the BigAmateurism monologues

A series of events over the last 18 months—some unforeseeable—have created a perfect storm that will change college sports forever. The NCAA's bait an…
Jun 21st, 2021 | 52:38

29: US Supreme Court to NCAA: You Are Not Above the Law

This morning, the US Supreme Court issued its long-anticipated ruling in the Alston case. The Court rejected the NCAA’s claim for antitrust immunity. It held that any challenge to NCAA compensation limits must be thoroughly vetted through the fact-intensive rule of reason antitrust analysis. The Court upheld the district court’s permission for education-related benefits for athletes that exceed the cost of the existing athletics scholarship. The Court also put to rest for good the NCAA’s 40-year reliance on dicta from the 1984 Board of Regents decision. The NCAA has clung to those off-hand judicial musings on amateurism in every legal challenge to its amateurism-based compensation limits. Justice Kavanaugh’s concurring opinion that addressed at the values level the weakness in the NCAA’s case may be a game-changer in how Congress and the American public view the NCAA’s propaganda on “amateurism”, the “collegiate model,” and the “student-athlete.” This episode is a raw (unedited) initial take on the Court’s opinion and its likely impact on the current debate on athletes’ rights. I will do follow-up episodes that dive deeper into the Court’s analysis.