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De La Haye VS. The NCAA

If you don’t know, well now you should!

Entering the octagon… De La Haye vs. the NCAA. If you don’t know the story, let me tell you. There have been many “facts” swirling around this incident, however, a lot of those “facts” are simply people’s opinions.

From De La Haye’s personal (and public) twitter on 08/06/2017

In order to be eligible for NCAA competition, student-athletes have to sign the Student-Athlete Statement. The purpose of the statement is to confirm that the student-athlete has not violated any of the rules listed in the NCAA Manual 16–17. Starting on page 53 and ending on page 82 is everything you need to know about “Article 12,” better known as “Amateurism and Athletics Eligibility”.

12.4.4 Self-Employment. [A] A student-athlete may establish his or her own business, provided the student-athlete’s name, photograph, appearance or athletics reputation are not used to promote the business. (Adopted: 12/12/06, Revised: 8/7/14)

You can see from the section above; student-athletes are not allowed to use their likeness to promote their business.

To really understand the situation, you should know more about De La Haye and his YouTube account.

According to Fox Business

“Donald De La Haye, a backup kicker for the University of Central Florida, 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.”

De La Haye goes on to state that;

“They (UCF) offer me some conditions that you know the NCAA didn’t really state too clearly. The ‘waiver’ they offered me (The Student-Athlete Statement above) to sign and it says, I can’t even post un-monetized footage of me playing football. I can’t be at the beach tossing up footballs with my friends. I can’t even mention quarterbacks, nothing like that,” De La Haye said.”

But, there technically isn’t anywhere within the amateurism by-laws that states he is NOT allowed to post un-monetized footage of him playing football with friends.

De La Haye mentions on his GoFundMe Page that “Yes, I made a little bit of money on YouTube, but nowhere enough to pay for school.”

If that is the case, then why forgo a full scholarship? Why would you give up everything for something that is made to sound like such a small deal?

But, you have to remember that De La Haye is his own person. An individual, a creative soul, and someone who understands what he wants for his future. He understood that he was giving up a large scholarship for his pride. He also must have understood that the publicity from this scenario with the NCAA could actually help out his future and his goals beyond sport. Remember, in the words of the NCAA, “Most student-athletes go pro in something other than sports.” You have to believe that this was a calculated decision and De La Haye knew exactly what he was doing. Just check out the tweet below, it seems his stock is already rising…in something other than sport.

@Deestroying is De La Hayes Twitter handle

The NCAA’s problem, UCF says, wasn’t with De La Haye making money off YouTube videos in general. The school got an NCAA waiver that said the kicker “could maintain his eligibility and continue to monetize videos that did not reference his status as a student-athlete or depict his football skill or ability.”

De La Haye decided not to accept those conditions. He’s now ineligible and no longer kicking footballs for UCF.

Even Marco Rubio, ex-presidential candidate got into the mix!

In all seriousness, the problem with this story is the “facts.” Most people aren’t doing their own research, which it seems could be what happened with De La Haye.

The official statement from the NCAA on the issue

As you can see above, De La Haye was not ousted. He chose not to follow the NCAA by-laws. Whether they are fair or not, he signed the Student-Athlete Statement and once you sign that waiver you are giving your likeness away.

If anything, this is a reason for all student-athletes to do their own research and understand what the NCAA wants and takes from them when they are admitted as eligible for play.

Do you due diligence, student-athletes.

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