UNC Director of Athletics Bubba Cunningham said “that these are interesting times” for college athletics—that in response to a federal agency’s ruling Wednesday that football players at Northwestern University can create the nation’s first union of college athletes.
The decision, which could revolutionize college sports, was made by a regional director of the National Labor Relations Board in Chicago.
When asked about the ruling during the UNC Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday, Cunningham said that he believed the decision, which categorizes the student athletes as employees, would be appealed.
“But I think that is going to create all kinds of other challenges. How this all plays out in the next couple of years will be interesting to watch. I think if we focus on what is important—education and opportunities—I think we are going to provide those opportunities for students. I don’t want to sound ‘Pollyanna-ish,’ but you have to think about what your philosophy is and then deliver on that philosophy,” Cunningham said.
Northwestern University officials said that they plan to appeal to the full labor board in Washington, D.C, according to the Associated Press.