Former USC Trojans star Reggie Bush has issued a cautionary warning to college football and basketball players regarding the name and likeness issue.
The NCAA appears to be in support of a plan that will allow student-athletes to profit off of their name and likeness. This is long overdue, according to many who follow college sports.
While this is probably the right move, Bush believes there could be some major negatives that come with it.
The former Heisman Trophy winner, whose award was revoked due to impermissible benefits, thinks paying college athletes for their names and likenesses is "going to destroy some people."
Bush, one of the best players in recent college football history, spoke on the topic during an interview with Playboy.
"Guidance is the one thing that young athletes coming through the college system miss on so much," Bush told Playboy. "I missed on it. They're about to start paying college athletes. This is something that has never been experienced before, and it's going to destroy some people if their foundation is not in the right place."
Bush played at USC from 2003-05 under Pete Carroll. He was one of the best players in the country, winning the 2005 Heisman Trophy, but his family allegedly received impermissible benefits. The Heisman Trophy was revoked, though Bush voluntarily parted with it.
The former USC Trojans star wants current student-athletes to get good advice.
"The one thing I wish I had early in my career is proper financial knowledge," Bush said. "I hired good agents, and I hired a good team. But I allowed that good team to make decisions for me. I'm not saying I'm going bankrupt, but if I had the proper knowledge back then, some things would be different.
"People just assume, 'Well, you got all this money, so you're good.' It's actually the opposite. The more money you have, the more danger you're in, because now you're a freaking open target for a lot of people. It's a nasty world out there, and it's about to get nastier. You're going to really start to see the true colors of a lot of people, and a lot of businesses too. You're going to see people doing some crazy stuff to make money, because our market is crashing."
More money is likely coming for prominent student-athletes, which is obviously a good thing. But as Bush points out, they'll need to have the right people around them.