Former Marshall star Grace Kirk suing the Ivy League and their schools

Suit alleges Ivy League Schools are “price fixing” scholarships
Tamenang Choh and Grace Kirk
Tamenang Choh and Grace Kirk(Brown University Handout)
Published: Mar. 9, 2023 at 3:06 PM CST
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DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - Two Student Athletes playing for Brown University are suing the Ivy League and their member schools - including Brown University.

Grace Kirk, who attends Brown University, and plays Women’s Basketball is one of the two suing.

Kirk was a star basketball player at Marshall High School.

The other person suing is Tamenang Choh. He plays Men’s Basketball at Brown University. Choh is originally from Lowell, Massachusetts.

The suit alleges all Ivy League schools have agreed to, “not to provide athletic scholarships to their Division I athletes (“Ivy League Athletes”) and not to pay Ivy League Athletes any compensation (or reimbursement of education-related expenses) for the athletic services they provide to the University Defendants.”

The suit calls this the “Ivy League Agreement” and claims it amounts to a price-fixing agreement.

The lawsuit claims Kirk was recruited to play a sport by at least one of the University Defendants. Plus, Kirk “received full cost-of-attendance athletic scholarship offers from at least one other Division I college.” Brown University awarded Kirk need-based financial aid that did not cover her full costs of attendance - tuition, room, board, and incidental expenses. Kirk was given no other compensation or reimbursement for their athletic services to the school.

The lawsuit paints a similar picture for Choh.

The lawsuit say without the “Ivy League Agreement” the schools would determine unilaterally, and in competition with each other, determine how many athletic scholarships to provide, by sport, and in what amounts, and how much to compensate.

The lawsuit alleges of the more than 350 colleges and universities whose students participate in Division 1 athletics, only Ivy League schools refuse to provide any athletic scholarships or other compensation/reimbursement for athletic services.

It adds Ivy League Athletes earn revenue for the schools from intercollegiate athletic competitions, including ticket sales, television rights, merchandise sales, and increased donations from alumni. The lawsuit estimates those totals to be more than $170 billion over the past three decades just for Ivy League schools. Yet, the schools do not give athletic scholarships as a group policy.

The lawsuit is officially against: Brown University, The Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York, Cornell University, Trustees of Dartmouth College, Harvard University, The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Yale University, and the Council of Ivy League Presidents.

Northern News Now has asked Ivy League officials for a comment and we have not received one.