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View Full Version : The "Amateurism" Dilemma in Collegiate Recruiting



Sam Miguel
02-04-2013, 11:29 AM
I've had calls, texts and even conversations with friends and colleagues who seem genuinely shocked that hot recruits are actually making better money than call center agents and even other typical entry-level employees.

Blame it on the marketability of the UAAP I guess. And it is not like this is a recent phenomenon. I can think of cases as early as the late 1970's when certain star college players were getting pretty good money as allowance.

In this day and age, the money has just plain gotten ridiculous, keeping in step with the overwhelming desire to win that precious UAAP championship on the part of deep-pocketed schools.

If only we could unlock the secret to FEU's successful recruitment over the last three decades or so, and doing it at costs nowhere near what we or Lasalle or the SM Group put out.

bchoter
02-04-2013, 12:19 PM
^ Looks like UE has discovered FEU's secret. Take away Mammie and you ahvae a low maintenance squad. Or maybe they created a new blue print. Mammie may be bandied around to show UE's Season 75 intentions but, I think, their biggest recruit is the latest super agent

gfy
02-04-2013, 12:37 PM
Before it gets out of hand, now is the time for UAAP to look into this pera-pera recruitment. I don't mind giving them reasonable allowances but giving other perks like condos, cars and so on should be prohibited.

Since the UAAP Board is scheduled to review the rules, I'd like them to consider the following: 1. Limit imports to just one per team with one-year residency. I heard that they may impose a condition that the two-year residency rule should be spent in the school concerned (this is because some of these imports spend some years in other leagues for example before they join the UAAP). 2. All Fil-foreigners, just like other transferees, need only to have one-year residency. 3. Revoke the Socrates Rivera rule. HS graduates, and not only star players, should be free to go to any school of their choice (no contracts - voluntary or otherwise). This may be in violation of human rights and the DepEd should take a look at this. I heard they are thinking of imposing even a two-year residency rule which may be counterproductive because these star players may just skip their senior year (and thus the school's campaign for championship would be affected) and transfer to other schools, e.g. Reedley.

bchoter
02-04-2013, 12:41 PM
^ How about reducing the 2-year residency of fresh-from-HS fil-ams to just one? The NCAA actually allows these fil-ams to play right away

Sam Miguel
02-04-2013, 02:25 PM
Begging the indulgence of Madam Moderator, to please allow me to respond to this as a separate post ___


Before it gets out of hand, now is the time for UAAP to look into this pera-pera recruitment. I don't mind giving them reasonable allowances but giving other perks like condos, cars and so on should be prohibited.

Since the UAAP Board is scheduled to review the rules, I'd like them to consider the following: 1. Limit imports to just one per team with one-year residency. I heard that they may impose a condition that the two-year residency rule should be spent in the school concerned (this is because some of these imports spend some years in other leagues for example before they join the UAAP). 2. All Fil-foreigners, just like other transferees, need only to have one-year residency. 3. Revoke the Socrates Rivera rule. HS graduates, and not only star players, should be free to go to any school of their choice (no contracts - voluntary or otherwise). This may be in violation of human rights and the DepEd should take a look at this. I heard they are thinking of imposing even a two-year residency rule which may be counterproductive because these star players may just skip their senior year (and thus the school's campaign for championship would be affected) and transfer to other schools, e.g. Reedley.

GFY, Tokayo, I would go even further and allow any kid straight out of high school, for as long as he has never played a minute of college ball, to play right away without any sit-out requirement, regardless of which part of God's blue planet he hails. I think any kid who makes the admissions requirement in any UAAP school straight out of high school should not have to sit out a year as a varsity requirement. It should not matter if the kid came from the United States or any other part of North America, Cameroon, Nigeria or any other country in Africa, or the Principality of friggin' Lichtenstein if that be the case. Lichtenstein has a 6-foot-9 Filipino-French-Senegalese teenager who might see action for the French junior team pala ano? Anyway, where was I...

Oh yes, review of the rules.

I am not in favor of limiting the number of imports at all, in fact I think there should be no limits to imports at all, AS LONG AS THEY ARE BONA FIDE STUDENTS. Shit, how would we like it if every US NCAA school down to Division III says no Asians at all in the NCAA and all NCAA-affiliated athletic conferences? We want to build world-class universities then by all means let's attract the best the world has to offer. I can't imagine limiting imports on varsity rosters would help that cause.

I agree with revoking the Soc Rivera rule, and may I also make a formal motion to ban friggin' Anton Montinola for good, and from ever having anything to do with the UAAP, period. And yes, no more player contracts at any level. Ever. Should there be any such contracts subsisting now, they should be considered by the league as void effective immediately.

Going back to paying players, this is actually a good idea. The UAAP makes money, why shouldn't their "employees" make money as well? Let's make this a rule so Bchoter's Dominicans won't have any excuse not to ante up for his Tigers.

Sam Miguel
02-04-2013, 02:31 PM
On this one as well, Madam Moderator ___


^ Looks like UE has discovered FEU's secret. Take away Mammie and you ahvae a low maintenance squad. Or maybe they created a new blue print. Mammie may be bandied around to show UE's Season 75 intentions but, I think, their biggest recruit is the latest super agent

I just wish that super agent would bring in some Ateneo-calibre players who could pass the ACET.

Super agent is always teasing the other recruiters that he can bring a kid to UE for 10% or less of what they spend on their so-called blue chips, and the academic credentials aren't that far off between them and the blue chips at all, har-har-har!

Kid Cubao
02-04-2013, 03:34 PM
actually the secret to recruiting lies not in trawl-fishing for blue chippers, but in picking diamonds in the rough. like i've said many times before, the blue chippers are already highly-sought commodities even before they become high school seniors; as such they will always vie for the best recruitment pitches.

what FEU has done so well is recruit "segundas" or prospects flying under the radar who later blossom into stars. and they've been successful at it since the time of anthony williams, romanito roa, arnold padaong, and even before that. now if we can recruit our own segundas who have the athletic and academic potential, that's where the satisfaction lies. and like i said earlier, the best scouts can spot talent simply BY THE WAY THEY CATCH THE BALL AND SHUFFLE ABOUT. wala sa perahan yan, talas lang ng mata ang puhunan.

Ghostrider
02-04-2013, 04:57 PM
but, I think, their biggest recruit is the latest super agent

Japeth's manager? He's got alot of fil-am clients and always to be trawling online fora for leads regarding fil-foreigners which he can sign to management contracts.

Kasama ba si Teejay Booker?

yungha
02-04-2013, 05:12 PM
^ust is also good at that, getting guys like mariano, afuang, a 2nd-tier high school pg who developed into the best uaap seniors pg (fortuna), ababou, duncil, vizcarra, canlas, mirza and of course who can forget jervy cruz.

our recruitment immediately after 2002 proves that recruiting based on sterling high school credentials doesn't always pan out - ford arao (best hs center at that time), barracoso (jrs mvp), estoesta (best hs prospect from cebu), johann uichico (uaap jrs mythical 5), etc. it was the aforesaid under the radar recruits like baclao and rabeh who ultimately made the difference.

roborat
02-04-2013, 06:05 PM
that's the beauty of the UAAP college tournament. Metro Manila schooled hot shot HS prospects are not guaranteed superstar status once they move up to college. When the probinsiyanos come in plus the Fil-foreigners, its becomes very hard to determine who suceeds and who doesn't in the college game.

BLUE HORSE
02-04-2013, 06:48 PM
There is a current article in Spin where in the UAAP is suppose to be studying a proposal to use a binding letter of intent (LOI) for athletes being recruited by UAAP schools. The LOI is suppose to be a copy of the contract used by the US NCAA binding a high school athlete to his choice of college. Once the athlete signs the LOI, the other UAAP schools are no longer allowed to recruit the athlete and the athlete has to honor his commitment for his freshman year. I personally like this rule but have a couple of questions for the board.

First, who prepares the LOI? The UAAP board should all agree on the form of the LOI that is distributed to all athletes. Who can be tendered the LOI and when can the athletes sign the LOI? In the NCAA, athletes are not tendered the contract until their senior year and both athlete and the athletes parent or guardian have to sign the binding letter of agreement. The NCAA also sets when the signed form letter has to be submitted to the school and the school then forwards the signed contract to the NCAA offices. In basketball, the signing date is the middle of November and spring date is in April. For football, contracts needs to be signed and submitted no earlier than this Wednesday.

Secondly, the UAAP has to address the question of athletes signing the LOI because of the coach and not the school. When the schools fire the coach, the athlete may no longer look favorably to the school. The NCAA allows schools to release athletes from their LOI if the athletes family requests to be released.

Third, how long can the UAAP school hold the athlete hostage to the LOI? The current proposal binds the athlete to honor his LOI for his freshman year. The way it is currently worded, a UAAP school can hold the athlete a hostage for 3 years total before he can transfer to another UAAP school. A better alternative is to bind the athlete for his first year but if said athlete is red shirted and not elevated to varsity, the athlete should be allowed the option of transferring to another school without the 2 year residency requirement.

Fourth, how does the UAAP impose the LOI on other schools not belonging to the UAAP?

My two cents.

bchoter
02-04-2013, 07:07 PM
The super agent was super enough to hide a blue chipper from down under while the kid was in town. He didn't go to any school. Not ADMU nore SBC. Not even DLSU. I was supposed to be FB-tight with his family but I couldn't even get his phone number. In other words the kid came only to talk to the super agent.

Para hindi off-topic, tho super agent is nudging him towards Recto, according to a family member, the kid really wants to take his talents to Katipunan. According to another prospect from down under (PG), the kid did well in Melbourne's JV league play.

Ghostrider
02-04-2013, 10:27 PM
^ Are you referring to the fool's gold? Commissioner kasi si "super" agent kaya sa cronies lang dinadala.

gfy
02-05-2013, 02:29 AM
Sam, globalization and all, IMO the Philippines is not exactly comparable to the US re basketball. There, there are hundreds of schools and various leagues and competition is stiff that several non-Americans would not be an issue, i.e. NCAA and NBA. Here we have only a number of leagues and limited slots for big men. I said one import (that is big man) so the local big men could improve playing the imports (in preparation for the PBA) while the local big men could have playing time when the imports are rested. Otherwise the locals would not get any playing time at all if two or more big men are allowed per team. A little protectionist maybe but it is good for local basketball.

gfy
02-05-2013, 03:22 AM
^ How about reducing the 2-year residency of fresh-from-HS fil-ams to just one? The NCAA actually allows these fil-ams to play right away

No residency just like the NCAA. HS graduates I was referring to include those from abroad.

Sam Miguel
02-05-2013, 09:19 AM
All this talk is enough to make me return to drinking...

tarmanz
02-05-2013, 12:02 PM
There is a current article in Spin where in the UAAP is suppose to be studying a proposal to use a binding letter of intent (LOI) for athletes being recruited by UAAP schools. The LOI is suppose to be a copy of the contract used by the US NCAA binding a high school athlete to his choice of college. Once the athlete signs the LOI, the other UAAP schools are no longer allowed to recruit the athlete and the athlete has to honor his commitment for his freshman year. I personally like this rule but have a couple of questions for the board.

