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Did NCAA Really Agree to Allow College Athlete NIL Compensation? Nope

https://unafraidshow.com/did-ncaa-really-agree-to-allow-college-athlete-nil-compensation-nope/

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On Tuesday, the NCAA’s working group released its decision on the college athlete name, image, and likeness (NIL) compensation issue. Or did they? All of the headlines immediately read that the NCAA allows college athlete NIL compensation. At first glance, the NCAA’s statement would lead one to believe that they did just that. The statement read that “the NCAA’s top governing board voted unanimously to permit students participating in athletics the opportunity to benefit from the use of their name, image, and likeness.” However, when looking a bit closer it becomes very apparent that the NCAA never used the word compensation in the context of allowing NIL payments. The NCAA danced around the compensation issue without ever calling it compensation.

In fact, the NCAA was not clear at all about how they plan to address the college athlete NIL compensation issue. They essentially addressed the issue without truly addressing the issue. Their statement is riddled with unclear ambiguous language that essentially renders the NCAA’s true stance on the issue unclear. The NCAA’s lack of clarity should come as no surprise. After all the NCAA is only addressing NIL compensation after being forced to do so.

The NCAA was Strong-Armed into Addressing College Athlete NIL Compensation

2019 has been a volatile year for the NCAA. State and federal lawmakers have become increasingly vocal about the injustices that plague the college athletics system. Several lawmakers introduced legislation to remedy those injustices. In January, Washington State Senator, Drew Stokesbary, introduced legislation to allow college athletes in Washington state to profit from their NIL. Soon after, Congressman Mark Walker introduced the Student-Athlete Equity Act. Under the Student-Athlete Equity Act, the NCAA would lose its tax-exempt status if it does not allow college athlete NIL compensation. While these bills were being introduced, lawmakers in California were debating the Fair Pay to Play Act. All of this led the NCAA to create a working group to address the NIL compensation issues.

However, the working group did not work fast enough for California. California Governor Gavin Newsom signed the Fair Pay to Play Act into law. Under the law, college athletes in California will be allowed to profit from their name, image, and likeness and sign with agents starting in 2023. In spite of the NCAA’s efforts to thwart the Fair Pay to Play Act, it still became law. As a result, the NCAA’s working group had no choice but acknowledge the need to “modernize” their rules in favor of college athlete NIL compensation. The NCAA was forced to either move towards NIL compensation or to at the very least appear to be moving towards NIL compensation. It seems as though the NCAA has chosen to appear to be moving forward with college athlete NIL compensation.

The NCAA Has Chosen to Give the Appearance of Moving Towards College Athlete NIL Compensation Instead of Truly Moving Towards it

While the NCAA has everyone saying that they have decided to allow college athlete NIL compensation, that is not exactly true. In fact, the NCAA never used the word compensation in that context. The NCAA voted to allow college athletes to “benefit” from the use of their name, image, and likeness, not to be compensated. It is not clear what “benefit” actually means. What kind of “benefit” will the NCAA allow? How are NIL benefits different from NIL compensation? However, what the NCAA did make clear is that the “benefit” will be done “in a manner consistent with the current collegiate model.” In true NCAA fashion, the NCAA spared no expense in making it clear that they are dedicated to preserving as much of the current collegiate model as possible. In fact, the NCAA set out a list of guidelines that are dedicated to doing just that.

The NCAA’s Rule Modernization Guidelines

As a part of its effort to allow college athletes to “benefit” from their NIL, the NCAA has urged each division to consider modernization of its bylaws and policies. To help each division with doing that, the working group created a set of guidelines for each division to consider. However, those principles and guidelines seem to be more about ensuring that the divisions create bylaws that maintain the NCAA’s commitment to amateurism.

For example, the NCAA has urged its divisions to amend their rules so that athletes receive similar treatment as other students. However, the guidelines provide a caveat that will allow athletes to be treated differently when there is a compelling reason for doing so. However, in true NCAA fashion, there is no clarity on what is a permissible compelling reason for different treatment. Additionally, the guidelines require that the amended bylaws maintain a “clear distinction between collegiate and professional opportunities.” This is clear amateurism perservation language.

