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Tennessee judge awards preliminary injunction against NCAA NIL rules

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(The Center Square) – Tennessee received a preliminary injunction on Friday against the NCAA enforcing its name, image and likeness rules.

The ruling blocks the NCAA from enforcing its interim NIL rules or any NIL restrictions until the full case is heard and a ruling rendered. U.S. District Judge Clifton L. Corker also restricted the NCAA from enforcing its rules of restitution related to NIL activities until a final ruling.

Corker wrote that Tennessee had shown that NIL rules likely restrict competition for athletes and hurt their earning power and it “suppresses price competition by limiting negotiating leverage and, as a result, knowledge of value.”

“The court’s grant of a preliminary injunction against the NCAA’s illegal NIL-recruitment ban ensures the rights of student-athletes will be protected for the duration of this case, but the bigger fight continues,” Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti said in a statement. “We will litigate this case to the fullest extent necessary to ensure the NCAA’s monopoly cannot continue to harm Tennessee student-athletes. The NCAA is not above the law, and the law is on our side.”

Corker previously wrote that the states were likely to prevail in the lawsuit while choosing not to award a temporary restraining order.

Tennessee and Virginia filed the lawsuit on the grounds NCAA rules are a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

The lawsuit came as the NCAA is reportedly investigating both the University of Tennessee and University of Florida related to NIL rules violations. It has taken action against Florida State for similar violations.

That case said the NCAA’s rules requiring a waiver to immediately compete the second time an athlete transfers is a violation of the Sherman Act.