The hurdles to make a new NCAA-licensed video game may still be around, but the licensing climate has softened somewhat in recent months. And that softening continued today, as a new bill that was signed into law in Florida will make it possible for college athletes to profit off of endorsements.
New Florida Bill For College Athletes
On Friday morning, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) signed into law SB 646: Intercollegiate Athlete Compensation and Rights Bill. This new bill, which was passed in March by the Florida State Senate, will give college athletes the ability to profit off of their name through endorsements.
During a news conference at the University of Miami football practice facility on Friday, DeSantis stated regarding the bill, “This whole issue of student-athletes and being able to receive compensations for their likeness or image is something that’s been bubbling to the surface in the last couple years.” On this issue of allowing collegiate athletes to receive money for endorsements, DeSantis added, “I viewed it as something that was a matter of fairness.”
The bill does have limits, as any payment must “commensurate with market value” in order to preserve the integrity of intercollegiate athletes. In addition, SB 646 also states that universities will be forbidden from paying student-athletes directly.
The new bill will go into effect on July 1, 2021, a year and half before California’s bill will take into effect.
Does this change anything?
It doesn’t change much on the NCAA Football and NCAA Basketball fronts. While the bill does make the environment to create an NCAA-licensed game more friendly to game developers, there are still major hurdles.
In April, the NCAA did agree to adopt new rules that would allow players to profit off their name and likeness, but group licensing is still off the table. So even though states and governing bodies are allowing player to make money off their name, it’s incredibly unlikely we will be seeing an NCAA video game anytime in the near future.