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Peter Karmanos, Jr., Peter Karmanos, III; Compuware Hockey Club, Plaintiffs-Appellants,
vs.
Deane Baker; Paul W. Brown; Neil D. Nielson; Sarah Goddard Power; Thomas A. Roach; Veronica Latta Smith; Nellie M. Varner; James L. Waters, Individually and as Members of the University of Michigan Board of Regents; Harold T. Shapiro, Individually, and as President; Don Canham, Individually and as Athletic Director; National Collegiate Athletic Association; John Doe; Richard Roe, Defendants-Appellees
 
Case:
No. 85-1896
 
Location:
UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE SIXTH CIRCUIT
 
Date:
January 19, 1987, Argued
April 20, 1987, Decided
 
Attorneys:
Erwin B. Ellmann, Jeffrey A. Heldt (Argued), Glen M. Bis, Levin, Levin, Garvett & Dill, for Appellants.
Peter A. Davis (Argued), Davis & Fajen, P.C., Edmond F. DeVine (Lead Counsel), Miller, Canfield, Paddock & Stone, George Gangwere, Swanson, Midgley, Gangwere, Clarke & Kitchin, for Appellees.
 
Court:
Keith, Krupansky and Guy, Circuit Court.
 
Author:
The Hon. Justice Krupansky
 

Plaintiffs-appellants Peter Karmanos, Jr. (Karmanos, Jr.), Peter Karmanos III (Karmanos III), and Compuware Hockey Club (Compuware) appealed from a final order of the district court dismissing this action initiated pursuant to 42 U.S.C. SEC.1983.

Karmanos III is the son of Karmanos, Jr. In August of 1984, Karmanos III enrolled as a student at the University of Michigan (U of M). Shortly thereafter, he endeavored to qualify for U of M's intercollegiate hockey team, but was declared to be ineligible to participate in intercollegiate ice hockey by the eligibility committee of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) as a result of its interpretation of Article III, Section 1 of the NCAA constitution. *fn1 Karmanos Jr. and Karmanos III thereupon initiated this action in federal district court naming as defendants the NCAA, the U of M Board of Regents and U of M's President and Athletic Director. *fn2 In their complaint, plaintiffs asserted that the defendants engaged in a conspiracy to declare Karmanos III ineligible to participate in intercollegiate ice hockey, depriving him of his constitutional right to freedom of association and also depriving Karmanos Jr. of his constitutional right to rear his son.

The NCAA is an unincorporated association consisting of approximately 800 non-profit public and private colleges and universities. One of the NCAA's primary objectives is to promote fair competition among its member institutions by maintaining uniform standards of scholarship, sportsmanship and amateurism. The U of M is a member of the NCAA. On June 26, 1980, the NCAA issued an official directive which declared all Major Junior A ice hockey teams in Canada and the United States to be professional hockey teams within the meaning of the NCAA Constitution and eligibility rules promulgated thereunder.

The record reflected that, pursuant to Karmanos Jr's direction, Karmanos III had completed his final year of high school education in Canada during which time he had, pursuant to contract, played ice hockey with the Canadian Major Junior A hockey league. His contract contained a rider which provided that Karmanos III would not be compensated for his services and that Karman

 
Notes:

*fn1 Article III, Section I of the NCAA Constitution provides that "if [an] individual participates or has ever participated on a team known to the individual or which reasonably should have been known to the individual to be a professional team in that sport, the individual no longer shall be eligible for intercollegiate athletics in that sport."

*fn2 The U of M defendants were named both individually and in their official capacities. The U of M defendants are immune from suit for damages in their official capacities under the Eleventh Amendment. Graham v. NCAA, 804 F.2d 953, 959-60 (6th Cir. 1986).