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NCAA President Emmert shreds players union talk

NCAA President Mark Emmert held his annual press conference at the men’s basketball tournament on Sunday, giving the NCAA’s face a chance to respond to the recent developments in the players union push. Needless to say, Emmert had nothing positive to say about the idea.

“To be perfectly frank, the notion of using a union employee model to address the challenges that do exist in intercollegiate athletics is something that strikes most people as a grossly inappropriate solution to the problems,” Emmert said, according to ESPN.com. “It would blow up everything about the collegiate model of athletics.”

The National Labor Relations Board recently ruled in favor of Northwestern football players looking to forma  players union by stating they should be viewed as employees of Northwestern University. There are still some steps ahead in the drawn-out process to form a players union — Northwestern players will hold a vote later this month to determine if a labor union will be formed to represent the players — but the progress already made at Northwestern has grabbed the attention of players from around the country. The idea of new unions being formed may become a reality if Northwestern players do follow through with the concept.

Emmert acknowledges the NCAA has issues to address and stresses the organization is working to reform from within. In doing so, Emmert suggested a players union is not the way to go about fixing any problems.

“There’s some things that need to get fixed,” Emmert said. “They’re working very aggressively to do that. No one up here believes that the way you fix that is by converting student-athletes into unionized employees.”

The big question is whether or not Emmert is able to lead the NCAA to fix the system in place.

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40 Responses to “NCAA President Emmert shreds players union talk”
  1. barkleyblows says: Apr 6, 2014 3:31 PM

    Let them go union. After they turn union take away the free ride these players are getting. Make sure they pay taxes on their “earnings” and don’t forget about women’s sports. After all, let’s be fair!

  2. meatcarroll says: Apr 6, 2014 3:35 PM

    “It would blow up everything about the collegiate model of athletics.”

    Good. The NCAA is grotesquely corrupt and out of control, I support any measure that acts as a sledgehammer to smash it into smithereens.

    That bumbling nincompoop Emmert being strongly against it should be prime evidence that unionization is the right way to go.

  3. dmarado says: Apr 6, 2014 3:55 PM

    Does the NCAA have to report what it does with the money it makes? As a not-for-profit does it have to file an annual report?

  4. iwishwvuwouldbeatbama says: Apr 6, 2014 4:03 PM

    It looks like the NCAA realizes they wont get their slave labor anymore. Too bad, they might have to share a little bit of those billions with they ones sacrificing their bodies and taking time away from their education. I laugh every time I hear the expression free ride. These players are completely exploited. They help earn millions for their university and maybe get a scholarship to that university worth somewhere around 20,000 a year. A free ride that does not even cover the entire cost of that education. Oh and the cost of this free ride is paid by the school to the school so is that really a loss? Sounds more like a casino comping a big spender that they know will help them make profit.

  5. thekatman says: Apr 6, 2014 4:07 PM

    Unionization is not the way to go for college athletics. However, the NCAA member schools must instructs Emmert to change a lot if tbe rules, such as allowing non schools athletes access to the training table, same neducal care as tbe schollie players, a spans based on University location to provide the athletes with a semester based check to account for the true cost of the education at that school. this includes money for food and transportation to their home for the holidays and family illness issues.

  6. coachmalik says: Apr 6, 2014 4:20 PM

    Nobody knows what unionizing will do, but I like that is making everyone uncomfortable….when this many old white men are upset, its usually the beginning of something good

  7. poconolion says: Apr 6, 2014 4:24 PM

    Spoken like a true company man. The coal mine and sweatshop owners were against unionization also.

  8. derekgorgonstar says: Apr 6, 2014 5:52 PM

    coachmalik says:
    Apr 6, 2014 4:20 PM
    Nobody knows what unionizing will do, but I like that is making everyone uncomfortable….when this many old white men are upset, its usually the beginning of something good

    Okay, when did this become the site for liberal pillow-biters?

  9. thekatman says: Apr 6, 2014 6:07 PM

    My apologies for the autocorrect errors. Resubmitted …

    Unionization is not the way to go for college athletics. However, the NCAA member schools must deman that Emmert change a lot if the rules, such as allowing non schollie athletes access to the training table, same medical care as the schollie players, a supplemental payment based on University location and cost of living at that school to provide the athletes with a semester based check to account for the true cost of the education at that school. This includes money for food and transportation to their home for the holidays, in between semesters and family illness issues.

    If a school cannot afford such supplements to the true cost of the education, then they should revisit how many sports teams they will support.

