I don’t know how many of you have been following the Ed O’Bannion case in which he’s suing the NCAA for using his likeness in video games without compensating him, but he got a nice win in a court ruling the other day which has the potential to lead to the disclosure of some interesting information. In essence, the ruling leaves the NCAA’s licensing contracts – estimated to be worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $4 billion – open to discovery.
Of course, be prepared for the hypocrisy charges to be laid out quite thickly. In this case, they’re deserved. But here’s the potentially ominous part for the suits:
… Michael McCann, a professor at Vermont Law School who specializes in sports law, called Monday’s ruling a “setback” for the N.C.A.A. He said that the case would probably be followed closely by members of Congress who were interested in the N.C.A.A.’s tax-exempt status.
Maybe it’s just more showboating grist for the political mill. But it sure sounds like another stick/carrot Congress can dangle out there if it’s serious about reforming the football postseason.
I’m sure if a deal like that is cut one day, concerns about the players will be front and center. After all, they’re from the NCAA and they’re here to help.