California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the Fair Pay to Play Act on Monday, which will allow college athletes in the state to profit from endorsements and their likeness in defiance of NCAA rules.
The law takes effect on Jan. 1, 2023.
Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James has supported the legislation and posted a video Monday of Newsom in an interview from his HBO show, "The Shop."
"It's going to initiate dozens of other states to do similar legislation. And it's going to change college sports for the better by having now the interest, finally, of the athletes on par with the interests of the institutions," said Newsom, a Democrat, signing the bill on the show. "Now we're rebalancing that power arrangement."
In June, NCAA President Mark Emmert said if the bill became California law, schools in the state could be prohibited from participating in NCAA championships. This first-in-the-nation legislation could face legal challenges from the NCAA, which has about three years to consider changes to its rules on amateurism.
The NCAA released a statement Monday:
"As a membership organization, the NCAA agrees changes are needed to continue to support student-athletes, but improvement needs to happen on a national level through the NCAA's rules-making process. Unfortunately, this new law already is creating confusion for current and future student-athletes, coaches, administrators and campuses, and not just in California.
"We will consider next steps in California while our members move forward with ongoing efforts to make adjustments to NCAA name, image and likeness rules that are both realistic in modern society and tied to higher education.
"As more states consider their own specific legislation related to this topic, it is clear that a patchwork of different laws from different states will make unattainable the goal of providing a fair and level playing field for 1,100 campuses and nearly half a million student-athletes nationwide."