The NCAA also urged that the bylaws be amended so that it is clear that “compensation for athletic performance or participation is impermissible.” In fact, that is the only context in which the NCAA made reference to compensation. They mentioned it to reiterate that compensation related to athletic performance is not permissible. Furthermore, the NCAA instructed that the bylaws be amended with the caveat that “student-athletes are students first and not employees of the university.” Again, their true focus is on preserving amateurism.

The NCAA’s Statement is not the Earth Shattering Development it was Made out to be

While the NCAA’s statement is noteworthy, it is not the groundbreaking development it was made out to be. It is noteworthy because the NCAA finally acknowledged that college athletes should be allowed to “benefit” from their NIL. However, it is not groundbreaking because the NCAA is still committed to preserving the farce of amateurism. After all, the NCAA is only addressing this issue after realizing that they had no choice. The NCAA was very careful not to say that college athletes are allowed to receive compensation. They strategically used the word “benefit” and neglected to define what a “benefit” would be.

While some of the guidelines addressed the betterment of college athletes, there was a heavy focus on protecting amateurism. The guidelines also created more questions than answers. It is for these reasons that the NCAA’s statement feels like a half measure that was intended to slow down the momentum of related legislation. Furthermore, the statement does not address college athletes’ ability to sign with agents. The NCAA addressed this issue during the summer for elite men’s basketball players. The NCAA needs to address this in the broader context as the Fair Pay to Play Act and other proposed legislation seeks to allow college athletes to sign with agents. The most useful finding that comes out of this statement is the fact that the NCAA has acknowledged the need for change. However, what form the NCAA will allow that change to take is still very unclear.

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Brett Lee urges Australia to give Pat Cummins the new-ball in Test series against Pakistan

https://sport360.com/article/cricket/international-cricket/338221/brett-lee-urges-australia-to-give-pat-cummins-the-new-ball-in-test-series-against-pakistan

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Babar’s Azam maiden series as Pakistan’s T20I captain proved to be a chastening experience with the Men in Green comprehensively turned over by Australia (2-0) in the three-match series.

The visitors were thoroughly outplayed in all departments by the Aussies and would most definitely have lost their current No1 ranking as well, had rain not stopped the first T20 in Sydney.

While Babar has only just taken over the T20 reins, the side’s woes very much predate his appointment with just one win and nine defeats to show for from 10 outings in the current year.

For head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq, the record is now five defeats in six T20I clashes. The mandate for the former highly respected skipper on his appointment after the 2019 World Cup, was primarily to shore up Pakistan’s dwindling Test and ODI fortunes. However, just a few months into his tenure, Misbah now finds himself with the unenviable task of having to fix all three set-ups of the national team.

With less than a year remaining for the T20 World Cup to take place in Australia itself, Pakistan have plenty of holes to plug in a side which has been ranked No1 for two years and running now. Very few positives, if any, can be taken from a shambles of a series with the individual display of Babar and the emergence of Iftikhar Ahmed as a viable lower-order aggressor just about covering it.

The question marks, though, are aplenty for Misbah and Babar.

Asif Ali’s time has run out

Could be curtains for Asif as Pakistan's designated finisher.

Could be curtains for Asif as Pakistan’s designated finisher.

Pakistan’s search for an explosive hitter for the death overs has been a longstanding one and it is Asif Ali who has been given the long rope in that regard.

However, that rope is now running out with the right-hander failing to come good despite umpteen chances in the T20 setup. While much of the focus has been on opener Fakhar Zaman’s disastrous T20 form, Asif has been equally culpable with an average of just over 10 in 2019.

The middle-order batsman has a high score of only 23 in his last nine innings for Pakistan and his latest displays in Australia should all but confirm his impending axing from the squad.

He hasn’t really been able to cut it at the international level, in both ODIs and T20s, despite some promising signs in the Pakistan Super League.

Misbah’s botched selections not helping matter either

Khushdil barely got a chance to prove his case.

Khushdil barely got a chance to prove his case.

Misbah had been criticised for recalling Umar Akmal and Ahmed Shehzad in the 3-0 series loss to Sri Lanka and the head coach responded by pointing to a lack of batting talent in Pakistan’s domestic pool.

While there might be a hint of truth in Misbah’s reasoning, the fact that he quickly discarded the two top-order batsman after the series whitewash while continuing to give others a long run, does not pain him favourably.

Fakhar Zaman has continued to be persisted with, despite his horrendous T20I form, while the same has been the case for Asif Ali. Khushdil Shah was the fresh face called up to the squad for the Australia tour but the middle-over batsman was only given an opportunity in the final T20.

