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WSU football players tweet in support of opting out of next season over COVID-19, racial injustice concerns

A group of Pac-12 players is threatening to opt out of this season if the conference doesn't meet their demands on injustice and safety during the pandemic.

PULLMAN, Wash. — Several Washington State football players expressed their support on social media to opting out of this season if the Pac-12 doesn't meet athletes' demands on racial injustice and safety during the coronavirus pandemic.

This comes a day after ESPN reported that a group of Pac-12 players are seeking a written contract with the conference over their demands.

Cougs Dallas Hobbs, Lamonte McDougle, Patrick Nunn and Kassidy Woods spoke out in support. The athletes are threatening to sit out fall camp and games.

"Both my parents have had COVID-19," McDougle told KREM 2's Brenna Greene. "My mother FaceTimed meme from the ICU and told me she felt like she was about to die. There are NFL players who are making millions of dollars and are opting out this season, but we're b being punished for doing the same thing. The only difference is we don't have million dollar salaries. Some of the guys I know in the Pac-12 haven't been tested one time. Until the NCAA has put some health regulations in place that make sense to protect us, I'm not going to sacrifice my health to make them billions."

The group is calling these the Pac-12 F Football Unity Demands.

I. Health & Safety Protections

COVID-19 Protections

  1. Allow option not to play during the pandemic without losing athletics eligibility or spot on our team’s roster.
  2. Prohibit/void COVID-19 agreements that waive liability.

Mandatory Safety Standards, Including COVID-19 Measures

  1. Player-approved health and safety standards enforced by a third party selected by players to address COVID-19, as well as serious injury, abuse and death.

II. Protect All Sports

Preserve All Existing Sports by Eliminating Excessive Expenditures

  1. Larry Scott, administrators, and coaches to voluntarily and drastically reduce excessive pay.
  2. End performance/academic bonuses.
  3. End lavish facility expenditures and use some endowment funds to preserve all sports.*

*As an example, Stanford University should reinstate all sports discontinued by tapping into their $27.7 billion endowment.

III. End Racial Injustice in College Sports and Society

  1. Form a permanent civic-engagement task force made up of our leaders, experts of our choice, and university and conference administrators to address outstanding issues such as racial injustice in college sports and in society.
  2. In partnership with the Pac-12, 2% of conference revenue would be directed by players to support financial aid for low-income Black students, community initiatives, and development programs for college athletes on each campus.
  3. Form annual Pac-12 Black College Athlete Summit with guaranteed representation of at least three athletes of our choice from every school.

IV. Economic Freedom and Equity

Guaranteed Medical Expense Coverage

  1. Medical insurance selected by players for sports-related medical conditions, including COVID- 19 illness, to cover six years after college athletics eligibility ends.

Name, Image, and Likeness Rights & Representation

  1. The freedom to secure representation, receive basic necessities from any third party, and earn money for use of our name, image, and likeness rights.

Fair Market Pay, Rights, & Freedoms

  1. Distribute 50% of each sport’s total conference revenue evenly among athletes in their respective sports.
  2. Six-year athletic scholarships to foster undergraduate and graduate degree completion.
  3. Elimination of all policies and practices restricting or deterring our freedom of speech, our ability to fully participate in charitable work, and our freedom to participate in campus activities outside of mandatory athletics participation.
  4. Ability of players of all sports to transfer one time without punishment, and additionally in cases of abuse or serious negligence.
  5. Ability to complete eligibility after participating in a pro draft if player goes undrafted and foregoes professional participation within seven days of the draft.
  6. Due process rights

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