3.1K likes. Muchnick contends that this privilege was waived when Fulp forwarded the exchange to someone who was neither a lawyer nor a UC Berkeley employee. Muchnick is no stranger to sports reporting rabbit holes and lone-wolf undertakings, having spent nearly 30 years beating the bushes over the unsolved homicide of former wrestling star Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka’s girlfriend. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court hasn’t touched FERPA since its 2002 ruling in Gonzaga University v. Doe, which found that individuals cannot sue to enforce the statute’s privacy provisions. Recently, author Jon Krakauer filed a petition for a writ of certiorari, asking the U.S. Supreme Court to take up his public records lawsuit against Montana’s Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education, which denied him records relating to the expulsion and reinstatement of a star college athlete accused of sexual assault. And I think a large section of the public now sees athletes as no different.”. When the Duke forward’s shoe burst open and his knee sprained in a nationally televised game against North Carolina last February, it targeted a laser pointer on everything that’s wrong with college sports’ economic structure. As for his present action against UC Berkeley, after two years of back-and-forth, the case has essentially wound down to a closing determination over whether the university should cough up an April 23, 2014 email, forwarded by Solly Fulp, then Cal’s deputy athletics director, to his father, a retired parks and recreation director in Alaska. No. So I think you have to take into account that the parent has to be involved, so you could mandate that the parent has to get the assistance of a financial person.”, Elkin likewise sees potential for real reforms, partly because NIL is so easy for the public to understand. We handle all types of injury cases including auto accidents and slip and fall claims. In his cert petition, filed on Oct. 31, lawyer Meloy boiled the matter down to a fundamental question: Does FERPA confer an individual right to privacy sufficient to block a court from ordering the release of personally identifiable information about a high profile university athlete on an issue of compelling public interest? Founded in 1994 by Attorneys Darryl Kogan and Theodore DiSalvo. In one sense, the matter at hand is relatively minor: a fight over the un-redacted release of a single email, sent by a Cal athletic official five years ago, in the immediate aftermath of football player Ted Agu’s death. Head football coach Sonny Dykes was fired two seasons later — not because of anything related to player safety, but because the program had suffered consecutive losing seasons and dwindling ticket sales — but was subsequently hired as head coach at SMU, where he remains today. As Muchnick’s reporting helped establish, the attack on Hale may have foreshadowed the death of Agu, who collapsed during a football conditioning drill three months later, in February 2014. Kogan & DiSalvo, P.A. [2][3] As it stands, money earned and accumulated under a contract under the code remains the sole legal property of the minor child. Other states with significant entertainment industries, most notably New York, have versions of the law, and California has updated it several times, formally including young athletes under the statute in 2000. It’s not just the NCAA that’s a problem; it’s the entire professional sports feeder system. had already logged millions of views on YouTube, as had a highlight package of Williamson’s 2017 AAU clash against LaMelo Ball. Agu was a carrier of the sickle cell trait, which was known to team doctors, and which put Agu at mortal risk during the kind of high-intensity training exercise that ultimately preceded his death. “In fairness to the University of California, they truly did the right thing,” says Steve Yerrid, a prominent personal injury lawyer who represented Agu’s family. 3 is, at what point do they get it?”. For your security, we need to re-authenticate you. “Everyone agrees on that. If you liked this article, you might also enjoy our new popular podcast, The BrainFood Show (iTunes, Spotify, Google Play Music, Feed), as well as: Your email address will not be published. But when he tried to claim his money after turning 21, he discovered his parents and his manager had spent almost all of it. Krakauer’s lawsuit has already endured five years of whiplash on a roller-coaster ride through Montana’s judiciary: a state district court judge initially ruled in the author’s favor; on appeal, the state Supreme Court remanded the case back to the district court; the original judge was disqualified; a new judge ordered the documents be submitted in chambers; he again ruled the records should be released to Krakauer; the case went back to the state Supreme Court, which ultimately reversed the lower court’s ruling this past July. It’s fundamentally wrong. Unfortunately, since passing the law, Congress has done little to rein in its dizzying misapplication as a public records brush-off. The Intercollegiate is proud to partner with the College Sport Research Institute, an academic center housed within the Department of Sport and Entertainment Management at the University of South Carolina. “If ever there was a federal statute crying out to be clarified, it is FERPA,” says Frank LoMonte, director of the Brechner Center for Freedom