Rich Paul pens op-ed slamming NCAA rule

Rich Paul
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 27: Rich Paul and Los Angeles Lakers General Manager Rob Pelinka speak before the game between New Orleans Pelicans and Los Angeles Lakerson February 27, 2019 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

Last week, the NCAA sent out a memo detailing a new rule for the collegiate athletes limiting who could represent those who wanted to “test the waters” as an early draft candidate before graduating. The new procedure has been colloquially called the “Rich Paul rule” after the super-agent who famously does not have a college degree, a distinction that would not allow future aspiring agents from representing the aforementioned athletes.

On Monday, Paul, who represents Los Angeles Lakers players LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Talen Horton-Tucker, wrote an op-ed for The Athletic, slamming the NCAA’s practice as one rooted in race and greed:

The harmful consequences of this decision will ricochet onto others who are trying to break in. NCAA executives are once again preventing young people from less prestigious backgrounds, and often people of color, from working in the system they continue to control. In this case, the people being locked out are kids who aspire to be an agent and work in the NBA and do not have the resources, opportunity or desire to get a four-year degree.

I actually support requiring three years of experience before representing a kid testing the market. I can even get behind passing a test. However, requiring a four-year degree accomplishes only one thing — systematically excluding those who come from a world where college is unrealistic.

The entire op-ed is worth a read as you can get the perspective of someone who would be directly affected by this rule if he were not already at the helm of Klutch Sports with powerful players under his umbrella. It’s also painfully obvious that the NCAA’s rule disproportionately affects people of color while limiting their athlete’s power as the NCAA has done for effectively its entire existence.

Paul ends his piece with an inspiring message for those hoping to follow in his footsteps:

No matter the result, what I’m focused on is helping aspiring agents and players figure out the best path forward for them so they can earn a living and be blessed with opportunities like I have. Hopefully, the NCAA will help foster a system that will allow for that as well.

But no matter what the NCAA does, I want young men and women no matter their color or background to know that this shouldn’t discourage them from aspiring to be in this profession. Continue to strive for greatness; the marathon of life will continue. #MoreThanAnAgent

One thought

  1. Every college or university I know wants black people to have an opportunity to get a degree. Every single one of them. I have worked for many companies and every one of them would hire or promote a black man over a white man. We are not holding you down, we are pushing you up from underneath! Any young black man with an IQ above 90 can get a free college education. But not if they sacrifice their future for sex, drugs, and jewelry.
    They need to go to bed early, get a good night’s sleep, and show up eager to learn, sitting in the front row, and paying attention. Listen, I flunked out of Brown twice. Uncle Sam made me a man, and I ended up teaching for the last two years of my service. Guess what I discovered? If you stop thinking about sex and sports and pay attention to the teacher, they will tell you what is on the exam: by what they write on the board, what they ask questions about, and what they assign as homework. I went back after four years and got straight A’s without working all that hard. Everyone can do it. Whitey is not keeping you down as the shysters keep telling you. Commn guys, suck it up and make us proud.

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