The NCAA's board of governors voted unanimously to have its three divisions propose policy changes that would let student-athletes benefit from the use of their name, image, and likeness "in a manner consistent with the collegiate model," the association announced Tuesday.
"We must embrace change to provide the best possible experience for college athletes," board chair and Ohio State president Michael V. Drake said in a statement. "Additional flexibility in this area can and must continue to support college sports as a part of higher education."
The three NCAA divisions are now tasked with making changes to their bylaws by no later than January 2021.
The vote came shortly after California signed Senate Bill 206 into law, beginning in 2023. The bill will allow collegiate athletes to profit from the use of their name, image, and likeness. Despite its announcement on Tuesday, the NCAA said it still opposes California's legislation, claiming it "likely is unconstitutional."
California state senator Nancy Skinner, who authored Bill 206, tweeted Tuesday that the "announcement shows promise ... But the devil is in the details on what the NCAA means by adhering to the 'collegiate model' in its new rules."
"California has made it clear that we won't accept any arbitrary limitations on college athletes' right to their name, image, and likeness," Skinner added.
The NCAA said its decision was based on recommendations from a working group comprised of school presidents, commissioners, athletic directors, administrators, and athletes. The group will continue to gather feedback through April 2020.