Outside of the union dispute going on at Northwestern, there is currently labor peace in America's major sports. The NFL, NBA and NHL have emerged from their recent labor battles and are currently in a cease fire until their current collective bargaining agreements expire, and Major League Baseball has been in a constant state of relative harmony since its 1994 strike.
North of the border, though, they're gearing up for what has already become a public labor dispute.
The Canadian Football League doesn't have the history of labor strife that its American counterparts have suffered through, there just hasn't been enough money to fight over. With the league on the verge of a lockout, the CFL has forwarded the following offer to its players:
We are not nearly nuanced enough to give a reasoned take on whether or not this is a fair offer. That's not the point.
Look at that minimum salary: $45,000. Convert it back to American dollars, and the league minimum player is earning $41,115 before taxes. Should the players' union take the league's offer, five years from now the lowest-paid CFL player will earn $55,000, or $50,297 in American dollars.
The NFL rookie minimum is $420,000 in 2014. Clearly, every player is choosing the NFL over the CFL, but that's not an option for most players. American college players head to Canada as a way to catch the eye of an NFL team, extend the dream of playing football for as long as possible, or both.
But as coaches, you should be as informed as possible if an undecided player seeks counsel on whether to join the CFL or follow another path in life. He can continue playing football in Canada, but he won't get rich doing it.