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Top College Athletes Sue NCAA Over Use of Their Name and Likeness

Written by Ankin Law Office

Federal antitrust lawsuits often involve large corporations and business in disputes over market share and price fixing, but a recent high-profile antitrust lawsuits brings college sports into the mix.

As the Wall Street Journal recently reported, six college football players have joined the ongoing antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA – a lawsuit that could potentially change the landscape of college sports.

On July 18, Arizona linebacker Jake Fischer, Arizona kicker Jake Smith, Clemson cornerback Darius Robinson, Minnesota tight end Moses Alipate, Minnesota wide receiver Victor Keise, and Vanderbilt linebacker Chase Garnham joined plaintiffs including former UCLA basketball star Ed O’Bannon and NBA legends Bill Russell and Oscar Robertson in a lawsuit against the NCAA and Electronic Arts and Collegiate Licensing Company, seeking a share of the revenue generated by the NCAA’s deals with television networks and videogame makers.

One of the plaintiffs, Jake Fischer of the Arizona Wildcats, told ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” that “he joined the lawsuit not because of money but to give players a voice on issues of long-term health and access to a quality education.”

Federal antitrust laws prohibit certain trade practices, such as collusion among competitors for the purpose of price fixing, and other illegal pricing schemes. The lawsuit against the NCAA accuses the organization of fixing at zero the amount of money that players can receive from video games and other products that use their names, likenesses, and images.

The plaintiffs are seeking certification as a class action lawsuit and the judge is expected to rule on the class certification issue later this summer. Antitrust claims are often brought as class action lawsuits because of the large number of plaintiffs and the complexity of the cases.

If the plaintiff class is certified, the NCAA lawsuit could potentially include thousands of current and former college athletes. Class certification could put pressure on the NCAA to settle the lawsuit in order to avoid potentially large financial damages tied to television revenues, which, according to ESPN, account for more than 90 percent of the money at stake in the dispute.

The Chicago class action attorneys at Ankin Law Office, LLC are knowledgeable and experienced in handling class action suits of all kinds. Not every law firm has the capacity and resources to handle antitrust class actions, which can be complex, costly, and time consuming, but the Chicago antitrust law firm of Ankin Law Office has the knowledge and resources to efficiently and effectively manage large and complex antitrust lawsuits.

If you are a current or former NCAA college athlete, you may want to consult with a knowledgeable antitrust attorney like the Chicago antitrust lawyers at Ankin Law Office, LLC. Contact our office at (312) 600-0000 to schedule a free consultation with one of our knowledgeable Illinois antitrust class action lawyers.