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Latest Headache for NCAA Inc: College Football Players Want to Unionize

Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter speaks at a press conference in Chicago on Jan. 28
Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter speaks at a press conference in Chicago on Jan. 28Photograph by David Banks/Getty Images

The NCAA’s ideal of student-athletes who take the field purely for the love of sport came under fire from a new direction on Tuesday as football players at Northwestern University announced they want to form a union—and they’ve got the United Steelworkers behind them.

The newly formed College Athletes Players Association would be the first athlete-specific union in the history of college sports, our colleagues on the Bloomberg News sports-business desk report. The Steelworkers are paying the nascent association’s legal fees in applying to the National Labor Relations Board for recognition.