NIL gives student-athletes the opportunity to get paid for their Name, Image and Likeness

Cookeville – Just when the Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) waters for college athletes heats up, here comes the government to dip their toes in the pool. According to reports, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is pushing legislation establishing the College Sports NIL Clearinghouse Act. The clearinghouse would have the ability to fine, sue or ban anyone from participating in college athletics.

Government oversight into college athletics NIL, what could go wrong? 

“NCAA lobbyists have long pushed for a piece of federal legislation that would give oversight power in college athletics’ new market of endorsements and collectives,” According to “The clearinghouse would also be given an antitrust exemption, another major item on the NCAA’s wishlist.”

Here is a portion of the drafted bill:

“The NIL Clearinghouse shall carry out enforcement actions for any violation of this Act, including by levying fines, imposing penalties, including suspension or a permanent ban of an individual or entity from participation in varsity intercollegiate sports competition for a period determined by the NIL Clearinghouse and commencing civil actions and seeking all appropriate legal, equitable or other relief, including damages and injunctions.”

The clearinghouse would look to monitor compliance and push penalties. It would also look to provide NIL education to athletes while providing protections including prohibiting schools from limiting playing time and/or punishing athletes in retaliation for a deal, according to According to the bill, nothing would limit an “institution, conference or athletic association to prohibit a third party from providing a student-athlete” with a recruiting inducement or compensation for participating in a sport. Civil suits the NIL clearinghouse would bring against athletes could be prosecuted by the attorney general.

One thing is for sure. The Power 5 conferences have already used NIL as a recruiting advantage (Missouri went as far as passing a law this week allowing higher pay to student-athletes), and the idea of pay-to-play and government oversight is here for the long run.

Image by creativeart on Freepik.

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