In the bowling department, Usman Qadir was a surprise call-up to the squad by Misbah with the leg-spinner barely creating an impression in his Big Bash League stint earlier this year. While his selection turned plenty of heads, Misbah then made sure it hardly mattered by not giving the spinner a single appearance in Australia.

It would be all well and good if there were more opportunities waiting down the line for the likes of Qadir, Khushdil and even young pacer Muhammad Musa. The problem, however, is that there aren’t many with Pakistan not set to play a single limited-overs clash until July, next year.

So what exactly was Misbah saving these players for?

Babar needs time but is there any?

Babar has hardly got any time on hand to settle in as skipper.

Babar has hardly got any time on hand to settle in as skipper.

“We have learnt a lot from this series and we’ll take the positives and come back hard in the next series,” a crestfallen Babar stated after the Perth humbling.

“I have learnt a lot, there is a lot to learn as well. Hopefully, I’ll apply it in the future.”

There is no denying that there are many tricks to learn for Babar as captain after his side’s lopsided defeat in Australia. But, with just five more T20Is to come for Pakistan ahead of next year’s World Cup, the team management might have left him with too little time to learn the ropes.

The batting prodigy is not even the captain of his Pakistan Super League (PSL) outfit Karachi Kings, with his national team-mate Imad Wasim leading that franchise instead.

While he has welcomed the captaincy publicly, the fact that the burden of leading has come at a time when the team is already so reliant on his batting is not a great situation to be in for Babar.

Time is not on his side, or Pakistan’s, with the World Cup fast approaching, and the team management will now have to blindly hope that their gutsy decision will bear fruit ultimately.

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Newly established Girls Community Football preparing for debut tournament

https://sport360.com/article/football/uae-football/338223/newly-established-girls-community-football-preparing-for-debut-tournament

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UAE coach Bert van Marwijk defended his decision to play poster boy Omar Abdulrahman for three quarters of the Whites’ 2022 World Cup qualifying defeat to Thailand – nearly a year to the day since his last start for the national team.

The 28-year-old Al Jazira playmaker played 72 largely inconspicuous minutes in the 2-1 defeat in Rangsit, although there were occasional flashes of the trademark brilliance and vision that have hallmarked the career of the exalted ‘Amoory’.

Fears arose post-match that Van Marwijk might have “exposed him to exhaustion” but the Dutchman said his decision to start the talismanic former Al Ain and Al Hilal midfielder was justified, labelling him “one of the best players” in Asia.

“I am a big fan of the player who is one of the best players at the Asian level and among the best I have trained during my career,” said 67-year-old Van Marwijk, who suffered his maiden defeat as UAE coach.

“And when I made a decision for him to participate, essentially I had goals from that participation, which means I made the right decision.

“I took him out after 70 minutes for more goals and a substitute can make a difference, and indeed the team had several chances to win the game.”

It is the most action Abdulrahman has been exposed to since returning to the UAE with the Pride of Abu Dhabi after an ill-fated spell at boyhood club Hilal, cut short following a devastating knee injury towards the end of 2018.

In five previous outings since missing 10 months of action, Amoory has only played sparingly in UAE qualifying wins against Malaysia (17 minutes) and Indonesia (31) and three Jazira games – totalling 103 minutes – as he eases back into action.

Van Marwijk expressed sadness and frustration at defeat to the War Elephants – their first in three Group G games, the second round of Asian qualifying, which leaves them a point adrift of them and Vietnam, the joint leaders.

It was also a first defeat for Van Marwijk in seven games since taking the UAE reins in March – having opened with five wins and a draw.

“I am not satisfied with the performance,” he said.

“However we almost won, especially from the opportunities in the second half and the final minutes of the game.

“The result is normal, especially after the performance of Thailand, who deserved to take the lead and win.

“And although I was happy with the goal scored by Ali Mabkhout at the end of the first half I was saddened after they scored their second goal, which frustrated me. We have not managed to translate the opportunities that we had into goals.”

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India v Bangladesh LIVE: Stakes high in T20I series decider in Nagpur

https://sport360.com/article/cricket/international-cricket/338216/india-v-bangladesh-live-stakes-high-in-t20i-series-decider-in-nagpur

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Babar’s Azam maiden series as Pakistan’s T20I captain proved to be a chastening experience with the Men in Green comprehensively turned over by Australia (2-0) in the three-match series.

