Condoleezza Rice calls NCAA rules against payments 'incomprehensible'

Condoleezza Rice, head of the Commission on College Basketball, described NCAA rules prohibiting payments to student-athletes as "incomprehensible" on Wednesday.

During a phone interview with USA Today Sports, Rice said she thought the commission's report, which called for an end to the "one-and-done" rule among several other notable changes, was "pretty clear" that college athletes should be able to profit from their names, images and likenesses. However, she reiterated that this should only be possible after the NCAA's ongoing legal cases are resolved.

"We believe that students ought to be able to benefit from name, image and likeness, but you can't decide a program until you know the legal parameters," Rice said. "That was the point. I think some of the commentary suggested that we didn't really speak on this issue. I think we did speak on this issue, it's just that we understand there's a legal framework that has to be developed first. ...

"Sometimes when something's incomprehensible, you have to go ahead and say, 'This is incomprehensible,' which means it probably isn't right. And I thought that in the report, we were pretty clear, that we think the framework doesn't work."

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Condoleezza Rice's connection to college sports
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Condoleezza Rice's connection to college sports
03 January 2011: Stanford faculty member Condoleezza Rice celebrates after the end of the Discover Orange Bowl game between Stanford Cardinal and the Virginia Tech Hokies at the Sun Life Stadium in Miami, Florida. Stanford defeated Virginia Tech with a score of 40-12. (Photo by Doug Murray/Icon SMI/Corbis via Getty Images)
PALO ALTO, CA - NOVEMBER 28: Honorary Stanford captain Condoleezza Rice walks to the middle of the field for the coin toss with Toby Gerhart #7 and Bo McNally #22 of the Stanford Cardinal before their game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Stanford Stadium on November 28, 2009 in Palo Alto, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
STANFORD, CA - OCTOBER 01: Honorary captain and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice waves to the crowd against the Stanford Cardinal she enters the stadium for the Stanford Cardinal game against the UCLA Bruins at Stanford Stadium on October 1, 2011 in Stanford, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 01: Former Secretary of State and Cardinal alum Condoleezza Rice celebrates after the Cardinal defeat the Wisconsin Badgers 20-14 in the 99th Rose Bowl Game Presented by Vizio on January 1, 2013 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
MEMPHIS, TN - MARCH 27: Former United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice looks on during a regional semifinal of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament between the Stanford Cardinal and the Dayton Flyers at the FedExForum on March 27, 2014 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 01: Former secretary of State Condoleezza Rice speaks to Ronnie Harris #21 of the Stanford Cardinal after Stanford's 45-16 win over the Iowa Hawkeyes in the 102nd Rose Bowl Game on January 1, 2016 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
STANFORD, CA - FEBRUARY 03: Stanford Cardinal Professor Condoleezza Rice observing the congratulation speeches during the regular season game between the USC Trojans and the Stanford Cardinals women's basketball on February 03, 2017 at Maples Pavilion. (Photo by Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is presented with a Georgetown t-shirt by Georgetown's mascot during a timeout in the NCAA basketball game between Louisville and Georgetown in Washington March 8, 2008. REUTERS/Joe Giza (UNITED STATES)
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice applauds during player introductions at the start of the NCAA college basketball game between Georgetown and Louisville in Washington March 8, 2008. REUTERS/Joe Giza (UNITED STATES)
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (L) greets former Georgetown University and NBA player Patrick Ewing prior to the start of the NCAA college basketball game between Georgetown and Louisville in Washington March 8, 2008. REUTERS/Joe Giza (UNITED STATES)
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Regarding one-and-done, which is an NBA rule, Rice said it won't be eliminated until 2019-20 at the earliest due to the 2018-19 players that have already been recruited under the current system.

Rice suggested at the time of the commission's report if the rule isn't changed, the NCAA may have to add its own rules -- perhaps barring freshmen from playing or making the scholarship of a player who leaves early unavailable after he leaves.

The commission's findings, shared two weeks ago, also recommended that college players should be allowed to return to school if undrafted and that high school and collegiate athletes should be able to sign with a certified agent before deciding to test the NBA draft waters.

