NCAA president Mark Emmert against NCAA union

By Tom Fornelli | College Football Writer

NCAA president Mark Emmert spoke against unionization Sunday
NCAA president Mark Emmert spoke against unionization Sunday. (USATSI)

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This won't come as a surprise to anybody, but NCAA president Mark Emmert is against the idea of a union in college athletics. Emmert held a press conference in Arlington, Texas, for this weekend's Final Four, and did not mince words when asked for his opinion on the subject.

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

Emmert also went on to explain that while he believes changes do need to be made to the NCAA model, a union just isn't the way to go about it.

"There's some things that need to get fixed," he 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."

In March the National Labor Relations Board ruled that Northwestern football players were employees and had the right to unionize. The Northwestern players will vote on it April 25, though their own head coach, Pat Fitzgerald, has let them know he's on the same side as Emmert.

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