ESPN analyst Jay Bilas spent his afternoon embarrassing the NCAA.
While Heisman winner Johnny Manziel is being investigated by the organization for reportedly receiving money for signing autographs, the NCAA seems to be profiting off of Manziel’s name on its apparel website (surprise, surprise). Even though the NCAA is in the midst of a lawsuit in which it claims that its use of athletes’ names and likenesses on products bearing college athletes’ jersey numbers doesn’t represent actual college athletes, its website might tell you otherwise.
Bilas took to Twitter on Tuesday to expose what you could call a pretty big instance of hypocrisy within the NCAA. Apparently, if you were to search for names like “Johnny Manziel” or “Jadeveon Clowney” on ShopNCAASports.com, items bearing Manziel’s and Clowney’s team colors and numbers come up. The trick worked for other players, too, like Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron, former Kentucky basketball player Nerlens Noel and former LSU safety Tyrann Mathieu.
Once word had spread on the Internet on Tuesday afternoon, the NCAA disabled the search function on ShopNCAASports.com, but Bilas found that the pages of apparel were still accessible by typing in the URL directly.
The lawsuit filed against the NCAA includes a complaint that “defendants and schools illegally allowed the sale of jerseys using former players’ ‘indicia of identity, namely, their uniform numbers and names’ and sometimes did the same with current players,” according to USA Today. The former and current players do not get compensated for sales of jerseys with their number on them, per NCAA regulations.
Lawyers for Collegiate Licensing Co. deny “that it has allowed former players’ indicia of identity to be utilized in connection with sales of replica and actual jerseys and other apparel offered for sale.”
Check it out for yourself in the photos below. [tweet https://twitter.com/JayBilas/status/364809647498088448 align=’center’] [tweet https://twitter.com/JayBilas/status/364815130090934272 align=’center’] [tweet https://twitter.com/JayBilas/status/364824072145747968 align=’center’] [tweet https://twitter.com/JayBilas/status/364861369734029312 align=’center’]