Outgoing Coastal Carolina baseball coach rips NIL system: 'Professional sports would go in the toilet'

The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers’ baseball season came to an end on Sunday with a 6-5 loss to the High Point Panthers in the Clemson Regional of the NCAA Tournament. 

It also marked the end of a legendary career for head coach Gary Gilmore. He had been at Coastal Carolina since 1996, taking the job after six years with USC Aiken. He had 1,116 wins with the Chanticleers.

As he talked to reporters for potentially the final time, Gilmore took a parting shot at the system behind name, image and likeness (NIL) and how it’s been used in NCAA.

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“If you had a system (in professional sports) where everyone was a free agent every year, do you realize what chaos it would be? (The leagues) would go away,” Gilmore said. “You wouldn’t have those sports. If you did, in baseball it would be the Yankees, the Red Sox, the Dodgers, Texas, and the rest of the teams couldn’t compete. They could spend however much money they need to do it. That’s what’s going on right now. It’s not a level playing field. … 

“As much as I’m going to miss the kids, dealing with that mess… The fact that there are teams in college baseball giving $2 million of NIL money away. I mean come on, man. A real system would be they get a little bit of money and they put money in trusts so you don’t have the horror stories you see in the NFL and different places…

“There has to be a better way because, like I said, professional sports would go in the toilet if we use this system.”

Last month, the NCAA agreed to allow its Power Five conferences (ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC) to pay its players directly. The revenue-sharing plan would allow each school to share up to around $20 million per year with athletes. 

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The Power Five conferences all voted to accept the general terms of the agreement with the NCAA. 

“In the first year of the settlement, each school can share 22% of the average Power Five school’s revenues, which is currently projected to be significantly more than $20 million per school, per year,” the law firm Hagens Berman and Winston & Strawn LLP said in a statement. “These new payments and benefits come in addition to scholarships, third-party NIL payments, health care and other benefits that college athletes already receive, and schools can choose to make the new payments and benefits to athletes playing any Division I sport.”

As college revenues rise each year, benefits and payments to athletes will also grow, according to the settlement. 

“Over the 10-year settlement period, attorneys estimate that the total value of new payments and benefits that may be shared with college athletes will exceed $20 billion, making it one of the largest antitrust class-action settlements in history,” the statement said. 

Fox News’ Scott Thompson contributed to this report.

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