Texas College Athletes Can Now Enjoy Their Name, Image & Likeness – Houston Public Media


Frederick Lewis, a student at the University of Houston, leads the track and field.

Frederick Lewis, a student at the University of Houston, has more than 76,000 subscribers on TIC Tac for his videos on mental health, racial disparities, historical facts and spirituality.

However, because he leads Division 1 athletics, he declined offers from the brands that contacted him. Lewis was also unable to benefit from the TikTok Creator Fund, the company’s social media program to monetize content from popular creators.

This is all thanks to the rules that have traditionally prohibited college athletes from making money with their name, image and likeness – or, NIL.

“When we go back to campus each year, we have to re-sign these contracts,” Lewis said. “A social media contract – one for school, then one for NCAA rules.”

A Texas law that went into effect Thursday changed that: State college athletes can now earn money with their personal brand for the first time.

A screenshot of one of the FTikTok by rederick Lewis video. The video shown was about the cultural appropriation of haute couture.

“It was truly a sigh of relief,” Lewis said. “Now that we can actually do this, I don’t have to limit myself anymore.”

The law, along with similar ones adopted by several states, lobbied the National Collegiate Athletics Association recently suspended her period that prohibit athletes from receiving compensation for things like brand sponsorships, social media promotions and personal appearances.

College athletes nationwide can now also benefit from NIL until Congress passes federal legislation to deal with states without laws.

The NCAA has been reluctant to make these changes due to the organization’s focus on amateurism.

“Amateurism has been a fundamental part of varsity athletics since its inception in the early 1900s,” said Rick Evrard, a varsity athletics lawyer specializing in NCAA compliance.

The NCAA said that NIL compensation would be blur the lines between college and professional sport.

the The new money-making ability for student-athletes now raises the question of how college sports might change.

“It’s the Wild West as far as how student athletes are going to be treated now,” Evrard said. “This is a new era where we will have to see exactly how and when limitations, if any, are imposed on these student-athletes. “

Unlike other states, Texas already has rules regarding NIL compensation. Athletes are prohibited from endorsing brands of alcohol, tobacco, gambling, and sex. It also requires student-athletes to take a workshop on financial literacy and life skills.

Some researchers are already responding to these changes. Earlier this week, the University of Houston announced LIFTOFF, a set of resources the school offers athletes to help them navigate the NIL rules and build their brands. These tools have already been featured in promotional material for UH athletics.

As the law takes effect, Frederick Lewis is thinking about his future, now that he is a rising senior.

“I’m getting older and getting closer and closer to graduation,” Lewis said. “After I leave college, I should be able to have something of my own name to stand on. Anything I can do to settle down after college, after NCAA track and field, I would definitely grab. the opportunity to do so. “

Disclosure: Houston Public Media is licensed to the University of Houston.

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