So, how’s that “changing the culture” stuff working out?

Central Florida is found guilty of major rules violations by both its basketball and football programs, gets cited for lack of institutional control… and suffers the relatively minor penalties of a one-year postseason ban and a $50,000 fine in addition to the restrictions it previously self-imposed.

And that’s not even the punchline.  This is:

The school announced Tuesday afternoon that it would appeal the postseason ban for football.

“We don’t believe the `aggravating factors’ cited from the NCAA bylaws justify this sanction,” UCF President John Hitt said in a statement released by the school.

At a news conference, Hitt noted that none of the football players the school recruited improperly ever wound up playing for the Knights.

“We suck at cheating” as a defense to NCAA sanctions – hey, what’s not to like?

If for some strange reason you still believe the situation isn’t hopeless, you need to read this.  I’m not sure any article I’ve read this year about college athletics has depressed me more.  The idea the NCAA has that it’s going to be able to get its arms around third-party recruitment is borderline delusional.  The coaches know it.

“If they banned four teams, they have only 104 to go,” said former college coach Tom Penders, who detailed AAU-related issues in his book “Dead Coach Walking.”

“The money deals go down during July. People who are watching have no idea what is going on, like where the peanut is in the shell game. They might be watching it, but they ain’t seeing it.”

I know it’s never going to happen, but if the NBA and NFL aren’t going to run true minor league programs that are a real option for kids who don’t want to go to school, then they ought to drop age requirements for eligibility so that those with their hands out can go where the money is supposed to be.  In any event, I don’t see how the status quo is sustainable.  Something’s gotta give before college basketball and football crack apart from the strain.  I doubt that’s going to be good for the pros, either.

16 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

16 responses to “So, how’s that “changing the culture” stuff working out?

  1. Go Dawgs!

    Pay them a meaningful stipend and be done with it.

  2. Macallanlover

    I am so in favor of a minor league opportunity for football players who don’t want to get a college degree. It just solves so many problems and is an honest approach to finally dealing with the elephant in the room. And economically, I feel the “minor league” for football would be financially profitable if the number of teams was kept to a reasonable size, say eight or less. I don’t know if this same approach would solve the basketball problem, I just don’t watch it any longer. CFB would be just fine and the universities could regain some of their lost honor.

    • Silver Creek Dawg

      No way the NFL subsidizes a football minor league when it already has a free (to them) one in CFB.

      • Exactly. I honestly appreciate Mac’s hope, but it the idea that either of the professional leagues would willingly fund a minor league system when they have free ones in CFB and CBB reeks of “and a pony” mentality.

  3. doofusdawg

    I believe that college football is the fabric that holds the culture together… at least in the south. This article is truly depressing on so many fronts.

    First of all it sure explains a lot about Auburn over the last few years. it also explains a lot about Georgia as well… but we already new that.

    Unfortunately the last shoe to drop will be the entrance of politics and social justice to rationalize the cheating and the payoffs and the inequalities. There’s a reason I gave up my tickets several years ago. Seeing the writing on the wall and realizing that tradition would be the biggest casualty of the current direction of America… and there is nothing more traditional than college football.

    • First of all it sure explains a lot about Auburn over the last few years.

      I don’t think it’s any coincidence that every highly successful period of Auburn football involves either a subsequent probation for NCAA violations or the most important player on the team had his father sticking his hand out for at least one other school. They have never won anything of significance without treading that gray line or outright crossing it.

  4. Governor Milledge

    “There are over 400,000 student athletes, and just about all of us will be going pro in something other than sports.”

  5. Todd

    It happens everywhere, some are better than others. I truly believe that the highly recruited kids know right now where they want to go. Bid time until NSD. High school coaches are getting pockets lined more than ever. Pre-paid debit cards seem to be the big thing right now. College football has always been dirty. Always will be. Pay the players? Ok. Now they get paid and get booster money. Auburn and Clemson are just out right blatant.

    Then again, self reporting teams and teams with stricter drug / discipline policies put themselves at a disadvantage. Kind of like allowing your program to get to 69 scholarships. If big money is involved, you can bet there is going to be shady to down right crooked activity. People better wake up and recognize their environment and adapt to it, or die. College football is a buisness and if not run like a competetive one will fail. Georgia fans seemed to be split on developer of fine young men or win at all cost. National perception is Georgia has failed at both. It would be interesting to see a stat on successful farming years in south Georgia and its correlation with UGA’s success recruitng that region.

  6. Cojones

    Once again, the NCAA, under ESPN influence, has failed to mete out total punishment. What happened to forfeiture of season scheduled and post season games? If they forfeit the bowl game in 2010, we no longer have a losing season under Richt. :)

    The ignominy of it all!.

  7. shane#1

    There is just too much money in CFB. Greed will ruin the sport, if it hasn’t ruined the sport already.

  8. Always Someone Else's Fault

    The problem with a minor league is simple: the colleges already have all the fans. Who is going to pay (or blow two hours at home in front of the TV) to watch the Birmingham Boll Weevils play the Baton Rouge Blues? You could put versions of AJ, Julio, Knowshon, Clowney and Mathieu on one of those teams, and no one would come watch.

    As Todd said, it’s become part of the game. As long as it remains plausibly clandestine (don’t Aunties always get paid in rolls of new Benjamins?), the NCAA keeps its amateur status and life moves on.

  9. Monday Night Frotteur

    There’s a much easier and cheaper solution. The NCAA could just end the prohibition on outside income.

    -Drastically cheaper compliance costs,

    -no Title IX problems,

    -no direct outlay of cash for universities (obviously booster donations would shift);

    -Competitive balance complaints are farcical on their face (the revenue sports have very little competitive balance; the same teams are almost always at the top, and would continue to be at the top),

    -value-adding players would get a much larger (and fairer) cut of the pie they bake.

    That’s the way out of this. No plan is perfect, but this plan is by far the most logical and the easiest to implement.

  10. Todd

    The post game interviews say it all. If you believe some of these guys(any school) are “student athletes”, then you are a fool. Every school already has a “degree” to keep guys qualified for 4 years. When you see guys go pro early for no apparent reason, more often than not it is because there are no more classes he can take. Are we to believe that certain professors aren’t used to help the “student athlete”, or rather completely random? Same thing with money from boosters and the like. Do you honestly think Georgia is lilly white and everybody else is dirty?
    Couldn’t we say Georgia basketball was more successful under Harrick than any other Georgia coach in recent history? He was a known cheater and did it at Georgia. Hell, he and his son used their name on the western union wire. Cheating is one thing, but being stupid about it is another.

  11. Todd

    People need to decide if you want to win or not. Cheating works. If you want a clean program with no cheating, then you should never be able to complain about coaches losing. Prepare to be a team with some of the best in-state talent in the nation and be relagated to a team that competes with Vandy and Kentucky. All the while watching Carolina pass Georgia, and Georgia remain light years away from being the best team in the country. In this day and age, it is real and extensive. When I see Georgia down to 69 scholarships, an OC that top schools wouldn’t take, and Richt having a “out there somewhere” complacent look on the sidelines…….I see why Georgia is where it is.