Washington Law Review


In National Collegiate Athletic Association v. Board of Regents, the Supreme Court held that the NCAA's regulations restricting television broadcasts of college football games violated section one of the Sherman Antitrust Act. The result stemmed primarily from the Court's conclusion that the regulations did not promote their asserted purposes. However, the crucial aspect of the opinion is that, contrary to what precedent would suggest, the Court determined that the NCAA's purposes were legitimate in the first place. This Note addresses the question of why the NCAA Court reasoned the way it did and examines the means by which it arrived at its result. The Note first explores the peculiar nature of the NCAA and how the antitrust treatment of it and similar organizations has developed. It then analyzes the alternatives available to the NCAA Court in reaching its decision. Because of the inadequacy of other alternatives, including the option adopted by the Court, the Note concludes that the Court should have overruled precedent that inappropriately restrained its decision.

First Page