Pac-12 News: A Look at the proposed Student Athlete Bill of Rights


Nov 19, 2011; Stanford CA, USA; Detailed view of the Pac-12 logo on painted on the field before the game between the Stanford Cardinal and the California Golden Bears at Stanford Stadium. Stanford defeated California 31-28. Mandatory Credit: Jason O. Watson-US PRESSWIRE

On Saturday, we told you about a bill being proposed by Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima), that would bring major changes to California’s four Pac-12 Schools. The bill proposes a new Student Athlete Bill of Rights, and it would require California universities that make in excess of $10 million in media revenue to comply with the terms of the bill. As a result, this bil would impact Cal, Stanford, USC and UCLA. Here’s what the bill would now require these schools to do:

  • Equivalent academic scholarships to athletes who are injured and lose their athletic scholarship.
  •  Equivalent academic scholarships to athletes who have participated in sports programs with a graduation rate of less than 60% and whose scholarship was not renewed for nondisciplinary reasons.
  • Payment of healthcare insurance premiums for low-income athletes.
  • Payment for deductibles and co-payments for sports-related injuries.
  • Financial and life-skills workshops for all incoming athletes.
  • Guidelines to prevent, assess and treat sports-related injuries and serious health conditions.
  • Immediate approval of transfers, without restrictions or conditions

Currently, the bill has been passed by the Senate and is on its way to be considered by the Assembly.

In addition to a new set of rules the schools would have to comply with, the bill actually outlines what is called The Student Athlete BIll of Rights, which offers certain protections for student athletes in specific situations. As part of Section One Part 40.3 of SB 1525 (the official number of the proposed bill), The Student Athlete Bill of Rights reads as follows:



67450. The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:

(a) Meeting the educational needs of student athletes should be a priority for intercollegiate athletic programs.

(b) California’s institutions of higher education that participate in Division I and Division II intercollegiate athletics collectively generate millions of dollars annually in media contracts, and this revenue would not exist without the efforts of student athletes.

(c) Student athletes generate large revenues for many athletic programs, spend approximately 40 hours per week participating in their respective sports, and suffer current and historically low graduation rates.

(d) Providing adequate health and safety protection for student athletes can help prevent serious injury and death.

(e) Current and former student athletes can be left to pay for medical expenses incurred from injuries suffered while participating in intercollegiate athletics.

(f) Institutions of higher education should provide their student athletes with the same due process protection afforded to students who do not participate in athletics.

(g) Athletic programs in this state are subject to federal gender equity requirements under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 1681 et seq.).

(h) An institution of higher education should not punish any student athlete for transferring to another institution of higher education.

(i) An institution of higher education should not use funds for purposes of this part that are dedicated for the benefit of the general student body.\

For a complete look at the bill (SB 1525), click here.

Over the next three days, we will examine a few key parts of this bill, and what kind of an impact they could have on the four California Pac-12 schools.