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WVU AD Oliver Luck: Student-athletes have ‘constitutional right’ to name and likeness compensation

Oliver Luck AP

Finally, a high-ranking college official has taken a stand on something incredibly logical: College athletes should be compensated for use of their name and likeness.

West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck was the one to come out and stated the obvious, via CBS Sports‘ Jeremy Fowler. Luck said student-athletes have a “constitutional right” to their name/image/likeness — duh — and added:

“That is who you are…That’s sort of existential,” Luck said. “If we are in fact using name, image and likeness of student-athletes, they should be compensated.”

This is a common complaint in the O’Bannon case and among student-athletes around the country. A former Notre Dame player told me earlier this year it always amazed him how many No. 5 Notre Dame jerseys were sold in 2012 and how Manti Te’o saw none of that money. EA Sports’ NCAA Football franchise never hid the fact No. 2 on Texas A&M was Johnny Manziel.

Still, that Luck came out and said it — and Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby agreed with it — probably speaks more to the entrenched system of doing things in the NCAA than it does a bold step from an AD or conference honcho.

Fowler provides a lot more important context to Luck’s quote in his story, so give it a read.

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10 Responses to “WVU AD Oliver Luck: Student-athletes have ‘constitutional right’ to name and likeness compensation”
  1. 8to80texansblog says: Aug 7, 2014 10:28 AM

    I agree with Luck completely, but it creates a HUGE problem in college sports.

    If Snyder thinks college athletics have sold out now, wait until boosters and agents are paying 6 digits to recruits for their “likeness”.

  2. floridacock says: Aug 7, 2014 10:40 AM

    This is the only logical step and should have been implemented years ago. As the student is associated with the University, his likeness and the schools will should be controlled by the school, so no shenanigans get started. Just get them paid.

  3. 8to80texansblog says: Aug 7, 2014 10:53 AM

    Gaming of that system is inevitable though…

  4. germanflats13a38 says: Aug 7, 2014 11:22 AM

    Jersey’s seem problematic when their is no name on the jersey.

    I found this persuasive from a co-worker. The number 12 for BAMA is a popular number to put on a jersey because:

    1. BAMA claimed 12 MNC at one point in time, and people bought jerseys to commemorate that fact; and

    2. The following players wore number 12

    Paul “Bear” Bryant
    Greg McElroy
    Joe Namath
    Brodie Croyle
    Kenny Stabler
    Pat Trammel
    Harry Gilmer
    John Phillips
    Robert Fraley
    Billy Ray

    So if you buy a number 12 tomorrow, should freshman QB David Cornwell get the money, should he slit it with all other players who have worn the jersey, or does the number and jersey belong to BAMA.

    If the number was retired, I would say that their is an argument that an ownership interest may apply.

  5. sweepthleg says: Aug 7, 2014 11:27 AM

    Slowly the wheels turn as the power 5 conference realize they have to give more to revenue sports athletes. All the while the NCAA keeps putting it’s head in the sand hoping the gravy train never stops.

    I still say the easiest thing is make revenue sports athletes like Football & Basketball university employees that have the option of actually attending the university. This makes their actual rights clear as to what and how they deserve to be compensated.

  6. germanflats13a38 says: Aug 7, 2014 11:32 AM

    Divide the big 12 into the other Big Five conferences, and things would be really interesting. I don’t see that happening though. Too bad.

  7. 8to80texansblog says: Aug 7, 2014 11:39 AM

    I’m sorry but I completely disagree with that “employee” idea with school “optional”

    I understand that the NCAA is making big time bucks off of these athletes, and sure some of them could care less about school as they are just biding their time before they get paid on Sunday, but that idea is just giving up.

    Otherwise it’s not college football anymore… it’s minor league football without a salary cap.

    Allowing athletes to profit off their likeness and name is a different story though. While that option presents obvious challenges, I believe it’s the ONLY way to fairly compensate athletes above and beyond their scholarships, which are usually 6 figures plus for 4-5 years of school.

  8. bigjdve says: Aug 7, 2014 11:47 AM

    While I don’t think that they kids should be to be players. I do think that they should be compensated for their likenesses.

    Give them a portion of the profits generated, and let them get paid for autographs, appearances, and the like.

  9. sweepthleg says: Aug 7, 2014 12:32 PM

    It is minor league football now at least as far as the majority of teams in the Power 5 conferences are concerned. We are just removing the rose colored glasses and saying this is what this is so the players involved can get fairly compensated for their talent and skills.

    But, you want to watch the best athletes play at the highest level, and still have that thin lie in front of you that they are just regular students playing a game in their spare time, and not highly trained athletes playing a game that generates billions of dollars. When the face value of the college football championship game is like $656.00 and if you cheer for a power 5 school you cant get a ticket to a premier game for less than $125.00 then you are watching a professional sport.

    If you want a return to times passed watch the Ivy League where football is treated more as a club sport activity.

  10. corvusrex96 says: Aug 7, 2014 2:13 PM

    Still don’t understand why everyone is only focused on on whether the players get paid for schools using their name & likeness.

    What about option 3 ?? Stop profiting from the student / athlete’s likeness (i.e.. stop selling the jerseys.)

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