Reinforcements, combos in NCAA’s crosshairs, but will NIL’s new policy be able to navigate choppy waters?

John Ruiz did not threaten to file a lawsuit Monday night. This in itself was breaking news. The University of Miami billionaire alumni who has largely become the face of name, image, and example were at peace when the NCAA put at least a Share the land by Create an actionable zero policy.

The likes of Ruiz are subject to review and can be considered reinforcers. Although he does not run a group, he supports the university and pays the athletes for NIL sponsorship through LifeWallet and his Cigarette Racing team. This could be a violation of new NCAA guidelines, which don’t allow people with a booster sticker to sniff out a moldy jock at Good Ol’ State U.

Ruiz does not feel threatened. He sees his project not only above controversy but as a pioneer in the burgeoning industry.

“For me, it’s business as usual,” he told CBS Sports after learning details of the NCAA’s long-awaited NIL guidelines. “I was dealing with the rules directly.”

“The term booster is irrelevant in my view because if you have a legitimate business, it doesn’t matter if you’re supportive or not. The deal is purely a bargain,” Ruiz added.

NCAA may vary.

“NCAA recruiting rules prevent promoters from recruiting and/or offering benefits to prospective student-athletes,” the NCAA Board of Directors explained in a press release that appeared to have been combed up by attorneys.

In fact, this is exactly what happened. But the membership wanted Big Brother to say it Somethingeven if it implements its rules ten months later.

In any case, there was a little calm on the ground on Monday when the Board of Directors issued these NIL guidelines. The NCAA was usually a reaction, but at least the scene that became cloudy could clear up a bit.

One coach compared the current situation to two of Paramount’s favorite shows, “Yellowstone” and “1883.”

“[Men who settled the West] That coach said, “They could have attacked and looted women and robbed people and wouldn’t go to jail. But you don’t. It’s moral. It wasn’t. That’s what bothers me the most.”

“Only because you can [cheat] It doesn’t mean you have to.”

It’s clear that people like Ruiz are in the crosshairs – at least for the review. The promoter is generally defined by the NCAA as a representative of the university’s athletic interests.

On Monday, “groups” and their representatives were added to the booster rating.

At their worst, collectives have become money laundering operations with fuel support for both high school recruits and valuable transfers. At their best, they tried to convince critics of anything other than this definition.

Ruiz’s actions were on top. He’s spending at least $550,000 this year on deals with Miami footballers. NIL pioneers Hanna and Haley Cavinder have been flown from Fresno to Miami in search of more off-court fortunes. Kansas State guard, Nijel Pack has found the same in one of the most popular deals of the NIL era. The transfer recently secured a two-year deal from Ruiz worth $800,000 while he was on his way to Miami.

“I never watched Nigel Buck play or knew what his capabilities were when I signed up,” Ruiz said. “The reason he did the contract was because he was kind of the highest rated gate player by all accounts.”

Pac’s deal has resulted in current Canes basketball player Isaiah Wong threatening to enter the transfer gate himself if his NIL compensation is not increased. Ruiz refused. Wong is currently in the NBA draft process.

“I would never do that,” said Ruiz. “No. 1, can be seen as pay-to-play. Furthermore, I don’t renegotiate with anyone.”

Monday’s release was clearly a warning shot fired at the boosters that would have such an effect.

This does not mean that Ruiz is violating the rules. He says he hands each contract over to Miami Compliance. But if nothing else, the NCAA is alerting everyone.

While the assembly included language about a retroactive investigation of supportive egregious abuses from July 1, 2021 to May 9, when the guidelines were released, attorney Tom Mars said that “retroactive legislation in a democracy is never a good idea.”

Therefore, at least the ground rules for the future are laid: reinforcements, in general, are bad.

The NCAA Board of Directors added: “It appears that the general task of many, if not all ‘collective groups’ is to make presentations to recruits as well as current athletes’ leading to the launch of the definition of reinforcement.”

If so, NCAA implementation has a gigantic task ahead. Condemning reinforcers is one thing; It’s another way to get law enforcement out of the garage and start investigating violators. Gentlemen, start your Priuses – or whatever the NCAA detectives are driving.

Otherwise, Monday’s news isn’t worth the short press release.

“You can’t have a group contract without contact [with an athlete], said Blake Lawrence, CEO of Opendorse, an industry leader in developing NIL opportunities. “This is the world we live in. If one of these two is a reinforcer and the other is a potential student athlete, then a violation has occurred.”

Dozens of groups have appeared since NIL started 10 months ago. Assuming that most of them provide illegal benefits to recruits – as the NCAA apparently asserts – this could mean that there may be significant wrongdoing for the NCAA to investigate. The Society’s law enforcement staff currently dropped 20 bodies for a variety of reasons.

“Today I am proud of the NCAA,” Lawrence said. “Someone has to be the record keeper. I think that will limit some behavior in the market.”

“one or more [boosters] may sue the NCAA,” added Mars, “and it is a costly endeavor to say the least. But in the end, I believe the NCAA will win in such lawsuits.”

At least one member of the working group that advised the board, Ohio State Athletic Director Jane Smith, said he was satisfied that the NCAA had included all of that group’s recommendations.

“It’s a good start,” Rick George, another member of the working group, wrote in a text message.

The most the NCAA can do for reinforcers is to separate them from school. Promoters are not obligated to cooperate with NCAA investigations. However, the word “disassociate” means that these reinforcements cannot have any connection with the athletic interests of the school in any way.

Years ago, a separate Ole Miss booster wanted to sue the NCAA. March, a famous NCAA opponent, declined.

“It’s hard to imagine that ego-driven boosters, who are willing to spend large amounts of money on their favorite school’s athletic program, will continue to invest at that level once they are stripped of their place in the school’s athletic program,” Mars said.

Does Royce qualify as a rogue backer? Do any of his peers do? Before answering, consider that Ruiz says that all of his customers have to perform trade-offs for his companies – usually social media posts and promotional videos. Ruiz also says the news of players like Buck striking deals for big money is promoting his brands on his own.

“Forgetting how good or bad a player is at the end – that doesn’t hold the day for me,” said Ruiz. “However, you can market that particular association.”

As for lawsuits, expect some sort of legal challenge from some of the aggrieved backers. NIL is the well-established road at this point, and a lot of strong people are involved, and that’s not the case.

Any hint of limiting the compensation of college athletes these days betrays an antitrust violation. Yes, the NCAA is to blame for letting all of this come to that.

“If you’re a lawyer and play college sports, Katie shuts the door,” Mars said. “It’s free for everyone. Anyone can sue anyone. The law is absolutely unstable [in this area]. If those boosters want to spend a gazillion dollar, they have more power.”

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