Category Archives: The NCAA

Greg. Sankey. Will. Not. Stand. Down.

No word on whether he laughed maniacally while signing this letter, though.

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Filed under Academics? Academics., ACC Football, SEC Football, The NCAA

Proof that amateurism makes people stupid

How can the people who run our nation’s universities sound this clueless?

His football program is installing new football lockers that cost an eye-popping $10,500 each, but Texas President Gregory L. Fenves “cannot comprehend” paying UT athletes.

That’s the main takeaway from an interview Fenves gave for a class-action antitrust lawsuit filed against the NCAA. The lawsuit seeks to challenge what schools can give to athletes playing football and men’s and women’s basketball.

The notes from the interview, first discovered by USA Today, were taken during an interview on Feb. 22 and attached to a legal filing. Fenves was one of five current or former university administrators interviewed by Kenneth Elzinga, an expert for the defense.

Kentucky athletic director Mitch Barnhart and former Purdue athletic director Morgan Burke were also interviewed. A UT spokesman declined to comment on Wednesday.

Fenves told Elzinga that he “cannot comprehend how athletics could be a part of university life” if athletes were paid like professionals. The UT president related an anecdote of going to a men’s basketball game this season and watching freshman Jarrett Allen, although his name is mentioned specifically.

Allen, described in general terms, was a “a very good basketball player, but he also makes mistakes ‘like a freshman,’” according to Elzinga’s notes. If Allen was paid like a professional, fans may watch him make “stupid turnovers” and may choose not to come watch him play.

So, over the top lockers, lavish training facilities and all the other bells and whistles players receive that regular students never get a whiff of don’t cause any dismay in the general student population, but Johnny Football getting a check for his work or his likeness/endorsement — something any of them can do now, but the players can’t — is somehow a bridge too far?

Tough call between stupidity and outright denial right there.  Should make for a fun deposition, though.

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Filed under It's Just Bidness, See You In Court, The NCAA

“The new rules clearly benefit college programs.”

Fresh off a successful vote to add an early signing date for football recruiting, Bob Bowlsby suggests a 60-day signing period in the fall might be possible.

That might give Saban’s Coke bottle the chills.  Then again,

“We’re dealing with a very entrepreneurial group,” Bowlsby said of the recruiting culture. “There will certainly be lots of thoughts on how to gain an advantage and how to work the system … There’s only so much you can do relative to how individual student-athletes are going to announce their choices.”

True ‘dat.

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Filed under Recruiting, The NCAA

This is what a false economy looks like.

The Texas football team has new lockers with a 43-inch television monitor rather than just a standard nameplate.

Per, bruh.  Times 85, that clocks in at a modest $892,500.

Wretched excess in the era of amateurism, for the win.

How many Longhorn players do you figure would rather have a check for $10 grand and a regular locker instead?

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Filed under It's Just Bidness, The NCAA

Losers

I wonder how many coaches agree with this sentiment.

Perhaps if players had the same degree of contractual freedom that coaches do, you might see transfers moving for the same reason.

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Filed under It's Just Bidness, The NCAA

They got everything they need, almost…

Generally when you hear that the NCAA is trying to block a request to depose school officials, it’s likely it’s from a fear that amusement will ensue, and that appears to be the case with the Alston litigation that Berman and Kessler are directing.

Friday’s filing pertains to a dispute over the plaintiffs’ request to depose five university officials, including Burke, who were interviewed by a defense expert as part the expert’s compilation of a report in the case. The NCAA and the conferences maintain that the plaintiffs are entitled to notes of the expert’s interviews with the five officials and a deposition of the expert, but they should not be allowed to depose the officials.

The expert, Kenneth Elzinga, covered a wide range of topics with Burke, according to the seven pages of notes from that interview, which say it was conducted Feb. 22 at Purdue in the presence of two attorneys from the law firm representing the Big Ten Conference in the case and an attorney from Purdue’s office of legal counsel.

Among them:

“ … MB said that one can already see what the effect of changing the current model of student-athletics would be on this group. If the model were changed to a more professionalized version, the members of the John Purdue Club [the athletics department’s fundraising arm] would cut back in their giving and their level of interest in intercollegiate sports. ‘They see how much we’re getting from our media contracts and that the university is taking a cut,’ MB said. They ask him, ‘why are you asking us? You’ve got money.’

“Member [sic] of the John Purdue Club would not like the money going into athletes’ pockets beyond the cost of their attendance at Purdue. Some donors already are concerned about the level of services Purdue provides its student-athletes. MB and his colleagues have to explain why the services are appropriate. He believes that if he didn’t have those conversations, donors might act unilaterally and reduce the amount of money they give.”

This is, to put a word on it, hilarious.  Fat cat donors who are already reluctant to give to the athletic department because it’s pulling in lots of Big Ten Network money are grumbling about what the school is currently shelling out to make student-athletes consider enrolling there and the school’s athletic director thinks that if those resources are redirected in the form of direct payments to the kids as opposed to the current direction of spending on staffing and infrastructure, it’s going to lead to a donor revolt.

I mean, let’s face it — when has a booster ever wanted to put money directly in a kid’s pocket?  That’s unheard of.

He should be a real blast under oath.

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Filed under It's Just Bidness, See You In Court, The NCAA

97

If you’re a coach like Kirby Smart or Nick Saban who’s already unhappy about the new NCAA rule that places limits on hiring high school coaches who, through no fault of their own, coincidentally happen to have highly regarded recruits on their roster, you’re probably going to go nuclear over the NCAA’s next initiative.

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby promised Friday that the NCAA Football Oversight Committee will take a “holistic look at staff sizes” within the next year, meaning that the proliferation of various analysts and other support positions could soon be regulated.

Speaking in a conference call with reporters in his role as Football Oversight Committee chairman, Bowlsby said the committee has two priorities for the coming year. First is adjusting the college football calendar as pertains to recruiting and practice times.

The second priority is a “deep dive on personnel.” The NCAA on Friday approved a 10th on-field assistant coach, and though that will not immediately affect the number of analysts a program can hire, Bowlsby said the time has come to examine staff sizes in college football.

“I think that door has been open for a while,” Bowlsby said. “We’re seeing very large staff. We see non-coaching personnel doing coaching duties. It is one of our two priorities for the Football Oversight Committee for the coming year … looking at personnel and how personnel should be deployed in the football coaching staff environment.”

Bowlsby did not identify any schools by names, but Alabama and Ohio State are among those most often mentioned to be bending the rules on personnel size. Bowlsby noted that one school — again, whom he did not mention — employed a football staff of 97 people, including on-field coaches, off-field player personnel staff, recruiting assistants and various analysts and graduate assistants.

You’ve got to admit if the Analyst Inn is full up, then it really doesn’t matter if that high school coach looking to move up has a gotta-have-Johnny Football on his roster.

Not that Greg McGarity is likely to strenuously object, either.

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Filed under The NCAA