California Gov. Gavin Newsom turned the world of college sports on its head in September when he went on HBO's "The Shop" and signed the first state law that allows college athletes to be compensated for their name, image and likeness.

LeBron James, who is the star of the show, later tweeted out video of the signing.

California Sen. Nancy Skinner introduced SB 206, better known as the Fair Pay to Play Act, earlier this year. It give college athletes the right to be paid for opportunities like endorsement deals starting in 2023 without them being considered employees of their schools.

It's proven to be quite the inspiration for other legislative action.

"We created a tidal wave," Skinner said. "We now have at least 19 other states who have either introduced bills, or bills that have already passed through committee, and the majority of them mirror SB 206."

Historically, the NCAA has banned student-athletes from receiving any form of financial compensation outside of scholarships and, more recently, small stipends. Amateurism has been a bedrock of its philosophy.

But now, lawmakers in states like Massachusetts are challenging those strict standards. Last month, Rep. Carlos Gonzalez, a Springfield Democrat, introduced the Massachusetts Collegiate Athletic Participation Compensation Act. Like the Fair Pay to Play Act, it would allow athletes the right to profit off their name, image and likeness with endorsement deals, sponsorships and other opportunities.

“When it comes to student-athletes, we feel that they should be compensated when universities and colleges are making millions of dollars while students are at the university playing all types of sports, and there’s nothing that gets returned to the students during that time period or even after," Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez, whose bill was co-sponsored by several members of the Black and Latino Legislative Caucus, which he chairs, also would set up a fund for athletes who are injured while playing college sports.

He noted many college athletes come from low-income communities.

“And many of them happen to be black and Latino. So it has a definite impact when a student goes to college and, because of their abilities, provide millions of dollars to universities and college," he said. "We feel that the millions of dollars should be redistributed in a better fashion.”

In the 2016-2017 school year, the NCAA brought in $1 billion in revenue. Coaches at powerhouse football and basketball schools often bring in paychecks several times larger than university presidents'.

That kind of money is a world away from when Sen. Barry Finegold, a Democrat from Andover, was playing football at Franklin and Marshall College in Pennsylvania, a Division III school that does not offer athletic scholarships. Earlier this month, Finegold introduced legislation in the Senate similar to Gonzalez’s in the House.

He said college sports have become professional, but college athletes aren’t treated like professionals.

“Now, I’m a firm believer that if you get a full scholarship that can be up to $300,000, that you shouldn’t demand compensation on top of that," he said. " However, if they’re using your name to market, that to me goes above what the trade-off is when you get a full scholarship."

Joseph Cooper, who teaches sports leadership and administration at UMass Boston, said the Fair Pay to Play Act was a step in the right direction for securing student athletes rights and providing them the same rights their college peers have.

"If you're a college student at a university, and let's say you're in computer science or technology and you do work for Apple, I'm not aware of any scholarship that that would affect your standing at the school, that you can also make money off of that skill and talent while also continuing your education," Cooper said. "I think college athletics should be the same."

So far, Massachusetts colleges have been cautious about even commenting on the proposed state legislation.

WGBH News reached out to each of the eight Division I schools in the state, including Merrimack College, which is in the process of transitioning to a Division I institution. These schools will likely be impacted the most if legislation on athletes' rights passes.

Harvard and Boston College declined to comment. Boston University, Holy Cross, UMass Amherst and UMass Lowell, along with Merrimack, did not respond to a request.

Only Northeastern University agreed to an interview.

Jeff Konya, Northeastern’s director of athletics, who played football at Princeton University, said internal conversations have started about how to prepare for these possible changes.

He wants the various forms of legislation across different states to be uniform, in part so colleges and athletes in some places don't have unfair advantages over others.

“I would like the laws to be consistent under the banner of the NCAA so that everybody would be afforded the same landscape and environment with which to work and allow the student-athletes to be able to monetize their own name, image and likeness under that one environment,” Konya said.

He said it's possible that Northeastern athletes could benefit from any changes.

"I mean, it's going to be what the market bears, right? ... It's really going to be dictated by the appetite of society," he said. "Do I think that Northeastern athletics generates interest from the public at large? I do. [Do I think] our athletes have the opportunity to compete at the highest levels and be very significant on the national front? I do. So given those realities, it will be interesting to see how it all plays out with what society's response will be with some of our more visible athletes and our more visible sports."

The NCAA was initially publicly outspoken against any state legislation that would allow athletes to use their name image and likeness. But just about a month after the Fair Pay to Play became law in California, the organization’s board of governors voted unanimously to allow student-athletes those rights.

“We must embrace change to provide the best possible experience for college athletes,” said Michael V. Drake, chair of the NCAA's board of governors, in a statement after the vote. “Additional flexibility in this area can and must continue to support college sports as a part of higher education.”

The board requested each division of the NCAA to create rules on the issue between now and January 2021.

But while the NCAA is moving forward on college-athletes' rights, Skinner, the California state senator, is still urging states to adopt legislation similar to the one she introduced.

“Because while the NCAA has shown some willingness to re-look at their rules, and they did vote that they would, I don’t have confidence that they will really give students the right to their name, image and likeness," she said. "I mean, the NCAA has a history of fits and starts on this. So I really encourage states to stay strong. We need to keep pressure on the NCAA.”

In college sports, tradition is often placed nearly above everything else. But now, in California, Massachusetts and other states, the tradition of student-athletes not being allowed to earn anything extra may be giving way — at least when it comes to their name, image and likeness.