Rudy Carpenter: “Ultimately you can have whatever stance you have, and you can have demands, but it comes down to leverage… Players have to understand their leverage right now, and their leverage is coming together as a group and then following through with their ‘threats’ to boycott the season. I’ve talked to 8 or 9 teams at a deep and serious level and I think that you have big numbers – 50, 60, 70 guys on a team that really support the ‘#WeAreUnited’ initiative, but I don’t think there is much support at all for actually sitting out games… As of today, I don’t think the players have actually sent these demands to the universities and to the commissioner’s office, I still think that it’s just floating out there in space… There is some low hanging fruit for these players to create some change, but I just think their messaging and their tactics are really bad… These college kids are smart, they’re intelligent, their well-versed, and have access to a lot of information, but they have one fatal flaw. They think social media is real, and they don’t understand that at some point in time dollars matter, numbers matter, being realistic matters, and being rational matters, and on Twitter there is just not a lot of that. Twitter and social media doesn’t provide us with nuance, and this is a very nuanced situation… As much as I’m for players unionizing, being represented, and getting a bigger piece of the pie, the big issue with paying players is Title IX. I don’t think that people really understand that last year the Pac-12 as a conference took a $12 million loss. There are players in the Pac-12 that think that conference as a whole is printing money, as we know they have a lot of suits that are making a lot of money for no reason. They’re not making money as a conference. They have a terrible TV deal, and they’re paying the LA Times to write positive stories about them. This is not the same conference that the SEC is and the money is different. When you have to pay, not just football players, but all the other sports that we all know are not revenue generating sports, it makes it a very different math equation.” (Full Audio Above)
Listen to former NFL and Arizona State quarterback Rudy Carpenter join The Odd Couple with Chris Broussard and Rob Parker to discuss the ongoing ‘#WeAreUnited’ saga that has a group of anonymous Pac-12 football players threatening to boycott the season if a list of demands they’ve drawn up are not met.
Carpenter is a host on Sirius satellite radio and also hosts a college football podcast, and is well-connected with Pac-12 football. Carpenter says that although the coalition may have sweeping support across the sport by principal, he says there is not legitimate backing towards a potential boycott that would have players actually threatening to sit out games.
Carpenter was a four-year starter for the Arizona State Sun Devils from 2005 to 2008. He finished his career with 10,491 passing yards, 80 touchdown passes, and 31 interceptions.
Listen to the informative interview above.