University of Miami Business Law Review

Document Type



During the last decade, antitrust litigation involving Division I athletes and the NCAA has resulted in changes to the NCAA’s rules, presenting a threat to amateurism. As athletes have voiced concerns about their likeness being used without permission in video games, the difficulty of balancing sports and academics, and going to bed hungry when millions of dollars in profits are being made off of them, the NCAA has allowed conferences and schools to provide student-athletes with stipends for cost of attendance expenses. However, even though the NCAA has modified its rules, athletes continue to ask for more, and courts have responded. Recent litigation has resulted in the expansion of athletes’ rights. In March 2019, U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken declared that the NCAA and its major conferences are violating antitrust law by restricting the education related benefits athletes can receive. In May 2020, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld Judge Wilken’s decision that the NCAA cannot limit the non-cash education-related benefits available to athletes in Division I of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).

This Comment will discuss how antitrust litigation has impacted amateurism. Parts III and IV will detail the Ninth Circuit’s decision in Alston, examine ways the NCAA can modernize to limit athlete exploitation, and discuss how the NCAA and student-athletes can benefit from these solutions.