NLRB Rules College Athletes are EMPLOYEES

#1

Tman44

God Father of Soul
Joined
Nov 23, 2012
Messages
1,923
Likes
7,189
#1
Yesterday, the National Labor Relations Board has ruled on behalf of Dartmouth Basketball players. This will have MAJOR ramifications across the NCAA. The NCAA and member institutions have fought this tooth and nail for years. These employees have the right to unionize, and the ruling sets in motion union elections. This is BIG sign of the apocalypse for the NCAA.

From the NLRB:

“Dartmouth takes the position the petitioned-for basketball players are not employees within the meaning of the Act and submits that the petition should be dismissed. In addition, Dartmouth takes the position that the Board should decline to assert jurisdiction over the basketball players so as not to create instability in labor relations. As set forth below, I find that because Dartmouth has the right to control the work performed by the men’s varsity basketball team, and because the players perform that work in exchange for compensation, the petitioned-for basketball players are employees within the meaning of the Act.

Additionally, I find that asserting jurisdiction would not create instability in labor relations.

Accordingly, I shall direct an election in the petitioned-for unit.”

Here is analysis of the ruling:


In other words: BOOM!
 
#5
#5
There are other relevant details in there that wouldn't necessarily affect "normal" schools, in that Ivy League schools apparently don't offer traditional athletic scholarships....
 
#6
#6
Maybe when there’s an open spot for a player they will go by seniority and not just let any player transfer..lol

If college sports Unionize they will have little bargaining power!
 
  • Like
Reactions: volanatic
#7
#7
Does this mean that all kids playing sports, all the way down to the elementary school level, are to be considered employees? Child labor laws about to be enforced within the sports arena?
 
#9
#9
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words. They'd do it even if there were no chance to go pro.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
 
#10
#10
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
Temporary employment
 
  • Like
Reactions: Seattle Hillbilly
#11
#11
This is exactly where I knew this was going but the schools have too many problems dealing with these million dollar long term employees. The universities next step will be to franchise their football programs to a 3rd party organization, which guarantees them revenue. The new franchises will employ the football, basketball players, make revenue deals with TV/radio/vendors and pay all the bills. At this point college football will officially be dead.
 
  • Like
Reactions: glv98
#12
#12
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words. They'd do it even if there were no chance to go pro.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
Nearly every current and former college athlete I’ve known thought it was really hard work that they really wanted to do because of some combination of:

1. They enjoyed the sport of it;
2. They got at least a partial scholarship;
3. They felt a duty to the school and/or their teammates; or
4. They wanted to work their way up the ladder into better opportunities.

From your post, it appears it can’t be considered work because someone might enjoy doing it.

I don’t think that’s a necessary factor.
 
#13
#13
Does this mean that all kids playing sports, all the way down to the elementary school level, are to be considered employees? Child labor laws about to be enforced within the sports arena?
Find me the boss of their tetherball court and I’m sure we could talk Cheeseburger Bobby’s into an endorsement deal for coupons.

😂
 
#14
#14
Nearly every current and former college athlete I’ve known thought it was really hard work that they really wanted to do because of some combination of:

1. They enjoyed the sport of it;
2. They got at least a partial scholarship;
3. They felt a duty to the school and/or their teammates; or
4. They wanted to work their way up the ladder into better opportunities.

From your post, it appears it can’t be considered work because someone might enjoy doing it.

I don’t think that’s a necessary factor.
Let's not confuse terms. In the NLRB's terminology, "work" doesn't just mean "hard" or "challenging" or "demanding." It means labor performed in exchange for financial compensation. It means "a job."

To see what I mean, let's look at the service academies. They have athletes competing to be on the rosters of all the sports, from football to basketball to golf to tennis to boxing to water polo to team handball.

Not a single one of them is paid to do the sport.

Not a single one of them will go pro as anything but a military officer.

They're all on the equivalent of 100% scholarship, whether they join a sports team or not.

Every student feels a duty to the school (or more accurately, to the nation behind that school's identity).

So there is no way on this planet that the sport(s) they pursue are "work." Hard, challenging, demanding ... but not work.

They're doing it for fun. They're busting their butts, getting up before dawn for two-a-days, suffering through ice baths and treatment for injuries, and embracing all the other non-fun aspects of the sport, because they want to, because it's what they think of as fun, satisfying, enriching.

