Skip to comments.(Northwestern) NLRB decision very well-reasoned
Posted on 03/27/2014 6:54:21 AM PDT by T-Bird45
The regional director of the National Labor Relations Board in Chicago, Peter Sung Ohr, ruled Wednesday that Northwestern University football players are university employees and entitled to an election that will determine whether they can form a union. The blockbuster ruling and Ohr's reasoning raise significant legal questions:
Q: What is the basis that college athletes are employees and entitled to form a union?
A: Ohr based his conclusion primarily on the enormous revenue and benefit that result from the efforts of the Northwestern football players and on the rigorous control that Wildcats coaches have over the lives of the scholarship athletes. The first thing that Ohr mentioned as he began to explain his decision was that Northwestern enjoyed football revenue of $235 million over the nine years between 2003 and 2012. Clearly impressed with that enormous income, Ohr explained somewhat unnecessarily that the university could use this "economic benefit" in "any manner it chose." It wasn't just the money, though, Ohr added. There is also the "great benefit" of the "immeasurable positive impact to Northwestern's reputation a winning football team may have." (Ohr did not mention NU's seven-game losing streak at the end of the past season.)
Ohr also was impressed with the hour-by-hour, day-by-day control that the coaching staff has over players' lives. He devoted more than 10 pages of his 24-page opinion to a detailed description of practice schedules, workout requirements and coaches' supervision, including approval of living arrangements, registration of automobiles, control of the use of social media (a player must be connected to a coach), dress codes, restrictions on off-campus travel and demanding study schedules. It was the kind of control, Ohr concluded, that an employer has over an employee, not the kind of control a school has over a student.
(Excerpt) Read more at espn.go.com ...
If Northwestern never wins another game, I would be a happy person. This is a joke.
Title 9 non revenue women sports are going to be funded by who? Lester
What next Olympics to be Unionize.
A Football player doesn't have to play College Sports.
Mixed feelings here... some college athletes are just that; others are clearly there for professional apprentice-ship.
I can see some funny things happening as the union gears up. Who is the rep? Is he a player or a labor pro? What happens to on-the-job seniority? Grievances with the coach (and team discipline)?
Actually, I think it is a failure of logic. The entire program is run by employees who find the appropriate talent, recruit them, train them, etc. The football players themselves are consumers of the program, not employees of the program. The program would continue whether those football players were there or not.
It was almost entirely a ruling based upon the ‘intern/employee’ test; another dip into the world of irrational thinking. But you could use the exact same rationality to unionize all college students.
All private schools that pay their players will be in violation of NCAA rules. This means YOU Notre Dame.
FR readers should be unionized.
Just like college football players pay room, board, tuition... Likewise FReepers pay monthlies, fundraisers, electricity, PC maintenance, occasional new keyboards...
While I do agree that universities make money off of what these players do for the program, many of them are getting paid by having their room and board covered by the way of scholarship.
No one is making these guys play football. You know what you are getting into when you play football. It’s a lot of work, but you know that going in. If the university is going to pay these guys to play, then they should NOT be paying for their education.
The ex-QB mouthpiece for this ‘movement’ is an Obama wannabe; a community organizer type who sees political office and/or the juicy salary of a newly-minted (pun intentional) union kingpin much preferable to actual work.
He’s already got the methodology down - forget actual community sentiment and instead use the terminally biased courts as a battering ram.
Sorry, Lester Munson is a lightweight moron. Over the years, he has continually commented on stuff he hasn’t even read. Such a bad habit for a “legal expert”.
1. Each student athlete knows what they're getting into and do so voluntarily.
2. It's a small price to pay for the privilege of playing college sports and getting a college education.
3. The best college sports programs are more than just playing sports - they're about building character into men and women - thus the necessity of the control.
4. Even though football (and college sports in general) bring in a lot of money, very few college sports programs are self-sufficient. This ruling will mean that none will be, so game tickets and tuition will have to increase.
5. I don't see any way this can be good for college sports.
Well then, the scholarships are salaries which are subject to state, fed and local taxes.
It’s an excellent analysis, in the sense of “since the sky is orange with green stripes...” style.
If they want a union then effective immediately these whiners will start paying for room, board, books, tuition, basically everything they are getting for free because they are “playing” football.
Or, effective immediately Football becomes a “Club Sport.” All volunteer walk on’s only will play.
Or, new starting college football salary a year is now say $60,000 - Tuition is $50,000, room, board, books $12,000 - Pay up chump, you now owe the university money.
Oh and by the way, we will reinstate the 3.0 GPA to play rule, so by God don’t dare let your GPA dip below a 3.0 or we will now cut your dumb arse and turn you over to the bill collection agencies. You wanna play hard ball, lets really play hard ball boys.
Otherwise I would suggest you all STFU and enjoy your free ride, free education, and the opportunity to get it all free for “playing” a game with no debt at the end of your four years. If you don’t like them apples how about $22,000 a year to be an enlisted man in Afghanistan “for real,” not playing a game. Still think you got it bad?
This is really a first world problem isn’t it?
Actually, a lot of scholarships are considered income, and the schools send out 1099s. Most of that income is not considered taxable, but I believe some kinds of scholarships are.
Who would want to be a coach in this setting?
The reason there is so much oversight by coaches is that the NCAA rules demand compliance and oversight is the only mechanism. I am certain the “car registration” thing came-up because a player broke a rule and the program was punished. “Hey... New rule, guys!”
The other controls are to meet academic compliance (with NCAA rules), and, of course, if you want ot WIN this is the workout/practice schedule.
I can hear it now, “Jones, take the field!” Jones, “Can’t coach. I’ve played in the last series. Shop Rules say you need to put in Smith.”
Eh....it’s Northwestern. You could get credits there for watching people use sex toys.
Right now, under IRS guidelines, the value of their tuition is NOT taxable...they must report the value of their room and board, and small stipend, but they end up paying no taxes on the amount.
HOWEVER...if they are employees, then they will have to report, and pay taxes, on the value of their tuition.
OK...let's say it's $40,000..that's gonna give them phantom income, and a REAL tax bill, say of about $10k. OUCH!!! Who's got that scratch? Can't have it both ways..
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