Taking the Student Out of Student Athlete: College Sports and the Unrelated Business Income Tax
Posted: 24 Jul 2014
Date Written: July 2014
A recent decision by a National Labor Relations Board regional director, concluding that football players at Northwestern University are employees for purposes of the National Labor Relations Act, could have spillover effects in tax law. This article considers whether severing the connection between participation in athletics and the educational function of a university — i.e., ending the pretense that athletes are student athletes — could lead to imposition of the unrelated business income tax (UBIT) on the net revenue of some intercollegiate teams at big-time athletic colleges.
Keywords: student athlete, unrelated business income tax (UBIT), National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), unrelated business, taxable activity
JEL Classification: K34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation