On Wednesday, Utah Republican Senator Mitt Romney expressed concerns over the NCAA’s recent decision to allow colleges athletes to receive endorsement money. However, former ESPN host Jemele Hill saw Romney’s concern an example of trying to keep black people down.
Speaking to ESPN’s Outside the Lines, Romney worried that allowing the endorsement deals may present some unforeseen consequences.
Romney went on to insist that Congress may have to act to try and make sure unfair conditions aren’t created.
“We recognize it’s just not fair to have these athletes giving the kind of time they give to their sport, and not receiving any kind of compensation or remuneration, particularly at a time when they come from very, very poor families in many cases,” Romney said.
But Romney went on to note that there could be problems with the idea of limiting athlete pay to those popular enough to get endorsement deals .
“But, look what you can’t have is a couple of athletes on campus driving around in Ferraris when everybody else is basically having a hard time making ends meet. And you can’t have a setting where some schools that are in major markets or have big sport followings, some schools are like the honey pot, and everybody, all the great athletes all want to go to those handful of schools. And then you kill collegiate sports. So, there needs to be some adjustment to the whole ‘name, image, and likeness’ approach to make sure that we don’t create those problems.”
Jemele Hill, though, found Sen. Romney’s reply to be an example of punishing blacks for their success.
“Conservatives are forever hollering about a free market and capitalism, and yet…,” Hill tweeted on Wednesday, adding, “I just think it’s funny how whenever there is something that could possibly benefit black people, suddenly it’s not fair to everybody else. But go off @MittRomney.”
Conservatives are forever hollering about a free market and capitalism, and yet….
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) October 30, 2019
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.