Category Archives: NCAA

As March Madness Looms, NCAA Opens Another Violation Investigation into UNC Academic Practices

Just when the University of North Carolina thought it was past the rounds of sanctions centering on academic integrity issues, the NCAA filed a third “Notice of Allegations” as 2016 came to a close. In the most recent notice, the NCAA alleged that the university provided improper extra benefits to student-athletes so that they could remain eligible for athletic competition. The notice goes on to allege that members of the men’s basketball and football programs received improper benefits, restoring a reference to the university’s premier…

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Could a Sport’s Revenue be the Difference-Maker in Fight for Paid Student-Athletes?

A federal judge in California held a Seventh Circuit’s decision inapplicable to the Fair Labor Standards Act case brought by former University of Southern California linebacker, Lamar Dawson. District Court Judge Richard Seeborg rejected the defendants’ motion to stay the wage-and-hour case in spite of the NCAA and PAC 12’s motion to dismiss Dawson’s claims. Dawson brought this class action suit after leaving USC in December 2015, arguing he was “denied full pay for all hours worked, including overtime pay, and was frequently permitted to…

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Former Track & Field Athletes Petition for En Banc Review in the Face of Latest Defeat in Student-Athlete Employment Fight

Two former NCAA track and field athletes are petitioning the Seventh Circuit to overrule itself, in one of the highest profile student-athlete lawsuits since the Ed O’Bannon litigation. Plaintiffs Gillian Berger and Taylor Hennig competed for the University of Pennsylvania, and argue that the hours spent training and competing for their school violated the wage-and-hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The defendants, which include the NCAA, won a motion to dismiss the case this past February. That order was upheld by…

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“UConn’t do that!” Ex-Soccer Player Suing University for Revoking Athletic Scholarship

In a bizarre lawsuit, a former soccer player from the University of Connecticut (UConn) is filing suit against her alma mater for taking her athletic scholarship away, but not for the reason you might think. It all started in 2014 after the UConn women’s soccer team won the American Athletic Conference title game. In a moment of jubilation, then-freshman Noriana Radwan hugged a teammate and then looked to the television camera directly in front of her, and proudly “flipped the bird,” likely without any idea…

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Ohio Takes a Closer Look at Accrual of Injury in Concussion Case

The long-lasting nature of a concussion injury may be a way around the statute of limitation problems for athletes bringing concussion suits. The Ohio Court of Appeals, which revived a former Notre Dame football player’s case against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), recently reasoned that there was nothing about the player’s condition prior to diagnosis (within the statute of limitations) that would have alerted him that his injury was the result of the NCAA alleged tortious conduct. Steven Schmitz, who passed away…

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Student Athletes: Don’t Quit Your Day Job

On December 5, 2016, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in a case brought by former student athletes of the track and field team at the University of Pennsylvania, against the University, the NCAA and several other Division I universities. The former student athletes claimed that during their time in college athletics they were employees of the defendants and therefore entitled to a minimum wage under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The district court held that the student athletes, who formerly attended…

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Upon Further Review: NCAA Sends University of Hawaii Basketball Case Back to Committee on Infractions

On October 28, 2016, an internal NCAA appellate board said that the Division I Committee on Infractions should reconsider sanctions imposed on the University of Hawaii’s men’s basketball program. The Division I Infractions Appeals Committee found there was insufficient evidence showing that the university permitted men’s basketball coach Gib Arnold to act unethically, finding “there needs to be a connection between the behavior of the coach and the university.” In 2015, the NCAA’s Division I Committee on Infractions found that Arnold violated NCAA rules concerning…

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Under a Microscope: NCAA Reviewing Academic Standards of Division I Student-Athletes

On October 13, 2016, the NCAA announced that it opened an overarching review on its academic standards for Division I student-athletes. The target of this investigation is to maintain academic quality for these student-athletes, and the committee has already approved a new transfer policy in its effort to accomplish this goal that retroactively applies to the 2012-2013 academic year. Under the old policy, when a student-athlete would transfer to another school, the transfer sometimes harmed the original school’s academic progress rate, or APR, which is…

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Another Tackle for the NCAA: Ex-MSU Football Player Brings Concussion Lawsuit

The NCAA has been tackling concussion litigation for years, and on Friday, September 30, 2016, an ex-Missouri State University football player brought another concussion lawsuit to add to the NCAA’s defense list. Richard Walker, who played football for MSU from 1976-79, suffered four traumatic brain injuries and about a dozen blackouts during his time as a student athlete. Walker filed this lawsuit in an Indiana federal court, alleging that the defendants, which include the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association and the NCAA, knew of and concealed…

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Will North Carolina’s 2017 March Madness Games Be Relocated to New York?

In early September, the NCAA announced it would not be holding the first two rounds of the 2017 March Madness Tournament in North Carolina due its controversial bathroom law. The bathroom law, which was implemented earlier this year, requires that individuals use the public bathrooms that match the gender listed on their birth certificate. Many sports associations, and specifically the NCAA, have taken a stand to protect the beliefs of the transgender individuals greatly offended by this law and refused to hold events in…

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