The college sports landscape is changing. College athletes are considered amateurs, and it used to be prohibited for them to make any money off their name, image or likeness. Doing so would make them a professional athlete, which meant they were ineligible to play at the college level.
This has changed, however, so that athletes now have more options. They’re still not professionals and they don’t get a salary from the school, but they can get money from outside sources. For instance, an athlete could sign autographs and make money that way, or they could start a training camp for high school students and charge an entry fee. This doesn’t give them the same rights that employees have, but it does mean that they can profit based on their own success.
This is widely viewed as a positive thing for athletes, though it is going to drastically change sports at the college level. And it also means that athletes need to know more about their legal options and have proper representation. But one interesting question to ask is if this will help to bring back a fan-favorite video game that was once canceled: NCAA Football.
It is coming back in 2023
The problem with this football game, which was played by millions of people on Xbox and Playstation, is that the players’ images were essentially still in the game. They technically had different names or had no names at all, but they would look the same, they would play for the same teams, they would have the same numbers and they would have similar attributes to what you would expect. A famous running back at Alabama would still appear to be in the game, even if he wasn’t named. As a result, this was seen as a conflict of interest and the game was canceled.
With these changes to the NIL rules, however, the video game is coming back in the summer of 2023. It is said to be revamped, so it’ll be interesting to see how much it has changed since the last iteration that came out in 2014.
This is just one way that the changes to the regulations are altering the landscape of college sports. Athletes who are involved in this need to make sure that they are well aware of all of their new rights and options.