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USFL players vote to unionize

Case Cookus’ 365 total yards and five touchdowns led a dominant effort as the Philadelphia Stars clinched their spot in the USFL playoffs.

The USFL didn’t want its players to unionize. The USFL didn’t get what it wanted.

Via, the USFL’s players voted on Monday to appoint the United Steelworkers as their exclusive bargaining representative. The unionization vote prevailed by a ratio of more than 2-to-1.

While the involvement of a union will make it more expensive to do business, it will result in greater benefits for players, from pay to other workplace conditions. And it’s necessary, given that football players are wired to accept whatever terms are offered in order to have the ability to play football.

The successful unionization of the USFL could mean that, next year, a similar effort will commence to organize the XFL’s workforce.

Young athletes who are interested in taking advantage of any and every opportunity to make a career out of pro football can easily be exploited and mistreated and ultimately not given a fair piece of the pie that their efforts are generating. (Case in point -- college football.) It’s good that they’ll have the collective protection afforded by membership in a union.