Start of Big 12 Media Days dominated by discussions on player vaccinations, NIL guidelines

Published: Jul. 14, 2021 at 8:01 PM CDT
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ARLINGTON, Texas (KWTX) - After taking a year off (like most events), Big 12 Football Media Days are back!

Baylor Head Coach Dave Aranda and two players will be available to the media tomorrow (Thursday), but there were plenty of relevant topics of discussion among the five teams that went on Day-one.

The day at AT&T Stadium began with Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby talking about the current state of the pandemic - and Bowlsby did not hold back.

The Commissioner said that the conference is encouraging student athletes to get vaccinated, adding, “Frankly, anyone not getting vaccinated is taking unnecessary ad unwarranted risks. That’s not just student athletes, that is anybody in our society.”

After Bowlsby wrapped up, Iowa State’s coach, Matt Campbell, TCU coach Gary Patterson, West Virginia coach Neal Brown, Kansas State coach Chris Klieman, and Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley, took to the stage, one-by-one.

The next hot topic: new “name, image, and likeness”, or NIL, guidelines that allow student athletes to make money.

All of the coaches seemed to agree that the athletes deserve to be paid, but it is a complex topic.

Brown explained, “I’m a proponent of it. I think it is a challenge... We are in an evolving world and I think we are all trying to figure out how to make it work.”

Along with all the business talk, there was an abundance of overall appreciation for the event that the players, coaches, and media all missed out on a year ago.

During breakout sessions with the athletes in the afternoon, Oklahoma’s Jeremiah Hall smiled and said, “I’m really just grateful to be here. I am happy to answer your questions, I am happy to be in a position of leadership – it means the world to me”

Tomorrow we will have access to Baylor Head Coach, Dave Aranda, Offensive Lineman, Connor Galvin, and Linebacker, Terrel Bernard to talk about the Bears’ upcoming season.

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