[Marxism] College Football Players Seek to Form a Labor Union - Athletics - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Wed Jan 29 07:20:52 MST 2014

College athletes on Tuesday took a bold step toward gaining more 
bargaining power in the National Collegiate Athletic Association, by 
attempting to form a labor union for big-time football and basketball 

Calling the NCAA a "dictatorship" that stamps on athletes' rights and 
fails to provide adequate long-term health care or educational 
assistance, football players at Northwestern University petitioned the 
Chicago office of the National Labor Relations Board to be recognized as 


The NCAA not only sought to generate fortunes both to the schools and 
itself, it also saw the “student-athlete” hoax as a way to protect a 
university from liabilities due to accidents on the field. One of the 
landmark cases involved a Texas Christian University running back named 
Kent Waldrep who broke his neck in a game with the University of Alabama 
in 1974 and was left a quadriplegic. When he filed suit in 1997 to 
establish his status as a wageworker rather than a “student-athlete” and 
thus be eligible for workman’s compensation, the university and the NCAA 
fought him tooth and nail. Waldrep lost the case but the battle continues.

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