Former UCLA basketball star Ed O'Bannon traveled from his Las Vegas home to attend a hearing in Oakland on Thursday that could swipe billions of dollars from the NCAA's bank account.
It could take weeks or months before U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken makes her ruling on the class-action lawsuit demands for the NCAA to come off its cash and cut players in on the major chips earned by college sports from live broadcasts, memorabilia sales, video games and in other areas.
Not just former players, but even the current athletes will be added to the suit, which sort of takes this litigation into a whole new realm. The NCAA's marketing practice as an amateur sports institution focused on graduating "student athletes" is now about as easy to see through as Lululemon yoga pants.
But the NCAA is making the same argument it did before becoming the billion-dollar industry it is today. Paying athletes would take funds away from sports like volleyball and gymnastics, the institution argues, as if that's more egregious than getting rich off free labor.
How interested is the NCAA in gymnastics when it's not to argue against paying athletes? Exactly.
And while the NCAA contests the lawsuits, athletic officials are still trying to make sure video games are depicting college athletes realistically.
Credit O'Bannon, though for championing this cause. If this lawsuit doesn't get the NCAA to come off that cash, hard to imagine what will.