of Information at the University of Florida. Everybody knows and understands and expects that a child who appears in a film or a TV show or a commercial should expect to get paid if it’s a commercial venture. The law provides that any of the parties may petition a court to approve an entertainment contract, and if the court does so, somewhat different rules apply. You can reach them with questions, comments, tips and FERPA-related denials at dlibit@theintercollegiate.com and lcyphers@theintercollegiate.com. Harrington, who was at the center of the Agu family’s wrongful death lawsuit, had already been accused of creating an unsafe football workout culture that incited the assault on Fabiano Hale. In April 2017, Muchnick and his attorney, Roy Gordet, filed suit against UC Berkeley, claiming the school had improperly delayed or denied numerous records requests Muchnick had made relating to Agu’s death. This is how the protected interests of college sports keep the threat of real reform at bay: by slow-walking the full story, such as it is, so that when the totality of the problem finally comes into full view, the only person still staring is a lone, persistent freelance writer with a bug up his ass. “Obviously, something was going on.”. Jackie will not get a cent of his earnings.” One notes even Bernstein used the word “his,” as in Jackie’s, in describing the money. For the top basketball players, though, that may not be much of an issue. LoMonte, who contributed to a Montana Supreme Court amici brief in support of Krakauer’s case, says that while SCOTUS is typically loathe to weigh in on state-protected rights, it may find this particular case worth taking up. However, in the 45 years since its adoption, FERPA has increasingly become higher ed’s reflexive response to even the slightest inkling of public inquiry — a scrutiny sneeze, so to speak. Of all the mountains the alpinist author has climbed, this might be among the most daunting — and consequential. And people are recognizing that.”, Beyond that, Elkin says, “There’s an increasingly broad recognition that there’s really no difference between entertainment and sports. Featured photo illustration by Newsletter of Intent / jesseorrico.com / Wikimedia Commons; Zion Williamson photo courtesy of Keenan Hairston (Wikimedia Commons). This was designed to address one of the major problems Jackie had in recovering his lost money from his mother; as a community property state, under California law, all of Coogan’s earnings as a child legally belonged to the family – meaning his mother was entitled to spend it (or at least some of it). Gordet previously represented Muchnick in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit they filed against the Department of Homeland Security, seeking immigration records related to an Irish Olympic swimming coach charged with multiple counts of child sexual abuse. In the course of researching his book, Krakauer wanted to know the basis of Christian's decision and sought official records that might illuminate it. Afterwards, UCF aggressively fought Plancher’s family’s wrongful death claim all the way to the state Supreme Court, which ruled that the school’s damages should be capped at a measly $200,000. This is Newsletter of Intent, a free weekly emailed dispatch from The Intercollegiate. UC Berkeley is arguing that because the school’s lawyers were parties to the communication, the materials are privileged. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99). Since then, Muchnick has carried on as the unpaid accountability guardian, single-handedly trying to hold the line against the natural human impulse and institutional prerogative to just…move…on. That, he says, is why accountability is so important in the case of Ted Agu’s death. Under the current law, the court may also approve contracts that involve the transfer of intellectual property. She used figure skating and gymnastics as examples—and this was before the Larry Nassar atrocities became public. The career experiences of both Williamson, the No. It’s an idea that can be applied to football and basketball players, too. 2, though, is how much are they entitled to? The California Child Actor's Bill (also known as Coogan Act or Coogan Bill) is a law applicable to child performers, designed to safeguard a portion of their earnings for when they reach the age of majority, and protect them from exploitation and abuse. Note, however, that California recently amended Coogan’s law again, this time to provide an exception to the 15% withholding and trust account requirements for those minors who “contract to provide services as an extra, background performer, or in another similar capacity.” I’m sure no one will find a way to exploit the “other similar capacity” loophole…. Hunter believes the financial issues coming to the fore with NIL create an opportunity across sports, one that can be addressed by mandating that minor athletes who receive any remuneration could not receive that money without having a certified financial adviser. Yerrid comes from the perspective of having previously represented the family of Ereck Plancher, the former University of Central Florida football player and sickle cell trait carrier, who died during an offseason conditioning drill in 2008. § 50-18-72(a)(1) and (37), which specifically incorporates the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C.

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