Dartmouth gets more time to appeal union vote


The National Labor Relations Board on Monday granted Dartmouth’s trustees extra time to request a review of a regional official’s ruling that the school’s men’s basketball players are employees.

The official’s ruling last week cleared the way for an election that could create the first labor union for NCAA athletes.

The labor relations board’s national office granted Dartmouth’s request to move the appeal deadline from Feb. 20 to March 5, which is the same day the players are scheduled to participate in an in-person election at the school’s Hanover, New Hampshire, campus.

All 15 members of Dartmouth’s basketball team signed the initial petition asking to be represented by the Service Employees International Union, which already represents some Dartmouth workers. One of the players, Romeo Myrthil, said Saturday following the team’s 77-59 loss to Harvard that he had no reason to expect anything different when the players vote.

The NCAA has long maintained players are “student-athletes” — a term created to emphasize that education comes first. But the labor relations board’s regional director in Boston ruled Feb. 5 that the players were in effect employees of the school.

The outcome of the case could have wide-ranging implications for the definition of amateurism in college athletics.

In a previous case involving the Northwestern football team, the labor relations board overturned a regional official’s similar ruling on a technicality that doesn’t apply in the Dartmouth case.



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