Alabama senator voices support for college athletes profiting off NIL rights
With college athletes scoring a major victory with the NCAA board voting to allow athletes to profit from their names, images and likenesses, senators in several states are responding with their position on the issue.
Alabama senator Doug Jones made it clear in a radio interview Tuesday that he supports the proposition of college athletes earning money based on their image and likeness.
“I think that is a logical extension of the business of college sports these days,” Jones said on NewsTalk WANI in Auburn/Opelika. “We’ve got to look at it like that. I think it’s a shame that these students have been so restricted in what they can do. I haven’t seen the exact proposal to be honest with you. … I just saw the top line, so I don’t know all the particulars, but I think we need to do more for these athletes than just send them to pay their tuition and expenses. This is a big business these days, and these athletes are the biggest component of that business. Overall, I think it’s going to be a good thing for these sports as long as we can make sure it’s being done the right way and we monitor it and don’t have the illegality problems that often come with things like that.”
That differs quite a lot from North Carolina senator Richard Burr’s take on the subject. Burr tweeted Tuesday afternoon that he plans to introduce legislation that will tax athletic scholarships as income for athletes, who choose to make money from their likeness.
If college athletes are going to make money off their likenesses while in school, their scholarships should be treated like income. I’ll be introducing legislation that subjects scholarships given to athletes who choose to “cash in” to income taxes. https://t.co/H7jXC0dNls
— Richard Burr (@SenatorBurr) October 29, 2019
It will be interesting to see where other senators fall on this issue. This topic is no longer just a sports discussion but could have political ramifications moving into the 2020 election year.