Conferences are quietly preparing for the sea-changing possibility they can compensate players above current NCAA limits, significantly altering the longstanding NCAA amateurism model, according to interviews and documents obtained by CBS Sports.
A judge in the ongoing Alston vs. NCAA trial will conduct a final hearing on Dec. 18 pertaining to closing arguments. She will then decide — likely early in 2019 — whether scholarship limits imposed by the association violate anti-trust laws.
If the plaintiffs win, there is concern among the Power Five that a Wild West culture could take hold. The last time conferences oversaw athlete compensation was 1956 before the advent of TV, rights fees, agents and riches from the NFL and NBA.