In a call with reporters on Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Auburn) announced that his NIL legislation was complete.
"I've been working on this legislation for more than a year with my friend, Senator Joe Manchin," he told reporters. "Our bill is finished, and it's ready to go."
As far as a timeline, Tuberville said, "We're planning to introduce it hopefully this week, but it could be next week."
The former head Auburn football coach said he was "all for" student-athletes making money but warned that under the current system of NIL, college athletics were "in bad and very serious danger."
Tuberville outlined some of his concerns to reporters: "[N]umber one is the education of the student-athlete. Number two is the future of women's sports and Olympic sports because if we continue down this road, all the money's gonna go to several athletes on different teams, and the money to support these non-revenue sports is not gonna be there."
He said the goal was to set a level NIL playing field for all NCAA athletics.
"Right now, we have several states that are just totally different than any other states," he explained. "You can't have a separate rule book. You can't have four downs for one team to make the first down and three downs for other teams. Basically, that's what we're looking at. We've got to get everybody on the same page. We've got to make it fair for everybody across the country in all 50 states."
Tuberville also made clear that he wanted his and Manchin's legislation to be as unintrusive as possible.
"We want to give the NCAA the opportunity to say [to schools], 'Here are your basic rules. Go with it. Make your own rules from there,'" he explained. "We don't want to be the end of all, and I don't think we need to do that."
One of Tuberville's concerns is getting enough Democrats to support the bill.
"A lot of them want to unionize athletes. That's not acceptable," he declared. "These are young people that deserve to get an education. And hopefully, we can get enough votes on the Democratic side."
To connect with the story's author or comment, email email@example.com.
Don't miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.