Ed O’Bannon Takes The Stand In Lawsuit Against NCAA

| June 9, 2014 | 0 Comments

Ed O’Bannon, the lead plaintiff in the landmark anti-trust lawsuit against the NCAA took the stand in federal court on Monday to discuss his college hoops journey. O’Bannon was the star power forward on the UCLA Bruins basketball team from 1991 to 1995. In 1995, he helped lead the Bruins to a national championship.

While on the stand, O’Bannon mentioned how he had dreams of becoming a star in the NBA and how he would only shoot for the bare minimum when it came to his academic performances at UCLA. He stated, “I was an athlete masquerading as a student,” O’Bannon said. “I was there strictly to play basketball. I did basically the minimum to make sure I kept my eligibility academically so I could continue to play.”

O’Bannon also touched on how past athletes in the NCAA should be financially compensated which is the primary focus of the lawsuit.

O’Bannon along with 19 other plaintiffs in the suit are asking U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken for an injunction that would allow former players to sell the rights to their own images so that they can be financially compensated for television rebroadcasts of games from the past.

The NCAA has recently reached a settlement worth $20 million related to the use of players’ likeness and images without proper consent. Due to being in the midst of the lawsuit EA Sports no longer licenses their football and basketball game products with the NCAA brand.

O’Bannon decided to bring suit against the NCAA after seeing his likeness in the video games and not being compensated.

O’Bannon spent two years in the NBA and seven years playing pro basketball in Europe. He currently lives in the Las Vegas area where he makes a living selling vehicles.

O’Bannon stands firm in his belief that athletes should receive share in revenue that they are helping generate for the NCAA and the universities that they play for.

Photo Credit: Universityherald.com

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