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October 12, 2013 - Antitrust for the NCAA?

Insidehighered.com recently reported that the athletics reform-minded Drake Group plans to pursue federal legislation to provide the NCAA with a “‘limited antitrust exemption’ to cap spending and redirect revenue toward athletes in the form of educational and medical benefits.”

The proposed College Athlete Protection Act is still being drafted.  The group aims to have it considered as part of the Congressional reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.  A portion of the proposal addresses NCAA governance restructuring, an undertaking in which the NCAA is currently involved. 

The Drake Group’s proposal would replace the NCAA’s “Executive Committee with a Board of Directors with more equal balance between the association's competitive divisions (evenly split, in the proposed board structure, as opposed to the current committee's heavy preference toward Football Bowl Series institutions). At least 40 percent of the board would be former college presidents.

“The board would have authority -- and sole authority -- to limit coaching staff sizes, sport expenditures, scholarships and other rules that affect spending. It could also limit the number of games, length of season and hours per week that athletes devote to their sport. It would determine the terms of insurance for athletes.”

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