Last week Peter Sung Ohr, the regional director of the National Labor Relations Board in Chicago, ruled that football players at Northwestern University could unionize. In issuing the ruling, Ohr found that the players were employees of the university.
The London Olympics are unthinkable without their corporate sponsors, both for the site itself and for the teams that are going to compete. But what would a person connected with the ancient version of the Games think?
Commercialization radically changes the economic benefit of winning for the young athlete. An adult can decide to risk injury; an 11-year-old should not be pushed to use athletic techniques that create risks he does not understand.
Universities, administrators and coaches earn millions dollars due to the exploits of student athletes. Yet anything done to help the athletes is seen as an outrageous breach of the amateur code.