Judge denies NCAA’s motion to dismiss lawsuit
by Steve Berkowitz, USA TODAY Sports
A federal judge on Friday denied motions from the NCAA and other defendants to dismiss an antitrust lawsuit pertaining to the use of college athletes’ names and likenesses.
The ruling, by U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken, sets the stage for another key ruling that is pending in the case – whether to certify the case as a class action.
Wilken ruled none of the three arguments that the NCAA offered for dismissal “provides grounds for dismissing Plaintiffs’ claims at this stage.”
Wilken said that a 1984 Supreme Court ruling that the NCAA has relied upon to preserve its amateurism system “does not stand for the sweeping proposition that student-athletes must be barred, both during their college years and forever thereafter, from receiving any monetary compensation for the commercial use of their names, images, and likenesses. Although it is possible that the NCAA’s ban on student-athlete pay serves some procompetitive purpose, such as increasing consumer demand for college sports, Plaintiffs’ plausible allegations to the contrary must be accepted as true at the pleading stage.”