NCAA “Battles” Former Marine Sergeant

Steven Rhodes, a former US Marine sergeant, just finished five years of active duty.  Now, he is going after his dream of playing college football.  He was a walk-on to the Middle Tennessee State (MTS) football team this summer and has been practicing as a tight end and defensive lineman.  Rhodes is, however, appealing an NCAA rule that prevents him from playing football this season.

The NCAA says he won’t see any game time this year because of a league he played in during his …

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NCAA Hits Back, Seeks Dismissal of Lawsuit filed by Paterno Family Stemming From Sandusky Scandal

The NCAA wants a judge to dismiss the lawsuit brought by the family and supporters of late football coach Joe Paterno. Alleging that the claims are “baseless,” the NCAA filed its response to the Paterno family’s civil lawsuit last week on the day marking the one year anniversary since the NCAA sanctioned PennState for the Jerry Sandusky scandal with unprecedented penalties that included a $60 million fine. This is just the latest chapter from the embarrassing scandal which has tarnished the university’s brand and hindered …

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NCAA Litigation May Lead to Compensation of Student Athletes

It is well known that student athletes do not receive any of the revenue that their schools generate from ticket sales, television revenues, jersey sales, or similar profit-generating business transactions arising out of college athletics.

However, former University of California at Los Angeles basketball player, Ed O’Bannon has commenced an action in the Northern District of California against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Collegiate Licensing Company seeking to recover damages from the licensing of his likeness to entities such as EA Sports

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NCAA Punishment? Just Do It, Says Oregon U.

On June 26, 2013 the NCAA issued a Public Infractions Report against the University of Oregon, ruling that former Ducks head coach Chip Kelly failed to monitor the football program. The report cited a recruiting service as its basis for the infractions.

The University of Oregon hired a Texas scout, Will Lyles, for recruitment services for its football program. Lyles provided cash, lodging, travel, and academic aid, and made personal contact with high school prospects and their families. This is a violation of NCAA recruiting …

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Latest Mitchell Quarterly Report Continues Praise of Penn State’s Progress Post-Sandusky Scandal

Penn State is apparently continuing to make steady progress in moving past the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal. Last week, former Senator George Mitchell, the third-party independent athletics integrity monitor, issued a third quarterly report (which can be found at by clicking here.) stating that University officials have given his team nothing but “full cooperation” as the institution works to implement various reforms after sanctions were imposed on Penn State stemming from the Sandusky scandal. Like Mitchell’s two prior reports, his third quarterly …

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If It’s In the Game …

This past week, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in the case Ryan Hart v. Electronic Arts, Inc., Index No. 11-3750, paved the way for a showdown that could fundamentally change the way the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) goes about its business. In the case, Hart alleged that Electronic Arts (EA) had violated his right of publicity under New Jersey law by including his “likeness” in its video games NCAA Football 2004, 2005, and 2006. EA had previously won a motion …

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Was it Retaliation? Why New Jersey’s Whistleblower Statute May Pose More Problems for Rutgers University on the heels of the Mike Rice Scandal.

The Rutgers Basketball saga was early April’s big news. As most are aware, video recordings were made of basketball practices conducted by Head Basketball Coach Mike Rice which showed him using gay slurs toward his players and otherwise becoming physical toward them. The footage was given to Athletic Director Tim Pernetti in November 2012. Pernetti seemingly took the path of lesser resistance by suspending Rice for three days and levied a fine against him.  No further action was taken until the tape was made public …

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ACC Locks Down Members with Media Rights Deal

On April 22, 2013, the Atlantic Coast Conference (“ACC”) Counsel of Presidents voted to approve a grant of media rights through 2026-27.  Because the deal ensures that each school’s media rights for all home games would remain with the ACC regardless of the member institution’s exit from the conference, the move would make it almost financially impossible for member schools to leave.  The ACC is now the fourth league of the “power five” (which also includes the Big Ten, Pac-12, Big 12, and the SEC) …

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O’Bannon Lawsuit Could Change the Face of NCAA Athletics

Former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon began his antitrust legal dispute against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) back in 2009, when he sued the NCAA for wrongfully profiting off the likenesses of former student athletes in EA Sports video games.  The suit accuses the NCAA of forcing students to waive the right to make money off of their likenesses, a behavior which amounts to an illegal restraint of trade.

In a new twist, in her January ruling, federal Judge Claudia Wilken permitted O’Bannon to …

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Penn State Taking Notable Steps to Implement Systemic Changes After Sandusky Scandal

Penn State is apparently making steady progress in incorporating the requirements mandated by the NCAA on the heels of the embarrassing Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.  Last month, former Senator George Mitchell (the third-party Athletics Integrity Monitor) stated that Penn State is implementing various campus-wide changes to address deficiencies which had rendered the University and its administrators partly culpable for Sandusky’s criminal actions.

Mr. Mitchell recently detailed in a second quarterly report to the NCAA and Penn State (as required to be issued pursuant …

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