Who knew that being a nice guy was a secondary violation?

But once you cross that threshold, Mark Richt’s bound to be a repeat offender.

And Damon Evans – what a cheap bastard.  Not for refusing to pay out the penny ante stuff that Richt eventually covered (that’s probably Michael Adams’ sanctimonious politics), but for turning it down with the knowledge that Richt was going to go ahead and pay it out of his own pocket anyway.

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UPDATE:  This Gentry Estes piece is worth a read.

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102 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, SEC Football

102 responses to “Who knew that being a nice guy was a secondary violation?

  1. Biggus Rickus

    Why does the NCAA have any say over Richt giving money to assistants and staff anyway? How does that corrupt the system in any way? At worst, under the table payments become an issue for the IRS to deal with, and for the most part it is a University level issue if they want to reprimand him for not going through proper channels or whatever.

    • Reading that article, my first thought was about the tax implications. I hope those guys all claimed the income on their returns.

      • Normaltown Mike

        Up to 11K is non taxable as a gift, no?

        • Biggus Rickus

          I think it depends…maybe? Tax laws are more convoluted than NCAA regs, so I wouldn’t be confident saying anything for certain.

        • ScooBoo

          I believe it’s up to 13k now, but not sure when it went up from 11.5k.

          • Macallanlover

            Has been $13K per person for several years now, 5-6 perhaps? CMR and Kathryn could give $13K each, $26K total, to anyone, child, friend, etc. each calendar year and no tax would be due from the recipient.

            • UGAfoo

              It doesn’t work that way. Income in connection with your employment is taxable regardless from where it came from.

              • Macallanlover

                It does work that way….if it is a gift. You are right though, as CMR was using it to replace income not offered/paid by the employer in connection to a job being done. Perhaps his “gift” to Fabris would qualify as it was given as one friend to another. But you can give the $13K to an employee, if intended as a gift, you can give it literally to anyone with no tax consequenses.

                • My point was that it does not work that way in this case when he was paying salaries and or bonuses. You can not claim that as a gift, or rather the people involved can’t. Also if it is over a certain amount ($600 comes to mind), then Richt should have given them a 1099.

          • AusDawg85

            As long as CMR did not try to deduct the payments as expenses, then they could be considered a gift. But yes, playing fire with the IRS is worse than the NCAA. Would have been better if he negotiated a reduction in pay and had that amount re-directed to the assistants as compensation within the UGA budget guidelines.

            But these examples show how out-of-control the NCAA has become. CTG’s violation is utterly ridiculous. Instead of continuously creating new, nit-picking rules, they would be far better served enforcing the big-time violations rather than giving wrist-slaps. (See…OSU, Miami, NC, etc…)

            • Wooderson

              So you do not see how a head coach paying a current or former assistant coach under the table is a good rule? Let’s suppose that it wasn’t Richt who made the under the table payment but it was made by Saban or Chizik or Kiffin or Tressel or Pete Carroll?

              You cannot think of any reason why a highly paid head coach would think it prudent to pay a current or former assistant coach money under the table?

              • AusDawg85

                From the NCAA Rulebook: “Rule 11.3.2.2 Supplemental Pay. An outside source is prohibited from paying or regularly supplementing an athletics department staff member’s annual salary and from arranging to supplement that salary for an unspecified achievement. This includes the donation of cash from outside sources to the institution earmarked for the staff member’s salary or supplemental income. It would be permissible for an outside source to donate funds to the institution to be used as determined by the institution, and it would be permissible for the institution, at its sole discretion, to use such funds to pay or supplement a staff member’s salary.”

                I’m scratching my head on how CMR is an “outside source” but will assume that would be his personal checking account in this situation ( you legal dudes can chime in). As I noted, I think CMR could have handled this better by having his pay re-directed through UGA to the others.

                Now let’s look at the very next rule entry: “11.3.2.3 Bonuses for Specific and Extraordinary Achievement. An institution may permit an outside
                individual, group or agency to supplement an athletics department staff member’s salary with a direct cash payment in recognition of a specific and extraordinary achievement (e.g., contribution during career to the athletics department of the institution, winning a conference or national championship, number of games or meets won during career/season), provided such a cash supplement is in recognition of a specific achievement and is in conformance with institutional policy.”

                Given this loophole, I’m really perplexed how UGA and Richt were determined to be in violation, other than perhaps the lack of specificity of CMR’s payments.

                You tell me what, exactly, the NCAA is trying to enforce/prohibit/etc. and why they should even have supervision over this?