There's a major difference between here and the US though. In the US, the high school is not the same school as the college. Here, the LOI, instead of "freeing" the recruit, could be used to make him a hostage. Imagine a HS hotshot being forced to sign an LOI to his school as a condition for graduating.

gfy
02-06-2013, 10:26 AM
On Pingoy, I think it was unethical, I am not sure legal, for FEU to sign a contract even if the father supposedly signed it and even if the family allegedly asked for it. Basketball is not exactly showbiz for these kind of contracts.

Another proposal I heard is the two-year residency for imports which should be spent in the school he's going to. Will this be, if approved, effective immediately? This means that even if the import has stayed a few years already in the country he STILL has to fulfill 2 years residency in the school.

bluebruiser90
02-06-2013, 10:31 AM
Another proposal I heard is the two-year residency for imports which should be spent in the school he's going to. Will this be, if approved, effective immediately? This means that even if the import has stayed a few years already in the country he STILL has to fulfill 2 years residency in the school.


The MBALA Rule.

bchoter
02-06-2013, 11:53 AM
Another proposal I heard is the two-year residency for imports which should be spent in the school he's going to. Will this be, if approved, effective immediately? This means that even if the import has stayed a few years already in the country he STILL has to fulfill 2 years residency in the school.This will hurt schools who have limited scholarships to offer (*ehem *ehem). Some schools don't offer 100% scholarship on the 1st year of a 2-year residency period that's why they are sometimes sent to another friendly school who is willing to give the student-athlete full scholarship for 1 year. This won't affect schools who can offer 100% scholarship for both years for ALL student-athletes.

Apocrypha
02-06-2013, 05:02 PM
^^So what's the point of that proposed rule? To force schools to use up a scholarship slot for the entire residency period? Come to think of it, is there a limit on how many scholarships a team can have, and is it enforced? It's an easy matter to send the tuition money to the athlete and have him say that it's coming from his own pocket.

atenean_blooded
02-06-2013, 05:24 PM
I still think all these rules are silly, and that if a kid in high school wants to attend a particular college and can afford it, then he has every right to do so, no ifs or buts. If he's one of your juniors players and wants to move to another college, tough luck.

You can rant and rave and call him a mercenary and boo him and give him the BJ Manalo treatment. But life goes on, and instead of whining, you're better off trying to beat him and his new team. See: 2002 Ateneo Blue Eagles.

If you want to give me some talk about "costs of recruitment" and "investment," allow me to happily remind you that we are dealing with kids in a amateur league.

dougrich
02-06-2013, 06:09 PM
Totally agree Blooded. Any talk of recouping an investment on a high school player is an admission of exploitation of a minor. I said it in a previous post a restriction on a college freshman violates his human rights and his academic freedom. Any contract that he signed as a minor would not be binding. Even if his parents signed the "contract" they cannot force him to play for his school or not play for any other school because we are all protected against involuntary servitude.

bchoter
02-06-2013, 06:36 PM
^^So what's the point of that proposed rule? To force schools to use up a scholarship slot for the entire residency period? Come to think of it, is there a limit on how many scholarships a team can have, and is it enforced? It's an easy matter to send the tuition money to the athlete and have him say that it's coming from his own pocket.Obviously a knee-jerk reaction to the Mbala move. With this rule, Mbala will be forced to wait til 2015. Right in time for his (Montinola's) newly ordered imports, who will sit for 2 years with or without that new rule

atenean_blooded
02-06-2013, 08:38 PM
The terrible thing that this is going to do is that it is going to make schools start recruiting at the high school level in order to circumvent these stupid rules. Doing this with college kids who are 18 years old is one thing. Doing it to high school students is really just awful.

If that's the way things are going to be, really, we will be in a situation analogous to the situation that led to the founding of the UAAP.

In that case, let's pack our bags and leave. In terms of basketball, we have nothing to prove to anyone. We have the most successful varsity basketball program in Philippine history, period. And that's only counting UAAP and NCAA titles. This discounts the fact that in addition to the major leagues, we also have victories in the offseason leagues, and the most number of national titles.

bluetruck
02-06-2013, 09:12 PM
In that case, let's pack our bags and leave. In terms of basketball, we have nothing to prove to anyone. We have the most successful varsity basketball program in Philippine history, period. And that's only counting UAAP and NCAA titles. This discounts the fact that in addition to the major leagues, we also have victories in the offseason leagues, and the most number of national titles.

I totally agree with blooded.

Joescoundrel
02-07-2013, 11:26 AM
Pera-pera na kasi talaga ngayon sa hirap din ng buhay. Kung ako man ang pobre, at may anak ako na magaling maglaro, at kita ko na pinag-aagawan siyang kunin ng mga may pera na tao para maglaro sa school nila, hijo de pota, hindi ko tatanggihan ang mga offer na 'yan. Bagkus magpataasan sila ng ibibigay para maganda naman ang kubra namin ng pamilya ko. Alalaon-baga dagdagan na nila ng non-cash incentives. THIS is the new reality in the recruitment of players. Kaya nga high school pa lang kagulo na. 'Yun ngang isang player diya nag-inarte pa, dagdag-pera lang pala kailangan.

A man's gotta eat. He also has to feed his family. I would not begrudge that of anybody, especially the pobres who have few options. Friggin' Keith Agovida had five or six siblings when he was in his last year with the JRU Light Bombers back in 2007. He has since resurfaced with Arellano, and in fact played against us in that shit tuneup at Moro last week. Guess what? He now has nine siblings. Kung hindi maghahanap ng kabuhayan ang Keith mamamatay sa gutom buong pamilya nila, pati na 'yun estupidong mga magulang niya na kasta ng kastang parang mga konejo.

You want to disallow him from getting what he can from whoever is willing to give it? Ok lang siguro. Kung ikaw na pumipigil ang siyang bubuhay sa pamilya niya. If not, to hell with you and your idealism. Not every kid getting good money as a recruit is a Jeron Teng or Keifer Ravena or Kib Montalbo who, in all honesty, does not really need that kind of money as a college player, coming from stable, well-to-do if not necessarily super rich families. Papano mga gaya ni Keith?

I myself long for those good old days when an amateur truly played for the love of the sport, for the sheer honor of athletic achievement. Sadly I must accept that those days are not merely gone, but will in all likelihood never come back. Tapunan na ng pera ang laban ngayon. Kung wala kang perang pantatapon, o meron man pero ayaw mong ipantapon sa player, aba'y sori na ka na lang.

Siguro pagalingan na lang 'yan ng mahuhugot na hindi expecting millions. Marami pa naman diyan, as close as Laguna, Cavite, Antipolo, Meycauayan, even Bahay Toro, as long as you look for them and talk to them earnestly and honestly. Kung umayaw e di pasensiya. Pero kung makuha mo naman, there is no other feeling like landing that kid no one's heard of and who suddenly is making expensive "blue chips" eat shit on the court.

bchoter
02-07-2013, 12:44 PM
^ ^ Ngayon pag labas ng recruitment service, pati mga "in the rough" mawawala na rin sa mga penny-pinching schools (*aray). Wala ng mga "under the radar". More like under rated siguro.

Sino ba naman kasing pintyo pilatong nakapag isip ng recruitment service na yan eh. Reduced to rejects nalang talaga hehehehuhuhu

BlueBlooded
02-07-2013, 02:39 PM
Pera-pera na kasi talaga ngayon sa hirap din ng buhay. Kung ako man ang pobre, at may anak ako na magaling maglaro, at kita ko na pinag-aagawan siyang kunin ng mga may pera na tao para maglaro sa school nila, hijo de pota, hindi ko tatanggihan ang mga offer na 'yan. Bagkus magpataasan sila ng ibibigay para maganda naman ang kubra namin ng pamilya ko. Alalaon-baga dagdagan na nila ng non-cash incentives. THIS is the new reality in the recruitment of players. Kaya nga high school pa lang kagulo na. 'Yun ngang isang player diya nag-inarte pa, dagdag-pera lang pala kailangan.

A man's gotta eat. He also has to feed his family. I would not begrudge that of anybody, especially the pobres who have few options. Friggin' Keith Agovida had five or six siblings when he was in his last year with the JRU Light Bombers back in 2007. He has since resurfaced with Arellano, and in fact played against us in that shit tuneup at Moro last week. Guess what? He now has nine siblings. Kung hindi maghahanap ng kabuhayan ang Keith mamamatay sa gutom buong pamilya nila, pati na 'yun estupidong mga magulang niya na kasta ng kastang parang mga konejo.

You want to disallow him from getting what he can from whoever is willing to give it? Ok lang siguro. Kung ikaw na pumipigil ang siyang bubuhay sa pamilya niya. If not, to hell with you and your idealism. Not every kid getting good money as a recruit is a Jeron Teng or Keifer Ravena or Kib Montalbo who, in all honesty, does not really need that kind of money as a college player, coming from stable, well-to-do if not necessarily super rich families. Papano mga gaya ni Keith?

I myself long for those good old days when an amateur truly played for the love of the sport, for the sheer honor of athletic achievement. Sadly I must accept that those days are not merely gone, but will in all likelihood never come back. Tapunan na ng pera ang laban ngayon. Kung wala kang perang pantatapon, o meron man pero ayaw mong ipantapon sa player, aba'y sori na ka na lang.

Siguro pagalingan na lang 'yan ng mahuhugot na hindi expecting millions. Marami pa naman diyan, as close as Laguna, Cavite, Antipolo, Meycauayan, even Bahay Toro, as long as you look for them and talk to them earnestly and honestly. Kung umayaw e di pasensiya. Pero kung makuha mo naman, there is no other feeling like landing that kid no one's heard of and who suddenly is making expensive "blue chips" eat shit on the court.

Most of the time, its really all about the money. That is a very sad reality these days.

I would still think that there are blue chip recruits not after the money but more of the education and the chance they get to crack the UAAP team in a said school.

Got to talk to one of kib's representatives and they mentioned that the reason the kid chose to move towards DLSU is because of Norman Black not being the head coach. Well as you can see with coach Bo right now, everything seems to be very slow. Another person i got to talk to during one of the tionglian games was the brother of Kyles Lao, so far Kyles has passed all the regular DLSU, ADMU and UP entrance exams (not the ones for athletes) and would really just like to get a good education and ofcourse play basketball in a good program where he can show his skills.

A-boy97
02-07-2013, 06:04 PM
As it is, there is nothing technically wrong with using money to get recruits. However, just because nothing is being violated it doesn't mean that it is right. We may live in a world not dictated by idealism but it doesn't mean we do not strive to attain a utopian world.

If the UAAP really wants to return to amateurism, then it is up to the UAAP board to make bold moves and provide restrictions and firm regulations in terms of recruiting. Why not impose stiff sanctions and suspensions when recruitment policies are broken? Put a spend limit when giving gifts to prospective players. Yes, ideally a recruit should to a school where he can get the course he wants but it is also a fact that playing basketball is a career(and a lucrative career at that) in itself.

Maybe for a change, the heads of each UAAP school and the UAAP board should be the ones taking the oath of the athlete.

