Sixth Circuit Upholds District Court Ruling in Marshall v. ESPN



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Aug. 17, 2016

Robinson Bradshaw served as coordinating counsel for conference defendants in a putative class action filed by present and former student-athletes alleging they should have been paid for the use of their images in television broadcasts of sports events. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit upheld the district court ruling dismissing all claims because, under Tennessee law, college players have no “right of publicity” in their names and images as they might appear in television broadcasts of football or basketball. Robinson Bradshaw attorney Robert Fuller, who represents the Southeastern Conference, argued at the district court and appeals level for the conference defendants.

Fuller was quoted in a Law360 article about the decision. "Plaintiffs lost because every claim they asserted assumed the validity of a nonexistent right of publicity for participants in sports contests," he said.

A subscription to Law360 is required to view the article, "6th. Circ. Shreds Ex-College Players' Likeness Suit," in full. Please visit for more information.

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