                • Cojones

                  Would one of you lawyers reply to AusDawg? If not, could we ferret it out from the hired Compliance-ferreters of Bond, Schoeneck and King who came up with these rule breaking items?? They certainly issued specifics right down to the chapter, verse and line that was broken in their report. Didn’t they? It also is public record is it not?

  2. TennesseeDawg

    The sheer amount of dumbassery that Richt has to put up with between Adams and the NCAA is mind blowing. The Gurley family has to reimburse $21 over a 5 year old’s meal and Georgia has to report a violation. Our athletic program in 2009-2010 had a $53 million dollar profit and Richt has to supplement salaries out of his pocket. Ridiculous.

    • Nate

      Hey, the women’s underwater basket weaving team has to get funding somewhere…

    • SouthGa Dawg

      If you are a college coach, can you buy your own child a Happy Meal? Dang…

    • He did not _have_ to supplement salaries.

      Deciding to give a guy money because his severance package runs out, or in spite of a salary freeze for all university employees, or because the guy was put into another position is just not acceptable unless it comes from the administration.

      Richt is not running the athletic department’s budget. He was making them look like assholes in my opinion. I’m not saying he meant to do it, but it was a side effect of his generosity. CMR doesn’t have to concern himself with the operational side of this equation and what kind of precedence it would set for other employees inside the athletic department.

      I am surprised the athletic department agreed to let him do it.

      • I am surprised the athletic department agreed to let him do it.

        I’m not.

        • Irwin R. Fletcher

          “He was making them look like a$$holes in my opinion.”

          That’s typically what happens when you screw your employees and someone with the resources to fix that screw job does the right thing. Add another item to the long list of things we know about Mark Richt, he’s a good boss.

          • UGAfoo

            “…screw your employees…”

            That is very subjective. For instance, freezing University salaries in the wake of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression seems prudent. Meanwhile your HC comes in asking you to break that policy and then proceeds to pay that salary from his own pocket. If you break that policy for him, then how do you think that would reverberate within the rest of the University?

            • Normaltown Mike

              The Athletic Ass’n and the University are miles apart when it comes to state funding vs private sources. It’s never clear how much the AA is holding (hiding?) which is why Adams threw the fit over North Campus 2 years back. To paraphrase the Dude: It’s like what Lenin said… you look for the person who will benefit…

              CMR might have a pretty good idea that the AA can afford a little extra scratch for the program that makes the overwhelming lion’s share of $$ that comes in that door.

            • Cojones

              UGAfoo’s point is comparable to Richt’s. No matter the appearance of Grinchiness, the administration takes and gives it’s orders from the state. A policy of belt-tightning for all employees has to be carried out as per Georgia law; even if the admin agrees with Richt, they can’t act. Inadvertently, Richt’s intention to make it right does reflect back negatively on the administration when made public. I’m sure no party wanted that to happen. The faceless admin has no discretion; whereas, Richt individually does.

              The admin did the correct thing according to the charge given them by the state of Georgia. Richt did the correct thing for his own heart and sense of fairness. Never the twain shall meet. It was “Damned if you do and damned if you don’t” for the admin once it became public. Let’s cut’em some slack. It’s the ahole rules made by members of the NCAA that caused this. The enemy, dear Brutus, be us.

          • gastr1

            Yeah, but if you were Richt’s boss this is the sort of troubling act that could get you fired.

            You can’t have subordinates making job payments to other subordinates.

        • Me either. Nor am I surprised that one of the most profitable athletic associations in the land would cry poverty. Stay in Boston, Damon.

          • Cojones

            They didn’t cry poverty. The State did.

            • Babs Jansen

              No, the Athletic Association did. Completely separate from the University. I don’t think the Board of Regents has any say whatsoever in how much the Athletic Department pays its coaches/staff.

              • gastr1

                Yes. Never, ever confuse the AD and AA with the BOR. The AA is by its own preference as far as it can get from the controls that govern the universities.

        • Keese

          Damon Evans did agree to push the salary envelope with the DC hire

      • Go Dawgs!

        It doesn’t sound like they did agree to let him do it.

      • sUGArdaddy

        UGAfoo…kindness is always acceptable. A man can give his hard earned money to whomever he chooses. What Richt did was be a great leader — make personal sacrifices for the good of those on his team because he believed in it so strongly. All leaders, especially those in Athens, could stand to learn a thing or two from him.

