The National College Players Association (NCPA) filed its complaint with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. Specific emphasis is being placed upon how the NCAA‘s limits on college compensation allegedly have a disproportionate impact on Black student-athletes.
“The limit on compensation is a violation of current civil rights law, and the Department of Education has the authority and jurisdiction and power and legal authority to address these violations,” NCPA Executive Director Ramogi Huma recently said.
“This multibillion college sports enterprise imposes discriminatory practices that disproportionately harms Black athletes, while predominantly white coaches and administrators make millions of dollars,” he continued. “College athletes throughout predominantly white sports receive fair market compensation, but athletes in the only predominantly Black sports do not.”
The complaint also accused the NCAA of facilitating “an abuse of Pell Grant funds,” as student-athletes from low-income backgrounds wouldn’t need this federal funding if they were “compensated fairly.”
While the complaint centers explicitly on advocating for college football and basketball players, Huma clarified that NCPA advocates are “fighting for fair compensation for athletes in all sports as an organization. And if we are successful, then the blanket cap on compensation will be lifted for athletes of all sports.”
A group that advocates for college athletes has filed a federal complaint that claims NCAA Division I schools are violating the civil rights of Black basketball players and major college football players by prohibiting compensation. https://t.co/3ja2jnoRuv
— The Associated Press (@AP) March 22, 2022
It’s also worth acknowledging that the complaint names a solution to the issue at hand.
“To remedy the situation, the elimination of these civil rights violations and the abuse of Pell Grant funds by ending collusive athlete compensation limits among Division I colleges that deny fair market compensation to college athletes,” the complaint reads.
This matter comes about nine months after the NCAA brought in “an entirely new landscape” for college athletes by amending its Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) policy. Resultingly, student-athletes can now profit off of their NIL, and big-name stars like Shedeur Sanders have secured game-changing deals.
However, the NCAA has still found itself on the receiving end of stark criticism. Days ago, Draymond John of Shark Tank slammed the NCAA’s March Madness tournament as “modern-day slavery,” as Blavity previously reported.