Did you hear the one about the NCAA losing institutional control?
Sure, there might be a real joke just waiting to be told, but after yesterday's Spin Cycle by Mark Emmert and Co., this seems like this is less of a joke and more of a punchline. If your head has been stuck in the ground, or you have been participating in the ever expanding discussion stream happening over at MSULAXER's awesome piece on Matt Painter, let's talk in bullets and look at some ways the NCAA and its Leadership Team screwed something else up:
- The NCAA was unethical to the point of firing Vice President of Enforcement Julie Roe Lach for her hiring of Nevin Shapiro's lawyer to glean information in the case against Miami. While this might not be a big deal considering Shapiro is the star-witness, the reality is that this lawyer then provided interviews to Miami that witnesses had given to the Shapiro Ponzi-scheme case, not the Miami is bad case. Those same witnesses already declined being used against Miami, you know, until this happened.
- Did I mention that this is shady as all get out, but probably would never have been noticed so long as they wouldn't have billed close to $57k to the NCAA instead of the allotted $15k that was originally signed off on. Loosely translated, this was one of the worst coverups ever, and still it somehow did not lead to this entire case being thrown out. I'm not sure what would constitute a case to be thrown out in a court of law, but something unethical like the cops extorting a witness or using unethical means seems like it would be in the running for such a ruling.
- The NCAA investigators used burner phones, like the ones NCAA Football and Basketball coaches got in trouble for using in recruiting, to communicate secretly so that in case things were found out there would be no paper trail. I'm not 100% sure how stupid one can be, but these were billed back to the NCAA because, sure why not. Again, this was only found out because these idiots cannot even be unethical without raising red flags. What is more infuriating, if such a thing can exist, is that nobody noticed to this point and Miami's lawyers, who knew about these things, were so worried that the NCAA would hammer them for pointing out these malpractices that they just sat on the information. WHAT?!?!
- Mark Emmert went on to say that the NCAA did nothing wrong in the same way that Bill Clinton did not have sexual relations with that woman and we can all at least kind of agree that this whole thing is a joke of epic proportions. In fact, since Marky was unaware of the shady dealings done by his staff, he is totally not a part of this. You know, because HOW COULD HE KNOW WHAT IT IS EXACTLY THAT ALL OF HIS VICE PRESIDENTS WERE DOING UNDER HIS WATCH!!! HOOOOOOWWWWWW?!?!?! *coughlackofinstitutionalcontrolcough*
- On that note, I e-mailed the OTE team earlier to discuss writing anything about this and I basically referred to the situation as this which seemed like an apt way to describe it.:
I mean, they've basically effed up the entire Miami investigation, washed their hands clean of the mistake in the most obviously OMGYOURFUCKINGHANDISINTHECOOKIEJAR way, and then smiled in the general directions of both USC and Penn State as they say, "Look, sure we hammered both of you for LOIC based on the notion that you all should know everything that is happening in your kingdom, but we don't necessarily need to be held to that same standard."
- By the way, the all-CAPS part is probably my new favorite way to describe the NCAA every time they screw up and deny what is going on. Mark Emmert and Company are in such disarray that they probably don't even realize the storm brewing on the horizon. With the pending investigation at Oregon, the angst felt at Penn State, and what I can only imagine is infuriation by the team at USC, I am guessing some legal action is getting ready to come their way. Remember the absurdity of that $60 Million penalty at Penn State? We thought the state lawsuit was silly, but this ammunition doesn't hurt, does it?
- Also, props to President Donna Shalala for finally having some sort of cogent rebuttal to the NCAA.
By the NCAA leadership's own admission, the University of Miami has suffered from inappropriate practices by NCAA staff. There have also been damaging leaks to the media of unproven charges. Regardless of where blame lies internally with the NCAA, even one individual, one act, one instance of malfeasance both taints the entire process and breaches the public's trust.