WASHINGTON DC — LEAD1 Association (“LEAD1”), which represents the athletics directors of the 130-member schools of the Football Bowl Subdivision (“FBS”), today announced the results of its FBS athletic directors survey which revealed 90% of polled ADs are concerned that collectives are using name, image, and likeness (NIL) payments as an improper recruiting tool.
The survey, which contained feedback from approximately 80 FBS athletic directors around the nation, also revealed strong support for more structure for the transfer portal (87%), reducing the number of NCAA Division I schools (67%), and distributing NCAA revenue units to schools based on NCAA women’s basketball tournament performance (61%). Additionally, 58% disagree with a model which would provide individual conferences to have full autonomy on key issues such as NIL, prospective student-athlete compensation, and scholarship regulations.
“This is a transformational period in college sports and the results of our survey illustrate that the FBS athletic directors are extremely concerned with a number of key issues,” said LEAD1 President and CEO, Tom McMillen. “We have shared our findings with the NCAA and expressed that considerable work needs to be done in order to continue to support the success of student-athletes and the evolution of college athletics.”
Overall, the LEAD1 survey results of FBS athletic directors included:
Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL)
- 90% are concerned (73% being extremely concerned) that NIL payments from collectives are being used as improper recruiting inducements, both for high school athletes or college transfers
- 78% agree NIL collectives will impact traditional athletic department fundraising which may lead to a reduction in both participation opportunities and the allocation of essential resources for student-athletes
- 77% agree an unregulated NIL market will lead to increased scandals, such as a sports betting scheme and/or athletes being taken advantage of
NIL “Pay for Performance” and “Pay for Play”:
- 92% disagree that NIL payments being used as “pay for performance” should be allowed (e.g., NIL payment(s) for scoring a certain number of points)
- 87% disagree that NIL payments being used as “pay for play” should be allowed (e.g., NIL payment(s) solely for being on an athletics team)
- 72% agree NIL payments should be tied to market value
Transfer Portal Restrictions:
- 87% agree more structure should be implemented for the transfer portal such as designated time windows on transferring
NCAA Division I Size and Conferences:
- 67% agree there should be fewer institutions at NCAA Division I level (currently more than 350)
- 63% would be opposed to eliminating conference men’s basketball tournaments and replacing them with one round-robin tournament involving all Division I men’s basketball programs
- 58% disagree that individual conferences should have full autonomy on key issues such as NIL, prospective student-athlete compensation, and scholarship regulations
NCAA Revenue Units and Women’s Basketball Tournament Performance:
- 61% agree NCAA revenue units should be distributed for women’s basketball tournament performance
Overall, LEAD1’s impact and reach encompass 42 states, 55,000 student athletes, and more than 25,000 athletic administrators, all with a focus towards supporting the success of student-athletes and the future of college sports.
About the LEAD1 Association:
LEAD1, founded in 1986 and formerly the Division 1A Athletic Directors Association, represents the athletics directors of the 130 member universities of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), that encompasses 42 states, 55,000 student athletes, and more than 25,000 athletic administrators. Key to LEAD1’s mission is advocating on policy facing NCAA Division I FBS athletic departments, promoting consensus among FBS athletic directors, and providing valuable services to member schools – all dedicated towards supporting the success of student-athletes and future of college sports. Since 2015, LEAD1 has been led by the Honorable Tom McMillen, a former Congressman, college basketball All-American, Rhodes Scholar, and 11-year NBA player. For more information, please visit www.LEAD1Association.com.
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