House committee forwards bill to let college athletes profit from skills

The House Education Committee approved a measure requiring all schools to allow student athletes to earn compensation from the use of their own name, likeness or image.

By Howard Fischer | Capitol Media Services 

State lawmakers are just a step away from allowing athletes at Arizona colleges and universities to profit from their skills, at least indirectly.

With only one dissenting vote, the House Education Committee approved a measure requiring all schools to allow student athletes to earn compensation from the use of their own name, likeness or image. That would pretty much place them on par with professional athletes who now can get cash for endorsements and other products and services bearing their names.

Potentially more significant, SB1296 would ensure that any student who takes advantage of this does not lose a scholarship or forfeit the right to compete. And Sen. T.J. Shope, R-Coolidge, said that, by extension, it means that their schools don’t end up getting dinged by the National College Athletic Association, which sets the rules that schools must obey.

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