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NCAA Power Conferences Gain Autonomy

NIU Director of Athletics Sean Frazier reacts to the news that the five power conferences now have more control over providing stipends and benefits to athletes.
DEKALB-More major changes are in store in college athletics. The NCAA Board of Directors has voted overwhelmingly to let the Power Five Conferences govern themselves.

The Power Five are the Big Ten, Big 12, Pac 12, SEC and ACC. They'll be allowed to establish rules allowing them to pay athletes stipends, and allowing them to offer athletes more benefits such as insurance. Those conference schools will also be able to offer things such as traveling expenses for families of athletes.

The impact of this could giving the larger schools more recruiting advantages over smaller schools and increase the divide between the larger schools and the smaller schools.

The smaller schools such as NIU from smaller conferences can only shrug their shoulders and go along with the decision.

NIU Director of Athletics Sean Frazier is trying to keep a positive attitude about the situation. "There needs to be flexibilities in some of the conferences that do things differently," said Frazier to Eyewitness News. "We have a different performer here at NIU than Wisconsin than Alabama. I can speak because I've been at those institutions. I think it's important to give due and flexibility to those institutions, but at the same time respect what's going on at other conferences such as ours in the MAC."
 
All Division One schools are feeling pressure resulting from numerous lawsuits filed by athletes and former athletes against the NCAA, as well as by attempts by Northwestern's football players to unionize.
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