Kung may pobre talagang player at kulang ang scholarship para sa kanya, maraming liga na pwede siyang kumita ng pera. Kaya nga may PBA D-league, ABL(the other ABL), Pampanga league at yung iba pang liga na pera pera ang usapan. Pero pagdating sa college basketball, mapa UAAP, NCAA, CESAFI at iba pa, ang sama ng lasa sa dila pag bayaran ang player.

Jeep
02-07-2013, 06:37 PM
^the UAAP board reminds me of a frog in slow-boil -- everything's all hunky-dory until the water's all dried up. then froggie's fried to a crisp.

we keep talking about striving for an ideal situation here, one in which the kids are free from being exploited -- by the schools, by their agents or guardians, or even by their parents (siempre, hello?!). as with the frog analogy, the change won't come from the board. and i think this is something the good senator koko pimentel should be looking into, instead of so-called rough or violent play. if by chance his younger brother is in town, i should tell him his kuya should look at legislating on that instead. there's a clear case for stricter laws on varsity recruitment. just look at how the US-NCAA does it. pakainin mo lang sa mcdonald's ang bata, yari ka na.

Sam Miguel
02-08-2013, 09:04 AM
I really must ask: if it is Ok for the UAAP schools and the UAAP league as a whole to make money from the highly lucrative men's basketball, and the burgeoning women's volleyball tournaments, is there any logical reason why it would not be Ok to pay men's basketball players and women's volleyball players?

Seriously, if the league is making money off the efforts and talents of these athletes, then does that not make these athletes employees? An employee is anybody paid to make sure his employer's business makes money, right? The UAAP and UAAP schools make money, and they recruit and give an allowance and sometimes other perks to varsity athletes, therefore is the UAAP not technically an employer in this case, and the athletes their employees?

And totoong panget dito ang UAAP at mga pamantasan lang ang kumikita. What about the athletes who actually make this entire enterprise profitable? I'm sure no one will want to watch games if the athletes in those games are bulok. If no one watches, then no one buys tickets, and no one buys popcorn and other munchies, and no one buys t-shirts and other merchandise. No one, in short, makes money.

But obviously the UAAP makes money. Getting ABS CBN Sports as your coverage is mondo expensive. PS Bank, Samsung, Jollibee and others throw millions at the league to hawk their wares. So why are the athletes, whose exploits generate all of this to begin with, not getting a piece of the action?

Ghostrider
02-08-2013, 09:52 AM
I think your analogy maybe a bit off. Think of the UAAP as more of an advertising expense. The end result is a larger entrance exam and enrollment base. In the case of non-profit schools, gains are plowed back to improved facilities, athletics, faculty and wage increases and finally additional scholarships. In case of schools run for profit, it goes to dividends for stockholders.

gfy
02-08-2013, 10:15 AM
I told a UAAP Board member that before this pera-pera recruitment gets out of control, a rule should first be made. Say PhP 20,000 max per month per player, whether local or import. No other benefits whether lump sums, condos, cars or the like. This also kind of levels the recruiting field for everybody. First violation merits a PhP 250,000 fine. Next violation is suspension. I understand that alumni may be a problem for the schools to control but that is their problem. In this age of transparency and investigations, I think the schools will be very careful and obey such rule.

Sam Miguel
02-08-2013, 11:34 AM
I think your analogy maybe a bit off. Think of the UAAP as more of an advertising expense. The end result is a larger entrance exam and enrollment base. In the case of non-profit schools, gains are plowed back to improved facilities, athletics, faculty and wage increases and finally additional scholarships. In case of schools run for profit, it goes to dividends for stockholders.

How can the UAAP be a marketing expense when it is obviously making money?

I've been involved with smaller varsity leagues, both old and new, and it always comes down to whether or not having such a league will bolster the bottomlines of the member-schools. If they lose money on the damn league they give up on it altogether. If you see a varsity league still subsisting, believe me, it is because kahit papano the league is making money.

Yes, there are expenses attendant to participation, i.e. scholarships, allowances, board and lodging, uniforms and equipment, coaches, etc-etc. But in the end I doubt any UAAP school is actually subsidizing its athletics program, or if there are subsidies, that it amounts to an advertising expense. These schools aren't fools not to look at their bottomlines. If they were actualy losing money on their UAAP participation, surely they would have left long ago.

NU had enrollment go down to something like an average of 4,000 semester on semester throughout most of the 1990's because of their also-ran varsity status, and yet they've not shut down as an institution, and they remain a part of the league. One of the sons of the old owners of NU was a busmate of mine back in the Grade School, and we used to keep in touch even pre-Internet, and he said it was actually their share of UAAP profits, especially when ABS CBN took over, that kept NU afloat. That makes the UAAP actually a revenue center for the member-schools does it not?

How much of that went to any of the NU players like Rey Mendoza, Froilan Baguion, Edwin Asoro et al before SM took over? I don't think there's a fraction small enough to even describe it.

Clearly the league and the schools have been, and continue to make money. Isn't it about time the ones who have made, continue to make, and will assure that the league remains this successful get a fair share of that money?

LION
02-08-2013, 11:55 AM
The league has become commercial, and it’s no surprise that the mentality of the players and their parents has become commercial too. If you want to take away the money factor from the minds of the players, then the league should take the first step by removing the telecast, advertising, merchandising and the showbiz hype and there’s no more reason for these players to treat themselves as merchandise.

But can we envision the UAAP or the NCAA without the live telecast, ads, hypes, etc.? Yun din naman ang gusto ng karamihan at ordinaryong UAAP or NCAA fan. The glamour side of it. We take the whole package. The good and the bad.

paralusi
02-08-2013, 02:01 PM
The O'Bannon Decision
Does Ed O'Bannon's lawsuit mean the NCAA might have to change?
By Charles P. Pierce on February 6, 2013

http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8914700/ed-obannon-vs-ncaa

BigBlue
02-08-2013, 06:26 PM
Since paralusi brought it up, and was touched on in the article, i suggest you watch the ESPN 30for30 doc on the Fab Five (the full version is available for viewing over the youtube). It was a great doc that traced the story from recruitment all the way to the Ed Martin scandal which ripped the Fab Five legacy into pieces. Chris Webber was said to have gotten involved in the Martin scandal (by receiving cash from Martin the "booster") after he realized how expensive Michigan merchandise was selling for, but there he was with barely a penny for gas.

atenean_blooded
02-09-2013, 03:49 AM
Clearly the league and the schools have been, and continue to make money. Isn't it about time the ones who have made, continue to make, and will assure that the league remains this successful get a fair share of that money?

We can also have something to say about Ateneo-DLSU basketball games bankrolling most of the league, right?

I mean, we can hear a lot of whining and bitching about how the UAAP is more than just the games between Ateneo and DLSU, but I don't see anything in the present landscape of Philippine (college) basketball that even comes close.

And if anyone tries to say average Ateneo-DLSU game gate attendance was beaten by a cheerdance competition, I should just point out that we have a basketball league with a series of basketball games, and that the cheerdance competition is a one-time thing.

A-boy97
02-09-2013, 04:06 PM
^I remember seeing a documentary about the NBA. The league was really at a low entering the 80's but with the help of the Boston Celtics and the LA Lakers being in the finals in the entire 80's, the NBA survived and moved to a different level.

In the UAAP, whether losing or winning, Ateneo and lasal have strong student and alumni support. It has been what, 15 or more straight years that either Ateneo or lasal figured in the UAAP basketball finals?!

mortalmar
02-10-2013, 02:22 AM
We can also have something to say about Ateneo-DLSU basketball games bankrolling most of the league, right?

I mean, we can hear a lot of whining and bitching about how the UAAP is more than just the games between Ateneo and DLSU, but I don't see anything in the present landscape of Philippine (college) basketball that even comes close.

And if anyone tries to say average Ateneo-DLSU game gate attendance was beaten by a cheerdance competition, I should just point out that we have a basketball league with a series of basketball games, and that the cheerdance competition is a one-time thing.

Well UST has a sellout crowd... whenever they reach the Final Four. They might have a sellout crowd during the regular season this coming UAAP season, since they have a very strong team again.

5FootCarrot
02-11-2013, 07:28 AM
A problem of poaching
THE GAME OF MY LIFE By Bill Velasco (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 9, 2013 - 12:00am

BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental – Long known for producing outstanding athletes not just in basketball but in athletics, football and other fields, this sports hotbed in the middle of the country has recently found itself an unwilling farm system for big schools in Metro Manila. It’s like the opposite of Robin Hood: the rich get richer by taking athletes from the provinces.

“We have been giving the NCR stiff competition in the Palarong Pambansa,” declares provincial sports head Angel “Nonong” Verdeflor. “In fact, we end up competing against some of our former athletes. Negros Occidental has a long history of excellence in sports.” ...

Panaad Sports Complex has been the southern home pitch of the Philippine Azkals, and University of St. La Salle has been the site of major basketball events from the MBA onward. The province has also hosted national championships and even the convention of the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines, and even the defunct SMC All-Stars.

On the other hand, since the death of the Metropolitan Basketball Association over a decade ago, basketball has been in the doldrums in the city and province. PBA MVP James Yap, and new Smart Gilas addition Jeff Chan sharpened their skills in this city before getting picked up by University of the East and Far Eastern University, respectively, where they gained national attention by being in the UAAP. Nonoy Baclao led West Negros to a runner-up finish in the 2005 adidas Asian Streetball finals at the Araneta Coliseum before being recruited by the Ateneo Blue Eagles.

“The schools have their own tournaments going, but there hasn’t been anything big in basketball here since the MBA,” says Negros Basketball Association founder and Negros Slashers co-owner Dodong Bascon. “We have very talented players, but once they are offered to play in Manila, they choose to leave. Of course, it’s for their future, but it leaves a vacuum in their schools.”

Most of the time, the sports pages headline acquisitions from Cebu. But it’s the same in other parts of the country where various sports flourish. Schools develop athletes for the Palarong Pambansa, then watch helplessly as their prodigies are courted and given eye-opening offers to uproot themselves and play in the UAAP or NCAA. Until the time comes when staying home is more enticing than going to the big city, schools outside Metro Manila will always be at a disadvantage. But Negros Occidental aims to lead the Visayas’ charge against this one-sided trend. ...

Read the rest here - http://www.philstar.com/sports/2013/02/09/906698/problem-poaching

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 10:36 AM
The O'Bannon Decision
Does Ed O'Bannon's lawsuit mean the NCAA might have to change?
By Charles P. Pierce on February 6, 2013

http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8914700/ed-obannon-vs-ncaa

"Last week, U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken denied the NCAA's motion in an antitrust lawsuit brought against the association by former UCLA All-American Ed O'Bannon and a number of former college athletes in 2009. At issue is the NCAA's right to profit forever from the names, images, and likenesses of the people who play the games without compensating the players at all. (The suit was kicked off by O'Bannon's anger that his likeness had been used in an NCAA-licensed video game.) The NCAA sought to deny O'Bannon and his fellow plaintiffs — who include both Oscar Robertson and Bill Russell — standing as a class to challenge the NCAA on antitrust grounds. (A class-certification hearing is scheduled for June.) Wilken ruled for the players and allowed the case to proceed. If the court were to eventually decide in favor of the plaintiffs, it would force the NCAA to fork over billions of dollars in television revenues and licensing fees. It could also force the development of a more equitable system in which the people who do the work get a decent share of the profits. All the profits.

