CSU athletic director on unions in college sports: "This is just the first step"

Published: Mar. 27, 2014 at 10:47 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 28, 2014 at 1:03 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Charleston Southern Director of Athletics Hank Small was not surprised to hear the National Labor Relations Board ruled in favor of the Northwestern University football team.

Players at the school can now unionize, a first in college athletics.

"When you have a coach, a football coach or a men's basketball coach making in one year, our entire budget here at Charleston Southern, athletes see that," he said.

The idea started with Northwestern's outgoing senior quarterback Kain Colter, who said he wanted to make sure players had a voice in decisions related to their health and future.

Former Stratford Knight and Penn State running back Rodney Kinlaw says the idea is a good one.

"After you're done, sometimes it takes guys a while to get a job, so you won't have the insurance," he said.

"You can go to your coaches, but sometimes, that's where it stays."

CSU Athletic Director Hank Small says he too can understand athletes concerns, but says legislating all of Division I may be the wrong move.

"We want to give them more ability to spend money on the athletes because we can see how it looks," Small replied.

"We will not have the budget to be able to do some of these things that they would want done."

Northwestern is expected to appeal the union decision in Washington D.C.

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