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Mark Emmert is the President of the NCAA. That’s the National Collegiate Athletic Association. They are charged with being the governing body of all amateur sports for colleges and universities. The NCAA has been a secret organization for many years. The pre-cursor to the NCAA was the infamos AAU….or Amateur Athletic Union…..established in 1888. This secret group of smoke filled room guys were the pre-cursor also to the USOC…..the United States Olympic Committee which pays homage to the IOC…..the International Olympic Committee. Each one of these organizations has God-Like Powers which make career life and death decsions for all athletes. So lets put these organizations in order: IOC, USOC, AAU and NCAA!
In oder to grasp the scope and power of these groups we take the case of one of America’s greatest athletes: Jim Thorpe, 1912 Olympic Games in Sweden where he won gold in both the Decathion and Pentathion. Several years later, those medals were stripped from Thorpe and never returned based upon rumor and innuendo that he had played football and baseball for pay……before those Olympic Games. Although those charges have never been proven – and Jim Thorpe became the greatest football player in NFL history – including being inducted to the Hall of Fame…..his Olympic Medals were never returned. With this small background to consider and the storied in the 1970’s with Prefontaine……..we can only say that all of these organizations have proven to be, over the years, nothing but capricious, avaricious, self consumed, small minded, without compunction, bigoted, unforgiving, lackey’s of their own back pockets.
The calls for safety gear – never heard. The dangers of concussion – never addressed. The cause of injury and even death because of track conditions or poor facilities – never talked about. The major use of steroids and ala carte boutique Performance Enhancing Drugs – forced down their throats and still not complying as they should. Concern for the general health of the Amateur Athletes – hardly a worry. Stipends to the various Boards and Committees – taken without trepidation. All of these organizations are what are known as Sanctioning Bodies…..to which any Sports Club needs to belong to and pay homage to and which can have its Sanction withdrawn without cause. They say that: “Power Corrupts….and absolute power corrupts absolutely!” So it is with these self important organizers of our multi-billion dollar sport programs in America and around the world. FIFA is the Sanctioning body for Soccer and the list is as endless as every school in every state and province in the world.
For years, these organizations have used the likeness and image of so-called “Amateur Athletes” to advertise, fund raise and develop new leagues and business. These organizations are self-perpetuating. They are the worst case scenario of a Time-Share or Pyramid Scheme – that you have ever heard of or seen. They all claim tax exempt status, draw huge salaries and chastise every athlete that has the temerity to “step out of line – for whatever purpose!” When those consumed in the process draw their ire………….the penalties are life changing and sometimes considered to be “a Death Penalty for competitive participation”! As we all remember; Reggie Bush, even had his Heisman Trophy taken away….because he was seen on a golf cart with a professional agent. The problem is that the penalties are neither fare or equal for the same apparent wrong doing. Another Heisman Trophy winner; “Football” Johnny Manziel for example received one half of one game off (the first game of the season – against a very weak opponent) for signing partiies with his own jersey, memorabilia and footballs for thousands of dollars.
Recently, a Federal Court Judge agreed with a former UCLA Basketball player Ed O’Bannion that the NCAA and UCLA could not use his name or likeness without paying him. This is a huge sea-change for the NCAA and if left to stand will change sports around the world….forever. Yes, it is a big deal and the NCAA, Mr. Emmert and the AAU, USOC and the IOC ….are all freaking out. What if the final Judges ruling means retro-active payments that have never been paid? The NCAA is Appealing and unless they are succesful, the elements of Anti-Trust will stand and now you have a can a worms that can never be fixed without a lot of money changing hands….back to Amateur Athletes. Right now, many collegiate super stars…….are on Food Stamps and many cannot even afford food of any kind. The NCAA usually wins in the Appeal Process, because enough cash is passed by hook or crook. This time they may not make it, due to the high viability of the case. The prior 20 athletic students that sued…..for pay and health benefits…..during and after college participation also passed in Deluth on the 8th of August. College Athletes can be paid. Amateur Athletics……..the NCAA way!
So, as the NCAA goes to court and pretends they are Donald Sterling……and threaten to take this case all the way to the Supreme Court, Donald Sterling lost to his wife Shelly in court and the deal to buy the LA Clippers is moving forward with Steve Ballmer of Microsoft and Seattle Sounders and Seattle Seahawks fame, completing the sale for $2 Billion dollars. We will see what more Donald Sterling wants and how many more times he wants to be on TV. The NCAA makes about $770 million dollars every year just on the Basketball Tournament called March Madness! In our opinion, the whole process is sheer madness.
Pyramid Schemes, Donald Sterling and the NCAA! Big changes coming boyz!