Po’ Donna Shalala. Her school gets hit with the dreaded “lack of institutional control” notice by the NCAA (insert your pot-calling-kettle-black joke here) and in the end, the best she can come up with is a we’ve suffered enough defense.
She is good enough to remind us in the very first paragraph of her statement about what her school considers “harsh sanctions”.
We have already self-imposed a bowl ban for an unprecedented two-year period, forfeited the opportunity to participate in an ACC championship game, and withheld student-athletes from competition.
Major props, Donna! Your team posted a 7-5 record last season and along the way lost to every ranked team it played, including the FSU squad it would have faced again in the ACCCG. No doubt the postseason you sacrificed would have been truly epic.
If you read her statement carefully, there’s no denial that the school is guilty of some things. Just not the most salacious ones.
Despite their efforts over two and a half years, the NCAA enforcement staff could not find evidence of prostitution, expensive cars for players, expensive dinners paid for by boosters, player bounty payments, rampant alcohol and drug use, or the alleged hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and gifts given to student-athletes…
Hey, now that’s a relief.
But the rest of what’s there is clearly offered in the hope that enough anger can be stirred up against the NCAA’s botched investigation to deflect any further attention to what did happen with Shapiro. Not that Shalala doesn’t have a point.
Many of the charges brought forth are based on the word of a man who made a fortune by lying. The NCAA enforcement staff acknowledged to the University that if Nevin Shapiro, a convicted con man, said something more than once, it considered the allegation “corroborated”…
Lewis Carroll had higher standards than the NCAA, it seems. But here’s the problem with all that righteous indignation: if it was so bad for the NCAA to associate itself with Shapiro, how was it any better for Miami to do so?
Shalala concludes with an appeal for fairness: “We trust that the Committee on Infractions will provide the fairness and integrity missing during the investigative process.” How about the Committee sanctioning both Miami and Emmert?