WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Tuesday released the following statement in response to the NCAA Working Group’s recognition that college athletes must be paid:

“The NCAA Board of Governors finally recognized that change is coming, and they need to adapt their rules to catch up with the times. We believe those rules must be changed to allow athletes to be compensated. The name, image and likeness approach has its own challenges that we must address, and we’ll be carefully reviewing the NCAA’s next steps and working on ways Congress can reform college sports,” said Murphy and Romney. “We need to correct the inequities between what college coaches and the institutions make versus what the athletes receive and protect college athletes’ health and educational opportunities.”

Murphy has released two reports focused on college athlete’s compensation and academic rights in a series called Madness, Inc. The first report, released in March during the annual men’s basketball “March Madness” tournament, examined the profits of college sports and how the NCAA enriches nearly every entity but the athletes themselves. The report found that across the 65 Power Five conference schools, only 12 percent of all revenue goes toward student aid and scholarships, while 16 percent goes to coaches’ salaries. The second report released in July, “How Colleges Keep Athletes on the Field and Out of the Classroom,” examines the ways in which colleges fail to provide athletes the education they deserve. Subsequent reports will examine the nature of amateurism, the long-term health consequences that college athletes face, and how to address the litany of issues within the college sports industry.