The SDMB NCAA thread

So it popped up in the SRIOTD thread in the Pit that the NCAA has decided to withdraw all neutral-site championship events that were scheduled to take place in North Carolina due to HB2, which makes it illegal for people to use bathrooms unless they first consult their genitals at birth (or something like that, anyway).

Anyway, I noted that this is a huge thing because the NCAA is actually taking the high road and has for years with policies concerning LGBTQ players. That makes the state of North Carolina look like utter neanderthals when comparing them to an organization that persistently argues in favor of their ability to continue to exploit the labor and talents of children and young adults for billions of dollars.

So the NCAA has, IMO, come down on the right side of this issue and did so years ago; that’s a good thing.

But when it comes to paying players, making sure players who are injured will get medical care and treatment, making sure injured players get a chance to finish their academic courses and get diplomas, etc. they still drag their feet and claim a special privilege.

Previously we had threads on the O’Bannon lawsuit in this forum and a thread on the Sackos lawsuit in Great Debates, but I’ve long thought that it would be great to have a single place to talk about this stuff, rather than a different thread for each and every lawsuit, public statement, etc.

So this thread is here for the purpose of keeping track of, debating, commenting on and highlighting the NCAA’s policies, positions, legal battles and cultural changes.

First, I’ll note that [In February, the Sackos lawsuit was thrown out of court.

](http://www.ogletreedeakins.com/shared-content/content/blog/2016/february/ncaa-sacks-sackos-suit-why-ncaa-student-athletes-are-not-employees-under-the-flsa)I’m disappointed. I’m not sure how it could be that there were “insufficient facts” but I haven’t yet read the decision to be able to comment on the court’s reasoning.

I think the NCAA has no business staking out positions on political issues. They should limit themselves to regulating college sports, not practicing extortion to fellate an agenda.

Doing nothing in a situation like this IS a political position.

Funny how libertarian beliefs go out the window for some when it comes to things like this.

Sort of a hijack, or is it? Simon Fraser University is the only Canadian university that competes in the NCAA (Tier 47, I think…). To be eligible to play in the NCAA the university has had to become accredited by a US accrediting agency, and is the only Canadian university so accredited. This has ramifications for every department: there are rules the accrediting agency insists on that have ever been in place before.

Furthermore, the NCAA will not permit universities to compete if they are in legal jurisdictions that permit single event betting. The logic is it is easy to rig a single game, harder to rig a series. Canada today does not allow single event betting. You can bet on the winner of the Stanley Cup 7 game series, but not on a single game. Legislation to permit single event betting has been before the Canadian parliament for a few years. The university, which has paid several hundred thousand dollars and taken up tons of person hours to become accredited, has been pooping its pants and sending delegations to lobby against the bill.

Clearly not the NCAA’s fault but perhaps a small window into the weirdness that it helps create?

If this is true, how is UNLV in the NCAA? :confused:

:smack:I over-stated the case in a flight of hasty righteous indignation. I believe what the NCAA forbids is the holding of championship games in jurisdictions that allow single event betting. The Canadian university wet its pants when the single event legislation was pending.

I believe the casinos don’t book UNLV games.

This was a Nevada law for a long time, and this included nobody being allowed to bet on anyone to win the NCAA basketball championship as long as UNLV or Nevada were in the tournament, but not any more. (At one point, it was changed to “which non-Nevada team would finish highest in the tournament,” then they were allowed to accept bets on the two Nevada schools.)

It’s possible that some casinos don’t let students bet on games, in part because any UNLV athlete who bets on a UNLV event, even in a different sport, immediately loses all college eligibility, but it’s not a requirement.

Thanks for the head’s up, Red.

I found [a brief article:

](http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/wireStory/fbs-athletic-directors-create-political-action-committee-44355040)How do I start a PAC to ensure that the concerns of people too young to vote and without the millions of dollars to spend who will be negatively affected by LEAD1’s concerns can have a voice?

The schools, ostensibly bastions of freedom of thoughts and deeds, now find themselves in the position of tacitly condoning an organization of their employees dedicated to the denial of students’ rights. More than any other aspect of this debate, this part of it may be the most disappointing. I don’t expect better from the majority of fans, who are traditionalists by nature, but I do expect better from the nation’s highest academic institutions.

