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Big Ten advocates 4-year scholarships

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The Big Ten says it supports guaranteed four-year scholarships and improved medical coverage for its athletes.

The league announced in a statement signed Tuesday by its 14 presidents that it proposes working within the NCAA structure to provide greater academic security for its athletes by guaranteeing scholarships for four years, even if an athlete can no longer compete or has left for a professional career.

The Big Ten also would like to provide more consistent medical coverage and ensure its athletes are compensated for the full cost of their college education rather than just tuition, fees and room and board.

The NCAA has been sued by a number of former athletes over compensation issues challenging the organization's bedrock of amateurism.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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