A recent article on OutKick brought up a report that the National Football League could intervene with the current college football elite and their unhappiness with the collegiate sports governing body, the NCAA. Ever since the creation of NIL and loosely restricted (but still sometimes strict) transfer portal rules, the business of collegiate athletics has been reinvented. While the student athletes are beginning to profit off of their name, image and likeness, the schools are also finding ways to make more and more money. This includes restructured media rights deals, partnership agreements and all that jabber. However, the most significant change has been the remapping of conferences.
Going back to a time long ago when Oklahoma and Texas sent an early goodbye to old friends in the Big 12 in order to add to the already prolific roster of the Southeastern Conference, it would be hard to fathom how far a simple realignment would go. Fast forward to today, as we prepare for 18-team mega-conferences, conjoined leagues and the possible extinction of a Power conference, the road away from normalcy continues to wind.
Schools, student athletes, people in general, have always had their different issues with the NCAA. But there have been few instances where so many are in disapproval of the governing bodyʻs actions than now. So much so, that the elite of the college sports scene, are calling for a revolution. And, of course, the NFL had to step in.
According the reports, somewhere in the ballpark of 50 teams would leave the NCAA behind and run under the NFLʻs umbrella. And thatʻs basically where the plan ends for right now. The programs would act as minor-league football teams in a sense, with players receiving a small compensation for their work, to go along with their underwear and air conditioning sponsorships, and a good shot at a spot on a professional roster.
It sounds like a bunch of baloney to my ears, but it canʻt be taken out of consideration. With the trajectory of the collegiate athletics scene as it is, mind-boggling propositions like these are as serious as they are laughable. There still might be a small glimmer of hope to save the greatness that is college sports: completely destroying the landscape and rebuilding it from the ground up.
Maybe that is what these institutions want. Maybe, it isnʻt so much that they want to leave the NCAA behind, rather they want reform. A new set of guidelines, reflective of the new generation, undoing some of the wrongs that recent changes have made.
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