STATE COLLEGE (WTAJ) — Penn State quarterback Sean Clifford went to social media Friday to clarify his relation with the College Football Players Association.
Clifford outright denied a report that said he was leading a players union startup at Penn State.
Earlier in the day A More Perfect Union, a progressive news outlet, posted an article saying Clifford was going to lead Penn State to the first players union.
A clipping from a video interview with Clifford was posted to the publication’s social media accounts. In it, Clifford talks about wanting to be a leader for players who are forced to medically retire like former teammate Journey Brown.
However, the article appears to be misleading. The publication has since clarified that the CFBPA is not forming a union and Clifford himself released a statement clarifying his role.
Get daily updates on local news, weather and sports by signing up for the WTAJ Newsletter
“As a student-athlete at Penn State, and member of the football team, I have had very positive and open discussions with coach Franklin, Director of Athletics Pat Kraft, and Big Ten Conference Commissioner Kevin Warren about the changing landscape of college sports and how those changes are, and will continue to impact student athletes.
It is important to state that my dialogue with my coach, athletics director and commissioner were conducted as a student-athlete. To characterize my dialogue as being on behalf of a union, or as a union member would be inaccurate,” he posted.
Clifford did speak with Big Ten commission Kevin Warren this week, according to various reports. ESPN reports that Clifford and the CFBPA have communication in the past, but didn’t speak concurrently with the conference.
In a statement to ESPN, Warren said “We are in the process of formalizing a student-athlete advisory committee to seek input from our student-athletes about the changing landscape of college athletics. We continue to work with our member institutions to ensure our student-athletes have an outstanding and well-rounded experience, while promoting and safeguarding the mission of higher education, and prioritizing excellence and integrity in both academics and athletics.”
ESPN further reports that it would be inaccurate to categorize the conversations as collective bargaining.
According to its web site, the CFBA is: “The College Football Players Association was founded to represent past, present and future college football players nationwide. The CFBPA will make sure that college football players everywhere are finally organized to have a collective voice in the decision making within their sport. The CFBPA is dedicated to being a member-led organization of, by and for the players.”