“We are determined to get this done.”


On Wednesday afternoon, the Power 5 issued a statement reading in part: “Only Congress can pass a national solution for student-athlete NIL rights. The patchwork of state laws that begins on July 1 will disadvantage student-athletes in some states and create an unworkable system for others. As leaders in college athletics, we support extending NIL rights in a way that supports the educational opportunities of all student-athletes, including collegians in Olympic sports who comprised 80% of Team USA at the Rio games. We continue to work with Congress to develop a solution for NIL and expand opportunities.”


Several congressional aides told ESPN last month that it was very unlikely that Congress will pass any type of college sports legislation before July. The debate appeared to be no closer to the finish line during Wednesday’s hearing.

Why is that?  Because Emmert’s gonna Emmert and Congress is gonna Congress.

During the hearing, Emmert declined to reveal whether the organization would file injunctions against states to delay their implementation of NIL law, saying the organization has taken no position but it has been “widely discussed.” Emmert acknowledged that it would be “very challenging” for a school to file suit against its state.

Meanwhile, the NCAA is expected to pass its own legislation by the month’s end, Emmert says, after the Supreme Court rules in the Alston case. The NCAA’s legislation will differ from state laws and it could trigger a wave of litigation—two reasons that the organization is encouraging Congress to create a uniform standard.

That’s where the five-member Senate working group comes in. Cantwell, Booker, Blumenthal, Wicker and Blackburn are attempting to find a middle ground between two noteworthy and diametrically opposing college athlete bills already introduced in Congress: (1) Booker and Blumenthal’s College Athletes Bill of Rights, a somewhat radical and sweeping legislation that includes revenue sharing, long-term medical care, lifetime scholarships and unrestricted endorsements; and (2) Wicker’s narrow bill focused only on NIL and featuring NCAA protections and athlete restrictions.

A compromise bill would be more broad than Wicker’s but not quite as expansive as Booker and Blumenthal’s, all while providing athletes with enough freedoms to satisfy both sides.

So how close are the five lawmakers to agreeing on a proposal?

Now there’s a question.

The hearings on Capitol Hill related to this issue aren’t over. Cantwell suggested that there will be more and that the next hearing’s witness list will include current college athletes—a key group that’s been missing from these discussions.

To summarize, the NCAA is paralyzed until it finds out if the Supreme Court is going to give it an antitrust exemption and Congress isn’t anywhere near being able to reach a consensus by month’s end.  Business as usual, in other words.


Filed under Political Wankery, The NCAA

14 responses to ““We are determined to get this done.”

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    Pray tell, what clause in Article I, Section 8 delegates to Congress the power to enact such legislation? Just thought I’d ask.


    • Without going into Playpen territory, they would say the interstate commerce clause.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Gaskilldawg

        You are correct. The famous Wickard v. Filburn United States Supreme Court case from the 1930s held that the Commerce Clause gives Congress the power to regulate local activity that has an impact on interstate commerce. The government had put a limit on production of wheat in order to stabilize prices. Wickard was a farmer who grew his own wheat to feed his livestock. He grew more wheat than his allotment. He argued that he did not sell any wheat and he was growing his own wheat just to feed his own cows and therefore his wheat was not part of interstate commerce. The USSC held that since his and other farmers’ production reduced the amount of wheat that they would buy their production had an effect on interstate commerce.
        College sports are by necessity engaging in interstate commerce and therefore subject to federal regulation.
        For Pete’s sake, this is a reference to a famous USSC case and not a commentary on it so I hope it doesn’t trigger a bunch of posts about the wisdom of federal regulation. I know you, ee, will not be one of them.


        • For Pete’s sake, this is a reference to a famous USSC case and not a commentary on it so I hope it doesn’t trigger a bunch of posts about the wisdom of federal regulation.

          If that happens, it won’t for long, if you get my drift.


        • Spell Dawg

          I took more than my share of US history and Constitutional law classes, but this case didn’t stick in my memory. It strikes me that one day they will limit the amount of air we each breathe. Shouldn’t surprise me by now; I shook my head so much reading SCOTUS decisions/opinions, thought I might have developed a tic.


  2. The NCAA and its members refused to reform itself and get a blessing from Judge Wilken. Now they are caught because I don’t think SCOTUS is going to give them what they want, and as everything else in Washington, a federal solution is so politicized now.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Congress gave up on actually legislating a long time ago. Just kick everything to the courts.


  4. TN Dawg

    If you want to force someone’s hand, a player needs to take money.

    Especially a player like Daniels or Corral that isn’t likely to lose any draft stock if the NCAA suspends them.

    If the NDS kid could get drafted high up the board despite playing only one game in 2020 against subpar competition, Daniels and Corral are in no danger of losing draft status.

    If they can score a couple of million is marketing rights, it would offset a draft spot or two.

    Make the NCAA suspend them. Shit, the speaking engagements alone on the issue would probably garner them millions in appearance fees if the NCAA chooses to act.

    It’s not against the law, just against an NCAA rule that they are already openly admitting they are going to get rid of. And if I were an agent for them, I would view it as a once in a lifetime opportunity. You already know the sports media will be sympathetic and paint you as a Rosa Parks of college football. Kaepernick has probably made more money by not playing than he would have as a quarterback.

    Liked by 1 person

    • miltondawg

      TN your post addresses the question that I have had all along. What is going to happen July 1st? Is the NCAA going to suspend a kid over NIL when the laws of the state permit NIL compensation? I’m for NIL compensation for athletes, but I damn sure don’t want my star quarterback to be ruled ineligible to play by the NCAA over NIL (or worse, wait until October or November and not only rule him ineligible but additionally rule that all the games he played in are forfeited).


      • We’re up to about 17 states that have passed NIL legislation. Emmert’s already said the NCAA won’t declare kids to be ineligible in states with such laws. If the NCAA does anything, it’ll be to seek injunctions to prevent the laws from becoming enforceable.

        The problem with that is it will pit the schools against the legislative bodies that control their funding. I doubt that’s a place the schools want to be.


  5. 69Dawg

    As a retired attorney I am forever grateful to clients like the NCAA that just let the attorney milk the cow until it is dry. Stubbornly litigious is what its called in the trade.

    Liked by 1 person