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College athletes in two-state will be compensated for name, image, likeness under law

The South Carolina Gamecocks kicked off fall camp on Friday to prepare for their season opener...
The South Carolina Gamecocks kicked off fall camp on Friday to prepare for their season opener on August 31.((Source: WIS))
Published: May. 6, 2021 at 10:44 AM CDT
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ATHENS, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Two bills signed yesterday will affect how all student collegiate athletes play sports in Georgia and South Carolina.

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp paid a visit to the University of Georgia to sign House Bill 617, and this legislation is to ensure that student collegiate athletes in Georgia are paid for the use of their name, image, and likeness.

“College athletics are an essential part of the fabric of who we are as Georgians,” Kemp said during his visit. “It is well past time for college athletes to be fairly compensated for all that they do for our universities and our state.”

“It is our hope that this bill will encourage more student athletes to come to Georgia to receive both a great education and the opportunity to compete at the highest level. As a diehard Georgia sports fan, I am so proud of the contributions that our student athletes have made to our great state and look forward to cheering them on as we fully re-open and return back to normal,” he said.

Watch Kemp’s full remarks below.

Later that afternoon, South Carolina Governor Henry McMasters also signed the Palmetto State’s version of the legislation.

South Carolina’s bill, S.685, allows for student-athletes to earn money as long as they do not use their college or university’s logos, uniforms or facilities to do so. It also prohibits athletes from being paid to attend particular schools. It won’t go into effect until 2022, giving the NCAA enough time to revamp its guidelines to accommodate athletes making money off the field.

South Carolina student-athletes are also banned from promoting tobacco, alcohol or other things barred by NCAA guidelines.

The two states join other states such as Florida, Alabama, Arkansas, and Mississippi in enacting their own NIL laws. Federal NIL legislation is also pending in Congress.

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Copyright 2021 WRDW/WAGT. All rights reserved. WMBF contributed to this report.