On June 12, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a name, image and likeness (“NIL”) bill into law, moving up the deadline for the NCAA to complete ongoing efforts to modernize its NIL rules. Unlike California’s Fair Pay to Play Act and Colorado’s NIL bill, which have both been previously signed with effective dates in 2023, the Florida NIL bill would allow student-athletes to profit off their NIL in Florida beginning July 1, 2021. More than 30 additional states have pending NIL legislation moving through the legislative process.
While the NCAA has dealt with a myriad of issues in 2020, NIL modernization efforts continue to press forward, and the Florida law sets a tighter timeline for either the NCAA or the federal government to put forward a national standard to avoid a state-by-state approach to NIL issues. While the specific form the NIL rule changes will take is not yet clear, it seems near certain that student-athletes will be allowed to profit off their NIL rights in the very near future.