        • Cojones

          And broke NCAA rules by doing it. Other “leaders” don’t have the discretion of the heart that Richt assumed. Everyone should understand that in our fondness for Richt, we are painting others as bad guys. They aren’t. But the more we applaud Richt, the more we help create a perception divide. I’m slightly surprised by the Senator’s comment since he knew the admin has no choice in these matters and is a dumb beast sent on it’s mission by the good people of Georgia.

          Everyone on here knows of my good feelings toward Richt and some bad feelings toward a few admin officials, but this issue has been dictated by the NCAA, who, in this case, are not the bad guys either. The NCAA members establish and vote on the rules to prevent cheaters from taking advantage of everyone.

          I blame Auburn.

          • sUGArdaddy

            I just don’t hunk he knew he was breaking rules. And if he did, he deemed them as bad rules. And he’s right. Great Leaders break bad rules and policies all the time. Policies are created because we can’t trust people to do what is right. Richt heard he policy, and deemed that he had a ‘more right’ answer. And I think it’s pretty awesome.

            • UGAfoo

              This was putting your heart in front of your brain which is not always a good leadership attribute. Somewhat troubling to me since this is not the first time he has done it (see Martinez, Willie).

              Would you be okay if he gave money to a needy recruit and his family? It would be the _right_ thing to do.

            • adam

              Think that rule HAS to be in place. Otherwise you could have some pretty shady stuff go down. For example, we could hear about an OC or DC trying to leave a school and suddenly deciding to stay because he got 20k under the table from the head coach.

      • Bad m

        I can’t tell your attitude with this, so I apologize if I’m getting this wrong.
        “Making them look like assholes?” 1. I’m sure that never entered his thought process. 2. Who cares what they look like? I dont get mad at the guy who wrote a check to the Savation Army because it made me look bad. 3. This isn’t a problem in 99.999% of the world. Hard to guess there might be a rule against it. I wouldn’t even think to check the rule book on this. It’s his own damn money. Not acceptable? 4. Sometimes you look like an ass because you are one.

  3. Spike

    Chickenshit stuff if there ever was any. CMR is a BAAAAD man!.

  4. Hogbody Spradlin

    The Grantham violation is the height of ridiculous.

      • Nate

        Senator, I’m sure Saban is getting a pretty good chuckle out of this list. I’m sure there are some coaching staffs out there that rack up this many violations in a weekend.

      • Hogbody Spradlin

        @Blutarsky: As I’m sure Nick Saban would totally agree that he never staged an accidental contact.

      • Cojones

        Senator, we (the members) make rules in the NCAA in order to prevent Saban from doing exactly the same. Having illegal contact and calling it inadvertent is typical of Tressel, Kiffen, Saban and others, so we make rules that make sure it is documented for fear it will come out inadvertently and will get folks crucified. Granthem self-reported this incident, did he not? It was a sad accident to be sure, but, reportable by honest people it was. These are instances of honest people working within a set of rules that they created or helped create.

        It honestly is funny as hell that my fellow fans (with agreement in my heart) have jerked up the flambos and pitchforks under the behest of our leader (mental image of the Senator at night with torch held high in an artificial hand, storming Young Doktore Frankensteen’s castle) ready to ferret out all those who have slighted the Dawgs or our Coach in any way. You are one clever booger, Senator. Having a little Hanukkah fun are you?

  5. I hope that Richt is able to continue to win enough games to be our coach for a very long time. I am very proud to have him as our coach.

  6. aristoggle

    I too think that being a nice guy is a bullshit reason for violations, and really respect Richt for giving out of his own pocket.

    As for the administration rejecting the pay increases, in light of the furloughs and pay cuts the rank and file staff have experienced, I can see how that would be seen as bad form. The upshot of this is that UGA seems to find a way to give certain folks raises when they want to. Exhibit A – Adams gets a raise: http://redandblack.com/2011/06/16/adams-gets-a-raise-families-are-barely-making-ends-meet-but-univ-president-living-the-good-life/

  7. JasonC

    Richt is a DGD for sure.

  8. Go Dawgs!

    Seriously, folks, it’s time to blow up the NCAA. What business is it of theirs what Richt does with his money, so long as it’s not paid to a recruit or a recruit’s family? Richt is seriously a special person to take money out of his pocket and pay it to his staff. And to give us a rip over giving food to a five year old boy? When it’s OK for us to feed the prospect and his parents? The NCAA offically makes as much sense to me now as PETA. Both had a noble goal in mind, and both have zero perspective or any idea how to accomplish the goal.

