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'Student-Athlete' Term in Question (Tom Farrey, ESPN - September 19, 2012)

"Maybe we don't call them student-athletes any longer and just refer to them as students."

-- NCAA senior policy advisor Wallace Renfro.

While presenting a unified front publicly and in the courts that athletes are being treated fairly, NCAA leaders privately agonized over the growing use of athlete images in commercial products, with one senior executive proposing to drop the term "student-athlete" after a half century of official use.

The philosophical divide emerges in depositions and frank emails unsealed this week in a class-action lawsuit by former UCLA basketball star Ed O'Bannon and other players who challenge the NCAA's licensing of their images to video games manufacturers and other third parties.

In one internal email sent after the lawsuit was filed in 2009, University of Nebraska chancellor Harvey Perlman wrote to then-Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe that he disagrees with the NCAA's legal defense that it can sell publicity rights without any compensation to the players.

"This whole area of name and likeness and the NCAA is a disaster leading to catastrophe as far as I can tell," wrote Perlman, a former member of the NCAA Board of Directors and law professor specializing in intellectual property. "I'm still trying to figure out by what authority the NCAA licenses these rights to the game makers and others. I looked at what our student athletes sign by way of waiver and it doesn't come close."

 

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This whole thing is looking bad for the NCAA. While I agree with Perlman, he should have used the phone not e-mail.

This boulder has started rolling down the mountain. Where it's going and what havoc it's going to wreak is still unclear.

For example, this could provide an excuse for the BCS to withdraw from the NCAA entirely. That would not be a good result for us.
 

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How about you turn it around - (full time) Athlete-(part time) student? er, maybe. Will that be with or without benefits. This is moving towards a messy/murky situation. But the colleges/ncaa have brought it on themselves. All they need is the ACLU (Title IX issues) to get involved to make it even more theatre.
 

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This whole thing is looking bad for the NCAA. While I agree with Perlman, he should have used the phone not e-mail.

This boulder has started rolling down the mountain. Where it's going and what havoc it's going to wreak is still unclear.

For example, this could provide an excuse for the BCS to withdraw from the NCAA entirely. That would not be a good result for us.
They probably will break away at some point, but I don't see that as being bad for non-football schools. The crapped-up NCAA will still have the basketball tournament to fund it's activities, as the football schools would break away for football, while leaving everything else underneath the NCAA. If anything, at that point, and assuming members could work together to be in unison for reforms, the members would have the leverage to actually reform the culture at that place. We all know it needs it.

The NCAA makes what goes on inside the Beltway entrepreneurial.
 

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There are some prominent coaches (Calipari? Calhoun? or was it Thuggins?) who have advocated the BCS schools to pull basketball out of the NCAA. If the schools' piece of the pie gets shrunk in this process, I think there is a significant chance that happens. No use in feeding the golden goose if you don't get to keep the golden eggs.
 

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There are some prominent coaches (Calipari? Calhoun? or was it Thuggins?) who have advocated the BCS schools to pull basketball out of the NCAA. If the schools' piece of the pie gets shrunk in this process, I think there is a significant chance that happens. No use in feeding the golden goose if you don't get to keep the golden eggs.
You'll have to elaborate for me, because I'm not following you. The bottom-line is clear enough: the existing format/structure of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament is what makes it so appealing nationally, and hence what makes it so lucrative. It would be seriously harmed and not worth as much if it were changed in such a way that: (1) the "David v. Goliath" aspect of it were lost; and (2) it failed to remain reasonably inclusive at the conference level. Why? Because of casual fan interest in general, especially with respect to the whole bracket gaming thing, and because of wider direct fan interest from all the different participating schools.

Thuggins may be prominent, but not for good reasons; his voice isn't swaying anyone on an issue like this. Calhoun is where he should be: gone, while sucking $3.5 million away from CT taxpayers. Calipari? Oh yeah, universal respect for that guy. Here's the thing: it doesn't matter what any one or small group or larger group of basketball coaches have to say about this, because their sport isn't driving the bus. That provides a nice segue back to the obvious, which is that football is driving the bus in realignment; the BCS power players are solving for football, and aren't even considering basketball as part of that process in any way, shape or form.

You are talking about the risk of a tournament that would end up having an opening round game involving something like Northwestern v. Washington State. I assure you that CBS isn't that stupid.
 

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I want to see more commercials saying that 99.99% of all students go pro into something besides law school. Pompous academic liberals.
 

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Apologies in advance for changing the order of your response.

The bottom-line is clear enough: the existing format/structure of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament is what makes it so appealing nationally, and hence what makes it so lucrative. It would be seriously harmed and not worth as much if it were changed in such a way that: (1) the "David v. Goliath" aspect of it were lost; and (2) it failed to remain reasonably inclusive at the conference level. Why? Because of casual fan interest in general, especially with respect to the whole bracket gaming thing, and because of wider direct fan interest from all the different participating schools.
The NCAA tournament is what I was calling the golden goose. I understand just how lucrative it is in the current format. I also understand that if the BCS withdrew from it that it would kill the golden goose.

You'll have to elaborate for me, because I'm not following you.
I haven't done the math, but I have the feeling that the NCAA tournament shares given to conferences/schools are a small fraction (30% maybe?) of the overall revenue collected from the tournament by the NCAA. A larger portion of the money goes to feeding the bloated leviathan that is the NCAA.

Living just outside the beltway has turned me into quite a cynic, and I'm guessing that that when the NCAA decides that a portion of the money needs to go to the athletes that the NCAA won't have the stomach to lay off staff. Instead, they are going to stick it the schools/conferences and pay the athletes with the money that used to be given to conferences/schools. (And I'm guessing with Title IX, there are going to be a lot of student/athletes who have to be paid.)

If they did that, I could see those blowhard bball coaches getting a following among the BCS that they need to withdraw from the NCAA because it's corrupt, inefficient, blah, blah, blah.

Then follow the money. The BCS will realize that if they withdrew and made their own exclusive tournament that got only say 40% of the revenue the NCAA tournament gets, they would still come out way ahead even paying their athletes because they wouldn't have to fund the bloated, decaying leviathan.
 

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An off the wall forecast - the ncaa gets blown up, over possible litigation, title IX, restraint of trade, licensing issues, etc, etc... the money is out of control. Plus they couldn't investigate themselves out of a paper bag, a bunch of Inspector Clouseau's.
The question will be, what replaces it. Lame eligibility rules (by each school) are making a mockery of college athletics.
 

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It's interesting that college sports as we know it is heading for the exit, just like, I guess, everything else as we know it.
 
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