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The University of Texas will begin paying scholarship athletes

According to a story by DallasNews.com’s Michael Lindenberger, the University of Texas is taking a big step in student-athlete compensation, and will begin paying scholarship athletes around $10,000 per year to cover additional expenses not accounted for by scholarship, and for the use of the athletes’ images in promotional materials.

The University of Texas will spend nearly $6 million a year to comply with a string of recent legal rulings requiring colleges to be more generous to their scholarship athletes.

That won’t break the bank, Athletic Director Steve Patterson said Tuesday at a forum on the fast-changing business of college sports. But even rich programs like UT’s will be forced to make tough choices in the future if momentum in the courts continues to push colleges to treat their players like employees or semi-pros, he said…

Patterson said UT won’t have problems paying the extra $6 million to its players. That money will break down to about $10,000 for each player. The money will cover college expenses that aren’t covered by a traditional full scholarship and give each player $5,000 in compensation for the university’s use of his image.

This decision comes on the heels of the ruling in the landmark Ed O’Bannon case, in which U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken ruled that the NCAA could not prevent student-athletes from profiting off of their likeness.

Texas is one of the nation’s largest and most profitable athletic departments, but expect other similar schools to begin to follow its lead.

[DallasNews.com]

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