Found August 09, 2012 on
The NCAA has an obligation to look into and punish North Carolina amid their academic scandal. I know that his will be most likely construed as another Duke guy taking a shot at North Carolina, but it really isn't. I'd feel the same way if it were any other school, Duke included.
The fact is that by the NCAA shying away from a ruling of any kind and outright refusing to get involved they are being more than a bit hypocritical in the wake of the severely harsh penalties levied against Penn State.
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I have not really commented on the Penn State controversy and I will say that the issues at North Carolina are in no way more severe than those at Penn State, but they are there and the NCAA should be acting.
If you want a full break down on the issues with the NCAA and Noth Carolina I suggest you read ESPN's Dana O'Neil's take.
Basically what we are looking at is the NCAA showing no consistency on who and what they want to punish and for what they want to get involved in.
Penn State's controversy was a horrible situation and in my opinion, it was not within the jurisdiction of the NCAA to levy penalties. All of the people involved in the scandal are no longer working for the university. The sicko who committed the heinous crimes will not see the light of day in his lifetime.
The coach who was held to the highest esteem is gone from his job and this Earth, his reputation forever tarnished. And the victims are forever scarred with no amount of firing and jailing able to give them back their innocence.
The NCAA in its effort to do something, anything, decided to play the moral police and punish the new coaches, players both new and old who had no knowledge or involvement in the heinous acts of Jerry Sandusky and the ensuing coverup.
The NCAA claims it needed to step in and make sure the situation where a coach or sport can have so much influence over a university never happens again. The problem is that it continues to happen and will continue to happen.
Granted programs with highly regarded and respected coaches are still subject to special treatment and consideration think about Duke Basketball or Alabama Football as examples.
Not that those programs have been involved in wrong doing, but they are looked at differently and their coaches are revered. Many schools put their sports teams and coaches on a pedestal of admiration and according the the NCAA that is bad, yet they don't always act.
When Urban Meyer was at Florida how many play football players were arrested? How often was Florida censured or reprimanded by the NCAA then?
The answer is zero.
Apparently at that time the violation of state and federal laws was the jurisdiction of the state and federal system and the university and its board of trustees. Those groups were responsible for giving punishments not the NCAA.
In the case of Penn State all the stake holders in the scandal were arrested, jailed, fired and now facing possible civil charges and eventual penalties. In my mind no amount of punishment fits that crime, but when you get rid of all of the parties that is a big step.
So, if the NCAA is going to get involved in a situation like Penn State why not North Carolina?
The North Carolina's academic scandal just won't die. I have written before that Duke fans, in particular, should be careful with the kind of hard time they give to North Carolina fans because this sort of thing can really happen anywhere.
However, that in no way absolves North Carolina from punishment from the NCAA. North Carolina took action like Penn State did. They fired the football coach(es) involved and the athletic director stepped down after the inappropriate benefits aspect was uncovered with the football program.
That program was giving special attention by the university in its efforts to become a national power and at the same time these benefits were being provided, academic fraud was taking place.
And to this day the current administration is down playing the significance saying it is a university matter and not an NCAA one.
Whatever gets you through the day.
The NCAA also is claiming that the academic issues are the domain of the university. Odd considering that North Carolina has admitted that several football players and some basketball players comprised the classes that have been brought into question.
In this instance you have the school admitting that student-athletes knowingly participated in something that isn't consistent with the mission of either the university or the NCAA. To me that directly speaks to athletics and that is the domain of the NCAA.
So, while the NCAA made at least themselves feel better with their punishment of the Penn State Football program they won't touch the academic scandal at UNC because it isn't their area?
The NCAA and president Mark Emmert are making an effort to clean up and restore the reputation of college athletics. I can respect that but you have to be consistent and you have to be fair.
You can't rule against some and not others and you certainly can't just take the most severe crimes, in the case of Penn State and rule on them while ignoring less severe, but still bad situations like the one at North Carolina.
One of the biggest criticisms of college and its student-athletics is that college sports isn't about academics anymore. Many feel it just is a sign of the times and given how much money the schools make from the efforts of these young men and women that it is only reasonable to be more lenient on them academically.
Fair enough but when you have a university that prides themselves in being the flagship academic institution in the state and then you find out that your athletes are taking fraudulent classes, yet are still eligible to play there is a problem. And even though they technically shouldn't be able to play based on requirements set by the NCAA, the NCAA does nothing.
And if they continue to not react and at least look into the situation then they are bigger hypocrites than they have already proven themselves to be.
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