US Supreme Court Unanimously Rules Against NCAA

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday against the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s limits on education-related benefits that student athletes can receive.In a 9-0 ruling, the court upheld a previous ruling from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California that expanded educational compensation for U.S. college athletes beyond athletic scholarships to perks such as free computers and graduate school tuition.  The NCAA determines the rules and regulations of U.S. collegiate competitions at 1,268 schools across the country, a main feature of which are restrictions on the compensation of athletes. In court, the organization argued that such limits helped maintain the amateur aspect of college sports.   The court’s ruling found that the NCAA’s regulations related to educational perks are anticompetitive and violate the Sherman Antitrust Act, which prevents organizations from holding a monopoly over a market. Justice Neil Gorsuch, who penned the opinion for the court, wrote that in most other U.S. industries, the NCAA’s business model would be illegal.“Price-fixing labor is ordinarily a textbook antitrust problem because it extinguishes the free market in which individuals can otherwise obtain fair compensation for their work,” Gorsuch wrote.  The court did not address other issues that critics of the NCAA and previous lawsuits have raised, such as the organization’s rule that athletes cannot be paid for the use of their name, image and likeness.

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