The NCAA is reportedly considering new rules that will allow players to be compensated for their names, images, and likeness. ESPN reports that the NCAA made it clear that they don't want these potential measures to be construed as them paying the student-athletes. A group, which will include NCAA president Mark Emmert as well as Big East commissioner Val Ackerman and Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith will be at the helm for the group as it looks into federal and state legislation surrounding this issue.
Ackerman said in a statement on Tuesday:
"This group will bring together diverse opinions from the membership -- from presidents and commissioners to student-athletes -- that will examine the NCAA's position on name, image and likeness benefits and potentially propose rule modifications tethered to education, [...] We believe the time is right for these discussions and look forward to a thorough assessment of the many complexities involved in this area.''
The final report on player compensation from the working group is due in October. Congressman Mark Walker (R-N.C.) has been working toward legislation that will lift the restrictions preventing student-athletes from reaping the rewards of their labor. Walker said of the NCAA's most recent step toward that resolution, "I am thankful the NCAA has created a working group to examine my Student-Athlete Equity Act and how it will empower college athletes with free-market opportunities," adding, While this is encouraging, the NCAA has claimed to study this issue for years. Now they need to act to fix the injustices in their model, protect athletes and save the college sports we love."