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Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Hearing on Stay in Clarett Matter: The NFL will seek a stay in oral arguments before U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin tomorrow at 1:00 pm. While the NFL declined to comment on the substance of its argument, the overall theme will probably be the damage that could be done to the league in allowing in some underclass players while an appeal is pending. The opposite argument is that a stay will prevent Clarett (and others) from exercising the very right the court sought to protect in its ruling last week, because the appellate court will not issue a ruling before the April 24th draft. Clarett is eligible for next year's draft even under the current rule, meaning that his lawsuit would become moot.

If Judge Scheindlin declines to issue a stay, the NFL can next ask the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. Even though a full appeal will take up to a year, the 2nd Circuit could decide the motion for a stay prior to this year's draft.


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