California state Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, released the following statement on the NCAA’s proposed rule change to allow college athletes the right to earn compensation for their name, image, and likeness (NIL). Sen. Skinner authored SB 206, the Fair Pay to Play Act, enacted in 2019, which made California the first state in the U.S. to restore college athletes’ ownership of their name, image, and likeness, a right that college athletes were required to forfeit to participate in NCAA programs. The passage of SB 206 prompted four other states to pass similar laws and forced the NCAA to revisit its rules.
“I’m heartened to see that the NCAA is finally following California’s lead to allow college athletes to make money from their talent and hard work. It’s a long-overdue step in the right direction. But, unfortunately, the NCAA’s proposal still comes up short. It doesn’t give college athletes the autonomy and full range of benefits that SB 206 does. So I call on the NCAA Board of Governors to refine this proposal before carrying it across the finish line and ensure that the ownership of their name and likeness, a right every other student and all other Americans enjoy, is restored to every college athlete.”
Sen. Nancy Skinner represents the 9th Senate District and is the Senate majority whip.