See more of Rice through the years: 

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Condoleezza Rice through the years
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Condoleezza Rice through the years
PALO ALTO, CA - CIRCA 1985: Professor Condoleezza Rice of Stanford University poses for a portrait circa November 1985 at her home on the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto, California. (Photo by David Madison/Getty Images)
National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice talks with Secretary of State Colin Powell. (Photo by ?? Brooks Kraft/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - CIRCA 2000: Condoleezza Rice, George W. Bush's advisor on international affairs, makes an animated speech during the second night of the Republican National Convention at First Union Center in Philadelphia. (Photo by Harry Hamburg/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
374856 15: Condoleezza Rice, international affairs advisor to Republican presidential hopeful Texas Gov. George W. Bush, greets delegates at the Republican National Convention August 1, 2000 in Philadelphia. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Newsmakers)
380475 09: Condoleezza Rice, Gov. George W. Bush''s foreign policy advisor, listens to her introduction to a crowd of supporters at a 'W Stands For Women' rally to help support the Republican ticket October 18, 2000 in Southfield, MI. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Newsmakers)
(Original Caption) George W. Bush and Condoleezza Rice at the Governor's Mansion in Austin. Bush has named Rice as his potential National Security Advisor. (Photo by Robert Daemmrich Photography Inc/Sygma via Getty Images)
Working with his senior staff, President George W. Bush reviews the speech that he will deliver to the nation from the Oval Office the evening of Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2001. Pictured from left are: Alberto Gonzales, White House Counsel; Karen Hughes, Counselor; Condoleezza Rice, National Security Adviser; Ari Fleischer, Press Secretary, and Andy Card, Chief of Staff. Photo by Paul Morse, Courtesy of the George W. Bush Presidential Library/Getty Images
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 26: United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice speaks during a Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East during the 63rd annual United Nations General Assembly meeting September 26, 2008 at UN headquarters in New York City. World leaders are gathering in New York for this year's general debate devoted to the midterm review of the Almaty Programme of Action which concerns the needs of developing countries. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
U.S. President George W. Bush makes a phone call to Spain's Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar while National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice listens in the Oval Office of the White House, March 10, 2003. Bush is seeking support for a U.N. vote that could lead to war in Iraq. REUTERS/Larry Downing LSD/ME
Britain's foreign secretary Jack Straw kisses U.S. National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice as U.S. secretary of State Colin Powell looks on during the official welcoming ceremony of U.S. President George W. Bush at Buckingham Palace in London November 19, 2003. Bush is in England on a four-day state visit. REUTERS/Jason Reed JIR
US Secretary of State Rice listens to translation during visit to closing ceremony of international trade conference in Dakar. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice listens to a translation using headphones during a visit to the closing ceremony of an international trade conference in Senegal's capital Dakar July 20, 2005. REUTERS/Finbarr O'Reilly Pictures of the month July 2005
U.S. President George W. Bush (L) and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice walk on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington May 26, 2006. Bush and Rice boarded Marine One to depart for the presidential retreat, Camp David, in Maryland. REUTERS/Larry Downing
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (L) meets South Korean Foreign Minister Ban Ki-moon in Seoul October 19, 2006. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon(SOUTH KOREA)
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice waves upon her arrival for a meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank city of Ramallah October 17, 2007. REUTERS/Loay Abu Haykel (WEST BANK)
Desiree Fairooz of Texas, 50, jumps up in front of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice before Rice testifies before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington October 24, 2007. Fairooz, an anti-war protester waved blood-colored hands in Rice's face at a congressional hearing on Wednesday and shouted "war criminal!", but was pushed away and detained by police. At right is the committee Chairman Rep. Tom Lantos (D-CA). REUTERS/Larry Downing (UNITED STATES)
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice testifies about the International Affairs Budget in front of the House State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Subcommittee on Capitol Hill in Washington March 12, 2008. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (UNITED STATES)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 15: Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice presents an award onstage during the 2009 ESPY Awards held at Nokia Theatre LA Live on July 15, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. The 17th annual ESPYs will air on Sunday, July 19 at 9PM ET on ESPN. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON - OCTOBER 15: Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice talks about her new book, 'Extraordinary, Ordinary People: A Memoir of Family,' during the Newsmakers luncheon at the National Press Club October 15, 2010 in Washington, DC. The book is about Rice's family and growing up in racially-segregated Birmingham, Alabama, during the 1950s and 60s. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 05: Condoleezza Rice visits 'FOX And Friends' at FOX Studios on November 5, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Kim/Getty Images)
DAVIE, FL - NOVEMBER 05: Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice attends a Get-Out-To-Vote Event at Broward College on November 5, 2012 in Davie, Florida. (Photo by Vallery Jean/FilmMagic)
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 06: World-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma (L) and former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice give a surprise performance of Robert Schumann's Fantasiestucke, Op. 73 at the 2017 Kennedy Center Arts Summit at John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on May 6, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images)
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The 12-person commission also called for independent investigations into rule-breaking and cheating in college programs, pushing for stiffer penalties -- possibly including lifetime bans -- for offenders.

The NCAA will take the recommendations into consideration, president Mark Emmert said in a statement upon the sharing of the report, adding that he hopes to have changes in place by August.

"The NCAA appreciates the thorough review and comprehensive work by the Commission on College Basketball," Emmert said. "The Board of Governors and Division I Board of Directors will now review the independent commission's recommendations to determine the appropriate next steps."

--Field Level Media

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