“Fair Pay to Play” Might Be Coming to Minnesota Universities

Minnesota House Representative Nolan West plans to introduce the bill

VERMILLION, SD—You can call it a snow-ball effect.

California lawmakers recently passed the “Fair  Pay to Play Act” allowing college athletes there to make money off their likeness, and now more states are aiming to follow suit.

Minnesota is one of the states ready to introduce a similar bill.

“It’s kind of ridiculous that the people generating the income aren’t seeing a dime of it. So, we should at least let them go into business for themselves,” said Nolan West, Minnesota House Representative.

West wants to see the athletes get paid.

He is going to introduce a bill similar to California’s “Fair Pay to Play Act” in Minnesota’s 2020 legislative session.

So players can hire an agent and seek out business deals while in school, which is illegal in the NCAA right now.

If passed this could mean a big edge in recruiting for Minnesota universities.

“It’s going to be complicated. I do agree that students should be given benefits from their likeness. But how and what’s in the weeds of rule, what’s going to happen, and how we’re going to legislate it is going be very very interesting,” said USD Head Basketball Coach Todd Lee.

USD Men’s Basketball Coach Todd Lee believes if Minnesota gets the legislation passed it wouldn’t mean a dip in recruiting for South Dakota.

But, it would eventually even the playing field and allow all college athletes to make a profit.

“What I think would happen with the NCAA is they would have to make it all across the board one way or another. I would not think they would allow schools in certain states to implement the rule,” said Lee.

That is exactly what Representative West wants as well.

“My hope is that this law is obsolete in 10 years or less because the NCAA is going to have to change its policies is what it comes down to,” said West.

Minnesota is not the only mid-west state planning on introducing “Fair Pay to Play” legislation, Colorado and Illinois lawmakers are as well.

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