That's not "work," not using the NLRB's definition.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: tango
#15
#15
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words. They'd do it even if there were no chance to go pro.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
Just because the athletes might enjoy the sport they play and love it, that doesn't necessarily make it fun. There are a lot of people who love what they do, but certainly don't consider it fun. And if there is compensation involved, it can surely be considered work. Forget about NIL, many of these athletes---basketball in the case of Dartmouth---are on full ride scholarships. I can only imagine the cost of tuition and board and other perks at an Ivy League school. I would definitely consider that compensation for services rendered.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Seattle Hillbilly
#16
#16
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words. They'd do it even if there were no chance to go pro.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
Double post by mistake.
 
#17
#17
The NLRB is an illegitimate authority regardless of whether they're right about this or not.

That said, all their ruling assures is that legislators will have cover and the courts will eventually "create law" to govern this. The absolute WORST of all possibilities.
 
#18
#18
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words. They'd do it even if there were no chance to go pro.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
A big question I have about this rests with the NLRB itself. The NLRB is an administrative arm of the federal government. The policies and rulings by the NLRB are not laws, they are merely administrative directives. (Side note, there is currently a case before the Supreme Court challenging the "Chevron doctrine" which allows federal agencies to make regulations.) Being under the executive branch of government, politics may play a huge factor in how decisions are made. The current democrat administration is very pro-labor and I would not put it past them to play politics instead of offering a fair ruling. The NCAA and others will certainly ask for a TRO while preparing for litigation. Should policies of this nature be made by unelected bureaucrats? I personally don't think so. With the Relentless vs, Department of Commerce case to be ruled on sooner than later, I see this ruling being nullified by a conservative SCOTUS.

Here is a link about Relentless vs. Department of Commerce that challenges the executives ability to create regulations that have the force of law. The plaintiffs argue that power lies specifically with only Congress. This may be the biggest blow to the administrative state in the history of our nation.

 
#20
#20
I think the NLRB over-reached. Specifically in this finding: "...that the players perform that work in exchange for compensation...."

Calling it "work" is disingenuous. It is play, not work.

The proof? "98% of college athletes go pro in something other than sports." What does that mean? It means the vast majority of college athletes don't see it as a job, they see it as play, as fun, as a pastime. Maybe a high-demand one, but still a voluntary activity that they do for some reason other than pay.

And if the 98% see it as fun, as sport and not a job, how many of the other 2% also see it as fun? Not a job?

I would guess most. Far more than half. The norm, in other words. They'd do it even if there were no chance to go pro.

But we can't know for sure.

What we do know is that it is not accurately called "work."

And so the NLRB over-reached with this description. And without this description, their finding does not wash.

This should be challenged in court. This is one the NCAA, or Dartmouth, or whoever, could win.

Go Vols!
Your statement about “work” is not accurate. Do you have anyone close to you that was a college athlete? I do. My daughter was a Division 1 college track athlete and she trained and “worked” like crazy 12 months out of the year with an indoor and outdoor season. For major college athletes, the games are secondary in terms of time compared to the practice and training schedule. Games are certainly fun. The training is anything but. It sure looked like work to me.
 
#22
#22
Your statement about “work” is not accurate. Do you have anyone close to you that was a college athlete? I do. My daughter was a Division 1 college track athlete and she trained and “worked” like crazy 12 months out of the year with an indoor and outdoor season. For major college athletes, the games are secondary in terms of time compared to the practice and training schedule. Games are certainly fun. The training is anything but. It sure looked like work to me.
My roommate was the starting middle linebacker for Army back when we were students. Another close friend was captain of the hockey team. Another friend was captain of the baseball team. Another friend was QB on the 150s football team. My best friend and I were both on the water polo team (I sucked, but that's beside the point).

So yeah, I'm a bit familiar with college athletes. Just a bit.

Let me tell you how decisively this was not work: on Sunday mornings, this group of friends would all get up at 6 am (this is the one day of the week we could sleep in), run up the hill to the ice rink, sneak in, borrow the pads of the hockey team members, and play the sport together for an hour or so. Just for fun. Including the captain of the hockey team (in fact, it was his idea). This included the linebacker. The 150s QB. The water polo players. Point is, we did even MORE sport, just for fun, on the day we could've been sleeping in.

It's not "work" in the NLRB's terms. It is sport. A hobby. A pastime. A hugely demanding one, a challenging one, sometimes a painful one, often a tedious one, but it's not the NLRB's version of "work."

I'm not denying that there are some (a small number, I think) of college athletes who would have nothing to do with their chosen sport if it weren't for the paycheck (or the future paycheck). I'm sure small numbers of those exist. They are vastly out-numbered by the mass of college student-athletes, but there are probably a few. For those, you could accurately call it "work." But just those few.

