In a unanimous decision, the board allowed student athletes to benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness in a manner consistent with the collegiate model.
"This isn't about becoming a professional or an employee based athletic model it's about providing greater opportunity to the students that are there now,” explained NCAA President Mark Emmert.
The decision comes after California passed a law allowing their student athletes to make money off their name image and likeness.
Sports and entertainment attorney Bret Adams said the NCAA is being reactive rather than proactive on this issue, “They had the opportunity to it a long time ago. This is a reaction to what happened in California and what’s about to happen in other states.”
Adams explained the NCAA’s decision brings more balance to the relationship between students athletes and the institutions they play for, “Well this is really good first step in making it an even playing ground to allow these players to benefit to some extent, again not to be paid as professional athletes, but to have some extra spending money.”
Former Buckeye and NFL player Jay Richardson said Tuesday's action should've happened a long time ago, “What this new rule is saying is we’re going to give you an opportunity based on the merits of your abilities and how hard you’re willing to work for it and your own personal likeness, you’ll have an opportunity to only boost your own personal brand, but earn actual dollars on your own for yourself that will benefit their families.”
The NCAA’s new rules go into effect no later than January 2021.