A kicker for the University of Central Florida football team has been ruled ineligible for keeping a profitable YouTube page active.
Donald De La Haye, a backup kicker, has a YouTube channel with more than 100,000 subscribers that has generated over five million total viewers. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) ruled the kicker ineligible because he earns advertising revenue from his YouTube page, which chronicles his life as a college student and a UCF football player.
In interview with FOX Businessâ€™ Stuart Varney, De La Haye said the NCAA should change the rules to allow student-athletes to earn an income while in college.
â€œWeâ€™re student-athletes and the reason we go to college is to learn how to make money, and an entrepreneur like myself should have the right to profit off his own business,â€ he said.
According to the NCAA amateur guidelines, the rules prohibit student-athletes from profiting from their likeness. NCAA bylaw 12.4.4 regarding self-employment states that "a student-athlete may establish his or her own business, provided the student-athleteâ€™s name, photograph, appearance or athletics reputation are not used to promote the business.â€
â€œThey offer me some conditions that you know the NCAA didnâ€™t really state too clearly. The â€˜waiverâ€™ they offered me to sign and it says, I canâ€™t even post unmonetized footage of me playing football. I canâ€™t be at the beach tossing up footballs with my friends. I canâ€™t even mention quarterbacks, nothing like that,â€ De La Haye said.
The former UCF football player noted it is unfair that any other person or non-student-athlete is able to make a profit off advertising revenue from a YouTube page.
â€œ[A] student, you know, with the same aspirations and goals and works as hard as me would be praised for what he is doing, but you know the NCAA kicked me out.â€