There are concerns about the NCAA's new requirements allowing men's basketball players to sign with an agent during the NBA draft process while maintaining their college eligibility.
The measures -- which notably now include requiring agents to have a bachelor's degree -- have drawn criticism from an attorney who has worked on numerous NCAA eligibility cases, at least one agent and NBA All-Star Le-Bron James via Twitter, among others.
"Frankly I think some of the efforts to control student-athletes and coaches, I think some of those actions are illegal," Alabama-based attorney Don Jackson said Wednesday. "But now they're attempting to engage in conduct where they're going to assert economic control over people that they have no real right to regulate.
"The entity that actually has the responsibility of certifying contract advisers in basketball would be the National Basketball Players Association, not the NCAA."
The NCAA rule permitting Division I men's players to obtain an agent yet still return to school after withdrawing from the draft was part of recommendations from the Condoleezza Rice-led Commission on College Basketball, which was formed in response to a federal corruption investigation into the sport.
The change took place last August, with the first wave of early draft entrants allowed to sign with an agent certified by the NBA players union in the spring. The NCAA added an additional layer of restrictions that control who players can sign with while preserving their college eligibility when the governing body created its own certification program that was announced this week.
The NCAA released a statement Wednesday night, saying that it "as a higher education organization... values a college education and continues to emphasize the importance of earning a degree." It also noted that Rice's commission had recommended that the NCAA's certification process "should be more stringent.
"While different and distinct our rules taken together, which is the manner they were meant to be examined, provide a clear opportunity for our student-athletes to receive excellent advice from knowledgeable professionals on either the college or professional path they choose."