This has always been the weakest part of the NCAA's case. It could argue that players should not be paid, based on the spurious notion that they are getting a college degree out of the deal in exchange for having a 40-hour-a-week job that requires them to travel all over the country. (I didn't have one of those jobs until I was 28. If I'd had one in college, I guarantee you it would've taken me a decade to get my degree.) There was a sort of logic there. At the very least, on the surface — and provided you squinted hard enough — you could perceive something of an even swap in the deal. As the TV revenues soared and marketing opportunities boomed, the deal got all out of whack. It was preposterous to claim, as the NCAA does, that, just because Ed O'Bannon played four years at UCLA, the NCAA somehow can profit off of his likeness for the rest of his life. There simply never has been a compelling moral or ethical argument that the NCAA and the university had an inalienable right to every last nickel they could squeeze out of the work done by their student-athletes. In fact, to be eligible to play, athletes have to sign papers waiving their rights to profit from their own names and their own faces. It has always been the crack in the foundation of the NCAA structure because, of all the self-evident absurdities of how college sports are run, this one was the most obviously comical. Nobody can squint hard enough to make this make sense."

Yeah, what they said.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 10:44 AM
The Shame of College Sports

A litany of scandals in recent years have made the corruption of college sports constant front-page news. We profess outrage each time we learn that yet another student-athlete has been taking money under the table. But the real scandal is the very structure of college sports, wherein student-athletes generate billions of dollars for universities and private companies while earning nothing for themselves. Here, a leading civil-rights historian makes the case for paying college athletes—and reveals how a spate of lawsuits working their way through the courts could destroy the NCAA.

By Taylor Branch

“I’m not hiding,” Sonny Vaccaro told a closed hearing at the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C., in 2001. “We want to put our materials on the bodies of your athletes, and the best way to do that is buy your school. Or buy your coach.”

Vaccaro’s audience, the members of the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics, bristled. These were eminent reformers—among them the president of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, two former heads of the U.S. Olympic Committee, and several university presidents and chancellors. The Knight Foundation, a nonprofit that takes an interest in college athletics as part of its concern with civic life, had tasked them with saving college sports from runaway commercialism as embodied by the likes of Vaccaro, who, since signing his pioneering shoe contract with Michael Jordan in 1984, had built sponsorship empires successively at Nike, Adidas, and Reebok. Not all the members could hide their scorn for the “sneaker pimp” of schoolyard hustle, who boasted of writing checks for millions to everybody in higher education.

“Why,” asked Bryce Jordan, the president emeritus of Penn State, “should a university be an advertising medium for your industry?”

Vaccaro did not blink. “They shouldn’t, sir,” he replied. “You sold your souls, and you’re going to continue selling them. You can be very moral and righteous in asking me that question, sir,” Vaccaro added with irrepressible good cheer, “but there’s not one of you in this room that’s going to turn down any of our money. You’re going to take it. I can only offer it.”

William Friday, a former president of North Carolina’s university system, still winces at the memory. “Boy, the silence that fell in that room,” he recalled recently. “I never will forget it.” Friday, who founded and co-chaired two of the three Knight Foundation sports initiatives over the past 20 years, called Vaccaro “the worst of all” the witnesses ever to come before the panel.

But what Vaccaro said in 2001 was true then, and it’s true now: corporations offer money so they can profit from the glory of college athletes, and the universities grab it. In 2010, despite the faltering economy, a single college athletic league, the football-crazed Southeastern Conference (SEC), became the first to crack the billion-dollar barrier in athletic receipts. The Big Ten pursued closely at $905 million. That money comes from a combination of ticket sales, concession sales, merchandise, licensing fees, and other sources—but the great bulk of it comes from television contracts.

Educators are in thrall to their athletic departments because of these television riches and because they respect the political furies that can burst from a locker room. “There’s fear,” Friday told me when I visited him on the University of North Carolina campus in Chapel Hill last fall. As we spoke, two giant construction cranes towered nearby over the university’s Kenan Stadium, working on the latest $77 million renovation. (The University of Michigan spent almost four times that much to expand its Big House.) Friday insisted that for the networks, paying huge sums to universities was a bargain. “We do every little thing for them,” he said. “We furnish the theater, the actors, the lights, the music, and the audience for a drama measured neatly in time slots. They bring the camera and turn it on.” Friday, a weathered idealist at 91, laments the control universities have ceded in pursuit of this money. If television wants to broadcast football from here on a Thursday night, he said, “we shut down the university at 3 o’clock to accommodate the crowds.” He longed for a campus identity more centered in an academic mission.

The United States is the only country in the world that hosts big-time sports at institutions of higher learning. This should not, in and of itself, be controversial. College athletics are rooted in the classical ideal of Mens sana in corpore sano—a sound mind in a sound body—and who would argue with that? College sports are deeply inscribed in the culture of our nation. Half a million young men and women play competitive intercollegiate sports each year. Millions of spectators flock into football stadiums each Saturday in the fall, and tens of millions more watch on television. The March Madness basketball tournament each spring has become a major national event, with upwards of 80 million watching it on television and talking about the games around the office water cooler. ESPN has spawned ESPNU, a channel dedicated to college sports, and Fox Sports and other cable outlets are developing channels exclusively to cover sports from specific regions or divisions.

With so many people paying for tickets and watching on television, college sports has become Very Big Business. According to various reports, the football teams at Texas, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, and Penn State—to name just a few big-revenue football schools—each earn between $40 million and $80 million in profits a year, even after paying coaches multimillion-dollar salaries. When you combine so much money with such high, almost tribal, stakes—football boosters are famously rabid in their zeal to have their alma mater win—corruption is likely to follow.

Scandal after scandal has rocked college sports. In 2010, the NCAA sanctioned the University of Southern California after determining that star running back Reggie Bush and his family had received “improper benefits” while he played for the Trojans. (Among other charges, Bush and members of his family were alleged to have received free airfare and limousine rides, a car, and a rent-free home in San Diego, from sports agents who wanted Bush as a client.) The Bowl Championship Series stripped USC of its 2004 national title, and Bush returned the Heisman Trophy he had won in 2005. Last fall, as Auburn University football stormed its way to an undefeated season and a national championship, the team’s star quarterback, Cam Newton, was dogged by allegations that his father had used a recruiter to solicit up to $180,000 from Mississippi State in exchange for his son’s matriculation there after junior college in 2010. Jim Tressel, the highly successful head football coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes, resigned last spring after the NCAA alleged he had feigned ignorance of rules violations by players on his team. At least 28 players over the course of the previous nine seasons, according to Sports Illustrated, had traded autographs, jerseys, and other team memorabilia in exchange for tattoos or cash at a tattoo parlor in Columbus, in violation of NCAA rules. Late this summer, Yahoo Sports reported that the NCAA was investigating allegations that a University of Miami booster had given millions of dollars in illicit cash and services to more than 70 Hurricanes football players over eight years.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 10:53 AM
^ Continued

The list of scandals goes on. With each revelation, there is much wringing of hands. Critics scold schools for breaking faith with their educational mission, and for failing to enforce the sanctity of “amateurism.” Sportswriters denounce the NCAA for both tyranny and impotence in its quest to “clean up” college sports. Observers on all sides express jumbled emotions about youth and innocence, venting against professional mores or greedy amateurs.

For all the outrage, the real scandal is not that students are getting illegally paid or recruited, it’s that two of the noble principles on which the NCAA justifies its existence—“amateurism” and the “student-athlete”—are cynical hoaxes, legalistic confections propagated by the universities so they can exploit the skills and fame of young athletes. The tragedy at the heart of college sports is not that some college athletes are getting paid, but that more of them are not.

Don Curtis, a UNC trustee, told me that impoverished football players cannot afford movie tickets or bus fare home. Curtis is a rarity among those in higher education today, in that he dares to violate the signal taboo: “I think we should pay these guys something.”

Fans and educators alike recoil from this proposal as though from original sin. Amateurism is the whole point, they say. Paid athletes would destroy the integrity and appeal of college sports. Many former college athletes object that money would have spoiled the sanctity of the bond they enjoyed with their teammates. I, too, once shuddered instinctively at the notion of paid college athletes.

But after an inquiry that took me into locker rooms and ivory towers across the country, I have come to believe that sentiment blinds us to what’s before our eyes. Big-time college sports are fully commercialized. Billions of dollars flow through them each year. The NCAA makes money, and enables universities and corporations to make money, from the unpaid labor of young athletes.

Slavery analogies should be used carefully. College athletes are not slaves. Yet to survey the scene—corporations and universities enriching themselves on the backs of uncompensated young men, whose status as “student-athletes” deprives them of the right to due process guaranteed by the Constitution—is to catch an unmistakable whiff of the plantation. Perhaps a more apt metaphor is colonialism: college sports, as overseen by the NCAA, is a system imposed by well-meaning paternalists and rationalized with hoary sentiments about caring for the well-being of the colonized. But it is, nonetheless, unjust. The NCAA, in its zealous defense of bogus principles, sometimes destroys the dreams of innocent young athletes.

The NCAA today is in many ways a classic cartel. Efforts to reform it—most notably by the three Knight Commissions over the course of 20 years—have, while making changes around the edges, been largely fruitless. The time has come for a major overhaul. And whether the powers that be like it or not, big changes are coming. Threats loom on multiple fronts: in Congress, the courts, breakaway athletic conferences, student rebellion, and public disgust. Swaddled in gauzy clichés, the NCAA presides over a vast, teetering glory.

Founding Myths

From the start, amateurism in college sports has been honored more often in principle than in fact; the NCAA was built of a mixture of noble and venal impulses. In the late 19th century, intellectuals believed that the sporting arena simulated an impending age of Darwinian struggle. Because the United States did not hold a global empire like England’s, leaders warned of national softness once railroads conquered the last continental frontier. As though heeding this warning, ingenious students turned variations on rugby into a toughening agent. Today a plaque in New Brunswick, New Jersey, commemorates the first college game, on November 6, 1869, when Rutgers beat Princeton 6–4.

Walter Camp graduated from Yale in 1880 so intoxicated by the sport that he devoted his life to it without pay, becoming “the father of American football.” He persuaded other schools to reduce the chaos on the field by trimming each side from 15 players to 11, and it was his idea to paint measuring lines on the field. He conceived functional designations for players, coining terms such as quarterback. His game remained violent by design. Crawlers could push the ball forward beneath piles of flying elbows without pause until they cried “Down!” in submission.

In an 1892 game against its archrival, Yale, the Harvard football team was the first to deploy a “flying wedge,” based on Napoleon’s surprise concentrations of military force. In an editorial calling for the abolition of the play, The New York Times described it as “half a ton of bone and muscle coming into collision with a man weighing 160 or 170 pounds,” noting that surgeons often had to be called onto the field. Three years later, the continuing mayhem prompted the Harvard faculty to take the first of two votes to abolish football. Charles Eliot, the university’s president, brought up other concerns. “Deaths and injuries are not the strongest argument against football,” declared Eliot. “That cheating and brutality are profitable is the main evil.” Still, Harvard football persisted. In 1903, fervent alumni built Harvard Stadium with zero college funds. The team’s first paid head coach, Bill Reid, started in 1905 at nearly twice the average salary for a full professor.

