SANTA CLARA – Stanford-educated 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman applauded the bill California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law Monday that clears the way for the state's college athletes to be paid from endorsement deals.

“I hope it destroys the NCAA, in general, because I think it’s corrupt, and I think it’s a bunch of people taking advantage of kids and doing it under a mask of fair play,” Sherman said Monday at the 49ers’ practice facility.

NCAA rules have traditionally prohibited athletes from profiting from their likenesses while in school. The new regulation, which is scheduled to begin in 2023, still prohibits California schools from directly paying student-athletes.

"Colleges reap billions from student-athletes but block them from earning a single dollar. That’s a bankrupt model," Newsom tweeted after signing the bill.

Said Sherman, “I think this is going to even that out. It’s either going to cripple the NCAA in a way that they start to bend and make it more fair and more of a symbiotic relationship between players and the NCAA, or it’s going to destroy them and will start a whole new way of college athletics in general. I can respect that, too.”

Sherman predicted that Texas and Florida will also pass legislation to enable college athletes in those states to profit from endorsement deals to prevent the vast majority of the nation’s best athletes from enrolling at California schools.

Sherman disputed the argument that the cost of a college education does not add up to fair compensation for many athletes in the high-revenue sports, such as football and basketball.

 

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“If you did a cost analysis of how much each student brings in compared to what they earn in scholarship, one number would be greater than the other,” Sherman said.

“The bowl executives get how much? How much does March Madness executives get? Who’s getting all that money? That’s the thing that’s so messed up is most people in the civilized world who are paying attention couldn’t tell you where the money is going.”