party endorsements, not only for NIL, but also in regards to social media and personal businesses. However, while student athletes will be allowed to identify themselves by sport and school, they will be prohibited from using conference and school logos.

The NCAA went on to say that students will not be paid for play, nor will colleges and universities be allowed to pay students for name, image and likeness activities.

Meanwhile, the NCAA will be asking Congress to write a bill ensuring federal preemption over name, image and likeness laws at the state level. The NCAA also hopes to get safe harbor protection against law suits related to NIL.

The NCAA is holding the three divisions to implementing these changes no later than the original January 2021 timeline.