Proposal to pay Minnesota college athletes introduced to Legislature

California is the only state to have passed such a law.
Publish date:
Gophers quarterback Tanner Morgan prepares to throw a pass against Penn State. 

Gophers quarterback Tanner Morgan prepares to throw a pass against Penn State. 

Hitting the floor of the Minnesota legislature this week is a bill that aims to give student-athletes at most Minnesota colleges the opportunity to be paid for use of their name, image and likeness. 

Sen. Roger Chamberlain (R-Lino Lakes) and Rep. Brad Tabke (DFL-Shakopee) introduced the bill Wednesday, with Chamberlain announcing last October the plan to create a bill that mirrors the California bill that was passed into law last September, effectively allowing student-athletes at California universities to be compensated for use of their name, image and likeness. 

Such bills seek to redress the balance that has seen college sports become a multi-billion dollar enterprise based on the talents of athletes who aren't paid for their efforts, outside of the college education they're getting.

The Minnesota proposal states: "It is the intent of the legislature to continue to develop policies to ensure appropriate protections are in place to avoid exploitation of student athletes, colleges, and universities."

While most states are pursuing payment opportunities for student-athletes of Division I colleges and universities governed by the NCAA, the proposal in Minnesota also aims to create a working group to study the Minnesota College Athletic Conference's (MCAC) rules and regulations regarding the compensation of community college athletes.

The findings of such a study would be reported with recommendations to the legislature and MCAC by July 1, 2022. 

"A postsecondary educational institution shall not uphold any rule, requirement, standard, or other limitation that prevents a student of that institution participating in intercollegiate athletics from earning compensation as a result of the use of the student's name, image, or likeness," the proposal says. 

"Earning compensation from the use of a student's name, image, or likeness shall not affect the student's scholarship eligibility."

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

The bill would not allow scholarships to be revoked in the event a student-athlete is being paid, and would also restrict colleges and athletic associations or conferences from disallowing athletes from hiring agents or professional representation of any kind. 

"Whether you’re a division one, two or three this is money making, and it’s entertainment, and people are getting wealthy off it," Chamberlain said last October, via MRP News. "So, the NCAA will not like it because the bill basically bars them from taking any action against the university or college or athlete for receiving compensation."

The threat of all 50 states passing their own college athlete compensation laws has put pressure on the NCAA or the federal government to step in and find a resolution that would work nationwide. 

"Having, in the end, 50 different state laws is a challenge to anything that’s trying to be operated at a national level around the country,” NCAA President Mark Emmert said in December, according to the Washington Post.

The law in California will go into effect in 2023. 

Next Up

closed sign

What's open and closed in Minnesota on Thanksgiving Day 2020?

Most services will not be running on Thursday and unlike most years, many stores will be closed, too.


How a turkey's brush with celebrity in Bloomington came to a tragic end

DNR: if you care about wild animals, stop feeding them

TCF Bank Stadium

Saturday's Gophers/Badgers football game canceled due to COVID-19 issues

The Battle for Paul Bunyan's Axe will not take place for the first time since 1906.

coronavirus, Iowa

MN health officials don't think downside of COVID-19 peak has arrived

We could be in a trough between a series of waves, Jan Malcolm said.

covid-19, coronavirus

Wisconsin reports record 104 deaths from COVID-19 Tuesday

That's roughly 10% of the total in the nation in a 24-hour period.


Husband and wife sentenced for fraud scheme through their drywall firm

The Annandale pair bilked an insurance company out of more than $300,000.


4 pedestrians suffer life-threatening injuries after being struck by vehicle

Two vehicles crashed into a car that was on the side of the road after striking a deer.

Marcus Carr

Gophers season preview: New lineup, deeper bench, more questions

Mathew Goldstein takes a deep dive into the murky waters of the college hoops season.


Photos: ViV!R, Minneapolis' new Mexican cafe and shop, is now open

The team behind the acclaimed Popol Vuh have opened the cafe in the same space.


At Wiscoy Township's sole precinct, election judges ditched masks

Voter and Wiscoy resident Kaitlyn O'Connor took a photo of the judges after asking them to wear masks, she said



Gov. Walz signs 'hands free' cellphone bill into law

Fines for violating the law could cost drivers up to $275.


MN Legislature passes police accountability package in late-night vote

The bill passed the House and Senate in the early hours of Tuesday.

Proposed bill would raise the smoking age in Minnesota

Five cities have already raised the smoking age to 21.

Minnesota's new DWI law goes into effect August 1

"Little Alan's Law" is in memory of a child killed by a drunk snowmobiler.

College Gameday

'College Gameday' coming to South Dakota, is Minneapolis next?

The Nov. 9 game between the Gophers and Penn State makes some sense.

Kobe Bryant

Athletes react with shock to news of Kobe Bryant's death

Multiple outlets have confirmed that Bryant died in a helicopter crash.

Gopher football

Minnesota lawmakers call for Big Ten sports to continue

Two Minnesota lawmakers joined those from state across the Midwest in a letter to Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren.