June 12, 2024

NCAA’s Charlie Baker: $2.8B Settlement Will Be a ‘Glue’ to Keep Conferences Together | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors

FRISCO, TEXAS - JANUARY 7: NCAA President Charlie Baker interviews from the sideline during the game between the South Dakota State Jackrabbits and the Montana Grizzlies during the Division I FCS Football Championship held at Toyota Stadium on January 7, 2024 in Frisco, Texas. (Photo by C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

NCAA president Charlie Baker is confident that the 10-year span of a recent $2.8 billion settlement will serve as the “glue” that helps to prevent power conferences from splitting and forming a separate entity.

“We now have the ability to move forward with the assumption that we’re all going to be one big, maybe happy, family moving forward,” Baker said on Monday, per ESPN’s Dan Murphy.

On May 23, the NCAA and the ACC, SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, and Pac-12 agreed on a monumental settlement that would resolve three federal antitrust cases and allow schools to compensate college athletes. The detailed terms of the settlement are still pending and need to be approved by a federal judge, which may take several months (via Murphy).

The NCAA will pay former athletes nearly $2.8 billion in back damages as part of the settlement, while schools will now be allowed to share roughly $20 million per year directly with athletes beginning in 2025 (per Murphy).

There was some speculation regarding larger groups of conferences splitting into separate divisions, with TCU head coach Sonny Dykes claiming that “there’s got to be a split eventually” in May (h/t Sports Illustrated’s Linden Hile).

However, Murphy noted that keeping Division I schools together will allow the NCAA to ensure that March Madness remains in place, which generates the overwhelming majority of money that the association distributes to its schools.