Texas House gives green light to bill allowing college athletes to be paid for their likeness

Texas Politics

Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian watches his team during the final half of the Texas Orange and White Spring Scrimmage in Austin, Texas, Saturday, April 24, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Thomas)

AUSTIN (KXAN) – College athletes in Texas could soon be able to profit from their likeness.

Senate Bill 1385 was passed to the third reading in the House with some changes on Thursday. The legislation was approved by the Senate in April.

The proposal aims to keep Texas colleges competitive when recruiting student-athletes, as 14 other state legislatures have already implemented laws regarding student-athlete compensation. The bill would prepare Texas if federal lawmakers, or the NCAA, allow student-athletes to be paid for their likeness in the future.

“If we delay, if we don’t pass it this session, Texas will be the only state in the SEC… and the only state in the Big 12 whose athletes can’t take advantage of these opportunities,” state Rep. Jim Murphy, a Houston Republican, said.

The bill needs one more vote in the House before it would head back to the Senate for a vote on the changes.

If approved by two-thirds of the House and Senate, the bill would take effect on July 1.

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