A newspaper story from that year, illustrated with the Grim Reaper laughing on a goalpost, counted 25 college players killed during football season. A fairy-tale version of the founding of the NCAA holds that President Theodore Roosevelt, upset by a photograph of a bloodied Swarthmore College player, vowed to civilize or destroy football. The real story is that Roosevelt maneuvered shrewdly to preserve the sport—and give a boost to his beloved Harvard. After McClure’s magazine published a story on corrupt teams with phantom students, a muckraker exposed Walter Camp’s $100,000 slush fund at Yale. In response to mounting outrage, Roosevelt summoned leaders from Harvard, Princeton, and Yale to the White House, where Camp parried mounting criticism and conceded nothing irresponsible in the college football rules he’d established. At Roosevelt’s behest, the three schools issued a public statement that college sports must reform to survive, and representatives from 68 colleges founded a new organization that would soon be called the National Collegiate Athletic Association. A Haverford College official was confirmed as secretary but then promptly resigned in favor of Bill Reid, the new Harvard coach, who instituted new rules that benefited Harvard’s playing style at the expense of Yale’s. At a stroke, Roosevelt saved football and dethroned Yale.

For nearly 50 years, the NCAA, with no real authority and no staff to speak of, enshrined amateur ideals that it was helpless to enforce. (Not until 1939 did it gain the power even to mandate helmets.) In 1929, the Carnegie Foundation made headlines with a report, “American College Athletics,” which concluded that the scramble for players had “reached the proportions of nationwide commerce.” Of the 112 schools surveyed, 81 flouted NCAA recommendations with inducements to students ranging from open payrolls and disguised booster funds to no-show jobs at movie studios. Fans ignored the uproar, and two-thirds of the colleges mentioned told The New York Times that they planned no changes. In 1939, freshman players at the University of Pittsburgh went on strike because they were getting paid less than their upperclassman teammates.

Embarrassed, the NCAA in 1948 enacted a “Sanity Code,” which was supposed to prohibit all concealed and indirect benefits for college athletes; any money for athletes was to be limited to transparent scholarships awarded solely on financial need. Schools that violated this code would be expelled from NCAA membership and thus exiled from competitive sports.

This bold effort flopped. Colleges balked at imposing such a drastic penalty on each other, and the Sanity Code was repealed within a few years. The University of Virginia went so far as to call a press conference to say that if its athletes were ever accused of being paid, they should be forgiven, because their studies at Thomas Jefferson’s university were so rigorous.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:04 AM
^ Continued

The Big Bluff

In 1951, the NCAA seized upon a serendipitous set of events to gain control of intercollegiate sports. First, the organization hired a young college dropout named Walter Byers as executive director. A journalist who was not yet 30 years old, he was an appropriately inauspicious choice for the vaguely defined new post. He wore cowboy boots and a toupee. He shunned personal contact, obsessed over details, and proved himself a bureaucratic master of pervasive, anonymous intimidation. Although discharged from the Army during World War II for defective vision, Byers was able to see an opportunity in two contemporaneous scandals. In one, the tiny College of William and Mary, aspiring to challenge football powers Oklahoma and Ohio State, was found to be counterfeiting grades to keep conspicuously pampered players eligible. In the other, a basketball point-shaving conspiracy (in which gamblers paid players to perform poorly) had spread from five New York colleges to the University of Kentucky, the reigning national champion, generating tabloid “perp” photos of gangsters and handcuffed basketball players. The scandals posed a crisis of credibility for collegiate athletics, and nothing in the NCAA’s feeble record would have led anyone to expect real reform.

But Byers managed to impanel a small infractions board to set penalties without waiting for a full convention of NCAA schools, which would have been inclined toward forgiveness. Then he lobbied a University of Kentucky dean—A. D. Kirwan, a former football coach and future university president—not to contest the NCAA’s dubious legal position (the association had no actual authority to penalize the university), pleading that college sports must do something to restore public support. His gambit succeeded when Kirwan reluctantly accepted a landmark precedent: the Kentucky basketball team would be suspended for the entire 1952–53 season. Its legendary coach, Adolph Rupp, fumed for a year in limbo.

The Kentucky case created an aura of centralized command for an NCAA office that barely existed. At the same time, a colossal misperception gave Byers leverage to mine gold. Amazingly in retrospect, most colleges and marketing experts considered the advent of television a dire threat to sports. Studies found that broadcasts reduced live attendance, and therefore gate receipts, because some customers preferred to watch at home for free. Nobody could yet imagine the revenue bonanza that television represented. With clunky new TV sets proliferating, the 1951 NCAA convention voted 161–7 to outlaw televised games except for a specific few licensed by the NCAA staff.

All but two schools quickly complied. The University of Pennsylvania and Notre Dame protested the order to break contracts for home-game television broadcasts, claiming the right to make their own decisions. Byers objected that such exceptions would invite disaster. The conflict escalated. Byers brandished penalties for games televised without approval. Penn contemplated seeking antitrust protection through the courts. Byers issued a contamination notice, informing any opponent scheduled to play Penn that it would be punished for showing up to compete. In effect, Byers mobilized the college world to isolate the two holdouts in what one sportswriter later called “the Big Bluff.”

Byers won. Penn folded in part because its president, the perennial White House contender Harold Stassen, wanted to mend relations with fellow schools in the emerging Ivy League, which would be formalized in 1954. When Notre Dame also surrendered, Byers conducted exclusive negotiations with the new television networks on behalf of every college team. Joe Rauh Jr., a prominent civil-rights attorney, helped him devise a rationing system to permit only 11 broadcasts a year—the fabled Game of the Week. Byers and Rauh selected a few teams for television exposure, excluding the rest. On June 6, 1952, NBC signed a one-year deal to pay the NCAA $1.14 million for a carefully restricted football package. Byers routed all contractual proceeds through his office. He floated the idea that, to fund an NCAA infrastructure, his organization should take a 60 percent cut; he accepted 12 percent that season. (For later contracts, as the size of television revenues grew exponentially, he backed down to 5 percent.) Proceeds from the first NBC contract were enough to rent an NCAA headquarters, in Kansas City.

Only one year into his job, Byers had secured enough power and money to regulate all of college sports. Over the next decade, the NCAA’s power grew along with television revenues. Through the efforts of Byers’s deputy and chief lobbyist, Chuck Neinas, the NCAA won an important concession in the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961, in which Congress made its granting of a precious antitrust exemption to the National Football League contingent upon the blackout of professional football on Saturdays. Deftly, without even mentioning the NCAA, a rider on the bill carved each weekend into protected broadcast markets: Saturday for college, Sunday for the NFL. The NFL got its antitrust exemption. Byers, having negotiated the NCAA’s television package up to $3.1 million per football season—which was higher than the NFL’s figure in those early years—had made the NCAA into a spectacularly profitable cartel.

“We Eat What We Kill”

The NCAA’s control of college sports still rested on a fragile base, however: the consent of the colleges and universities it governed. For a time, the vast sums of television money delivered to these institutions through Byers’s deals made them willing to submit. But the big football powers grumbled about the portion of the television revenue diverted to nearly a thousand NCAA member schools that lacked major athletic programs. They chafed against cost-cutting measures—such as restrictions on team size—designed to help smaller schools. “I don’t want Hofstra telling Texas how to play football,” Darrell Royal, the Longhorns coach, griped. By the 1970s and ’80s, as college football games delivered bonanza ratings—and advertising revenue—to the networks, some of the big football schools began to wonder: Why do we need to have our television coverage brokered through the NCAA? Couldn’t we get a bigger cut of that TV money by dealing directly with the networks?

Byers faced a rude internal revolt. The NCAA’s strongest legions, its big football schools, defected en masse. Calling the NCAA a price-fixing cartel that siphoned every television dollar through its coffers, in 1981 a rogue consortium of 61 major football schools threatened to sign an independent contract with NBC for $180 million over four years.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:05 AM
^ Continued

With a huge chunk of the NCAA’s treasury walking out the door, Byers threatened sanctions, as he had against Penn and Notre Dame three decades earlier. But this time the universities of Georgia and Oklahoma responded with an antitrust suit. “It is virtually impossible to overstate the degree of our resentment … of the NCAA,” said William Banowsky, the president of the University of Oklahoma. In the landmark 1984 NCAA v. Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma decision, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the NCAA’s latest football contracts with television—and any future ones—as an illegal restraint of trade that harmed colleges and viewers. Overnight, the NCAA’s control of the television market for football vanished. Upholding Banowsky’s challenge to the NCAA’s authority, the Regents decision freed the football schools to sell any and all games the markets would bear. Coaches and administrators no longer had to share the revenue generated by their athletes with smaller schools outside the football consortium. “We eat what we kill,” one official at the University of Texas bragged.

A few years earlier, this blow might have financially crippled the NCAA—but a rising tide of money from basketball concealed the structural damage of the Regents decision. During the 1980s, income from the March Madness college basketball tournament, paid directly by the television networks to the NCAA, grew tenfold. The windfall covered—and then far exceeded—what the organization had lost from football.

Still, Byers never forgave his former deputy Chuck Neinas for leading the rebel consortium. He knew that Neinas had seen from the inside how tenuous the NCAA’s control really was, and how diligently Byers had worked to prop up its Oz-like façade. During Byers’s tenure, the rule book for Division I athletes grew to 427 pages of scholastic detail. His NCAA personnel manual banned conversations around water coolers, and coffee cups on desks, while specifying exactly when drapes must be drawn at the NCAA’s 27,000-square-foot headquarters near Kansas City (built in 1973 from the proceeds of a 1 percent surtax on football contracts). It was as though, having lost control where it mattered, Byers pedantically exerted more control where it didn’t.

After retiring in 1987, Byers let slip his suppressed fury that the ingrate football conferences, having robbed the NCAA of television revenue, still expected it to enforce amateurism rules and police every leak of funds to college players. A lethal greed was “gnawing at the innards of college athletics,” he wrote in his memoir. When Byers renounced the NCAA’s pretense of amateurism, his former colleagues would stare blankly, as though he had gone senile or, as he wrote, “desecrated my sacred vows.” But Byers was better positioned than anyone else to argue that college football’s claim to amateurism was unfounded. Years later, as we will see, lawyers would seize upon his words to do battle with the NCAA.

