Northwestern's Pat Fitzgerald: Players should vote 'no' on union

Saturday April 5th, 2014

Jeff Haynes/AP Pat Fitzgerald's Northwestern players will vote on whether to seek union representation on April 25. (Jeff Haynes/AP)

This week the National Labor Relations Board announced that Northwestern players will vote on whether to seek union representation on April 25. Evidently the Wildcats' coach isn't supportive of the idea of a union.

ESPN's Adam Rittenberg and Brian Bennett attended Northwestern practice on Saturday as Fitzgerald offered his take on his players seeking union representation. Fitzgerald said he believes his players should opt against unionizing.

According to Rittenberg and Bennett, Fitzgerald met with Northwestern players on Wednesday regarding union representation. The coach has until 24 hours before the team vote on April 25 to discuss the matter.

In February Fitzgerald testified against Northwestern players who sought the right to form a union, including graduating quarterback Kain Colter. Fitzgerald disagreed with attorneys for the College Athletes Players Association, who argued that the player-coach relationship is more like an employee-employer relationship.

Per USA Today:

"We take pride in developing our men to be the best they can be in everything they choose to do," Fitzgerald said. "Our goals are simple: We want to graduate 100% of our players and prepare them for life, and we want to compete for championships."
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