Thanks to a recent NCAA interim policy change and a new law, student-athletes in Mississippi can now be paid for use of their name, image, and likeness (NIL). This opens up new opportunities for students involved in collegiate sports to earn money.
On April 16, 2021, Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves signed a bill allowing student-athletes the long-awaited privilege of being compensated for their name, image, and likeness (“NIL”). This bill became effective on July 1, 2021. This legislation possessed similar provisions to the other 7 states which had NIL laws take effect on July 1, 2021, some of which include:
Although similar to other states in many facets, Mississippi’s NIL laws include some provisions unique to the state, including:
At midnight, as the date turned to July 1, 2021, Antwan Owen’s, a Jackson State football player, became one of the first student-athletes to sign an endorsement deal. His agreement is with 3 Kings Grooming, a black-owned hair product business. The company struck similar deals with four other players at the university. The deal was facilitated by ICON Source, a digital marketplace that connects athletes with brands.
Throughout the state, businesses of all sizes are seeking athletes to endorse their company. Parker-McGill Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Starkville was one of the first local business offering Mississippi State players the opportunity to make money through endorsements. The dealerships general manager says the plan is to select a handful of student-athletes across different sports and begin their relationship with a social media campaign. The hope is that they can partner with athletes who are not on scholarship, but now have this opportunity to earn extra money.
For these student-athletes, the possibilities are truly endless as to how they can now earn money off of their own NIL. Business of all sizes are looking to partner with athletes across the state. On July 1, 2021, Mississippi took a big leap forward in the ongoing battle of student-athletes being fairly compensated for the revenue they produce for the NCAA. This legislation will ensure that student-athletes will be compensated for their NIL, while providing and maintaining structure and guidelines for these student-athletes throughout the process. If you need assistance developing an appropriate policy to comply with the state law or you are an athlete, school, or business looking for guidance on complying with NCAA rules and state law, contact our attorneys.