Meanwhile, reformers fretted that commercialism was hurting college sports, and that higher education’s historical balance between academics and athletics had been distorted by all the money sloshing around. News stories revealed that schools went to extraordinary measures to keep academically incompetent athletes eligible for competition, and would vie for the most-sought-after high-school players by proffering under-the-table payments. In 1991, the first Knight Commission report, “Keeping Faith With the Student Athlete,” was published; the commission’s “bedrock conviction” was that university presidents must seize control of the NCAA from athletic directors in order to restore the preeminence of academic values over athletic or commercial ones. In response, college presidents did take over the NCAA’s governance. But by 2001, when the second Knight Commission report (“A Call to Action: Reconnecting College Sports and Higher Education”) was issued, a new generation of reformers was admitting that problems of corruption and commercialism had “grown rather than diminished” since the first report. Meanwhile the NCAA itself, revenues rising, had moved into a $50 million, 116,000-square-foot headquarters in Indianapolis. By 2010, as the size of NCAA headquarters increased yet again with a 130,000-square-foot expansion, a third Knight Commission was groping blindly for a hold on independent college-athletic conferences that were behaving more like sovereign pro leagues than confederations of universities. And still more money continued to flow into NCAA coffers. With the basketball tournament’s 2011 television deal, annual March Madness broadcast revenues had skyrocketed 50-fold in less than 30 years.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:07 AM
^ Continued

“Picayune Rules”

NCAA officials have tried to assert their dominion—and distract attention from the larger issues—by chasing frantically after petty violations. Tom McMillen, a former member of the Knight Commission who was an All-American basketball player at the University of Maryland, likens these officials to traffic cops in a speed trap, who could flag down almost any passing motorist for prosecution in kangaroo court under a “maze of picayune rules.” The publicized cases have become convoluted soap operas. At the start of the 2010 football season, A. J. Green, a wide receiver at Georgia, confessed that he’d sold his own jersey from the Independence Bowl the year before, to raise cash for a spring-break vacation. The NCAA sentenced Green to a four-game suspension for violating his amateur status with the illicit profit generated by selling the shirt off his own back. While he served the suspension, the Georgia Bulldogs store continued legally selling replicas of Green’s No. 8 jersey for $39.95 and up.

A few months later, the NCAA investigated rumors that Ohio State football players had benefited from “hook-ups on tatts”—that is, that they’d gotten free or underpriced tattoos at an Ohio tattoo parlor in exchange for autographs and memorabilia—a violation of the NCAA’s rule against discounts linked to athletic personae. The NCAA Committee on Infractions imposed five-game suspensions on Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State’s tattooed quarterback, and four other players (some of whom had been found to have sold their Big Ten championship rings and other gear), but did permit them to finish the season and play in the Sugar Bowl. (This summer, in an attempt to satisfy NCAA investigators, Ohio State voluntarily vacated its football wins from last season, as well as its Sugar Bowl victory.) A different NCAA committee promulgated a rule banning symbols and messages in players’ eyeblack—reportedly aimed at Pryor’s controversial gesture of support for the pro quarterback Michael Vick, and at Bible verses inscribed in the eyeblack of the former Florida quarterback Tim Tebow.

The moral logic is hard to fathom: the NCAA bans personal messages on the bodies of the players, and penalizes players for trading their celebrity status for discounted tattoos—but it codifies precisely how and where commercial insignia from multinational corporations can be displayed on college players, for the financial benefit of the colleges. Last season, while the NCAA investigated him and his father for the recruiting fees they’d allegedly sought, Cam Newton compliantly wore at least 15 corporate logos—one on his jersey, four on his helmet visor, one on each wristband, one on his pants, six on his shoes, and one on the headband he wears under his helmet—as part of Auburn’s $10.6 million deal with Under Armour.

“Restitution”

Obscure NCAA rules have bedeviled Scott Boras, the preeminent sports agent for Major League Baseball stars, in cases that may ultimately prove more threatening to the NCAA than Ed O’Bannon’s antitrust suit. In 2008, Andrew Oliver, a sophomore pitcher for the Oklahoma State Cowboys, had been listed as the 12th-best professional prospect among sophomore players nationally. He decided to dismiss the two attorneys who had represented him out of high school, Robert and Tim Baratta, and retain Boras instead. Infuriated, the Barattas sent a spiteful letter to the NCAA. Oliver didn’t learn about this until the night before he was scheduled to pitch in the regional final for a place in the College World Series, when an NCAA investigator showed up to question him in the presence of lawyers for Oklahoma State. The investigator also questioned his father, Dave, a truck driver.

Had Tim Baratta been present in their home when the Minnesota Twins offered $390,000 for Oliver to sign out of high school? A yes would mean trouble. While the NCAA did not forbid all professional advice—indeed, Baseball America used to publish the names of agents representing draft-likely underclassmen—NCAA Bylaw 12.3.2.1 prohibited actual negotiation with any professional team by an adviser, on pain of disqualification for the college athlete. The questioning lasted past midnight.

Just hours before the game was to start the next day, Oklahoma State officials summoned Oliver to tell him he would not be pitching. Only later did he learn that the university feared that by letting him play while the NCAA adjudicated his case, the university would open not only the baseball team but all other Oklahoma State teams to broad punishment under the NCAA’s “restitution rule” (Bylaw 19.7), under which the NCAA threatens schools with sanctions if they obey any temporary court order benefiting a college athlete, should that order eventually be modified or removed. The baseball coach did not even let his ace tell his teammates the sad news in person. “He said, ‘It’s probably not a good idea for you to be at the game,’” Oliver recalls.

The Olivers went home to Ohio to find a lawyer. Rick Johnson, a solo practitioner specializing in legal ethics, was aghast that the Baratta brothers had turned in their own client to the NCAA, divulging attorney-client details likely to invite wrath upon Oliver. But for the next 15 months, Johnson directed his litigation against the two NCAA bylaws at issue. Judge Tygh M. Tone, of Erie County, came to share his outrage. On February 12, 2009, Tone struck down the ban on lawyers negotiating for student-athletes as a capricious, exploitative attempt by a private association to “dictate to an attorney where, what, how, or when he should represent his client,” violating accepted legal practice in every state. He also struck down the NCAA’s restitution rule as an intimidation that attempted to supersede the judicial system. Finally, Judge Tone ordered the NCAA to reinstate Oliver’s eligibility at Oklahoma State for his junior season, which started several days later.

The NCAA sought to disqualify Oliver again, with several appellate motions to stay “an unprecedented Order purporting to void a fundamental Bylaw.” Oliver did get to pitch that season, but he dropped into the second round of the June 2009 draft, signing for considerably less than if he’d been picked earlier. Now 23, Oliver says sadly that the whole experience “made me grow up a little quicker.” His lawyer claimed victory. “Andy Oliver is the first college athlete ever to win against the NCAA in court,” said Rick Johnson.

Yet the victory was only temporary. Wounded, the NCAA fought back with a vengeance. Its battery of lawyers prepared for a damages trial, ultimately overwhelming Oliver’s side eight months later with an offer to resolve the dispute for $750,000. When Oliver and Johnson accepted, to extricate themselves ahead of burgeoning legal costs, Judge Tone was compelled to vacate his orders as part of the final settlement. This freed NCAA officials to reassert the two bylaws that Judge Tone had so forcefully overturned, and they moved swiftly to ramp up rather than curtail enforcement. First, the NCAA’s Eligibility Center devised a survey for every drafted undergraduate athlete who sought to stay in college another year. The survey asked whether an agent had conducted negotiations. It also requested a signed release waiving privacy rights and authorizing professional teams to disclose details of any interaction to the NCAA Eligibility Center. Second, NCAA enforcement officials went after another Scott Boras client.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:08 AM
^ Continued

The Toronto Blue Jays had made the left-handed pitcher James Paxton, of the University of Kentucky, the 37th pick in the 2009 draft. Paxton decided to reject a reported $1 million offer and return to school for his senior year, pursuing a dream to pitch for his team in the College World Series. But then he ran into the new NCAA survey. Had Boras negotiated with the Blue Jays? Boras has denied that he did, but it would have made sense that he had—that was his job, to test the market for his client. But saying so would get Paxton banished under the same NCAA bylaw that had derailed Andrew Oliver’s career. Since Paxton was planning to go back to school and not accept their draft offer, the Blue Jays no longer had any incentive to protect him—indeed, they had every incentive to turn him in. The Blue Jays’ president, by telling reporters that Boras had negotiated on Paxton’s behalf, demonstrated to future recruits and other teams that they could use the NCAA’s rules to punish college players who wasted their draft picks by returning to college. The NCAA’s enforcement staff raised the pressure by requesting to interview Paxton.

Though Paxton had no legal obligation to talk to an investigator, NCAA Bylaw 10.1(j) specified that anything short of complete cooperation could be interpreted as unethical conduct, affecting his amateur status. Under its restitution rule, the NCAA had leverage to compel the University of Kentucky to ensure obedience.

As the 2010 season approached, Gary Henderson, the Kentucky coach, sorely wanted Paxton, one of Baseball America’s top-ranked players, to return. Rick Johnson, Andrew Oliver’s lawyer, filed for a declaratory judgment on Paxton’s behalf, arguing that the state constitution—plus the university’s code of student conduct—barred arbitrary discipline at the request of a third party. Kentucky courts deferred to the university, however, and Paxton was suspended from the team. “Due to the possibility of future penalties, including forfeiture of games,” the university stated, it “could not put the other 32 players of the team and the entire UK 22-sport intercollegiate athletics department at risk by having James compete.” The NCAA appraised the result with satisfaction. “When negotiations occur on behalf of student-athletes,” Erik Christianson, the NCAA spokesperson, told The New York Times in reference to the Oliver case, “those negotiations indicate that the student-athlete intends to become a professional athlete and no longer remain an amateur.”

Paxton was stranded. Not only could he not play for Kentucky, but his draft rights with the Blue Jays had lapsed for the year, meaning he could not play for any minor-league affiliate of Major League Baseball. Boras wrangled a holdover job for him in Texas with the independent Grand Prairie AirHogs, pitching against the Pensacola Pelicans and Wichita Wingnuts. Once projected to be a first-round draft pick, Paxton saw his stock plummet into the fourth round. He remained unsigned until late in spring training, when he signed with the Seattle Mariners and reported to their minor-league camp in Peoria, Arizona.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:09 AM
^ Continued

“You Might As Well Shoot Them in the Head”

“When you dream about playing in college,” Joseph Agnew told me not long ago, “you don’t ever think about being in a lawsuit.” Agnew, a student at Rice University in Houston, had been cut from the football team and had his scholarship revoked by Rice before his senior year, meaning that he faced at least $35,000 in tuition and other bills if he wanted to complete his degree in sociology. Bereft of his scholarship, he was flailing about for help when he discovered the National College Players Association, which claims 7,000 active members and seeks modest reforms such as safety guidelines and better death benefits for college athletes. Agnew was struck by the NCPA scholarship data on players from top Division I basketball teams, which showed that 22 percent were not renewed from 2008 to 2009—the same fate he had suffered.

In October 2010, Agnew filed a class-action antitrust suit over the cancellation of his scholarship and to remove the cap on the total number of scholarships that can be awarded by NCAA schools. In his suit, Agnew did not claim the right to free tuition. He merely asked the federal court to strike down an NCAA rule, dating to 1973, that prohibited colleges and universities from offering any athletic scholarship longer than a one-year commitment, to be renewed or not, unilaterally, by the school—which in practice means that coaches get to decide each year whose scholarships to renew or cancel. (After the coach who had recruited Agnew had moved on to Tulsa, the new Rice coach switched Agnew’s scholarship to a recruit of his own.) Agnew argued that without the one-year rule, he would have been free to bargain with all eight colleges that had recruited him, and each college could have decided how long to guarantee his scholarship.