The visitors were thoroughly outplayed in all departments by the Aussies and would most definitely have lost their current No1 ranking as well, had rain not stopped the first T20 in Sydney.

While Babar has only just taken over the T20 reins, the side’s woes very much predate his appointment with just one win and nine defeats to show for from 10 outings in the current year.

For head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq, the record is now five defeats in six T20I clashes. The mandate for the former highly respected skipper on his appointment after the 2019 World Cup, was primarily to shore up Pakistan’s dwindling Test and ODI fortunes. However, just a few months into his tenure, Misbah now finds himself with the unenviable task of having to fix all three set-ups of the national team.

With less than a year remaining for the T20 World Cup to take place in Australia itself, Pakistan have plenty of holes to plug in a side which has been ranked No1 for two years and running now. Very few positives, if any, can be taken from a shambles of a series with the individual display of Babar and the emergence of Iftikhar Ahmed as a viable lower-order aggressor just about covering it.

The question marks, though, are aplenty for Misbah and Babar.

Asif Ali’s time has run out

Could be curtains for Asif as Pakistan's designated finisher.

Could be curtains for Asif as Pakistan’s designated finisher.

Pakistan’s search for an explosive hitter for the death overs has been a longstanding one and it is Asif Ali who has been given the long rope in that regard.

However, that rope is now running out with the right-hander failing to come good despite umpteen chances in the T20 setup. While much of the focus has been on opener Fakhar Zaman’s disastrous T20 form, Asif has been equally culpable with an average of just over 10 in 2019.

The middle-order batsman has a high score of only 23 in his last nine innings for Pakistan and his latest displays in Australia should all but confirm his impending axing from the squad.

He hasn’t really been able to cut it at the international level, in both ODIs and T20s, despite some promising signs in the Pakistan Super League.

Misbah’s botched selections not helping matter either

Khushdil barely got a chance to prove his case.

Khushdil barely got a chance to prove his case.

Misbah had been criticised for recalling Umar Akmal and Ahmed Shehzad in the 3-0 series loss to Sri Lanka and the head coach responded by pointing to a lack of batting talent in Pakistan’s domestic pool.

While there might be a hint of truth in Misbah’s reasoning, the fact that he quickly discarded the two top-order batsman after the series whitewash while continuing to give others a long run, does not pain him favourably.

Fakhar Zaman has continued to be persisted with, despite his horrendous T20I form, while the same has been the case for Asif Ali. Khushdil Shah was the fresh face called up to the squad for the Australia tour but the middle-over batsman was only given an opportunity in the final T20.

In the bowling department, Usman Qadir was a surprise call-up to the squad by Misbah with the leg-spinner barely creating an impression in his Big Bash League stint earlier this year. While his selection turned plenty of heads, Misbah then made sure it hardly mattered by not giving the spinner a single appearance in Australia.

It would be all well and good if there were more opportunities waiting down the line for the likes of Qadir, Khushdil and even young pacer Muhammad Musa. The problem, however, is that there aren’t many with Pakistan not set to play a single limited-overs clash until July, next year.

So what exactly was Misbah saving these players for?

Babar needs time but is there any?

Babar has hardly got any time on hand to settle in as skipper.

Babar has hardly got any time on hand to settle in as skipper.

“We have learnt a lot from this series and we’ll take the positives and come back hard in the next series,” a crestfallen Babar stated after the Perth humbling.

“I have learnt a lot, there is a lot to learn as well. Hopefully, I’ll apply it in the future.”

There is no denying that there are many tricks to learn for Babar as captain after his side’s lopsided defeat in Australia. But, with just five more T20Is to come for Pakistan ahead of next year’s World Cup, the team management might have left him with too little time to learn the ropes.

The batting prodigy is not even the captain of his Pakistan Super League (PSL) outfit Karachi Kings, with his national team-mate Imad Wasim leading that franchise instead.

While he has welcomed the captaincy publicly, the fact that the burden of leading has come at a time when the team is already so reliant on his batting is not a great situation to be in for Babar.

Time is not on his side, or Pakistan’s, with the World Cup fast approaching, and the team management will now have to blindly hope that their gutsy decision will bear fruit ultimately.

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