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The NCAA Set to Rule on Question of Athlete Compensation Soon

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is a nonprofit organization that regulates student athletics at roughly 1,100 schools in the United States, and one in Canada. Meanwhile, the NCAA also organizes the athletic programs of colleges and aims to help hundreds of thousands of students annually. Of course, the NCAA also rakes in massive revenues from broadcast rights, ticket sales, television advertising, and corporate sponsorships. In fiscal 2022, the NCAA generated $1.14 billion in revenues.

These enormous revenues earned by the NCAA and its partners have cast a spotlight on the lack of compensation for NCAA athletes. For decades, student athlete representatives have been unable to make much headway to change this. However, there may be revolutionary changes on the horizon.

In December, NCAA president Charles Baker mailed a letter to Division I schools. The letter outlined a proposed shift in governance that would allow athletic departments to directly compensate their athletes. Indeed, the new framework would allow each department to crate what Baker called an “enhanced educational trust fund” for NCAA athletes.

Of course, there is still much to be learned about the details of the proposal and what it would mean for the future of the NCAA. Regardless, this development will be well worth monitoring going forward. The NCAA is a revenue machine, and this proposal would serve to shake up the entire college athletic landscape for decades to come.