April 7, 2014 |
The NCAA must be feeling a bit like Dr. Frankenstein these days: assailed by college football and men's basketball players who reject the NCAA's precious, but mostly mythic, notion that they are student-athletes. At Northwestern University, a group of football players scored a first-round victory before the National Labor Relations Board in a campaign to be recognized as "employees" eligible to unionize. For some college football fans, this evokes disturbing images of burly 18- to 22-year-old player-proletarians marching on picket lines instead of lined up on offensive or defensive lines, much less seated in classrooms.
April 6, 2014 |
ARLINGTON, Texas -- NCAA President Mark Emmert said Sunday that unionizing students is a “ridiculous idea” to solving the problems of intercollegiate athletics. “It would blow up everything about the collegiate model of athletics,” Emmert said during a morning press conference at AT&T Stadium. “There are some people who think that might be fine. I don't think that represents the views of anybody up here right now.” Northwestern football players recently received regional clearance from the National Labor Relations Board to unionize as they seek more benefits for student athletes.
April 4, 2014 |
The group behind the effort to unionize Northwestern athletes isn't interested in advocating for salaries for them. In a forum at the Aspen Institute in Washington on Thursday, College Athletes Players Assn. President Ramogi Huma refuted the notion that the group wants pay for play. “And that's not part of our agenda,” Huma said, according to the event's transcript. “That's one reason why we're here in Washington, D.C. This is not about salary.” Last month, a regional director of the National Labor Relations Board ruled that Northwestern athletes are university employees and have the right to form a union.
April 2, 2014 |
Former Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter and Ramogi Huma, the founder and president of the National College Players Assn., will meet with members of Congress on Wednesday in preparation for an appeal of a ruling that full scholarship athletes at Northwestern can form a union. “The goal is to make athletes have a seat at the table. Health and safety of athletes is the concern, especially to reduce the risk of brain trauma,” Huma told the Associated Press. “We want to make sure they have an opportunity to hear from us directly.” Colter and Huma were expected to meet with California Rep. George Miller (D-Martinez)
March 26, 2014 |
Northwestern football players qualify under federal law as employees of the university and, therefore, can legally form the nation's first college athletes' union, the National Labor Relations Board announced Wednesday. “We had both the facts and the law on our side,” Gary Kohlman, the attorney representing the players, said in a telephone interview with Bloomberg News. It's a stunning ruling, but hardly the final one on the matter. Northwestern has already announced plans to appeal the ruling by National Labor Relations Board regional director Peter Ohr to the full NLRB in Washington, D.C. After that, it probably will go through appellate courts and even the Supreme Court if necessary.
March 19, 2014 |
The NCAA basketball tournament field is set, and this week an estimated 50 million people will fill out their brackets in a fit of March Madness. Yet almost a year after fans witnessed one of the worst in-game injuries in a generation, college athletes are still fighting for basic healthcare guarantees from the institutions that profit from their sweat and blood. Broken bones come with the territory at high levels of competition, but you know an injury is uniquely awful when the player receives consolatory phone calls from Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and Michelle Obama.