Jae C. Hong/AP
- The NCAA has gone back on its decision to require agent representing college players to have a bachelor’s degree
- The rule had been dubbed the "Rich Paul Rule," as it would prevent LeBron James’ agent, Rich Paul, from representing college players.
- On Monday, Paul wrote a rebuttal to the NCAA’s decision, arguing it would prevent those with a different career path from having an equal opportunity in the field.
- Six hours after Paul’s essay went live, the NCAA reversed its decision, earning praise from James.
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LeBron James is celebrating the NCAA’s decision to reverse its decision on the controversial "Rich Paul Rule" that the organization announced one week earlier.
The rule was part of an NCAA memo outlining requirements for agents representing college players who are debating whether to return for another year of college basketball. James dubbed the rule "The Rich Paul Rule" after his agent and friend, Rich Paul.
One condition was a bachelor’s degree. The rule would have prevented Paul and other agents who did not attend college from representing some of the most talented players in the world.
On Monday, Paul responded to the NCAA with an op-ed for The Athletic, arguing that it was not just him that would be affected by this rule. Also, potential future generations of player representatives who decided college would not be their path.
"The harmful consequences of this decision will ricochet onto others who are trying to break in," Paul wrote. "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."
On Twitter, James shared Paul’s words in solidarity.
James supported Paul when the NCAA first announced the rule, and on Monday once again used his social media megaphone to bring attention to Paul’s cause.
Just six hours after Paul’s post was published, the NCAA announced that it would drop the "Rich Paul Rule," a decision that was a clear victory for Paul.
Once again, his most high-profile client offered praise.
Paul is one of the most powerful agents in sports, representing James as well as Anthony Davis, Ben Simmons, Draymond Green, and more.
The public pressure that Paul and James brought to the issue made a big impact on the NCAA’s quick decision to go back on their initial plan.
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