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BONEYARD: Is the NCAA ready to get serious about NIL enforcement?

The NCAA has changed their enforcement process as it relates to Name, Image and Likeness potential violations. In most cases, would-be offenders are given the presumption of innocence. Of course, most of the time the NCAA investigators begin snooping around the goose is already cooked. That said, there is still a process where the enforcement staff has to build a case. Schools get the opportunity to defend themselves before the Committee on Infractions.

Late last year, the D1 council adopted some new measures to police NIL outlaws. One consistent theme has been that NIL cannot be used as part of the recruiting process. Newsflash: it is. There have been countless articles on the subject. Some schools through the efforts of a collective are skirting NCAA rules and offering NIL compensation as an improper inducement.

It is brazen and often public. When will the NCAA do something about it? It appears that day may be approaching. In a now released memo, the NCAA shares that schools will now have to prove a violation did not occur. In other matters, the burden of proof is on the NCAA. Things are changing now as schools and players have to prove their innocence. To date, no school has been formally charged with an NIL related allegation. Until they are, business will continue as it has since NIL was made legal.

At issue are third parties working on behalf of schools to sweeten the pot for recruits. The most notable case is that of quarterback Jaden Rashada who is now headed to Arizona State. He originally committed to Miami. A lucrative NIL deal was discussed in the media reports that accompanied that pledge.

Rashada eventually flipped to Florida. An NIL deal worth a reported 13 million dollars made the rounds. True or untrue, it is a bad look for Florida, the SEC and all of college football. The story took another twist when Rashada asked out of his national letter of intent. Rumors suggest that those responsible for the NIL deal reneged on the monies owed. One has to wonder how much of that is true, but one thing is certain. Rashada is no longer a Florida Gator.

With the public nature of these deals and some media companies claiming to have seen written contracts, the NCAA has to act. The rules are in place for a purpose. The law abiders are at the disadvantage here. It is up to the NCAA to ensure that the playing field is a lot more level. They have a duty to protect the programs working within the framework of the bylaws.

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