Illinois College Athletes Could Sign Endorsements Under New Bill

CHAMPAIGN,IL-SEPTEMBER 28: University of Illinois Fighting Illini football players celebrate a touch down during a game against Miami-OH on Saturday, Sept 28, 2013.


A new bill passed by state lawmakers in Illinois on Tuesday morning could bring big news for college athletes within the state.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Illinois college athletes would be able to sign endorsement deals and hire agents under the new bill as early as this summer.

It’s the latest step towards allowing student-athletes to use their name, image, and likeness for profit.

A vote from the NCAA that was originally scheduled for January has been delayed.

“The spirit of this bill is we want to make sure we’re not only allowing these young people autonomy over their name, image and likeness, but also giving the institutions the opportunity to protect them, because we know we live in a pretty unscrupulous world,” said Rep. Kam Buckner.

There would be some limitations to what endorsements the student-athletes could sign, however.

From the report:

The Illinois legislation, sponsored by a pair of lawmakers who played college football, now moves to Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s desk. If he signs the bill into law, student athletes could begin signing agents and endorsement deals on July 1.

The law would apply to both public and private colleges and universities. It would prohibit college athletes from promoting sports betting, alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, vaping products, adult entertainment or any other product “considered to be inconsistent with the values of a postsecondary institution” or which would bring “embarrassment, scandal or ridicule” to a college or university.

As more and more states continue to pass similar legislation, the NCAA could be forced to abandon its archaic laws that have prohibited athletes from profiting off of their image and likeness for years.

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