Black Student Athletes Sue Community College District After Cutting Football Program - Higher Education
Higher Education News and Jobs

Black Student Athletes Sue Community College District After Cutting Football Program


Eleven African-American student athletes have filed a federal lawsuit against the Maricopa County Community College (MCCC) District after the school decided to cut the JUCO football program after the 2018 season.

The MCCC District, the largest community college system in Arizona, made the announcement in February 2018 citing the systems need to refocus their spending after a decrease in enrollment and recently having state funding be eliminated.

District officials also noted concerns about football-related injuries and the program’s low academic performance in comparison with other college sports.

Maricopa County Community College JUCO football players

“We will support our players, coaches and staff through this final season, and we will honor the scholarships of our players through the Spring 2019 semester,” the district said in an August 2018 statement.

The 11 players claim that ending the program violates federal law because it inexplicably affects the 62 percent of African-American student athletes that make up the MCCC team, according to AZCentral.

The suit states that the athletes accepted scholarship to play football in the district with the hope of continuing their undergraduate career by receiving scholarships to four-year universities. In addition, the athletes claim that the district made the announcement two days prior to signing day for players who committed to new football teams.

This caused them to not be able to accept financial aid or offers from other schools, the lawsuit said.

The district’s decision “evidences a policy and practice, both written and unwritten, of racial discrimination,” the lawsuit stated, adding that cutting the football program violates the U.S. Constitution and the Civil Rights Act.

The 11 athletes are requesting a federal judge prevent the district from going through with this decision and to pay attorneys’ fees linked to the lawsuit.

Maricopa football players are continuing to try to save the program, establishing a Twitter campaign with the hashtag #SaveJCFootball.

Since the decision to cut the program was not made at the board level, board members could review the decision, which leaves students and supporters hopeful.

Groups Unite on HEA Priorities for Military-Connected Students WASHINGTON – Strengthening the GI Bill, institutional accountability and protecting military-connected families from unethical and illegal practices were among the top concerns that various veteran and military-service groups want to see addressed in...
Native, Black, Latino Students Most Likely to Pay for College Themselves Nearly three in 10 college students in America are solely responsible for paying for all of their higher education costs, and that number is highest by far among Native American, Black and Hispanic/Latino college students, according to a study by Len...
WV Legislatures, Higher Ed Officials Voice Support for Community College Bill West Virginia legislatures and post-secondary officials have expressed their support for recently passed Senate Bill 1, legislation that supporters say could open new economic opportunities and establish an industry talent pipeline in West Virgina’s ...
Schatz, Pocan Reintroduce Debt-Free College Act With the support of more than 30 Congressional co-sponsors, Sen. Brian Schatz, D-HI, and Rep. Mark Pocan, D-WI, have reintroduced the Debt-Free College Act which provides solutions to the issue of college affordability by establishing a path for stud...
Semantic Tags: