The ongoing scandal over at the Flagship is now getting reaction from its peer institutions.
Michael Rosenberg, SI.com:
In a class called How To Embarrass Your School Without Getting In Trouble With the NCAA, I give the North Carolina Tar Heels an A-plus. And they don’t even have to write a paper.
The NCAA looked at the UNC scandal and announced that, as in one of the fake UNC classes, there was nothing to see here. No NCAA rules were violated. Of course, Penn State didn’t violate any NCAA rules either, but that is what we call a “technicality,” Sorry you have to spend the next decade in the wilderness, Penn State. Bring a blanket and a Thermos.
I don’t know how the NCAA can justify this. I don’t understand why Penn State has to spend four years in the NCAA’s intensive-care-unit for the abhorrent actions of a few former employees, while North Carolina gets a pass for its rampant academic fraud.
I don’t know what the NCAA can say to Penn State now. But I really don’t know what the NCAA says to Connecticut.
You remember Connecticut, don’t you? The Huskies are ineligible for the 2013 NCAA tournament because poor academic scores.
UConn athletic director Warde Manuel said he was not intimately familiar with the details of the UNC scandal, but that he found it “odd” the NCAA would punish Connecticut severely and not punish North Carolina at all. Manuel called it a “double standard.”
The NCAA just made it clear: The Huskies should have cheated. UConn should have given all its players a phony A. Then the NCAA would say, “No violations here!” Instead, UConn was honest about its academic failures, and the NCAA banned the Huskies. Tell me again about those “life lessons” the NCAA wants to teach.
Here’s the message: If you do poorly honestly, you’re out.
If you fake it, you’re in.
“And the NCAA wonders why it’s a laughingstock?” ESPN college analyst Jay Bilas tweeted. “Cue NCAA Prez to lecture on integrity â€¦”
UConn athletic director Warde Manuel didn’t have anything to do with the poor academic performance by the UConn basketball team, either. That happened long before he arrived. He has worked on NCAA committees for years. He has been part of the NCAA establishment. He only walked into UConn’s dark hour.
Don’t his words count for something?
“It is a double standard,” Manuel said Tuesday, a few days after he said those four words to Sports Illustrated. But then Manuel said plenty more and when he was done, he chuckled and said, “Now I’m in trouble.”
Not with the school president and certainly not with the state’s fan base. After harshly criticizing UConn and Jim Calhoun for academic problems, I don’t believe I’m being a homer here when I ask, “What in Tar-nation is going on?” Isn’t the new UConn AD, the big man from Michigan, allowed to stand up and ask what the hell is going on here?
“I don’t know all the intricacies of the North Carolina case at this point,” Manuel said. “But for the NCAA to say there is nothing for them to do with this case does appear that there is a double standard in the way they dole out punishment for lack of academic success and supposed cheating.
“If that’s what they are saying, we need to look at the rulebook. We need to determine what we should have in that rulebook that relates to academic fraud at institutions and the NCAA’s ability to hand out punishment.”
Honesty is the best policy. Don’t be a fool. Stay to school. â€¦ Evidently those words are not among the 500 or so pages in the NCAA rulebook. Cautionary note: If you do decide to add those words, Mr. Emmert, credit me. I worked hard to get an A-plus in one of those phony Carolina classes coining those terms. OK, I lied. I didn’t really coin those terms. That should clear me to cover the NCAA Tournament in March.
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