New Congressional Bill Introduced To Add Protections For College Athletes

Most people have no idea how college sports programs work. During the course of a season at a college with a high-profile team, a new student might be scouted — and even asked to sign a deal that would go into effect after the student graduates. A new bill introduced by Senator Jerry Morgan (R-Kansas) would limit the types of deals that a student can take. It’s goal is to increase protections and reduce the likelihood of someone trying to take advantage of the student.

Another aspect of college sports the layman might not know about is the medical coverage athletic departments must provide students. The bill would provide a boon to this kind of coverage. In addition, new rules would guide how student athletes transfer from one college to another. This would prevent a student from losing his or her eligibility.

Moran said, “It is vital to establish a consistent national standard for universities and student-athletes. This bill strikes an appropriate balance as we work to empower amateur athletes while maintaining the integrity of college sports that we all know and love.”

The bill (and others like it) was a direct response from a request made by NCAA President Mark Emmert to create rules to determine how student athletes generate income through sports. A California law passed in 2019 would make many NCAA policies borderline illegal in the near future. That’s why the NCAA barred athletes from accepting payments by third-parties, a move that caused significant blowback.

The NCAA leadership has acknowledged the need for significant change in how college sports are handled, but they wish to balance professionalism with what at the core is a program to foster growth in new athletes searching for a career in a particular sport. It isn’t clear whether or not Moran’s bill stands a good chance of passing the Senate.