TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Following in the footsteps of California's new law, Florida House of Representatives Minority Leader Kionne McGhee (D-Miami) filed a similar bill Monday allowing college athletes in Florida to make money through endorsement deals using their name, image and likeness.
McGhee's bill (HB 251) prohibits a postsecondary educational institution from preventing students from participating in intercollegiate athletics from earning specified compensation.
“The NCAA regularly earns more than $1 billion per year, but these student-athletes aren’t allowed to accept a bag of groceries," McGhee said in a September news release.
McGhee says his legislation is about fairness and allowing skilled adults to earn a living.
“I predict this will have a positive impact on female athletes, as they have far fewer opportunities in sports after college than men," he said.
Florida now joins a group of other states with proposed legislation regarding compensation for student-athletes. Earlier this month, a New York senator introduced a bill that would require New York colleges to share 15 percent of their annual athletics revenue with student-athletes.
Lawmakers in South Carolina, Washington, and Colorado are also considering legislation similar to California's new law, which allows students at universities to sign deals with sneaker companies, soft drinks, and other advertisers.
Before the governor signed the bill, the NCAA cautioned the law would give California universities an unfair recruiting advantage.
The association responded to the law Monday saying, "As more states consider their own specific legislation related to this topic, it is clear that a patchwork of different laws from different states will make unattainable the goal of providing a fair and level playing field for 1,100 campuses and nearly half a million student-athletes nationwide."
The NCAA reported $1.1 billion in revenue in 2017.
In 2017, Donald De La Haye, the former Central Florida kicker was ruled ineligible over his YouTube videos.
De La Haye was a marketing major, he said, and the videos were a good learning tool for him in his chosen career path. After the California law passed Monday, De La Haye tweeted, "I’m a pioneer. I feel like this rule change wouldn’t have happened this quickly if I didn’t take the L for the athletes to come."
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