Michigan senior forward Isaiah Livers wore a black shirt with #NotNCAAProperty written on it during the top-seeded Wolverines’ 82-66 win over No. 16 seed Texas Southern in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday afternoon.
“Isaiah, he’s going to speak his mind,” Michigan senior guard Mike Smith said after the game. “Everybody has their own opinion and he speaks his mind all the time.”
Livers – who missed the game with a foot injury – is one of a handful of student-athletes, including Rutgers’ Geo Baker and Iowa’s Jordan Bohannon, who have voiced their concerns over the NCAA profiting off their name, image and likeness and other inequalities by using that hashtag on social media in recent days. They launched the movement with support from the National College Players Association, which said in a statement the protest is meant to “underscore their concern that the NCAA too often treats college athletes like dollar signs rather than people.”
The shirt was made by The Players Trunk, which was founded by former Michigan basketball players Charles Matthews and Zavier Simpson and helps former student-athletes cash in on their game-used gear and other memorabilia. The company is selling the shirt for $25, with portions of each sale going to the GetTuff Foundation.
It’s unclear if Livers will once again wear the shirt in Michigan’s second-round matchup with No. 8 seed LSU, which tips off at 7:10 p.m. ET on Monday on CBS. But it’s worth noting NCAA president Mark Emmert has said players who display #NotNCAAProperty on apparel will not be punished for doing so.
Photo courtesy of @umichbball on Twitter.