Agnew’s suit rested on a claim of an NCAA antitrust violation combined with a laudable academic goal—making it possible for students to finish their educations. Around the same time, lawyers from President Obama’s Justice Department initiated a series of meetings with NCAA officials and universities in which they asked what possible educational rationale there was for allowing the NCAA—an organization that did not itself pay for scholarships—to impose a blanket restriction on the length of scholarships offered by colleges. Tidbits leaked into the press. In response, the NCAA contended that an athletic scholarship was a “merit award” that should be reviewed annually, presumably because the degree of “merit” could change. Justice Department lawyers reportedly suggested that a free market in scholarships would expand learning opportunities in accord with the stated rationale for the NCAA’s tax-exempt status—that it promotes education through athletics. The one-year rule effectively allows colleges to cut underperforming “student-athletes,” just as pro sports teams cut their players. “Plenty of them don’t stay in school,” said one of Agnew’s lawyers, Stuart Paynter. “They’re just gone. You might as well shoot them in the head.”

Agnew’s lawsuit has made him a pariah to former friends in the athletic department at Rice, where everyone identified so thoroughly with the NCAA that they seemed to feel he was attacking them personally. But if the premise of Agnew’s case is upheld by the courts, it will make a sham of the NCAA’s claim that its highest priority is protecting education.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:11 AM
^ Continued

“They Want to Crush These Kids”

Academic performance has always been difficult for the NCAA to address. Any detailed regulation would intrude upon the free choice of widely varying schools, and any academic standard broad enough to fit both MIT and Ole Miss would have little force. From time to time, a scandal will expose extreme lapses. In 1989, Dexter Manley, by then the famous “Secretary of Defense” for the NFL’s Washington Redskins, teared up before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Education, Arts, and Humanities, when admitting that he had been functionally illiterate in college.

Within big-time college athletic departments, the financial pressure to disregard obvious academic shortcomings and shortcuts is just too strong. In the 1980s, Jan Kemp, an English instructor at the University of Georgia, publicly alleged that university officials had demoted and then fired her because she refused to inflate grades in her remedial English courses. Documents showed that administrators replaced the grades she’d given athletes with higher ones, providing fake passing grades on one notable occasion to nine Bulldog football players who otherwise would have been ineligible to compete in the 1982 Sugar Bowl. (Georgia lost anyway, 24–20, to a University of Pittsburgh team led by the future Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino.) When Kemp filed a lawsuit against the university, she was publicly vilified as a troublemaker, but she persisted bravely in her testimony. Once, Kemp said, a supervisor demanding that she fix a grade had bellowed, “Who do you think is more important to this university, you or Dominique Wilkins?” (Wilkins was a star on the basketball team.) Traumatized, Kemp twice attempted suicide.

In trying to defend themselves, Georgia officials portrayed Kemp as naive about sports. “We have to compete on a level playing field,” said Fred Davison, the university president. During the Kemp civil trial, in 1986, Hale Almand, Georgia’s defense lawyer, explained the university’s patronizing aspirations for its typical less-than-scholarly athlete. “We may not make a university student out of him,” Almand told the court, “but if we can teach him to read and write, maybe he can work at the post office rather than as a garbage man when he gets through with his athletic career.” This argument backfired with the jurors: finding in favor of Kemp, they rejected her polite request for $100,000, and awarded her $2.6 million in damages instead. (This was later reduced to $1.08 million.) Jan Kemp embodied what is ostensibly the NCAA’s reason for being—to enforce standards fairly and put studies above sports—but no one from the organization ever spoke up on her behalf.

The NCAA body charged with identifying violations of any of the Division I league rules, the Committee on Infractions, operates in the shadows. Josephine Potuto, a professor of law at the University of Nebraska and a longtime committee member who was then serving as its vice chair, told Congress in 2004 that one reason her group worked in secret was that it hoped to avoid a “media circus.” The committee preferred to deliberate in private, she said, guiding member schools to punish themselves. “The enforcement process is cooperative, not adversarial,” Potuto testified. The committee consisted of an elite coterie of judges, athletic directors, and authors of legal treatises. “The committee also is savvy about intercollegiate athletics,” she added. “They cannot be conned.”

In 2009, a series of unlikely circumstances peeled back the veil of secrecy to reveal NCAA procedures so contorted that even victims marveled at their comical wonder. The saga began in March of 2007, shortly after the Florida State Seminoles basketball team was knocked out of the NIT basketball tournament, which each spring invites the best teams not selected for the March Madness tournament. At an athletic-department study hall, Al Thornton, a star forward for the team, completed a sports-psychology quiz but then abandoned it without posting his written answers electronically by computer. Brenda Monk, an academic tutor for the Seminoles, says she noticed the error and asked a teammate to finish entering Thornton’s answers onscreen and hit “submit,” as required for credit. The teammate complied, steaming silently, and then complained at the athletic office about getting stuck with clean-up chores for the superstar Thornton (who was soon to be selected by the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the NBA draft). Monk promptly resigned when questioned by FSU officials, saying her fatigue at the time could not excuse her asking the teammate to submit the answers to another student’s completed test.

Monk’s act of guileless responsibility set off a chain reaction. First, FSU had to give the NCAA preliminary notice of a confessed academic fraud. Second, because this would be its seventh major infraction case since 1968, FSU mounted a vigorous self-investigation to demonstrate compliance with NCAA academic rules. Third, interviews with 129 Seminoles athletes unleashed a nightmare of matter-of-fact replies about absentee professors who allowed group consultations and unlimited retakes of open-computer assignments and tests. Fourth, FSU suspended 61 of its athletes in 10 sports. Fifth, the infractions committee applied the byzantine NCAA bylaws to FSU’s violations. Sixth, one of the penalties announced in March of 2009 caused a howl of protest across the sports universe.

Twenty-seven news organizations filed a lawsuit in hopes of finding out how and why the NCAA proposed to invalidate 14 prior victories in FSU football. Such a penalty, if upheld, would doom coach Bobby Bowden’s chance of overtaking Joe Paterno of Penn State for the most football wins in Division I history. This was sacrosanct territory. Sports reporters followed the litigation for six months, reporting that 25 of the 61 suspended FSU athletes were football players, some of whom were ruled ineligible retroactively from the time they had heard or yelled out answers to online test questions in, of all things, a music-appreciation course.

When reporters sought access to the transcript of the infractions committee’s hearing in Indianapolis, NCAA lawyers said the 695-page document was private. (The NCAA claimed it was entitled to keep all such records secret because of a landmark Supreme Court ruling that it had won in 1988, in NCAA v. Tarkanian, which exempted the organization from any due-process obligations because it was not a government organization.) Media outlets pressed the judge to let Florida State share its own copy of the hearing transcript, whereupon NCAA lawyers objected that the school had never actually “possessed” the document; it had only seen the transcript via a defendant’s guest access to the carefully restricted NCAA Web site. This claim, in turn, prompted intercession on the side of the media by Florida’s attorney general, arguing that letting the NCAA use a technical loophole like this would undermine the state’s sunshine law mandating open public records. After tumultuous appeals, the Florida courts agreed and ordered the NCAA transcript released in October of 2009.

News interest quickly evaporated when the sports media found nothing in the record about Coach Bowden or the canceled football victories. But the transcript revealed plenty about the NCAA. On page 37, T. K. Wetherell, the bewildered Florida State president, lamented that his university had hurt itself by cooperating with the investigation. “We self-reported this case,” he said during the hearing, and he later complained that the most ingenuous athletes—those who asked “What’s the big deal, this happens all the time?”—received the harshest suspensions, while those who clammed up on the advice of lawyers went free. The music-appreciation professor was apparently never questioned. Brenda Monk, the only instructor who consistently cooperated with the investigation, appeared voluntarily to explain her work with learning-disabled athletes, only to be grilled about her credentials by Potuto in a pettifogging inquisition of remarkable stamina.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:27 AM
^ Continued

In January of last year, the NCAA’s Infractions Appeals Committee sustained all the sanctions imposed on FSU except the number of vacated football victories, which it dropped, ex cathedra, from 14 to 12. The final penalty locked Bobby Bowden’s official win total on retirement at 377 instead of 389, behind Joe Paterno’s 401 (and counting). This carried stinging symbolism for fans, without bringing down on the NCAA the harsh repercussions it would have risked if it had issued a television ban or substantial fine.

Cruelly, but typically, the NCAA concentrated public censure on powerless scapegoats. A dreaded “show cause” order rendered Brenda Monk, the tutor, effectively unhirable at any college in the United States. Cloaking an old-fashioned blackball in the stately language of law, the order gave notice that any school hiring Monk before a specified date in 2013 “shall, pursuant to the provisions of Bylaw 19.5.2.2(l), show cause why it should not be penalized if it does not restrict the former learning specialist [Monk] from having any contact with student-athletes.” Today she works as an education supervisor at a prison in Florida.

The Florida State verdict hardly surprised Rick Johnson, the lawyer who had represented the college pitchers Andrew Oliver and James Paxton. “All the NCAA’s enforcements are random and selective,” he told me, calling the organization’s appeals process a travesty. (Johnson says the NCAA has never admitted to having wrongly suspended an athlete.) Johnson’s scalding experience prompted him to undertake a law-review article on the subject, which in turn sent him trawling through NCAA archives. From the summary tax forms required of nonprofits, he found out that the NCAA had spent nearly $1 million chartering private jets in 2006. “What kind of nonprofit organization leases private jets?,” Johnson asks. It’s hard to determine from tax returns what money goes where, but it looks as if the NCAA spent less than 1 percent of its budget on enforcement that year. Even after its plump cut for its own overhead, the NCAA dispersed huge sums to its 1,200 member schools, in the manner of a professional sports league. These annual payments are universal—every college gets something—but widely uneven. They keep the disparate shareholders (barely) united and speaking for all of college sports. The payments coerce unity within the structure of a private association that is unincorporated and unregulated, exercising amorphous powers not delegated by any government.

Searching through the archives, Johnson came across a 1973 memo from the NCAA general counsel recommending the adoption of a due-process procedure for athletes in disciplinary cases. Without it, warned the organization’s lawyer, the association risked big liability claims for deprivation of rights. His proposal went nowhere. Instead, apparently to limit costs to the universities, Walter Byers had implemented the year-by-year scholarship rule that Joseph Agnew would challenge in court 37 years later. Moreover, the NCAA’s 1975 convention adopted a second recommendation “to discourage legal actions against the NCAA,” according to the minutes. The members voted to create Bylaw 19.7, Restitution, to intimidate college athletes in disputes with the NCAA. Johnson recognized this provision all too well, having won the temporary court judgment that the rule was illegal if not downright despotic. It made him nearly apoplectic to learn that the NCAA had deliberately drawn up the restitution rule as an obstacle to due process, contrary to the recommendation of its own lawyer. “They want to crush these kids,” he says.

The NCAA, of course, has never expressed such a desire, and its public comments on due process tend to be anodyne. At a congressional hearing in 2004, the infractions-committee vice chair, Josephine Potuto, repeatedly argued that although the NCAA is “not bound by any judicial due process standards,” its enforcement, infractions, and hearing procedures meet and “very likely exceed” those of other public institutions. Yet when pressed, Potuto declared that athletes would have no standing for due process even if the Supreme Court had not exempted the NCAA in the 1988 Tarkanian decision. “In order to reach due-process issues as a legal Constitutional principle, the individual challenging has to have a substantive property or liberty interest,” she testified. “The opportunity to play intercollegiate athletics does not rise to that level.”

