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OPINION | WALLY HALL: NIL must be controlled and accountable

by Wally Hall | July 28, 2022 at 2:09 a.m.

Every college coach and administrator is concerned about Name, Image and Likeness.

Right now, a school can pay $6 million for a quarterback, which has been reported, and there is no one who can say you can't do that.

The problem is going to be when quarterbacks are making that kind of money and offensive linemen are getting $20,000 a year, if they are lucky.

How long before that lineman tires of protecting that quarterback?

Which is why it won't be surprising next week when the Transformation Committee makes it recommendations to the NCAA that there be a salary cap.

Many pro sports have one, and the only thing keeping college athletes from being declared professional is someone saying it.

SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey and Ohio University Athletic Director Julie Cromer head up the Transformation Committee, and transformation means change, and they are both progressive thinkers.

Next Wednesday, or very soon, the proposal will be made that every scholarship athlete playing on the highest level of competition be paid $40,000 a year.

That's a really good chunk of change for a 18-year-old, regardless of position.

It will cost the schools millions, but this NIL business has to be made transparent and it needs to be controlled and accountable.

It would take the cooperation of every school and that could be the stumbling block.

. . .

Last week as SEC Media Days was winding down, the University of Georgia stole the spotlight when it was revealed football Coach Kirby Smart had gotten a contract extension.

The new deal runs through 2031 and will pay him between $10.25 million and $12.25 million per season.

That's Nick Saban money. It is better than most NFL coaches. It is wealth that could last generations.

It is also problematic in that head coaches of other sports are going to want more money -- football assistant coaches, too.

Smart becomes the highest paid college coach in the country months after winning his first national championship.

Got to believe Saban's agent will be asking to meet with Alabama leaders and about a re-do on his contract.

He's won seven national championships, six at Alabama, and he's 4-1 against Smart, a former assistant at Alabama.

The 46-year old Smart is a Georgia man through and through.

He played football for the Bulldogs and turned down several head coaching jobs while defensive coordinator for the Crimson Tide until his alma mater called.

His wife played basketball at Georgia.

In six seasons, he is 66-15 overall and 40-9 in SEC play and he's never had a losing season as a head coach.

. . .

In an unrelated but historical sports moment, LSU has finally unveiled the "Pistol Pete" Maravich's statue.

It was six years in the works.

He is the all-time leading scorer in NCAA with 3,667 points and that was before the three-point line. It has been reported more than 1,200 of his field goals were well beyond the three-point arc.

It would seem natural the statue would be of Maravich making one of his picture-perfect jump shots, but his wife and sons made the suggestion that his ball handling skills be featured.

Maravich grew up a coach's son, playing for his dad Press at LSU, and was a prolific passer, so the statue is of him making a right-handed behind the back pass is good.

Maravich averaged 5.1 assists and 6.5 rebounds per game for the Tigers.

LSU had previously honored Maravich by naming the basketball arena after him, but it is outdated.

The statue, though, is a great compliment to one of the all-time great players.

Print Headline: NIL must be controlled and accountable


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