SAN FRANCISCO | Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott has expressed serious concerns about a new law that would allow college athletes in California to hire agents and be compensated for the use of their name or likeness through endorsement deals.
The law signed last week by Gov. Gavin Newsom would blur the lines between college athletics and professional sports, Scott said Monday at Pac-12 women’s basketball media day. Also, other states considering similar legislation would create an unbalanced state-by-state approach to governing amateur sports.
“We are for choice and if young people want to earn money from their name, image or likeness or get paid to play, they should have that opportunity. That’s called pro sports,” said Scott, who met with the coaches and student-athletes Monday morning. “College sports is different. You go to get an education. It’s amateur, they’re students. Those are the defining characteristics and we’d like to see those lines not get blurred.”
The California law is set to take effect in 2023.
Also Monday, Oregon was picked to win the Pac-12 for the third straight season in a poll of the conference coaches, followed by perennial power and defending Pac-12 Tournament champion Stanford and Oregon State in third.
Scott announced that the Pac-12 finalized arrangements to hold the men’s and women’s conference tournaments in Las Vegas for two more years, through March 2022.