    Most womens sports, at the university level, exist because of Title 9 and training of potential Olympic ahletes, not because there’s an interest on behalf of the student population or the sports fans. If an atheletic program cannot sustain itself, then it should be a school organized club sport, not a 100% funded sport.

    @coachmalik. Your ignorance od e subject matter is only exceeded by your liberal, racist mentality.

  10. huskerzfan says: Apr 6, 2014 6:19 PM

    Absolutely amazing how the masses, still to this day, do not realize that the NCAA doesn’t make a dime from college football.

  11. queenlivekillers says: Apr 6, 2014 6:40 PM

    Overly dramatic headline. Responds to union talk? Yes. “Shreds” it? Hardly.

  12. pawloosa says: Apr 6, 2014 7:11 PM

    Place a salary (budget) cap on running a college football program…. Every program must operate within that set budget for coaches salary, recruiting, and other related expenses..
    Anything above that can go towards other athletics programs or the university general fund…
    No pay for players
    If pay must be discussed further… Create separate farm league for those that just

  13. pawloosa says: Apr 6, 2014 7:13 PM

    Unions have no place in college ball or the workplace for that matter…

  14. corvusrex96 says: Apr 6, 2014 7:25 PM

    I guess the anti union collusion meeting must have been on Friday since we got statements from 1) coach Fitzgerald 2) the head of a major conference & 3) the head of the NCAA making their case. If all three of these highly paid guys are against it then the players should really consider voting yes.

  15. mt10425 says: Apr 6, 2014 8:29 PM

    I’m not going to say unionization is the correct method, but if lights a fire of change under the dead ass of the NCAA, it’s a good thing. Emmert and his cronies drag their feet constantly. Anything that will possibly reduce the arbitrary power of the NCAA, is a terrific step forward.

  16. provguard says: Apr 6, 2014 9:00 PM

    The scholarship athletes are being paid! If you don’t think so, take you kid to the admissions office and see if he can get in for free….

    These prima donnas get a gift of a lot more than what most other American citizens earn in a year. If they must be paid, make them pay for that (this next word I say loosely) EDUCATION.

    It is amazing the intelligence that gets shown daily by some of these dough head athletes with the interviews before and after the contests…

    They all say the same thing, because they are not creative enough to have their own thoughts…

  17. jollyjoker2 says: Apr 6, 2014 9:05 PM

    this guy doesn’t get it. A lot of kids get injured and get zilch. I support some type of long term comp plan for these kids that get dumped to the curb and have to walk crooked the rest of their lives. If every kid was in the union…including the women, they could negotiate with the colleges. They might be better off. That it will blow up college sports…who cares? they should be teaching kids, not exploiting them for their kingdoms.

  18. provguard says: Apr 6, 2014 9:23 PM

    “Unions have no place in college ball or the workplace for that matter…”

    I agree sports do not need to be unionized, but thanks to our ancestors that didn’t let the Vanderbilts, Rockefellers and the rest of their greedy buzzards of the early 2oth century kept poor Americans in slavery. Some of these so-called great industrialists fired men because they could pay women cheaper and then fired the women for cheaper wages to children in the coal mines. Don’t believe me? Look it up!

    Yes, there was some good from it, but they could have pocketed less money and paid their workers fairly!!!

    I was never a union person until I got into the studies of the industrial history of this country. The pigs were not any better than slave owners in the south. Thank whoever or whatever for unions…

  19. mogogo1 says: Apr 6, 2014 9:33 PM

    The mere fact Emmert is still around says all you need to know about the problem with the NCAA. The Miami debacle should have cost Emmert his job already. Crazy to think that much impropriety went on during his watch and he’s just been allowed to stay on the job.

  20. leprechaun2114 says: Apr 6, 2014 10:06 PM

    It’s quite simple … have an accountant do the actuarial tables of the actual out-of-pocket cost of a 4 year education and degree and then add in the difference in the value of the education versus having no education over the working lifetime of the athlete (30 – 40 years), even averaging those in pro sport and those not = the total value of what the scholarship true worth is in present day dollars.

    The result is the true value of what the college offering on the table … and is probably in excess of $1 million dollars … If you don’t want it we will simply go to the next guy in line. They need to see the value of the education not just in terms of tuition fees but the actual value in terms of earning power over one’s lifetime.

    Once the union contract is signed, say good bye to any flexibility the coach might be inclined to give because the coach will be obliged to live and stay within the terms of the union contract. And be prepared to go on the injury reserve list at lower pay, pay taxes on everything you earn … talk to some people in the union

    These guys only see the pay day … they haven’t even thought it through or talked to the average Joe in the union. This is whole lot more complicated that it looks on the surface … and be ready to pay unions dues and have prima doonas as your union rep.

