Northwestern players make move to unionize

A group of Northwestern football players have made a move to form a labor union for collegiate athletes.

ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” reported today that Ramogi Huma, the president of the National College Players Association, filed a petition at the office of the National Labor Relations Board in Chicago.

“This is about finally giving college athletes a seat at the table,” Huma told the network. “Athletes deserve an equal voice when it comes to their physical, academic and financial protections.”

Several UGA football players tweeted their support of the move.

Quarterback Kain Colter contacted Huma last spring about representing college athletes. Huma, a former linebacker at UCLA, started the National College Players Association as an advocacy group in 2001, according to “OTL.”

More from the story:

“In a Sept. 21 game against Maine, Colter wore a black wristband with the hashtag “#APU” — All Players United — prominently scrawled in white marker as part of a quiet protest gesture. He was joined that day by about 10 teammates as well as players at Georgia and Georgia Tech. In all, players on seven teams in the five largest conferences displayed the #APU symbol, according to the NCPA.”

Colter needs at least 26 of Northwestern’s 85 scholarship football players to be on board because “at least 30 percent of the members of a group serving an employer must sign union cards,” according to the article.

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20 comments Add your comment

dgroy...lighten up

February 1st, 2014
11:35 am

dgroy, it won’t cause the kids to not make a play because it’s ‘not my job, it’s yours’ anymore than it does in the NFL. The NCAA allows kids from some sports to turn pro after one year, some after three.
Some sports can transfer and play immediately, some have to sit out a year. Kids see their pictures on billboards promoting their school and that particular sport and they get nothing other than tuition, books, room and board. Tell a 19 year old kid that he can’t work during the offseason to make extra cash so he can have fun during the school year, but tell an athlete from another sport that he can.
Point is, the NCAA is a bunch of older gentlemen, out of touch with the mindset of the labor group that puts cash in their pockets, coaches come and go at will, and everyone makes huge profit…but the kids.
The NCAA has had their heads up their rears for a long time. The kids, who doubtful want to make millions, just want a piece of the pie that they themselves bake, same as you would were you talented enough.

[...] Northwestern players make move to unionize [...]


January 30th, 2014
10:07 am

If these idiots succeed, it’ll be the beginning of the end of college football as we now know it. These athletes have been given a golden opportunity to succeed in life by playing a game and getting a college education “free” and they’re getting ready to blow it. If they’re successful, next thing you’ll be hearing is “tackling him was not my job, it was yours” and here we go……all of them will develop that “union mentality”. It’s been killing our country for years and it’s high time “all unions” are outlawed. They’re all disgusting.


January 29th, 2014
10:40 pm

“at least 30 percent of the members of a group serving an employer must sign union cards,” I don’t think the players qualify. Unless the grant in aid is considered an employment contract the players are students and not “employees”. Doubtful the “union” would be recognized.


January 29th, 2014
3:23 pm

Let’s leave money out of the issue for a moment.
The second biggest issue is the transfer rule. Currently, players cannot transfer to another school at the level of competition and be eligible to play the next year. This rule gives the coaches and schools all the power. There’s no financial gain for the student athlete in transferring.
All employees of any athletic department can change jobs or employers any time they chose. However, the student athlete is force to be indenture serviant. This rule is in place for benefit of the coaches and schools for the purposes of Money and Control!
The players lose in every way: 1. Transfer and lose scholarship 80 percent do, only star players keep their scholarships, 2. Players have real issues for transferring: family, distances, education, health, playing opportunities, and finally Chose!
Why doesn’t the student athlete have the same rights as any other member of the school?


January 29th, 2014
10:20 am

@HotDawg…It’s “woe is me” I’m just saying.

Bazooka Joe

January 29th, 2014
9:35 am

More like NCAA and college greed is what got us to this point Duce….. they could have avoided this years ago with a small stipend or something. But nooooooo, they have to suspend AJ for 4 games for selling his own jersey, etc….
I have no sympathy for them anymore – you made your bed, now lay in it.

Bazooka Joe

January 29th, 2014
9:30 am

Hot Dawg, don’t kid yourself, college football is now nothing more than another big business. Yes they have expenses to pay, have to invest to keep up, just like any other business. However I am about sick and tired of people thinking the American public is so stupid that we would still believe their pile of ___ statements about amateurism, education, etc….. none of that matters anymore.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t agree with it either (as I am sure you and most others on this board have similar feelings).


January 29th, 2014
8:55 am

The “whoa is me” mentality of kids today.
They have no appreciation for what they receive.
Proof of the sense of entitlement generation growing.


January 29th, 2014
8:46 am

We’re does everybody think all this money schools make is going?
It is being re-invested in athletic programs, academic programs, facilities, scholarships, etc. Of the schools these kids are attending. It’s not going in pockets of individuals other than paying the “going rate” for coaches and staff. Other than that, nobody connected to schools are getting rich. The schools are benefiting as a whole. Including the players and entire student body. Schools have expenses to pay to be top notch.