Paying college athletes a 'very slippery slope': Joe Theismann

NCAA rules in the spotlight as the debate over paying college athletes ramps up

NFL legend and former Super Bowl champion quarterback Joe Theismann said paying college athletes is a "very slippery slope," during an interview on FOX Business’ "Varney & Co." Wednesday.

"Are you going to pay the women? Are you going to pay the men? Are you going to pay Division I? Division II, Division III?" Theismann told host Stuart Varney

The topic of paying students to participate in college sports has been an ongoing debate as athletes and the NCAA fail to find common ground. 

Most recently, the debate over whether student-athletes should profit off of their name, image, and likeness has been dragged to the forefront. 

The NCAA made an announcement in May that its Division I Council would take up the N.I.L. legislative proposals during a meeting in late June. Some states have taken the proposal into their own hands, signing legislation to allow college athletes to profit off of their name. However, the bill will become law in New Mexico, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and Florida on July 1. 

Theismann suggested an alternative to enable student-athletes to receive compensation. 

"Establish a trust if you're going to sell a jersey of someone's, which is what they really want. They want to be able to do endorsements because the university is selling their jerseys, set up a trust for them so that when the eligibility ends that trust that money's theirs," he said. 

Despite some states pushing forth the legislation in favor of the athletes, U.S. Senators held a hearing Wednesday on the issue which could result in federal legislation. NCAA President Dr. Mark Emmert was in attendance. 

Though the push will benefit the athletes, Theismann raised concerns. 

"You know, you're going to start bidding and buying, you know, young kids. And I just think it's a mess if they try and do this, to be honest with you," he said.