    Good luck to all

  21. chunkala says: Apr 6, 2014 10:47 PM

    A union makes perfect sense for helathcare aspect of intercollegiate athletics, I get that.
    But don’t forget that the nuclear option is still on the table – schools getting rid of most or all sports, meaning virtually all womens sports.

  22. wearepennstate1984 says: Apr 6, 2014 11:03 PM

    There is nobody that I respect less in sports than Mark Emmert. He knows that as soon as the players get anything, the NCAA is done. There is no reason for the NCAA to exist, and this will be the tipping point for him to be out of a job. The conferences can police themselves.

  23. wearepennstate1984 says: Apr 6, 2014 11:05 PM

    The kids should not get paid, but they should be allowed to accept money, jobs, cars, sponsorships, and whatever else they get their hands on. Just like everyone else at the school.

    Do you think the finance guys at every school don’t get free things from Wall st?

    Do the rest of the students have counselors helping them with their careers? Why can’t the players have agents?

  24. jaclyn1973 says: Apr 6, 2014 11:16 PM

    I do not consider college athletes to be “employees” of the University.
    That said, the NCAA has some really crazy rules. I was friends with some tennis players who came from overseas. The athletic dept couldnt even go to the airport, (an hour away) and pick them up.

    The NCAA just doesn’t want anyone getting a sliver of their huge piece of the pie.

  25. poconolion says: Apr 7, 2014 12:02 AM

    corvusrex96-I’m sure Herr Emmert and the rest of the Gestapo at the NCAA have instructed Northwestern to stick to the party line or suffer the consequences.

  26. coachmalik says: Apr 7, 2014 1:14 AM

    Oh come on, I admitted my ignorance on the matter didn’t I? It’s obvious from the threatening nature of the people in charge that they are scared of this. I don’t know if it’s good or bad but more will get done to help student athletes regardless of unionization because of this conversation that’s started, how is that not celebrated?

    If my comments on old white men were offensive to anyone I was kidding, my grandfather is actually an old white man whose sitting with me laughing at you.

  27. Professor Fate says: Apr 7, 2014 1:17 AM

    coachmalik-
    “when this many old white men are upset, its usually the beginning of something good”

    This country was ruled, often with a thinly-gloved iron fist, for centuries by white men. The vast majority of corporations, as well as the government, are still top-heavy with old white men. Those old white men, by virtue of their dictatorial tactics, were the very reason unions came into existence.

    In response derekgorgonstar wrote:
    “Okay, when did this become the site for liberal pillow-biters?”

    Just a WAG (wild-ass guess), but probably the same time as it did for hypocritical conservatives (google gay Republicans): Approximately 30 seconds after the very first article was posted. Politically-based slander extrapolated from one-sentence commentary likely commenced moments later.

    The “pillow biter” part of your comment is an old slur for a homosexual man, no better than yelling “faggot!” at someone you disagree with. Pretty childish and something one would expect on a grade-school playground.

    I’m a fairly conservative old white guy and coachmalik’s comment is pretty accurate. The status quo in the NCAA hierarchy needs a major wake-up call and this unionization is it.

    By the way, my conservative side is usually financial in nature as I see no reason for people to attempt to impose their personal preferences on others’ lives. Being fiscally conservative as well as
    socially liberal causes certain judgmental people to assume I must be a Libertarian, but lately that pejorative seems nearly as distasteful as being called a Democrat or Republican. Almost.

  28. coachmalik says: Apr 7, 2014 1:43 AM

    Thanks Gramps! I wish I inherited your diplomacy. BTW, you are so articulate.

  29. jacksprat57 says: Apr 7, 2014 2:12 AM

    derekgorgonstar says: Apr 6, 2014 5:52 PM

    coachmalik says:
    Apr 6, 2014 4:20 PM
    Nobody knows what unionizing will do, but I like that is making everyone uncomfortable….when this many old white men are upset, its usually the beginning of something good

    Okay, when did this become the site for liberal pillow-biters?
    —————————————————————
    You may now return to scarfing that pruny old Koch Brothers D, Faux Man.

  30. spoiledbratswhosuck says: Apr 7, 2014 7:16 AM

    Players unionizing is a DIRECT RESULT of colleges and universities allowing

    criminals
    thugs
    losers
    alcoholics
    drug addicts
    abusers

    into sports for the sake if mega $$ for the schools.

    The NCAA has lowered its standards and now sees its gravy train is being threatened.

