One of the most obvious name, image and likeness issues is heading toward its obvious solution.
LSU, Oklahoma, Penn State and Washington have announced partnership that will allow each school to sell jerseys with their players' names on the back, with the player getting a cut of the proceeds.
"For the first time ever, fans will be able to purchase authentic jerseys of their favorite LSU Tigers, and student-athletes will directly benefit from every sale," LSU athletic director Scott Woodward said. "We cannot wait to see our jerseys on the sidelines and in the stands inside Tiger Stadium next season, and we eagerly anticipate additional player co-branded products for our student-athletes across all sports."T
The schools will do so through a partnership with Fanatics and OneTeam Partners, made possible by the new NIL rules enacted on July 1 of last year.
“Our focus has been on creating broad-scale licensed product programs that wouldn’t otherwise be possible without group rights," OneTeam Partners senior vice president Malaika Underwood said in a statement. "The Fanatics jersey program, which will cut across schools and eventually men’s and women’s sports, will give fans the ability to buy the jersey of their favorite college athlete and is exactly the type of thing we can help bring to market."
Jersey sales have long been an ethical misstep hemmed in by archaic NCAA policy.
ESPN college basketball analyst Jay Bilas went viral in 2013 exposing how the NCAA corporate office cut players out of the value they created with their performance.
In typical NCAA fashion, the organization responded not by changing its rules -- it'd take eight years of lost court fights and state legislation to do that -- but by getting out of the jersey sales business.
"In the national office, we can certainly recognize why that could be seen as hypocritical, and indeed I think the business of having the NCAA selling those kinds of goods is a mistake, and we're going to exit that business immediately," NCAA president Mark Emmert said. "It's not something that's core to what the NCAA is about, and it probably never should have been in the business."
Moving forward, each of the above schools will be market their players jerseys in a way their fans, their players and their bottom line will all benefit.
Here's to more of this in the very near future.