Unfortunately, they’ll still have to say no to an extra slice of birthday cake this year, that is if they want to play.
Despite the NCAA’s board of directors deciding Wednesday to officially suspend the organization’s rules prohibiting student-athletes from profiting off their own names, images, and likeness, the “non-profit” concluded Wednesday without any mention of the “Reasonable Refreshments” rule.
Listed under the NCAA’s Incidental Benefits bylaw 22.214.171.124, the rule states that “An institution may provide student-athletes with reasonable refreshments (e.g., soft drinks, snacks) for student-athlete educational and business meetings and, on an occasional basis, for celebratory events (e.g., birthdays).”
University of Connecticut basketball phenom Paige Bueckers, whose Instagram following alone could reportedly earn her roughly $16.5 million now that NIL restrictions are lifted, praised the NCAA’s NIL move, but was admittedly disappointed to learn the “Refreshments Rule” was still in place.
“It’s my party, and I will eat another piece of cake if I want to,” Bueckers said. “Best believe there will be extra icing on the cake too.”
Fans will remember in 2013 when the University of Oklahoma self-reported a potential violation of the bylaw after three football players, who had actually graduated from the university already and were returning for graduate-level coursework, were served too much pasta at a graduation party.
While the NCAA never penalized the university, it’s believed that school officials reported the incident in fear of violation of the law.
Oklahoma isn’t the only school to of potentially broken the “law” of providing human beings food when they are hungry - the University of South Carolina raised a red flag over “impermissible iced decorations on a cookie cake” given to a potential recruit in 2014.
Whether or not the Incidental Benefits bylaw ever gets terminated like the NIL rules, Bueckers said she’s still glad to be able to “eat” financially.
“It feels good to be told that I have the right to earn a living wage again,” Bueckers said. “Being recognized as a human being is neat.”