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Former NFL star Eric Weddle questions NCAA’s decision on NIL

Eric Weddle
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The now Utah football Hall of Famer Eric Weddle made his opinion very clear on how the NCAA handled overturning name, image and likeness laws for student-athletes in an interview with the Deseret News.

Weddle prefaced his comments with saying he could talk about NIL “for about an hour about what they should have done.”

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In the eyes of the former All-Pro safety, the NCAA had little interest in assisting student-athletes with profiting on their name, image and likeness.

“I think they rushed it. They handed it off to the universities and the NCAA wiped their hands and they’re free from all of it. There’s really no structure or anything. There’s no balance. These kids have so much going on — family, teammates, school, social media, pressure, all this other crap. And now you’re throwing another element into them,” Weddle said in the interview.

Weddle’s qualm with the NCAA comes with the fact that student-athletes being compensated would cost them nothing, allowing their nine-figure profits to grow, while in a way leaving universities to build a system for themselves.

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In offering a solution, Weddle stated:

“Every athlete across every sport gets a cut. That’s what I would have hoped for. Take it from the NCAA and give it to everyone. Because everyone deserves it, not just the star players,” Weddle explained. “The undrafted and the drafted. The non-scholarship kid that’s paying for school and working deserves it just as much as everybody else. He deserves a little something. He’s putting in every effort and every hour and on top of that he’s working to pay for school. There’s a lot that can be made better.”

During his NFL career, Weddle appeared in six Pro Bowls, was named to the All-Pro team twice and won a Super Bowl. While playing in college, Weddle was a shutdown defensive back for the Utes. In four seasons between 2003-2006, the 2021 Super Bowl champ registered 278 total tackles, 18 interceptions and even six touchdowns as a running back.