Name, image and likeness is the new buzz term across the country with Thursday’s start of a new era of collegiate athletics. Athletes are now legally able to profit off of their own personal brands and earn money for endorsements, deals and other endeavors. That is leading to the return of a popular fan debate from the Michigan Wolverines community.
Previously, athletes in violation of compensation rules would be wiped from the record books with sanctions following. Michigan basketball is familiar with this with the absence of the program’s 1992 and 1993 Final Four banners following a scandal involving Chris Webber. Webber had received funds from a booster while playing for Michigan, which led to the program having to vacate its Final Four appearances with him and the rest of the Fab Five.
With NIL in full swing, Webber took to Twitter to say he wants the banners to hang once more at Crisler Center.
“Ummmmmmm soooo …whoever has the key please hit me up,” Webber tweeted. “I need that key.. you know… the one to the secret room with the Banners.”
Ummmmmmm soooo …whoever has the key please hit me up. I need that key.. you know… the one to the secret room with the Banners…— Chris Webber (@realchriswebber) July 1, 2021
Webber was also forced to vacate all personal accolades he earned while in college and had to disassociate with Michigan from 2003-13.
Similar conversations have been taking place with Reggie Bush, who had to give up Heisman Trophy honors and other accolades after a similar scandal at USC. He has also taken to social media to attempt to have his accomplishments restored.
My statement… pic.twitter.com/kbyqXgHncf— Reggie Bush (@ReggieBush) July 1, 2021
I never cheated this game. That was what they wanted you to believe about me.— Reggie Bush (@ReggieBush) July 1, 2021
It will be interesting to see how the NCAA and schools move forward with these types of situations. In Michigan’s case, the time has passed and punishments have been served. It seems silly to pretend accomplishments did not happen when the punishment was due to things that would be legal today.
Aside from what Juwan Howard has accomplished as Michigan’s coach so far on the floor, it does seem like everything is building toward an eventual Fab Five celebration. It feels like it would be appropriate now to make that happen.