SEC commissioner Greg Sankey talks NCAA settlement, Jaden Rashada lawsuit and more ahead of spring meetings

DESTIN, Fla. — Memorial Day is not a work day, but on the eve of the SEC’s spring meetings, it was clear commissioner Greg Sankey was more interested in getting back to work Tuesday to seek feedback from his conference’s leaders and not necessarily face a litany of questions that do not yet have answers.

“I’ll be happy to do my best to dodge every question you ask,” he joked, eliciting a laugh from a small contingent of reporters.

An understandable introduction? Perhaps. The $2.8 billion settlement announced last week in the House v. NCAA case, a landmark legal battle, has far-reaching implications anchored by revenue sharing and the expansion of roster sizes, which might also spark more legal battles with Title IX and antitrust implications. The amateurism model is dead, blown up after nearly one year of negotiations among the power conferences, the NCAA and the House’s counsel.

Publicly, the time to begin formulating resolutions based on the settlement terms begins this week in the large ballrooms at the Hilton-Sandestin, where the first major conference will conduct its annual business meetings in the wake of last week’s seismic news.

“I anticipate plenty of conversation here with our leadership about what that means for our own decision-making,” Sankey said. “We have the opportunity to play an important role in our own decision-making about the future, as opposed to leaving that just to the court system.”

The settlement terms are complicated and developing models will take time. Terms could change, too, as nothing is settled until Judge Claudia Wilken of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California rules whether to accept the terms — potentially within the next 60 days. From there, it would take several months…


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