“They want to hear why we did what we did and why,” Phelps said. “My sense is they are very interested in having a model approach for states to take.”
About 40 states have previously adopted model legislation to curb sports agent abuses of student athletes. The effectiveness of that model has come under question as the NCAA launched a series of investigations last year into alleged abuses.
A major concern that has been raised is the lack of uniformity between the laws the states have actually adopted.
Phelps said that there was no specific incident that sparked the effort in Arkansas to beef up its law. Advocates saw it as a way to avert a potential problem.
Arkansas’s Athlete Agent Reform Act of 2011 makes it a felony to entice student-athletes into signing an agency contract by offering them or their family gifts or services.
The law upped civil penalties from $50,000 to $250,000 per violation. It requires agents wishing to contact a student-athlete to notify the school’s athletic director beforehand.
The Arkansas Attorney General’s office paid for the trip to the summit. State officials from North Carolina, Texas and Oklahoma also attended the summit, as did representatives of the National Football League, NFL Players Association and sports agents.