If kids will do it for free--and they will, in droves--it's play. Or sport. Or hobby. Not work. Not as the NLRB uses the term.


p.s. Ever heard this aphorism? "If you do something you love, you'll never WORK a day in your life."
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: tango and kcvols1
#23
#23
Cadets and Midshipmen do get paid in general. They draw a fraction of O-1 pay grade.

Their athletes still receive additional benefits incidental to their participation like workout clothes, game uniforms, equipment, tickets, food, medical care, travel, and accommodations.

NLRB puts it well in the Dartmouth decision, and a lot of this would also apply to a West Point Cadet or Navy Midshipman.

“the Dartmouth men’s basketball team performs work in exchange for compensation.
It is true that they do not receive the athletic scholarships enjoyed by the football players at issue in Northwestern University. They do, however, receive the benefits of “early read” for admission prior to graduating high school. They also receive equipment and apparel—including basketball shoes valued in excess of $1000 per player per year— as well as tickets to games, lodging, meals, and the benefits of Dartmouth’s Peak Performance program.

While the Employer asserts that players are
admitted to Dartmouth on the strength of their academic records, the record reveals that Dartmouth first makes contact with the players as high school students because of their basketball abilities. The coaching staff is allotted a certain number of highly coveted admission spots for players they scout based upon their basketball skills, and encourages players to matriculate at Dartmouth rather than at a
school which might offer them an athletic scholarship because of the lifelong benefits that accrue to an alumnus of an Ivy League institution.”
 
  • Like
Reactions: S.C. OrangeMan
#25
#25
Cadets and Midshipmen do get paid in general. They draw a fraction of O-1 pay grade.

Their athletes still receive additional benefits incidental to their participation like workout clothes, game uniforms, equipment, tickets, food, medical care, travel, and accommodations.

NLRB puts it well in the Dartmouth decision, and a lot of this would also apply to a West Point Cadet or Navy Midshipman.

“the Dartmouth men’s basketball team performs work in exchange for compensation.
It is true that they do not receive the athletic scholarships enjoyed by the football players at issue in Northwestern University. They do, however, receive the benefits of “early read” for admission prior to graduating high school. They also receive equipment and apparel—including basketball shoes valued in excess of $1000 per player per year— as well as tickets to games, lodging, meals, and the benefits of Dartmouth’s Peak Performance program.

While the Employer asserts that players are
admitted to Dartmouth on the strength of their academic records, the record reveals that Dartmouth first makes contact with the players as high school students because of their basketball abilities. The coaching staff is allotted a certain number of highly coveted admission spots for players they scout based upon their basketball skills, and encourages players to matriculate at Dartmouth rather than at a
school which might offer them an athletic scholarship because of the lifelong benefits that accrue to an alumnus of an Ivy League institution.”
You got some things wrong, KC.

For instance, ALL cadets and midshipmen get paid a monthly stipend. Not just the athletes. And it's the same for all cadets/ midshipmen. So that pay is NOT for being an athlete.

For instance, ALL cadets and midshipmen get medical care. Not just the athletes. [I have an amusing anecdote about this, but won't bore you with it]

All cadets and midshipmen get food, as much as they can eat, 3 meals a day, every day of the year. Not just the athletes.

And so on.

Do the athletes get workout clothes? Sure, but every cadet and midshipman gets workout clothes. Only difference is the football player's clothes say "Army football" on the front while the cadet not in a sport gets the one that says "Army."

The athletes get their travel and lodging paid for when they're on team trips for games or matches. But every cadet or midshipmen gets travel and lodging paid for when they're on Army business, like going to airborne school or for a month of CTLT somewhere in the world.

So almost every benefit you claimed for the athletes, those aren't unique to the athletes. Not at the academies.

Now, you missed the small, ancillary benefits academy athletes get beyond the other cadets and midshipmen. But they are so small, so ancillary, they really don't help your argument. Things like "squad tables" (which means a separate set of tables in the dining hall set aside for each team to eat as a group). Things like being excused from parade drill when their sport is in season (because they're practicing instead).

It's not work. And they're not really being compensated in the way that you think. The pride of being an Army football player (or baseball, or hockey, or whatever) is really the only BIG difference between them and other cadets.

I can't tell you about the differences between Dartsmouth and Northwestern. But I sure know how the academies work. And I can tell you, every single student-athlete at the academies is in sport because they WANT to be, not as a form of 'work.'

I suspect that's true of almost all student-athletes at almost all universities throughout the country. Indeed, the world.

Go Vols!
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: GBOx2 and kcvols1

VN Store



Back
Top