Last week the Chicago district of the National Labor Relations Board ruled that Northwestern football players qualify as employees of the university and can unionize.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban chimed in with his thoughts on the matter following practice on Monday night. Here is what he had to say per ESPN.
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"I've always been an advocate of players being compensated the best that we can to help them," Saban told reporters following practice on Monday night. "Whatever the NCAA rule is and whatever they decide to do, I've always been an advocate of the player and the quality of life that a player has. I think that having a voice in what happens, I think, is something that the players probably ought to have."
"On a per-player basis, what we invest in the player to try to help them be successful," he said. "We spent like $600,000 last year on personal development programs -- all things that directly affect the player having a chance to be successful. I can't even tell you what our academic support budget is, trying to invest in a player and what is the value of him getting an education and graduating from school here?"
"We can't pay them but we can reinvest in trying to help them be successful in their future," Saban said, "which I think we do a marvelous job here at the University of Alabama. I think a lot of people do. I think that's what makes great programs. I think that's why players want to come and be a part of the program, because we do reinvest in the future and their chances of being successful, and we do care. And it's not just about football.