NCAA athletes in Pa. granted control over name, image, likeness

Can now be fairly compensated for their hard work

HARRISBURG, July 1 – With Gov. Tom Wolf’s signing of Act 26 of 2021, college athletes in Pennsylvania were given control over their name, image, and likeness. Much of the language for this provision of the bill was based off the PA Fair Pay for Play Act proposal, introduced earlier this year by Reps. Ed Gainey and Dan Miller, both D-Allegheny.

Now that the bill has become law, college athletes in Pennsylvania may be compensated for the use of their name, image, and likeness. For example, athletes who are used to create team jerseys, college team video games, and/or college team trading cards can now be paid royalties. Additionally, these college athletes are now allowed to hire professional representation, such as agents, to negotiate contracts on their behalf.

“Pennsylvania’s college athletes are finally able to make money for the hard work they put in each day for their team, institution, and fans,” said Gainey. “It’s long overdue, but the college athletics system is now a fairer and more equitable one.”

“College sports is a multi-billion-dollar industry that thrives due to the hard work and dedication of its athletes. By granting them the ability to earn money and contract like anyone else, we will be increasing economic freedom and opportunity,” said Miller. “This will also help make sure that our schools remain competitive for attracting athletes from across the country.”

Ramogi Huma, executive director for the National College Players Association, worked closely with Gainey and Miller to drive the legislation.

“The NCAA has no business excluding college athletes from the rights and freedoms afforded to other students and Americans,” said Huma. “This is a great day for current and generations of future Pennsylvania college athletes. We are grateful to Representatives Dan Miller and Ed Gainey for standing up for college athletes.”

“I am very grateful for the lawmakers who helped make this bill happen and cannot wait to see the changes it enacts in college sports for the benefit of student athletes. This will open up a lot of opportunities for female athletes to profit and make money as well,” said Anna Camden, a member of the Penn State University women’s basketball team.

“This NIL bill being passed will be monumental for collegiate sports. Now we can use our talents and our personality to benefit us financially like students in areas other than athletics,” said Myles Dread, a member of the Penn State University men’s basketball team.

After the bill signing on Wednesday, the NCAA announced all college athletes across the country will have the opportunity to benefit from their name, image and likeness beginning Thursday.