Student-Athletes to Get Paid? It Looks That Way

In this photo taken Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010, former UCLA basketball player Ed O'Bannon Jr. sits in his office in Henderson, Nev. O'Bannon is part of a lawsuit seeking revenue sharing for NCAA athletes. "There are millions and millions of dollars being made off the sweat and grind of the student athlete," O'Bannon said. "Student athletes see none of that other than their education." (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)
In this photo taken Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010, former UCLA basketball player Ed O'Bannon Jr. sits in his office in Henderson, Nev. O'Bannon is part of a lawsuit seeking revenue sharing for NCAA athletes. "There are millions and millions of dollars being made off the sweat and grind of the student athlete," O'Bannon said. "Student athletes see none of that other than their education." (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)
In this photo taken Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010, former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon Jr. sits in his office in Henderson, Nev. O’Bannon is part of a lawsuit seeking revenue sharing for NCAA athletes. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

 

(NBC News) – Two court rulings may have finally marked the end of college athletes as amateurs, say experts.

On Friday, a district court judge in California ruled in favor of former UCLA basketball star Ed O’Bannon, who sued the NCAA over compensation for the use of university player names and likenesses.

And just the day before, the NCAA — college sports’ governing body — announced it would allow more freedom to schools and athletes on how they run their sports programs. That’s likely to result in player stipends and increased financial aid.

Both decisions break down the current economic stranglehold on student athletics, said Mark Conrad, professor of sports business at Fordham University.

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