I wonder if an anti-trust exemption will lead us closer to the athletes using the nuclear option (boycott)? It’s a really difficult thing to organize but perhaps the motivation just needs to be greater.

If the schools don’t like it, then they can leave the NCAA and form a separate organization that allows players to be paid, or at least keep merchandising rights to their names and likenesses. This has happened before, albeit at a professional level, when the top soccer teams in England pulled out of the “football league” and joined with England’s Football Association to form a “premier league,” and I don’t remember the reason being anything other than “we’re the ones making the money; why should we share it with the three lower divisions?”

I still think that the reason they haven’t already done this is, too many of the big schools are competitive in smaller sports that wouldn’t be part of a breakaway association, and yes, there are parts of the country where this matters.

As for a boycott, sitting out a year would do far more harm than good to the top players in terms of their chances in the NBA/NFL, and a boycott by anybody else would be ignored.

If the schools dislike it, they don’t dislike it enough to rein in their employees who are working against the athletes’ interests and that’s something I fault them for very much.

A boycott doesn’t have to be season long for it to be effective (see U. of Missouri football); it just has to be fairly widespread. But even that is incredibly difficult to organize, in part for the reason you noted. The athletes have so much to lose and the power imbalance is huge. But if congress and the courts will not give them justice, what other options are left?

The whole point of the ADs’ PAC is to beat Jeffrey Kessler to the punch re: anti-trust. The schools are in violation of anti-trust laws with their conspiracy to limit compensation and sooner or later an enlightened court will find for the market. Congressional exemption, while bringing a host of other problems with it, pretty much ties the courts’ hands in favor of maintaining “amateurism.”

PastTense posted a story about a guy at UCF who’s been told by the NCAA that he cannot post videos to YouTube because he would be profiting off of his likeness; I thought that should also be available in this thread.

And today I found [an article on VICE about the NCAA’s notion that not being paid somehow enhances the educational experience of players.

](https://sports.vice.com/en_us/article/amateurism-isnt-educational-debunking-the-ncaas-dumbest-lie)
It’s a good article; well-researched with lots of input from former players. It’s also fairly long and covers a lot of ground, but for anyone truly interested in this subject, I think you’ll find it informative and possibly persuasive.

Given that the generic educational experiences of athletes is downright shite at most institutions, I fear how much worse it could get if the money the players were earning got passed on to them instead of the NCAA.

Did you read the article?

What do you think of the opinions of the former players interviewed for it?

What do you base your own opinion on and how exactly do you think things would get worse and why?

We’re already at a point where education is a secondary (or lower) priority for many student athletes. Does anyone in the entire Alabama football organization (to use an example) give a rip about their players’ education, other than to make sure they meet the minimum requirements to remain eligible to play?

At the very least, I think the highest levels of college football and basketball have completely diminished the spirit of college sports. I’ve said before that I’d like to see some level of professional football between high school and the NFL that eliminates the need for top players who couldn’t care less about school to play NCAA football. The way college programs, coaches and directors bend and outright break rules to gain a competitive advantage is so much worse in the NCAA than any American professional sports league.

The snark in the second half of my statement must have been effectively communicated. The educational support for a very large portion of big-sport athletes is woefully inadequate, while blatant malfeasance like that at UNC continues and expands. At UNC, over the course of 18 years, over 3000 students took classes that just didn’t exist. And that’s coming from the guy the university itself hired. That’s just the end of investigations spanning back for years prior. The NCAA punished the university and their basketball team by…doing nothing. North Carolina won the NCAA Men’s basketball tournament this last year. Contrast that with the NCAA suspending the eligibility of baseball players for playing fantasy football, suspending players for buying school supplies, or trading memorabilia for tattoos and cash.

The NCAA is a sham that pulls in over a billion dollars a year. The highest-paid public employee in 39 states is a head football or basketball coach. Many of those states have multiple coaches making more than Over a hundred ASSISTANT coaches make over half a million dollars annually. College sports are huge money for everyone except the ones actually on the court or field. Of those 39 states, you could take a full million away from 35 of those coaches to pay players and they’d STILL make far more than anyone else in the state.

FYI, I love John Urschel. The articles and math challenges he’s posted the the Player’s Tribune are fantastic.

AP story here:

I admit that I’m still not clear on what laws might have been broken here, tho.

I’m curious about that as well: the ESPN piece I read did mention wire fraud.