Decades after Curt Flood and Oscar Robertson sued their respective leagues to gain free agency, the college system is still operating under a set of archaic rules governing “amateurism,” even as young stars in hockey, tennis, and Olympic sports are reaping the benefits of today’s free market.
In his new book, Court Justice, former UCLA Star Ed O’Bannon details his nearly ten year battle with the NCAA to establish that athletes are entitled to compensation for use of their likeness in video games and other areas. In fact, it all began innocently enough with a video game. O’Bannon describes how a friend’s son showed him how his avatar did battle in an EA sports college basketball video game.
He writes, “My lawsuit was really about former players like myself being duped by the NCAA and companies that made video games, rebroadcasts, and merchandise using our names, images, and likenesses.”
O’Bannon’s narrative proceeds in a very personal and candid style. He describes his upbringing, his college and professional years, and life after basketball. An interesting fact from the book was that Ed originally wanted to play at UNLV, not UCLA, and ended up in Westwood, only after Jerry Tarkanian advised him that his program was going on probation. Again the all powerful NCAA flexing its muscle.
The reader gets an inside look at the litigation, the trial, and the subsequent appeals. The book is very timely with references to current sports controversies.
Unlike some authors who disparage the process or the system, but don’t offer any solutions, the last chapter of the book has twelve ideas on how to fix college sports.
Court Justice is an excellent and worthwhile read. An eye opening look at the hypocrisy of college sports, and the efforts of one man to force the NCAA to give these “amateurs” a stake and a say in their sports.
with Packer Dave, Steve Leventhal, and Jeff Rich
Our special guest, former UCLA Bruin and NBA veteran Ed O’Bannon talks about his lengthy legal battle with the NCAA over the “amateur” status of college athletes, as chronicled in his book, Court Justice. Plus, the guys talk Winter Olympics, NBA, Jimmy Garopollo’s new contract, the Lions new coach, and the fiasco over Josh McDaniels. The Pats offensive coordinator took the Colts head coaching job, then promptly changed his mind.
Don’t miss cameos from Dick Vitale and Jeff Foxworthy on The Sports Report for February 2018.
on the Sports Report with Packer Dave, Steve Leventhal, Jeff Rich, and John Poulter
We preview Super Bowl LII between New England and Philadelphia with Jeff, as well as talk NBA and college hoops. John joins us to discuss the latest news in the NHL and English soccer. Hear interviews from Bill Belichick, Pats safety Devin McCourty, Nick Foles, Zach Ertz, and Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville. Don’t miss cameos from Jeff Foxworthy and Hall of Famer Len Dawson.
also featuring Steve Leventhal, Jeff Rich, and John Poulter
We preview the Bears – Lions game with Andrew Seligman of the Associated Press in Chicago. We’ll also look at the upcoming return of Aaron Rogers to the Green Bay lineup. Has Brett Hundley improved during his stint at QB? All this and more NFL with Packer Dave, Jeff, and Steve. Plus John Poulter chimes in with a look at the NHL, the Yankees moves in the offseason, and a EPL soccer discussion with Steve. Hear interviews with Rogers, Hundley, John Fox, Mitch Trubisky, Matthew Stafford, Ron Rivera, Christian McCaffrey, Ben Roethlisberger, Rams QB Jared Goff, and point guard Kris Dunn of the surging Chicago Bulls.
Don’t miss cameos from Len Dawson and Wayne Larrivee.
with Packer Dave, Steve Leventhal, Jeff Rich, and John Poulter
This week on the Sports Report we preview the Bears-49ers, Packers-Bucs, Vikings-Falcons, and other key games from around the NFL. Ryan Leong, our long time correspondent from the Bay Area, talks 49ers, Raiders, and the Golden State Warriors. Jeff chimes in on the NFL, and the college football conference championship games. John updates us on the NHL, plus Steve and John discuss this week in the English Premier League.
Hear interviews with Brett Hundley, Clay Matthews, Jr., John Fox, Mitch Trubisky, Matt Ryan, Mike Zimmer, Golden Tate of the Lions, Bill Belichick, Urban Meyer, and coach Paul Chryst of Wisconsin.