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SBD/February 26, 2014/Colleges
Three Former Northwestern Football Players Dispute Colter's Testimony At NLRB Hearing
Published February 26, 2014
DETAILS ON THE TESTIMONY: In Chicago, Sandra Guy reports NLRB Hearing Officer Joyce Hofstra yesterday declined to let CAPA lawyers "ask one of the former players if he considered his playing and practicing time a full-time job." But the CAPA lawyers "did get the former players to agree that they would have suffered consequences if they had violated team rules -- part of their argument that coaches can treat players unfairly and players have no representation in those cases" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 2/26). Also in Chicago, Seth Gruen writes Ward "was the most effective of the nine witnesses the university called to testify" in the five-day hearing. He was the "only witness on either side to grant an interview after his testimony." Ward said, "What we heard in here is indicative that the union should be dismissed" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 2/26).
WHAT CASE COMES DOWN TO: SI.com's Chris Johnson noted the NLRB when making its decision on this case "will focus on whether the facts submitted into the record through testimony provide sufficient proof" that NU football players are university employees. Whether NU "actually treats its football players like employees is beside the point." At issue is whether NU "can treat them like employees" (SI.com, 2/25). Meanwhile, NU football coach Pat Fitzgerald was asked what he would say of Colter in light of Colter's testimony against the program and responded, "He's a terrific person, a terrific leader and a very bright person who worked hard in the classroom" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 2/26).