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4 Things To Know About California's "Fair Pay to Play Act" That Benefits Collegiate Athletes

Here are four takeaways from California's foray into the world of collegiate sports.

There's a new order on the horizon in the world of collegiate sports and it begins with California. On Monday (Sept. 30), the state's Gov. Gavin Newsom authorized the "Fair Pay to Play Act" that grants student-athletes the opportunity to profit off of their likeness and hire agents. That means a student at a California-based university or college can entertain endorsements without being penalized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The bill is set to go into effect in January 2023.

The NCAA also issued a statement citing there's confusion brewing within the collegiate sports sphere. "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 statement reads. In 2017, the NCAA surpassed $1 billion in revenue for the first time.

Here are four takeaways from California's foray into the world of collegiate sports.

What Restrictions Are Now Placed On The NCAA?
This leaves the NCAA without the power to ban an athlete or their respective university from a competition. California's student-athletes will gain the opportunity to market their name and likeness "to outside bidders." Community colleges, however, remain exempt from the state's law.

Other States Plan To Get In On The Action:
Earlier this month, Brooklyn, New York's Sen. Kevin Parker recently advocated for the state to mandate that colleges pay its athletes, citing equity as the main root. "These young people are adding their skill, talent and labor to these universities," Parker said per ESPN. "You don't need the shortcuts and the end-arounds because now we're providing some real support for these student-athletes." Parker's legislation would require a collegiate school's athletic department to disperse 15 percent of its yearly ticket revenue to its athletes.

Before California's bill, the NCAA allowed tennis players to receive prize money no more than $10,000. Other student-athletes within the "Power 5" also are eligible to receive anywhere between $2,000-$4,000 in "cost-of-living stipends." The Power 5 conferences include SEC, Big Ten, Pac-12, ACC, and Big Twelve.

Professional Athletes Previously Voiced Concern Over The NCAA's Restrictions:
In February 2018, LeBron James scrutinized the NCAA's longstanding practice of not compensating athletes and referred to it as a "corrupt" company following a string of college basketball recruiting investigations. James even produced a documentary on the NCAA that highlights the astronomical salaries paid to coaches and secret endorsements.

"I do know what five-star athletes bring to a campus, both in basketball and football. I know how much these college coaches get paid. I know how much these colleges are gaining off these kids," he said per ESPN. "I've always heard the narrative that they get a free education, but you guys are not bringing me on campus to get an education, you guys are bringing me on it to help you get to a Final Four or to a national championship, so it's just a weird thing."

While California's bill also allows athletes the right to seek out an agent, the NCAA tried to get ahead by implementing a rule stating agents who express interest in student-athletes looking to enroll in the NBA draft must have a three-year certification with the league, take a test at the organization's main office, and must've graduated with a bachelor's degree.

NCAA Believes California's Decision Will Blur The Lines Between Amateur And Professional Athletes:
The Associated Press notes being a part of the NCAA is voluntary, meaning if the organization begins to impose bans or further restrictions on universities and colleges in California, those schools have the ability to part ways from the company and possibly form its own league. The NCAA took issue with the state's ruling stating the playing field will become uneven. “Right now, nearly half a million student-athletes in all 50 states compete under the same rules,” a statement reads. “This bill would remove that essential element of fairness and equal treatment that forms the bedrock of college sports.”

The organization reportedly asked California's legislatures to remain steady on passing the bill so that its committee can review its own mandate that allows collegiate athletes a similar opportunity.

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DJ D-Nice, Swae Lee And Victor Oladipo Sign Up For NBA’s Instagram Live Performances

Although the NBA is currently on hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the professional basketball league is still giving fans content to dissect. On Friday (March 27), the entity continues its NBA Together Live campaign with performances from Rae Sremmurd’s Swae Lee alongside Indiana Pacers’ Victor Oladipo (who also sings), and DJ D-Nice who has kept the virtual dance party going since earlier this month.

The NBA Together program was launched in response to the virus’ outbreak that has plagued several countries. Stateside, New York has remained the epicenter of the coronavirus’ contagion rate.

"The program is centered on four pillars—Know the Facts, Acts of Caring, Expand Your Community and NBA Together Live—that will amplify the latest global health and safety information, share guidelines and resources, and keep people and communities socially connected through digital tools and virtual events as everyone copes with the impact of the pandemic," a statement from the entity reads. "As part of NBA Together, the NBA family is committed to contributing and helping raise more than $50 million to support people impacted by the coronavirus and community and healthcare organizations providing vital services around the world, which includes the more than $30 million financial commitment already made by NBA and WNBA teams and players to date."

Swae Lee and Oladipo will launch their performances on the NBA’s Instagram channel at 3 p.m. EST while DJ D-Nice will take over from 7-9 p.m. EST.

 

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#NBATogetherLive brings you a special edition of @dnice’s #ClubQuarantine on @nba IG LIVE at 7:00pm/et TONIGHT!

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🎙 @vicoladipo of the @pacers will be going live on our NBA Instagram at 3:00pm/et TODAY for a concert with some special guests! #NBATogetherLive

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The 2020 Tokyo Olympics Postponed To 2021

One of the world’s largest sports gatherings has a new date. According to the Associated Press, Japan's Tokyo Olympics 2020 will take action in 2021 due to health concerns over COVID-19. The virus' global outbreak has placed a halt on a number of planned gatherings and grounded various travel plans leading into the spring and summer months.

"In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community," a statement from the International Olympic Committee reads.

The games were set to begin July 24-August 7, with the AP noting hotels and other entities previously signed off on contracts for those dates. While the postponement must happen on a date before the summer next year, it’ll still be referred to as the Tokyo Olympics 2020. The news website also published that the country has reportedly spent $28 billion in accommodations and preparations. Although the torch relay was set to begin this week (March 26), the display will live in Fukushima, Japan.

Due to war, the Olympics in 1916, 1940 and 1944 were canceled, but the AP states this is the first time the Olympics were postponed, even due to a virus. Globally, the number of positive cases for COVID-19 reached upwards of 375,000.

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Kevin Durant Tests Positive For Coronavirus

The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 has already impacted basketball fans with the suspension of the NBA season and the cancellation of the NCAA tournament. But now, another prominent player has tested positive: Kevin Durant.

Durant, a star for the Brooklyn Nets, has been sidelined all season after tearing his Achilles' tendon in 2019 while playing for the Golden State Warriors. But the former MVP and two-time champion told The Athletic that he has still tested positive for the coronavirus. He insists that he "feels fine," and brought a message of calmness and hope.

Kevin Durant tested positive for coronavirus, Durant tells @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium. Durant says he is feeling fine: "Everyone be careful, take care of yourself and quarantine. We're going to get through this."

— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 17, 2020

"Everyone be careful, take care of yourself and quarantine," Durant said. "We're going to get through this."

The NBA suspended its season after Rudy Gobert, a two-time Defensive Player of the Year for the Utah Jazz, was tested positive for the coronavirus. Donovan Mitchell, another star on the team, also tested positive. Today saw the news of Durant and three of his Nets teammates being infected. Various NBA players, including Zion Williamson and Blake Griffin, have pledged to donate money to help NBA employees survive during the league's suspension.

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