Florida AD Stricklin Open To NIL Laws, Wary Of Ramifications
Florida AD Scott Stricklin believes allowing college athletes to profit off of their name, image and likeness has "some merit," so long as doing so "doesn't lead to unintended consequences that might jeopardize schools' ability to fully fund all men's and women's sports," according to Gene Frenette of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. With an NIL bill under consideration in his state, Stricklin acknowledged that college coaches and administrators making "wildly excessive incomes" is a "bad look." He said, "One of the problems we have from an optics standpoint is our athletes aren't in a free-market setting. They're in a socialist setting. But yet we have coaches coaching them who are in the ultimate free-market setting. It's really an uncomfortable dichotomy." Stricklin also responded to the fact that state Rep. Kionne McGhee said that "nobody in college athletics was consulted" when Florida's NIL bill was crafted. Stricklin: "The trial lawyers and sports agents are pushing this narrative. My fear is they're going to get 14-year-olds signed up and get a cut of everything they can push through these kids. What you worry about is the decision on which school they go to, an agent driving it and basically turning their image and likeness into an opportunity to have a bidding war." Stricklin also "worries that if money athletes receive for capitalizing on NIL comes from companies already providing sponsorship dollars for member schools, will that mean less money in the budget that would normally go to funding sports besides football and men's basketball?" (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 10/18).
STATE OF PLAY: In Iowa, James Lynch notes two state lawmakers have asked the Iowa Legislative Services Agency to draft an NIL bill "modeled on one signed into law earlier this fall in California." Iowa state Rep. Ras Smith said, "I can't say that we'll have a lot of people in our sports programs getting rich off this, but maybe they won't eat Ramen as much. We're not talking hundreds of thousands of dollars, but we'll have some students who can pay off their loans and spend more time on their academics because they aren't trying to be a full-time student-athlete and work a job in the offseason." He added, "It's about exploring. It may be a heavy lift, a three-year lift, but we want to broach the topic." Iowa state Rep. Joe Mitchell "expects the California law to generate discussions at Statehouses across the country and he wants Iowa to be at the forefront" (Cedar Rapids GAZETTE, 10/21).