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Michigan Senate considers NIL bill for high school athletes

Michigan Senate considers NIL bill for high schoolers
Michigan Senate considers NIL bill for high schoolers 01:53

LANSING, Mich. (CBS DETROIT) - About 20 other states already allow high school athletes to enter into name, image and likeness deals, allowing student-athletes to make money. 

Michigan could soon join. 

Legislation is working its way through the Michigan Legislature that could change the game for high school athletes.

"We do want to make available for them to benefit, after school, outside of school on their one time from their name, image and likeness. And we think this brings about fairness to allow them to benefit but also brings us to the forefront of the other 20 states that already have this in place," said state Rep. Jimmie Wilson Jr. during the Senate Oversight hearing last week. 

The bill would allow high school athletes to enter into deals with companies or brands to make money off their name, image or likeness - a move that has already been made at the college level. But not all lawmakers are on board.

"We need to be really careful moving into this, that it seems to me to be a very complex issue," said state Sen. Ed McBroom. "While I don't think schools or universities for that matter, should be able to make all these huge profits off of their athletics programs off of the kids in particular. I still believe that our school's primary mission is education."

The Michigan High School Athletic Association has concerns over the legislation as well but for different reasons. The organization did not advocate or lobby for this legislation.  

"An absolute nonstarter with us is if these would be anything more than individual opportunities for individual kids," said Mark Uyl, the executive director of the MHSAA. 

Uyl says that as the bill stands now, any contract would need to be approved by the MHSAA, deals couldn't be offered to whole teams and under no circumstances could a school or athletic booster club entice a student to stay at a school or move to a new school for NIL deals.

"Those are the lines that those have become very blurred at the college level," Uyl said. "From the first minute these conversations started, that was an absolute red line issue for us that the only way we could be supportive to the degree to kind of go along with this as if it was individual opportunities."

Uyl also noted that the number of deals out there for high schoolers is few and far between, which is a much smaller scale than what we've seen at the college level.    

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