Mr. Emmert goes to Washington.

It’s obvious in reading bits and pieces from yesterday’s Senate Subcommittee on Manufacturing, Trade, and Consumer Protection hearing that what the NCAA wants more than anything right now is more time, not because it’s working hard to come up with a solution for NIL rights in the face of increased state legislative activity, but because, in its time-honored tradition, it simply wants to put off making any hard decisions as long as humanly possible.

Unfortunately for Mr. Emmert’s organization, it was also obvious that the Senate knows the game he’s playing.

So what’s being done to correct this inequality? John Tester, a Democrat from Montana, asked that question to Emmert during an exchange midway through the proceedings.

“I’m going to be honest with you,” Tester told Emmert, “you don’t want us to solve this. You want us to help you solve this. So the question is, where are we at as far as putting stuff on paper, because a time is a clickin’ and we can’t stop states from what they’re doing. We’ve got to figure it out.”

“There is a timeline in place for having this resolved for January 2021,” Emmert responded.

Asked the senator, “Do you have anything on paper right now?”

Said Emmert: “We don’t.”

The skepticism was bipartisan, in case you were wondering.

Sen. Jerry Moran, a Kansas Republican and the chairman of the Subcommittee on Manufacturing, Trade, and Consumer Protection, said he was not inclined to act until after the NCAA reveals its new rules.

“I wish Congress was in a position to be able to provide the NCAA and the athletes the opportunity to find a solution. … The ability for Congress to do that is, that’s a challenge,” Moran said in an interview after the hearing. “The next step is to see what the NCAA is capable of presenting to us in April.”

I wouldn’t expect much, Senator.


Filed under Political Wankery, The NCAA

8 responses to “Mr. Emmert goes to Washington.

  1. Derek

    They probably calculate why negotiate anything when the impending catastrophuck will give them more leverage later? Why not plan on coming back and saying: “we told you so?”

    Today, they have to offer something. Tomorrow, they may get everything they want for nothing and the reason will be that no one took the time to think through the issues surrounding unregulated NILs.


    • Doug

      I’m not sure what “leverage” the NCAA will have at that point other than a sense of moral superiority. Even if player NILs do send everything to hell in a handbasket, nobody from either party is gonna want to be the one to tell players “Oopsie, we fucked up, you can’t make any money after all.” Not as long as the games are still fun to watch and everybody’s still dying to know who’ll make the playoff. I mean, the creeping influence of the almighty dollar has been an issue in college football for decades now. I don’t see viewers or advertisers abandoning the sport just because the players are finally getting a piece of the action.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Derek

        They’d be more than happy to pearl clutch at any and all perceived excesses. Its what they do. They also do clumsy fixes. They also listen to the people with money more than the people who are left wanting.

        With patience the ncaa might get an anti-trust exemption out of it. Who is going to lobby for the players? No one.

        Its like what Carlin said: “its a big club. And you ain’t in it.” College presidents are in.

        Heres an exercise: Give me the ncaa proposal they het through both houses and signed by the president today.

        My answer: nothing.

        Why put any pin up to get bowled over?

        The smart move is to ask for a global fix and barring that wait for the inevitable.


  2. ASEF

    NCAA: what’s the least onerous thing we will be forced to do?

    They are having a hard time figuring out the angles here. They know NIL for the college game is worth a ton. How do they keep most of it? Or at least as much as possible? And on the flip side, how do they open up that revenue stream and not lose a sponsor who sees better value in cutting a check directly to the starting QB? Will this cost them money? And how much?

    The same people who make you write two checks just to have the opportunity to write a third one for season tickets have a very specific view of how to make money: put people on a rack and twist the knobs until every last penny has been wrung out of them.

    Example: A Cinderella emerges in March Madness. offers the PG $50,000 to wear a logo sweatshirt at the press conferences. The coach says, “Great!” The NCAA bans him from media events unless he wears NCAA regulation attire. Which could include a sweatshirt if they cut the check to a NCAA trust fund rather than the player directly.

    Which is probably how this all shakes out. The NCAA won’t mess with player eligibility over things like autograph sessions, but they will lock down player visibility in relation to NCAA events. The next Johnny Football can do commercials, but the sponsor can’t use institution names or images from NCAA events without going through the NCAA. Which of course means the NCAA and the member institutions keeps most of it, right?

    They won’t stop people from working directly with athletes. They will just make it impossible for said sponsors to use phrases like “starting QB at the University of Georgia” without routing the payment through Georgia.


    • FlyingPeakDawg

      I concur. The NCAA is making this much harder than it has to be. The fear that a booster will offer $50k to a kid to do a car ad if he attends State U. is blown out of proportion. If the NCAA and its member institutions simply restrict NIL to the player, but they can’t use the school’s NIL without going through a process that pays the school directly who then pool/hold/manage the funds for the players, said booster will go through that system. If I wanted Jake Fromm for an ad, I want him in his UGA uniform or he’s not worth as much. Plus Jake doesn’t have time to personally market himself and sort through offers, especially if the school has staff dedicated to do it for him. UGA should sell the shirts with his name on the jersey, but Jake should get a cut. Let the kids keep the revenue from autographs and podcasts…it’s chump change to the university. This system works for all athletes who can create value with their NIL outside of their sport and doesn’t harm amateurism as we currently know it.


  3. Former Fan

    I guess they think if they wait long enough, they will make more money than they would by getting ahead of curve. Maybe they will be unpleasantly suprised.


  4. spur21

    All of this hand ringing about ruining the game and NIL booty becoming out of control is a smoke screen. What it does is lessen the impact of the bagman and moves most of the $$ flow out of the shadows.


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