Who Scores With the Ads on NBA Jerseys?

BBALL foto

By Alex Bullock

The National Basketball Association’s (NBA) owners recently approved a proposal to allow the sale of jersey sponsorships as a part of a three-year trial program set to begin in the 2017-2018 season, the same year that the league’s official uniform provider switches over from Adidas to Nike. Jersey sponsorship will take the form of a patch on the front left of the jersey, measuring 2.5 inches by 2.5 inches. The Nike logo will occupy the same position on the other side of the jersey.

This decision by the NBA’s owners marks the first foray into in-game, on-jersey advertisements by one of the “big four” sports in the United States (NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL). Adam Silver, the Commissioner of the NBA, said the NBA teams could earn additional revenue of $100 million annually through the program, and that “[j]ersey sponsorships provide deeper engagement with partners looking to build a unique association with our teams and the additional investment will help grow the game in exciting new ways.”

Continue reading

Erin Andrews’ Privacy Lawsuit and its Possible Effect on Hotel Policy

erinandrewsBy Joe Davison

On March 7th, 2016, a jury awarded $55 million to Erin Andrews, a famous sports reporter and cohost of the popular show Dancing With The Stars, in an invasion of privacy lawsuit. In 2008, Michael David Barrett, a convicted stalker, secretly videotaped Andrews through the peephole in her hotel room door at a Marriot hotel in Nashville. Barrett had conned a hotel employee into confirming Andrews’ hotel reservation and asked to reserve the adjoining room. After filming Andrews while she was undressing, Barrett posted the video online. Continue reading

Kobe Bryant Trademarks Phrase to Prepare for the Next Chapter

kobeBy Yayi Ding

It’s official – Kobe Bryant has trademarked the phrase: “Friends Hang Sometimes Banners Hang Forever.”

The motto originated from a 2015 interview with Kobe, when a reporter asked him about “not being a great friend all the time.” His response captured the relentless drive that has defined him as a basketball player: “Friends can come and go, but banners hang forever.” As Kobe’s NBA career comes to a close, his legal efforts offer more insight into his business acumen and his post-retirement preparations. Continue reading

The Continuing Fight Over Paying Student-Athletes

Untitled2By Joe Davison

College athletics, like professional sports, have become a multi-billion dollar business. As the NCAA and its conferences sign lucrative media contracts, many have started to question the lack of compensation for college student-athletes. This has resulted in an outbreak of antitrust action against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). In O’Bannon v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, plaintiffs challenged the restrictions on student-athletes receiving compensation for the use of their names, images, and likenesses. Plaintiffs are a group of twenty current and former college student-athletes who played either Division I men’s basketball or football between 1956 and the present. They represent a certified class of all current and former student-athletes who “compete on, or competed on, an NCAA Division I . . . men’s basketball [or] . . . football team and whose images, likenesses and/or names may be, or have been, included . . . in game footage or in videogames licensed or sold by Defendants, their co-conspirators, or their licensees.” Named Plaintiff, Edward O’Bannon, was a student-athlete who played on the 1995 University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), national championship team. Continue reading

Negotiation, Arbitration, Deflation: Tom Brady’s Appeal Yet Another Fourth Quarter Comeback for Labor Unions

Deflategate PictureBy Grady Hepworth

What is there left to do for someone with four Super Bowl championships, two Super Bowl MVP awards, ten Pro Bowl selections, and who recently became the fourth NFL player in history to throw for over 400 touchdowns in a career? On September 3, 2015, Tom Brady added another accomplishment to his résumé: groundbreaking legal precedent.

In a controversial United States District Court decision, the Honorable Judge Richard Berman overturned a penalty imposed upon the New England Patriots’ quarterback, Tom Brady, through an arbitration mandated by the National Football League’s Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). Although the NFL has appealed the judgment (the Second Circuit Court of Appeals has coincidently scheduled the hearing for the week of Super Bowl 50), the district court’s decision has far-reaching implications. For Patriots fans, the decision likely provides hope that another championship title looms on the horizon. However, for the legal world, the district court’s decision may have significantly shifted the balance of power under the NFL CBA. Continue reading