A lot of this Dennis Dodd post about Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick’s vision of D-1 academic elites and lower brow schools splitting into two collegiate athletic associations is silly – for example, Vanderbilt walking away from the SEC over fulfilling some highfalutin quasi-Ivy League mission would be an expensive one, to say the least – but I will say that Swarbrick has grasped one reality that I predict his peers will eventually have no choice but to embrace if they keep losing antitrust litigation.
… If the NCAA loses the O’Bannon case, players could make up to $20,000 in a trust fund payable after they leave school. Several lawsuits against the NCAA and Power Five conferences are calling for the full-on payment of athletes.
Northwestern is still waiting on a National Labor Relations Board ruling that would allow private-school athletes to unionize.
“The irony of all this is, maybe the only way we can get resolution is to ask our athletes to unionize,” Swarbrick said.
That, at least, would bring some sort of cost certainty instead of spending endless hours in court.
“You could have an enforceable collective bargaining,” Swarbrick said.
Yep, the same thing that keeps kids out of the NBA and NFL until the pros are good and ready to take them could be what allows schools to live with the cost of the consequences. Ironic, ain’t it?
Colorado men’s basketball coach, Tad Boyle, putting the “voluntary” into summer workouts:
“As coaches, we know where we need to get better, but how are we going to do it?” Boyle said. “There’s some things in the offseason that probably need to change and are going to change. The bar is going to be raised; the commitment is going to be higher.”
The main change will come in how the players spend their summer. In the past, Boyle has let his players choose between going home and staying in Boulder, figuring they’d work just as hard on their game either way.
“As a coach, I trust these players and maybe I’ve trusted them too much,” he said. “Now, that leash is going to be tightened.”
For those players who want to remain on the team, their summer is going to be spent in Boulder.
Remember, playing college sports is a privilege. If these student-athletes can’t fully appreciate the opportunity Boyle is providing for them by giving up more and more of their free time, they can just go play professional ball somewhere else, right?
Ah, the joys of amateurism.
Pat Fitzgerald thinks it was a tragedy that he had to spend time “educating” his seniors about unionization.
It sure would have been a lot easier if somebody would have just made it illegal. Then you wouldn’t have to spend any time explaining yourself.
Shorter Arizona AD Greg Byrne: Before you talk about football players being exploited, don’t forget to count the money we spend flying all of our student-athletes to away games!
(h/t Andy Schwarz) (Or to put it another way…)
The National Labor Relations Board has yet to weigh in on the regional director’s ruling that gave football players employee status under federal labor law, allowing them to unionize, but, if nothing else, the decision has played a hand in kick starting an effort by the schools and the NCAA to bend more in the direction of student-athletes.
Earlier this month outside Washington, Northwestern women’s soccer player Nandi Mehta was one of three Big Ten athletes to cast a vote in favor of the “cost-of-attendance” scholarships. Student-athletes make up 15 of the 80 votes, along with each of the 65 schools in the Power 5 conferences.
Mehta, whose three-year term will stretch beyond graduation, said she relishes having a “direct voice” in the process and does not believe that unionization — which would rebrand athletes as employees — is the right avenue for reform.
“But the way (Colter) did it,” she said, “did get a lot of attention.”
I can think of worse legacies for Kain Colter.
Of course, the decision has brought out its share of the morons, too. If you question my characterization, read this:
I asked Pscholka about this issue of admitting athletes just for their athletic ability, and he said it’s wrong if that’s what Michigan does, but that he has seen no evidence of it. He also said that he had heard of such things happening “in the SEC, but not in the Midwest.”
Uh hunh. Right. That’s why everyone keeps getting the Big Ten confused with the Ivy League.
Here comes the weekend… but first, a little nosh.
- Expanding the CFB playoffs is so obvious, even Dennis Dodd sees it coming.
- Speaking of obvious, Paul Chryst appears to be Barry Alvarez’ new man at Wisconsin.
- Marcus Mariota had a pretty good day yesterday.
- Now here’s a shocking development.
- At Central Florida, nearly half of its $41 million in 2013 sports revenues came out of students’ pockets. At least they weren’t charged to attend games.
- At Kentucky, knowledge is good: “… about 20 percent of players picked undergraduate studies, 18 percent picked community leadership and development and 16 percent chose kinesiology.”
- Jim Delany’s noblesse oblige.
- Three Georgia players made the freshman All-SEC team.
- Georgia isn’t looking for a new head coach, but you might want to take this test just for kicks, anyway. Don’t cheat!
Here’s another example of why there’s no money in college football to pay players.