The story was buried innocuously on page D3 of The Oregonian’s sports section, as if it was of no import and even less concern. The University of Oregon announced that it was about to put in place a mandatory, random drug-testing program for student/athletes across all sports. The story talked about the program as if it was the most natural thing in the world, something that should arouse neither concern nor controversy.
That’s exactly the problem.
Student/athletes are not employees. One could argue that they’re getting something of value from the university (an education, though the term “student/athlete” is a misnomer). That doesn’t connote an employer/employee relationship. Why, then, are Oregon student/athletes to be subjected to a program whose legality and constitutionality are questionable?
Employment laws don’t govern student/athletes. Perhaps that’s what allows Oregon’s athletic department to feel they can trample their constitutional rights. Whatever the reason, the r...