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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Should College Athletes have control over their Rights of Publicity?

I believe totally that college athletes should be paid for the amount of money they generate for the NCAA each year, but these athletes don’t have any control over their Rights of Publicity. The Right of Publicity is the right of every person to control the commercial use of his/her identity, often applied to an individual’s persona. A persona encompasses things such as a person’s likeness, nickname, performance style or mannerisms (Mueller, 2004).

One specific case where a former athlete, Ed O’Bannon, is fighting for his Rights of Publicity as well as the rights of other former and current NCAA athletes in a classic action lawsuit against the NCAA. Ed O’Bannon was a former UCLA forward who led them to a national championship, scoring 30 points and pulling down 17 rebounds in the win (, 2010). Today, O’Bannon coaches a high school basketball team and is a car dealer in Las Vegas, but the NCAA still profits off of his likeness. Whether it is his image, re-broad casts of games or in video game form, the NCAA still makes money through the sales of licensed merchandise. O’Bannon states in his lawsuit that the NCAA makes about 4 billion dollars annually on collegiate licensed merchandise (, 2010).

In my opinion, O’Bannon feels taken advantage of by the NCAA. The modern day college athlete has been referred to as a “slave” on the NCAA “plantation” because college athletes do not get paid but the NCAA makes an incredible amount of money from the talents of these collegiate athletes. It seems only right for the NCAA to start sharing this money with the people they exploit year in and year out. Student athletes are not allowed to get jobs or receive any money from their scholarships and should get some sort of monthly stipend. I understand that some athletes go on to make millions playing professional sports but what about the 90% of student athletes who do not make it? Just something to think about.

Drake, S. (2010). Sports Illustrated Michael Mann on the NCAA lawsuit. Legal Broadcast Network. Retrieved on 11/27/10 from: (2010). Former college athletes sue NCAA over licensing. Retrieved on 11/27/10 from:

Mueller, K. (2004). No control over their rights of publicity: College athletes left sitting the bench. LexisNexis. Retrieved on 11/27/10 from:

Sunday, November 14, 2010

What is the biggest sports story of the decade?

In my opinion, I believe the biggest story of the decade was steroids in baseball. On February 16, 2005, Jose Conseco held an interview with 60 Minutes where he discussed his much talked about book he calls “Juiced”. This book purports to tell the truth about his use of anabolic steroids and human growth hormones, and the same about other top players in Major League Baseball (Hancock, 2005).

Steroids have been a part of baseball’s banned substance list since 1991, however testing for major league players did not begin until 2003 (, 2007). Conseco’s book in 2005 caused rumblings all around the league and led to former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell’s 409 page report, identifying 86 names who admitted to using steroids. Names on the list included Barry Bonds, Miguel Tejada, Andy Petitte, Eric Gagne, Jason Giambi and Roger Clemens (who continues to deny his usage). The problem is that we don’t know how many people actually were using steroids during this era. If fingers are pointed at the few who admitted to it, what about the players who didn’t? The entire era will have an asterisk attached to it because there is no way to determine who really had the upper hand. Former N.Y. Yankees outfielder Gary Sheffield, who admitted to unknowingly using a steroid-based cream in 2002, says records can’t be stripped because of “speculation.” If “somebody comes up with facts, then we can talk. Other than that, it’s a waste of time”  (Jenkins, 2005).

If it were up to me, I say let everyone use what ever they want and lets go (I jest), but the game was its most exciting during those McGwire/Sosa homerun battle years or watching Bonds take the only good pitch of an at bat deep. I thought it was the live ball era but we now know it was much more than tightly strung baseballs. This past World Series was the second lowest rated fall classic ever and baseball needs to find a way to” juice” up the game again. (2007). Mitchell report: Baseball slow to react to players’ steroid use. Retrieved on 11/12/10 from

Hancock, D. (2005). Steroid-user Canseco names names. Retrieved on 11/12/10 from

Jenkins, C. (2005). Players admit steroids changed baseball. USA TODAY. Retrieved on 11/12/10 from

CNBC video, “The Biggest Plays in Sports Business”:

Sunday, November 7, 2010

fans rule!

“No matter what steps facility management takes to increase attendance, the fans have the ultimate say when it comes to buying tickets.” Steve Fall

Facility management is very significant in any economy, but becomes even more exigent in a down economy. In the article Taking Attendance, Steve Fall talks about the challenges facilities around the country face in today’s down-trodden economy as well as how these facilities are facing these challenges.
One way facilities are keeping fans in the seats is by offering discounted tickets through social media sites. This makes sense in so many ways including the fact that social media sites are free to use and reach so many people. These sites, such as twitter and facebook, can also track how many fans are interested in a team or event as well as feedback from fans for future deals. Social media reaches so many people because everyone owns a smart phone/laptop or may have access to the Internet through work. The fact that social media sites are free to join is very cost efficient when saving money is of priority. Positive interaction between fans and the team they support can only bolster the love between the two entities (Fall, 2010).
Another way teams can increase fan support, without cutting ticket prices, is through fan give-a-ways, concession deals, and fan appreciation in general. Teams come up with creative ways to entice fans to attend games for full price by offering deals once inside the stadium/arena. One example of this is the San Diego Padres who offered a promotion for nearly all-81 home games this past season such as $5 dollars for 5 items on the menu. Richard Anderson, CFE and general manager of PETCO Park and the executive vice president of the San Diego Padres, explains that “these extraordinary economic times” are driving their promotional approach (Fall, 2010).
In conclusion, I feel the adaptation of Direct TV and satellite dishes have also hurt facilities during this economy. Sports packages offer the fan the ability to watch any team in any sport for an entire season. Before this, fans would look forward to seeing certain teams in person because you never get to see them on television. Now you can watch any team, which takes away from the facilities’ appeal. I feel fan appreciation is the way teams can continue to fill the seats. Cheap hotdogs, free t-shirts and a quality experience are ways teams can keep the seats filled and the fans coming to the games.

Steve Fall. (2010). Taking attendance. Facilities find creative ways to fill seats in a down economy. Facility manager. Retrieved on 11/7/2010 from:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Why will it be messy?

Although Derek Jeter is coming off a year with career lows in batting average, slugging percentage and on-base percentage, the N.Y. Yankees need to compensate him accordingly. The N.Y. Yankees have already stated that the Derek Jeter negotiations may become messy. Why is that? Derek Jeter means so much more that numbers to the Yankee organization as well as the fans all around the world. Jeter is a global icon who is on the verge of 3000 hits and he shouldn't reach this milestone in any other uniform other than the pinstripes.