    • Cojones

      Have to admit the kid’s food bill hits me wrong. How can a 5-yr old eat $21-$22 worth of food in two meals? I just got used to a $6 hamburger when you have a kid’s portion now going for over $10/plate. What have the food prices come to in Athens? Highway robbery on top of a bad NCAA rule. This is just too much angst to be created on a Tues morning.

    • adam

      I think it’s a rule that exists for a reason. For argument’s sake, say you were recruiting 2 HS prospects who are brothers (happens often enough). Without the rule you could basically have them both there for 2 official (aka free) visits each. With the rule in place, the sibling would only be paid for in one case.

      Now, the rule is either too specific or not specific enough. And this application of it is laughable. Still, these insane rules usually were created because of a situation where the lack of a rule was abused.

  9. Bob

    There’s Mark Richt. Then there’s Todd Graham.

    • Cojones

      Holy crap, Bob. Read your comment several times before it hit me that you were referring to the arm-Pitt Sun Devil. Cheez! (image of the heel of my hand slamming my forehead thereby increasing it’s backward slope).

  10. Skeeter

    Toddlers getting bags of Cheerios, excessive greetings, gameday role playing — things are outta control in Athens!

  11. Irishdawg

    This is what happens when petty bureacrats are left to decide things on a whim (see almost every federal government agency ever). The NCAA is stocked to the brim with officious little jerk off tyrants who love to investigate shit like this, but give Auburn’s money laundering scam a pass.

    Eat me, NCAA.

  12. AJC poster

    Nothing but Thugs at UGA!

    Ever since Richt got there it’s been nothing but arrests and NCAA violations!

    He just brought those cheatin ways from Free Shoes University to Athins!

  13. BeardDawg

    How many points does this give us in the Fulmer Cup?

  14. Peter Paul Gualtieri

    The only objectionable part was that Richt gave Jancek extra money. Jancek was already stealing from us everytime he cashed his regular paycheck.

    Funny that Fabris had such a hard time finding work. Guess there weren’t many programs out there looking to take on the “challenge” of directional kicking.

    • Cojones

      Yeah, but look at the rosy side for you. He didn’t give Willy any extra money. Wonder if they exchange Christmas Cards?

    • adam

      Seriously, I was thinking the exact same thing. If I were AD, I would’ve refused to give Jancek a raise too.

  15. WF dawg

    It says a lot about the man that in the middle of his roughest time in Athens he’d think about others enough to make sure his assistants were being treated fairly. And had his actions not amounted to secondary violations, this story would never have seen the light of day. Mark Richt is just a good guy, even when no one’s looking, and I’m proud to have him as our coach. I hope he’ll be able to stay just as long as he wants (i.e. have enough success to allow this) and hoist a MNC trophy or two along the way.

  16. AusDawg85

    I’m just concerned there’s a reason for the expression, “Nice guys finish….”

    /won’t say it.

  17. BeardDawg

    I blame Bobo.

  18. Pingback: NCAA, Can You Explain A Few Things? « The Grit Tree

  19. Slaw Dawg

    I’ve bled Red and Black for almost 50 years and I have never, ever been prouder of my favorite team’s head coach than I am right now.

    College football has taken it on the chin, in the ribs, in the gut and about the head and shoulders over the past year plus. The stories have gone from bad (Auburn: the Newtons and more), to worse (Miami’s sordid booster chicanery) to shocking (Penn State’s sickening willful ignorance). The NCAA seems immobilized by these disasters and wooden headed about their impact on the sport’s rep. In the midst of this, our school gets a wrist slapping because we have a head coach who gives a damn about his assistants and a program that gives a 5 year old something to eat. The irony is so powerful that I’m sure it’ll go over ESPN’s head like a Stealth Fighter.

    And let’s not forget that our coach is also the guy who took the time to send representatives to the funeral of an aspiring walk on and posthumously award him a place on the team.

    You can have Saban, Meyer and Spurrier and their national titles. If “settling for 10-2″ means having a coach who brings honor to my alma mater, I’ll settle.

  20. Shooter

    I thought Fabris had accepted a job at Okla and then at the last minute declined it due to family considerations. Or am I thinking of someone else?

    • AthensHomerDawg

      You’re right Shooter…. only your timing is off. Fabris left Georgia ….if only for a short while and at some point realized “his error”? and came back. Only later with directional kicking, and when he lost CMR’s confidence he did struggle to find a coaching spot and is now coaching D line at Louisville.

