“I just feel the elite-level athletes in Ohio, they could benefit from this,” Martindale said. “Those are the kids that are hurt by that proposal not going through. I’m not sure how many athletes across the state would benefit.”
Martindale mentioned one of his own seniors, point guard Lawrent Rice, the No. 135 recruit in the class of 2023, as well as two other high-profile Ohio recruits, Centerville’s Gabe Cupps and Cincinnati Taft’s Rayvon Griffith, as the type of athletes who would have been able to profit off the use of their name, image and likeness. College athletes have had NIL rights since last summer.
“I feel like eventually it’s coming,” Martindale said. “I just don’t know what it looks like yet. Hopefully, we’re able to get ahead of this and set some parameters and set some guidelines as to what this looks like for Ohio. There are other states right now that have adopted this. I would definitely hate to see high-level guys in our state go somewhere else and say, ‘Hey, I’m going to go benefit from this and play over here.’”
High school principals cast the votes on the issue. A majority is needed to pass a proposal.
“If NIL is going to enter the Ohio interscholastic landscape, we want the schools to be the ones to make that determination,” OHSAA Executive Director Doug Ute said in a press release. “Whatever we do moving forward, it will include discussion on this issue with our school administrators, Board of Directors, staff and leaders of other state high school athletic associations.”
Kaufman doesn’t think the issue will come up for a vote again anytime soon because it failed by such a wide margin.
“If something happens a year or two or five years from now and the legislature throw something into a budget bill, or something happens within the courts, that it’s forced upon us,” Kaufman said, “then we’ll adjust and deal with it as best we can. The nice part was the association got ahead of it. Now we have a pretty resounding idea of what the member schools want.”