BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — One of the hottest topics in college sports is picking up steam in New York. New York State Senator Kevin Parker proposed a bill in the State Senate to compensate college athletes.
California became the first state to allow its athletes to receive payments when Governor Gavin Newsom signed a law on Monday allowing students to profit off their names, images, and likeness. Parker's proposed bill does the same thing, and goes one step further. He added an amendment requiring college athletic departments to give away 15% of their revenue to student athletes. Each student athlete would receive an equal compensation.
“It is unfair for students to struggle financially while their athletic ability is a source of income solely for the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) and the colleges and universities they attend,” said Senator Parker.
The NCAA called California's law unconstitutional. There are other states discussing plans of their own. Mike Farrell with the Martin Group sports division said these talks are a step in the right direction.
"All of the inconsistencies with this is eventually going to push the NCAA to have to do something, or there has to be some federal statute that encompasses all U.S. states," he said.
Farrell said today's athletes are not the same as the ones from 10-20 years ago.
"The modern athlete in some instances whether it be college football, college basketball especially, they're concerned with becoming their own brand," he said.
While some athletes receive six figure scholarships, Farrell referenced an example the California Governor used, saying athletes are nonetheless being treated unfairly.
"A student can go to a college or university and profit off his or her likeness on YouTube and make scores of money," Farrell said. "If you play a sport, no matter what sport it is in the NCAA, you cannot make a dime off anything you do."
Parker's bill is still in committee with no floor vote scheduled at this time.