A second unfair labor practice lawsuit was filed Tuesday against the NCAA as it attempts to capitalize on a September ruling by the National Labor Relations Board that could eventually lead to college athletes becoming employees of their universities.

The California-based National College Players Association (NCPA) filed the complaint with the NLRB naming not only the NCAA, but also the Pac-12, UCLA, USC and all football, basketball Division I men’s and women’s basketball as plaintiffs.

“The goal is to affirm varsity athlete status for every FBS football player and Division I basketball player at all public and private universities nationwide,” the NCPA said in a statement.

The NCPA’s decision comes three months after the College Basketball Players Association (CPBA) filed a similar unfair labor complaint against the NCAA for classifying college players as “student-athletes.”

Taken together, the two complaints continue the momentum towards a conclusion that some believe is inevitable: college players become employees paid directly by their universities.

“Somehow I feel like it’s more of a freight train now. No one can explain exactly how it’s going to play out, but the direction is clear,” the manager said. NCPA Executive Ramogi Huma to CBS Sports.

In September 2021, the NLRB’s General Counsel released a memorandum clearing the way for institutions to have varsity athletes paid directly by their institutions, thereby becoming employees.

For the NLRB to move forward, there had to be formal complaints. In November, the CPBA filed the first complaint from Michael Hsu, former regent of the University of Minnesota and co-founder of the organization.

On Tuesday, Huma followed. A former UCLA player, he has been an activist college athlete for at least 20 years and helped form the NCPA to officially advocate for college player rights. In 2014, the NCPA supported the legal battle that eventually became the Alston v. NCAA lawsuit and spawned Northwestern’s organizing effort.

Legal sources believed the memo from the NLRB’s general counsel only applied to private schools. Huma said that because the NCAA and the conferences are “joint employers,” the NLRB would also have jurisdiction over public schools.

“We chose UCLA and USC because we wanted a private school and a public school to set a national precedent in those sports,” Huma told CBS Sports. “They’re both in the same city under the same NLRB region. They’re both in the same conference. Of course, California was the hub of college athlete reform. We were able to change the nation through to California law.”

In trying to prove how schools control athletes, the NCPA said media policies imposed by universities violate labor law. The association said some media policies that require athletes to allow school interviews or not use social media are in violation.

Prior to the NCPA complaint, multiple sources told CBS Sports that they expected a response from the NLRB to the CBPA complaint this year. A bill in the state of Iowa was introduced last month by a state representative seeking to classify athletes as employees.

“If there is ever a path to employee status, we try to make sure it can be done,” Huma added. “Players will benefit no matter what.”