Update from Section A in the political peanut gallery: the NCAA is threatening to pull California’s amateur sporting license if the state follows through on passing a bill that would allow student-athletes to receive licensing compensation.
Reaction: Hardy-har-har. The nerve of these cheap-labor kids asking for a small piece of the pie that helped turn conference commissioners into a multi-millionaires.
The Fair Pay to Play Act is winding through the state legislature faster than Ball-family-owned Maseratis through the hills of Chino.
Spoiler alert: SB 206 is going to pass and NCAA President Mark Emmert, wind-bagging behind a phalanx of lawyers, says that could ultimately lead to California schools getting kicked out of Marky's Mouse Club.
We say to the NCAA: go for it, make our day, give California the boot and watch it death spiral with its deep stash of Division 1 athletes and fifth-largest economy…in the world.
Kicking California out of NCAA championships would be like kicking Gladys Knight out of the Pips.
The top 10 universities in the country have combined for 668 NCAA titles, with four California (Pac 12) schools winning 386 of those.
Stanford (123), UCLA (118) and USC (107) rank 1-2-3 on the all-time NCAA win list. Oklahoma State is fourth with 52 titles.
The University of California, ranked No. 10 with 38, has two more NCAA titles than the University of Florida.
We were told as kids that California, any minute, was going to break off into the Pacific Ocean after a massive earthquake.
Yet, now, the idea of breaking off from the NCAA sounds VERY intriguing.
Hey Emmert, where do we sign?
My 86-year-old dad has a great line about people here complaining about California for its overcrowding, liberalism and, um, rising ethnicity.
Pop, who moved to L.A. not long after Pearl Harbor, says “If you’re going to leave take someone with you.”
Getting threatened by Mark Emmert, frankly, is like getting barked at by a chihuahua.
Imagine a guy governing from Indiana lecturing us on right and wrong?
In fact, California Senate Bill 206 is on the cutting edge of what’s going to happen, incrementally, everywhere, eventually.
Just like solar panels and wind turbines, we're way ahead of you on this.
The NCAA is withering on the vine as it tries to cling to its antiquated amateur-sports model. Emmert is Norma Desmond in “Sunset Boulevard” if that movie was remade and filmed in downtown Indianapolis.
California’s bill, frankly, is just an appetizer. It won’t even go into effect until 2023, allowing the NCAA time to reconcile the stone-cold reality and come up with a compensation solution for which it can take full credit.
I still don’t believe in paying college athletes directly, and neither does this bill, but I do believe in legislation regarding licensing and likeness that could put earned money into “trust” accounts. I believe athletes injured in college should have extended medical care.
My thoughts on compensation changed radically after college athletics went from a million-dollar business to a billion-dollar business.
It changed when, in the span of 10 years, the Pac 12 commissioner’s salary increased from $500,000 per year to $5.3 million. It changed when Jimbo Fisher signed a 10-year, $75 million deal at Texas A&M after leaving Florida State in ruins.
Emmert’s NCAA is mostly blowing political smoke here, and so, to an extent, is California.
This is all heading for some sort of common-ground reconciliation...right?
If Emmert is really serious about kicking California out, however, we've got our suitcases packed.
Take note: this bill won't impact major college football because the NCAA lost control of that sport in a 1980s Supreme Court case over broadcast rights.
There is, hence, no NCAA championship for football—and California hasn’t serious cared about basketball since UCLA’s last title in 1995.
Imagine, though, the state forming its own conference and competing for independent titles, particularly in the non-revenue sports we have come to dominate?
How much claim would the SEC have in winning the NCAA women’s volleyball title against a Stanford team winning the CAFU (California Athletic Federation of Universities) crown?
Stanford won six NCAA titles...this year.
Imagine Golden State-only conferences that combine Pac 12 sports with the Big West, Mountain West and West Coast Conference?
Ok, I haven’t worked out all the details, but…
Imagine a football-only league with Cal, Stanford, Fresno State, San Jose State, UCLA, USC and San Diego State.
What star prep player from California would leave knowing he could earn future income by staying in state?
So many top athletes would flood INTO California, in fact, you could bring back football at Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach, USF and Saint Mary’s.
UC Davis, now coached by Dan Hawkins, could upgrade.
You want to fight, NCAA?
--San Jose State won three straight NCAA boxing championships in 1958, ’59 and ’60.
You want to spike us?
--Long Beach State men’s volleyball is the reigning NCAA champions in men’s volleyball.
You want to play hardball?
--Cal State Fullerton is a four-time NCAA champion in baseball. USC has won 12, more than any school.
--Pepperdine, in this century, owns NCAA titles in men’s tennis and men’s volleyball.
--UC Irvine has won NCAA titles in men’s volleyball and water polo.
--UC Santa Barbara claimed the NCAA titles in soccer (2006) and water polo (1979).
Admittedly, San Diego State, with its only NCAA title captured way back in 1973 (volleyball), needs to get with the program.
Imagine, also, potential California conferences for current NCAA D-III schools.
UC Santa Cruz, for instance, has won seven lower-level national titles. Hey, NCAA, here's Claremont-Mudd in your face.
And just let Emmert try to sue the Cruz for its nickname: Banana Slugs.
That would likely get him slugged.