    College sports is polluted. For many athletes who never intend to graduate playing sports is like being on a plantation.

  31. thegreatmorpheos says: Apr 7, 2014 8:45 AM

    The second comment above, by meatcarrroll says all that needs to be said about the corrupt & abusive NCAA and the long overdue need for reform. I experienced one the NCAA’s little siblings in the FHSAA in Florida; truly out of control.

    What Emmert doesn’t seem to comprehend is the need to blow up the current “collegiate model of athletics” because it only seems to work for him and the corrupt dictatorship that is the NCAA. A coach is free to leave at any time, but a student athlete is held accountable after a coach recruits him or her and then flees, leaving sanctions in their wake.

    Blowing it up can’t happen fast enough.

  32. coloradofort says: Apr 7, 2014 9:13 AM

    Translation “We need to aggressively meet the players concessions before they take us to court where we will be handed our heads on a swivel”….

  33. elfmanne says: Apr 7, 2014 9:44 AM

    Very simple, don’t Hire the unionized players. Let them wait the required 3 years to play in the NFL. We can always use more people without a collage education.

  34. dmayer2695 says: Apr 7, 2014 2:28 PM

    So what’s room, board and tuition at Northwestern? $50-60000????

    So in a way of figuring the little kiddies have a part time job that pays $50,000/year. (Plus they don’t pay any taxes on their “job”.) They eat better than regular student, have access to tutors for free, often live in nicer dorms and have free medical while student athletes.

    The benefit of their part time job is one of the best educations in the country. One that can lead to a full time job if/when they graduate that can make them a lot of money.

    Sounds like a pretty good gig!

    Think about it…mom and dad would have to earn about $90,000/year pre tax to pay for little kiddies school if they weren’t on scholarship. So mom & dad can’t afford $50k/yr and take out school loans fort the kids (like we did for our kids). Guess what, they now have $500/month loan payments for the next 10 years.

    That scholarship is worth a small fortune to most folks.

    These kids are not exploited. NCAA could use some reforming but the kids are doing fine.

    They want a monthly stipend? How about they call mom & dad- their scholarship is saving them a fortune!

    Mom & dad too poor to send them a bit of pocket money? Well then they’re damn lucky they have a scholarship that’s paying them $50,000…or $35,000 or maybe “only” $20,000 at a state college somewhere. Count your blessings.

    No scholarship and can’t get a loan? Their alternative is go get an entry level job somewhere where they’ll be lucky to make $20,000/year.

    Most schools don’t make money off sports. Student fees help pay for them. To support the stipend those fees would have to go up. “Regular” students shouldn’t have to pay more so some an athlete can have a little pizza money. All this while there’s regular students that are out there working a part time jobs and taking out student loans to pay for school.

  35. swampcannons says: Apr 7, 2014 2:42 PM

    “We can always use more people without a “collage” education.
    Clearly.

  36. onlyoneleft says: Apr 7, 2014 4:54 PM

    These kids don’t realize how good that they have it. If they don’t like it, then let them drop out of school and get a job. Most of them have little intention of studying as it is.

  37. mikeinthevine says: Apr 7, 2014 7:02 PM

    Funny how the people at the top think that they are the only ones who should have a contract.

  38. rponciano says: Apr 8, 2014 3:14 PM

    Wow! meatcarroll, dmarado, poconolion, mogogo1,wearepennstate1984, jaclyn1973,proffessorfate, I loved your comments!
    “Emmert acknowledges the NCAA has issues to address, and stresses the organization is working to reform from within” also “There’s some things that need to get fixed”….Really? ya think? All you have to do is look in the mirror and fix the problem that is staring back at you.
    I have no respect for a man who is aware of missdeeds done by his field investigators, and did nothing to correct the corruption(alot like your LSU issue) You Mr Emmert have lined your pockets with a pile of money while preaching; Integrity, Fairplay, and accountability!

  39. packerbadger says: Apr 10, 2014 10:02 AM

    pawloosa says:Apr 6, 2014 7:13 PM

    Unions have no place in college ball or the workplace for that matter…
    ==================================

    provguard says: Apr 6, 2014 9:23 PMI was never a union person until I got into the studies of the industrial history of this country.
    ==================================

    People that are anti-union are either rich, uneducated or both. Unions came about to help protect the little guy from the rich and powerful.

  40. dhardy8207 says: Apr 11, 2014 5:56 PM

    @Professor Fate;

    Oh Professor, much props to you sir for that very well stated post! Derekgorgonstar needed that little bitch slap and I must say you did so with absolute class!

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