Only 21 of 130 NCAA FBS-level schools say they have plans to provide allowed academic bonus payments to athletes this year

Apr 6, 2022

Less than one-quarter of the nation's wealthiest college athletic departments say they have a plan in place to maximize the amount of money they can give to athletes this year by providing cash rewards for getting good grades.

For many athletes, the academic year was a revolutionary one for their bank accounts. Boosters and brands spent millions of dollars in the newly formed marketplace for athlete endorsement deals. And while schools quickly invested in helping their athletes find ways to sell their name, image and likeness to outside bidders, they have been generally slow to reach for their own wallets to take advantage of a new, less-publicized rule that allows the athletic department to reward athletes directly for strong performances in the classroom.

In response to a federal judge's mandate, the NCAA changed its rules in August 2020 to allow schools to pay each of their athletes up to $5,980 per year as a reward for academic performance. The oddly specific dollar amount was calculated during the legal proceedings because it is equal to the maximum amount of financial value an athlete can receive in one year from awards related to their athletic performance, such as conference player of the year titles or the Heisman Trophy. The U.S. Supreme Court solidified the federal judge's ruling with a 9-0 decision in the NCAA v. Alston case last June.

Source: ESPN
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