      • Cojones

        “Under” Charlie Strong’s tutelage no doubt.

        • AthensHomerDawg

          No doubt. And Smart as well at Bammer. Fabris had his good games. The Clemson game and special teams comes to mind. Our special teams still aren’t where they should be and Fabris has been gone for awhile now. I hate it that he slipped and CMR had to let him go. I hate it our special teams are costing us games …….still.

  21. Cojones

    “Merry Christmas!” to you all!

  22. Mayor of Dawgtown

    The NCAA is ridiculous. That worthless organization raises minor indiscretions to the level of “secondary violations” yet totally ignores serious shit–like Auburn paying for players. If this were Auburn there would be no evidence of payment to the assistant coaches by the HC (even if that happened). The money would have been delivered in cash in a brown paper sack.

    • Cojones

      …..while ours would be delivered in a white envelope by a guy on a white horse…..or a white Ford pickup? Just kiddin’, Mayor. :)

  23. Wooderson

    It is a testament to CMR’s character that no one suspects his motives here, but I am troubled that he either knew it was violation and did it anyway or he did not think that it could possibly be a violation in the first place.

    Paying someone “off the books” is generally used to either cover up wrong doing or to facilitate wrong doing.

    Also, I disagree that this is a ticky-tack NCAA rule. My guess is that the NCAA has instituted the rule in the first place as response to it happening in earlier circumstances where an assistant coach received under the table money from a HC/AD/Univ to keep quiet about unethical behavior.

    Of course Richt had good intentions, but it makes him and the University look stupid.

    • Cojones

      …And since it was self-reported (after UGA self-investigation) going back to 2010, that kinda blows a hole in your disingenuous comment.

      • Cojones

        Point is, did the admin make itself look stupid? See conspiracy theory.

      • Wooderson

        So you think it is a ticky-tack rule? As I said above, it is a testament to Richt’s character that no one thinks this is something else than what he said it is.

        I doubt we would give someone else like Saban or Chizik or Tressel the same latitude.

        I think it was stupid of him to think that paying someone out of his own pocket WOULD not be an NCAA violation. Even I could see why it would be a problem.

  24. Cojones

    Got a new one for you conspiracy theorists.

    Isn’t Bond, Schoeneck and King the headhunting search firm that UGA uses for replacement of sports administrative jobs? Didn’t they search for McGarity? If so, what IF the intent was not to find NCAA violations of the secondary type, but instead was a search for ammo to be used in the firing of a coach? The admin can’t use it now, but was it sitting there waiting to be exposed later as an attitudinal margin-caller? What if it now had to be put out there in this reportable manner because to sit on stuff going back to 2010 was beginning to smell, especially if it went into 2012? Is it now a small deleveraging tool applied by the admin to lower costs of keeping a now popular coach?

    Food for thought. Of course, if I have the wrong firm, all of this was like a fart in the wind.

    • Wooderson

      I don’t think that they are in the career recruitment business … they apparently do a different type of headhunting …

      http://www.bsk.com/groups/detail.cfm?id=4

      The Collegiate Sports Practice Group at Bond, Schoeneck & King is the nation’s premier practice group for the representation of colleges and universities in NCAA rules compliance, eligibility, and infractions matters. With over 100 combined years of involvement and expertise in NCAA-related matters, our attorneys and consultants are far and away the most qualified, capable and experienced in this area of unique and complex regulations.

      You could be on to something here

  25. yurdle

    It says a lot to me that Richt was making these payments when his own job security was at issue. He wasn’t locking down for the winter, but rather writing pretty large checks to guys who were in no position to help him.

    The NCAA can have its rules (and what rules it has should be enforced) but I’m proud that my University will own these secondary violations. These kinds of payments violate a rule that aims to prevent the exact opposite of what happened here.

    • Cojones

      You are right, yurdle. No snarkiness intended, but we ought to carve each of these hits into granite along with the inadvertent pocket phone calls,etc. Display them, along with all the other humane endeavors Richt has done since he has been here, to the Insurance co. fostering the “Best Coach in America” contests and dare them to come up with anything comparable for the Miles’, Sabans, Meyers and Tressels and ask them what is their criterion. Is it just a popularity contest to get everyone’s name and addresses to solicit insurance or are they serious? Might be worth the effort.

      We can officially dub him “Santa Richt” for this year, 2011. Saint it is!

  26. Justin

    NCAA violations? I blame Bobo.

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