On the heels of hosting college football’s national championship, Indianapolis will serve as the backdrop for another pivotal moment in college athletics. The city is hosting the 2022 NCAA Convention, where membership will vote on several key matters, including a new constitution that will govern college sports. NCAA Vice President of Division 1 Governance Kevin Lennon says one issue stems from a ruling last June by the U.S. Supreme Court that favored athletes over the NCAA when it comes to compensation.
“We happen to lose a Supreme Court decision…that really required us to go about changing the way we do our work,” said Lennon is an interview on Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick. “Change is really no longer an option, but really a necessity. And our membership will address those issues coming up.”
The justices voted 9-0 to uphold the lower courts’ ruling that the NCAA can no longer dictate limits on education-related compensation. It opens the door for compensation in the form of laptop computers, scientific equipment and graduate school costs.
However, Lennon says the ruling did not change the long-held NCAA policy of college athletes not receiving direct paychecks for their performance.
“What we don’t want is pay for play. We don’t want as it to enter into the recruiting environment. And thus, the challenge that our membership continues to address,” said Lennon.
Also last summer, the NCAA adopted an interim policy that suspended the NCAA name, image and likeness rules for all incoming and current student-athletes in all sports. Lennon says the membership will formally vote on NIL during this week’s convention.
“We know how multi-talented they are. We know that they’re more than just athletes, and just students,” said Lennon “This name, image, likeness [policy] gives them an opportunity to share who they fully are and be compensated for that.”
The convention will draw 3,000 visitors, including collegiate athletic directors and university presidents. It begins Wednesday and runs through Saturday.