The NCAA has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to review an antitrust case that allows schools to better compensate student-athletes.
The NCAA claims the Alston/Grant-in-Aid case inconsistently applies antitrust laws and “blurs the line between student-athletes and professionals.”
The ruling came from former West Virginia football player Shawne Alston‘s lawsuit against the NCAA. That suit brought about a permanent injunction against the NCAA‘s limits on athlete compensation, per USA Today.
The USA Today story draws an important distinction: while the NCAA is currently making moves to loosen its name-image-likeness (NIL) rules, it is also working legally to oppose the Alston injunction. The major difference: NIL legislation would allow athletes to earn money from third parties, while the Alston injunction allows schools to directly compensate students more.
Current NCAA rules restrict student-athlete compensation to only covering the cost of attending college – that can include compensation to cover things like tuition, room & board, and textbooks. But the USA Today report says the injunction the NCAA opposes could allow schools to compensate athletes even further as long as the payments can be related to education. That could include things like internships or postgraduate scholarships. The NCAA says such payments would turn college student-athletes from amateurs to professionals.