NCAA Says Athletes Counsel Overcharged It for Attorney Fees

The NCAA wants more than 80% discount on the bill presented by the lawyers who represented the student-athlete plaintiffs in the O’Bannon case pursuant to a judgment in that case. In a court filing, the NCAA argued that since the court’s decision in the O’Bannon case was a “limited success” as it only allowed players to share licensing revenue but awarded no damages, $9.1 million was more reasonable than the plaintiffs lawyers’ demand of $51 million.  Further, it accused the plaintiffs legal team…
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O’Bannon Plaintiffs Urge 9th Circuit to Affirm Pay-Rule Ban

On January 23, O’Bannon Plaintiffs filed a response to NCAA’s appellate brief that asked the Ninth Circuit to reverse the lower court’s decision allowing student-athletes to be paid. In a 851-page long filing, the plaintiffs argued that the a limited compensation to $5,000 for every year of academic eligibility pursuant to the court’s decision is “such modest payment” to jeopardize NCAA’s policy on amateurism, a concept that has evolved and eroded admittedly by NCAA.  Further, the plaintiffs stressed that because the injunction was not mandatory,…
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Law Professors Support NCAA’s Appeal in O’Bannon Case

On November 21, fifteen law professors filed an amicus brief with the Ninth Circuit Court in support of the NCAA in its O’Bannon appeal. The fifteen antitrust law professors argued that U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilkin’s decision that the NCAA violated antitrust law was a misapplication of the “less-restrictive alternative prong” of the relevant analysis. Referring to the “limited appellate authority” in defining the scope of the less-restrictive alternative, the professors stated that if the Circuit Court affirms Judge Wilkin’s judgment, it “would substantially expand…
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Plaintiffs’ Lawyers for O’Bannon Case Billing NCAA for over $50M

Lawyers for the plaintiffs in the O’Bannon case have filed an amended billing filing on October 22 to seek approximately $50 million in attorneys’ fees and other related costs. The filing is a revision of what the lawyers filed back in August pursuant to U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken’s decision that the plaintiffs “shall recover their costs from the NCAA.”  The original request that totaled more than $52.4 million was filed within 14 days of the judgment to comply with the local court rules. …
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Ninth Circuit Takes NCAA’s Appeal of the O’Bannon Case in Expedited Manner

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals agreed to hear the NCAA’s appeal of the O’Bannon case in a speedy manner after the parties filed a joint motion last week to expedite the schedule for briefs and oral arguments so that they have a decision before the permanent injunction by Judge Claudia Wilken becomes effective on August 1, 2015. Typically, the Ninth Circuit does not schedule appeals before all briefs are filed.  Originally, the NCAA was to submit its opening brief by November 28, and the…
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NCAA Using the O’Bannon Decision to Have Two Other Similar Suits Dismissed

While the NCAA is appealing the O’Bannon decision by Judge Claudia Wilken, it is using Judge Wilken’s ruling in that case as the reason why she should dismiss two other scholarship suits before her. One lawsuit was brought by several former men’s and women’s basketball players in 11 conferences as well as football players, including former West Virginia running back Shawne Alston.  The other suit covered players in men’s basketball and football, including Clemson football player Martin Jenkins. In the O’Bannon case, Judge Wilken had…
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Injunction on NCAA Player Compensation Set for August 1, 2015

Tuesday, August 19, the terms of the recent Order lifting the NCAA’s ban on student-athlete compensation was clarified and set in motion. The O’Bannon plaintiffs and the NCAA filed a joint stipulation last week asking for Judge Claudia Wilken to clarify her order in terms of when the ban on player compensation was to kick in.  The parties at first disagreed over whether any students currently enrolled would be eligible for student-athlete pay in the future, however the disagreement was resolved. The parties’ stipulation designates…
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O’Bannon Plaintiffs & NCAA Ask Judge to Set Timetable for Athlete Pay

On Thursday, August 14, the O’Bannon plaintiffs and the NCAA filed a joint submission to the United States District Court for the Northern District of California seeking clarification of Judge Claudia Wilken’s injunction on the NCAA’s ban of player compensation. The two parties to the lawsuit have come to an agreement over when the injunction should take place.  Judge Wilken’s original ruling left the results somewhat ambiguous, and the current joint submission was submitted to clarify.  The parties’ submitted a proposed order designating the injunction…
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O’Bannon Case: NCAA Urges For Court’s Clarification

In the wake of last week’s O’Bannon ruling, the NCAA has requested for clarification of the court’s injunction.  Judge Claudia Wilken wrote that the injunction would not be applicable to student-athletes enrolled in college before July 1, 2016 or after the next recruiting cycle. The next recruiting cycle, however, focuses on student-athletes first entering in Fall 2016.  Further, new recruits may receive offer letters as early as August 1, 2015, the first day colleges can offer scholarships to their recruits in the 2016-17 class…
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O’Bannon Case: Judge Found NCAA “Unreasonably Restrain[ed] Trade”

U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken in her decision wrote “The evidence . . . demonstrates that student-athletes themselves are harmed by the price-fixing agreement.”  Having found that the NCAA has violated antitrust laws, Judge Wilken issued an injunction prohibiting the NCAA “from enforcing any rules or bylaws that would prohibit its member schools and conferences from offering their FBS football or Division I basketball recruits a limited share of the revenues generated from the use of their names, images, and likenesses in addition to a…
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