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:42 AM
^ Continued

To translate this from the legal jargon, Potuto used a circular argument to confine college athletes beneath any right to freedom or property in their own athletic effort. They have no stake to seek their rights, she claimed, because they have no rights at stake.

Potuto’s assertion might be judged preposterous, an heir of the Dred Scott dictum that slaves possessed no rights a white person was bound to respect. But she was merely being honest, articulating assumptions almost everyone shares without question. Whether motivated by hostility for students (as critics like Johnson allege), or by noble and paternalistic tough love (as the NCAA professes), the denial of fundamental due process for college athletes has stood unchallenged in public discourse. Like other NCAA rules, it emanates naturally from the premise that college athletes own no interest in sports beyond exercise, character-building, and good fun. Who represents these young men and women? No one asks.

The debates and commissions about reforming college sports nibble around the edges—trying to reduce corruption, to prevent the “contamination” of athletes by lucre, and to maintain at least a pretense of concern for academic integrity. Everything stands on the implicit presumption that preserving amateurism is necessary for the well-being of college athletes. But while amateurism—and the free labor it provides—may be necessary to the preservation of the NCAA, and perhaps to the profit margins of various interested corporations and educational institutions, what if it doesn’t benefit the athletes? What if it hurts them?

“The Plantation Mentality”

“Ninety percent of the NCAA revenue is produced by 1 percent of the athletes,” Sonny Vaccaro says. “Go to the skill positions”—the stars. “Ninety percent African Americans.” The NCAA made its money off those kids, and so did he. They were not all bad people, the NCAA officials, but they were blind, Vaccaro believes. “Their organization is a fraud.”

Vaccaro retired from Reebok in 2007 to make a clean break for a crusade. “The kids and their parents gave me a good life,” he says in his peppery staccato. “I want to give something back.” Call it redemption, he told me. Call it education or a good cause. “Here’s what I preach,” said Vaccaro. “This goes beyond race, to human rights. The least educated are the most exploited. I’m probably closer to the kids than anyone else, and I’m 71 years old.”

Vaccaro is officially an unpaid consultant to the plaintiffs in O’Bannon v. NCAA. He connected Ed O’Bannon with the attorneys who now represent him, and he talked to some of the additional co-plaintiffs who have joined the suit, among them Oscar Robertson, a basketball Hall of Famer who was incensed that the NCAA was still selling his image on playing cards 50 years after he left the University of Cincinnati.

Jon King, an antitrust lawyer at Hausfeld LLP in San Francisco, told me that Vaccaro “opened our eyes to massive revenue streams hidden in college sports.” King and his colleagues have drawn on Vaccaro’s vast knowledge of athletic-department finances, which include off-budget accounts for shoe contracts. Sonny Vaccaro and his wife, Pam, “had a mountain of documents,” he said. The outcome of the 1984 Regents decision validated an antitrust approach for O’Bannon, King argues, as well as for Joseph Agnew in his continuing case against the one-year scholarship rule. Lawyers for Sam Keller—a former quarterback for the University of Nebraska who is featured in video games—are pursuing a parallel “right of publicity” track based on the First Amendment. Still other lawyers could revive Rick Johnson’s case against NCAA bylaws on a larger scale, and King thinks claims for the rights of college players may be viable also under laws pertaining to contracts, employment, and civil rights.

Vaccaro had sought a law firm for O’Bannon with pockets deep enough to withstand an expensive war of attrition, fearing that NCAA officials would fight discovery to the end. So far, though, they have been forthcoming. “The numbers are off the wall,” Vaccaro says. “The public will see for the first time how all the money is distributed.”

Vaccaro has been traveling the after-dinner circuit, proselytizing against what he sees as the NCAA’s exploitation of young athletes. Late in 2008, someone who heard his stump speech at Howard University mentioned it to Michael Hausfeld, a prominent antitrust and human-rights lawyer, whose firm had won suits against Exxon for Native Alaskans and against Union Bank of Switzerland for Holocaust victims’ families. Someone tracked down Vaccaro on vacation in Athens, Greece, and he flew back directly to meet Hausfeld. The shoe salesman and the white-shoe lawyer made common cause.

Hausfeld LLP has offices in San Francisco, Philadelphia, and London. Its headquarters are on K Street in Washington, D.C., about three blocks from the White House. When I talked with Hausfeld there not long ago, he sat in a cavernous conference room, tidy in pinstripes, hands folded on a spotless table that reflected the skyline. He spoke softly, without pause, condensing the complex fugue of antitrust litigation into simple sentences. “Let’s start with the basic question,” he said, noting that the NCAA claims that student-athletes have no property rights in their own athletic accomplishments. Yet, in order to be eligible to play, college athletes have to waive their rights to proceeds from any sales based on their athletic performance.

“What right is it that they’re waiving?,” Hausfeld asked. “You can’t waive something you don’t have. So they had a right that they gave up in consideration to the principle of amateurism, if there be such.” (At an April hearing in a U.S. District Court in California, Gregory Curtner, a representative for the NCAA, stunned O’Bannon’s lawyers by saying: “There is no document, there is no substance, that the NCAA ever takes from the student-athletes their rights of publicity or their rights of likeness. They are at all times owned by the student-athlete.” Jon King says this is “like telling someone they have the winning lottery ticket, but by the way, it can only be cashed in on Mars.” The court denied for a second time an NCAA motion to dismiss the O’Bannon complaint.)

The waiver clause is nestled among the paragraphs of the “Student-Athlete Statement” that NCAA rules require be collected yearly from every college athlete. In signing the statement, the athletes attest that they have amateur status, that their stated SAT scores are valid, that they are willing to disclose any educational documents requested, and so forth. Already, Hausfeld said, the defendants in the Ed O’Bannon case have said in court filings that college athletes thereby transferred their promotional rights forever. He paused. “That’s ludicrous,” he said. “Nobody assigns rights like that. Nobody can assert rights like that.” He said the pattern demonstrated clear abuse by the collective power of the schools and all their conferences under the NCAA umbrella—“a most effective cartel.”

The faux ideal of amateurism is “the elephant in the room,” Hausfeld said, sending for a book. “You can’t get to the bottom of our case without exposing the hypocrisy of amateurism, and Walter Byers says it eloquently.” An assistant brought in Byers’s memoir. It looked garish on the shiny table because dozens of pink Post-its protruded from the text. Hausfeld read to me from page 390:

The college player cannot sell his own feet (the coach does that) nor can he sell his own name (the college will do that). This is the plantation mentality resurrected and blessed by today’s campus executives.

He looked up. “That wasn’t me,” he said. “That was the NCAA’s architect.” He found a key recommendation on page 388:

Prosecutors and the courts, with the support of the public, should use antitrust laws to break up the collegiate cartel—not just in athletics but possibly in other aspects of collegiate life as well.

Could the book become evidence? Might the aged Byers testify? (He is now 89.) Was that part of the plaintiffs’ strategy for the O’Bannon trial? Hausfeld smiled faintly. “I’d rather the NCAA lawyers not fully understand the strategy,” he said.

He put the spiny book away and previewed what lies ahead. The court soon would qualify his clients as a class. Then the Sherman Antitrust Act would provide for thorough discovery to break down exactly what the NCAA receives on everything from video clips to jerseys, contract by contract. “And we want to know what they’re carrying on their books as the value of their archival footage,” he concluded. “They say it’s a lot of money. We agree. How much?”

The work will be hard, but Hausfeld said he will win in the courts, unless the NCAA folds first. “Why?” Hausfeld asked rhetorically. “We know our clients are foreclosed: neither the NCAA nor its members will permit them to participate in any of that licensing revenue. Under the law, it’s up to them [the defendants] to give a pro-competitive justification. They can’t. End of story.”

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:55 AM
^ Continued

In 2010 the third Knight Commission, complementing a previous commission’s recommendation for published reports on academic progress, called for the finances of college sports to be made transparent and public—television contracts, conference budgets, shoe deals, coaches’ salaries, stadium bonds, everything. The recommendation was based on the worthy truism that sunlight is a proven disinfectant. But in practice, it has not been applied at all. Conferences, coaches, and other stakeholders resisted disclosure; college players still have no way of determining their value to the university.

“Money surrounds college sports,” says Domonique Foxworth, who is a cornerback for the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens and an executive-committee member for the NFL Players Association, and played for the University of Maryland. “And every player knows those millions are floating around only because of the 18-to-22-year-olds.” Yes, he told me, even the second-string punter believes a miracle might lift him into the NFL, and why not? In all the many pages of the three voluminous Knight Commission reports, there is but one paragraph that addresses the real-life choices for college athletes. “Approximately 1 percent of NCAA men’s basketball players and 2 percent of NCAA football players are drafted by NBA or NFL teams,” stated the 2001 report, basing its figures on a review of the previous 10 years, “and just being drafted is no assurance of a successful professional career.” Warning that the odds against professional athletic success are “astronomically high,” the Knight Commission counsels college athletes to avoid a “rude surprise” and to stick to regular studies. This is sound advice as far as it goes, but it’s a bromide that pinches off discussion. Nothing in the typical college curriculum teaches a sweat-stained guard at Clemson or Purdue what his monetary value to the university is. Nothing prods students to think independently about amateurism—because the universities themselves have too much invested in its preservation. Stifling thought, the universities, in league with the NCAA, have failed their own primary mission by providing an empty, cynical education on college sports.

The most basic reform would treat the students as what they are—adults, with rights and reason of their own—and grant them a meaningful voice in NCAA deliberations. A restoration of full citizenship to “student-athletes” would facilitate open governance, making it possible to enforce pledges of transparency in both academic standards and athletic finances. Without that, the NCAA has no effective checks and balances, no way for the students to provide informed consent regarding the way they are governed. A thousand questions lie willfully silenced because the NCAA is naturally afraid of giving “student-athletes” a true voice. Would college players be content with the augmented scholarship or allowance now requested by the National College Players Association? If a player’s worth to the university is greater than the value of his scholarship (as it clearly is in some cases), should he be paid a salary? If so, would teammates in revenue sports want to be paid equally, or in salaries stratified according to talent or value on the field? What would the athletes want in Division III, where athletic budgets keep rising without scholarships or substantial sports revenue? Would athletes seek more or less variance in admissions standards? Should non-athletes also have a voice, especially where involuntary student fees support more and more of college sports? Might some schools choose to specialize, paying players only in elite leagues for football, or lacrosse? In athletic councils, how much would high-revenue athletes value a simple thank you from the tennis or field-hockey players for the newly specified subsidies to their facilities?

University administrators, already besieged from all sides, do not want to even think about such questions. Most cringe at the thought of bargaining with athletes as a general manager does in professional sports, with untold effects on the budgets for coaches and every other sports item. “I would not want to be part of it,” North Carolina Athletic Director Dick Baddour told me flatly. After 44 years at UNC, he could scarcely contemplate a world without amateur rules. “We would have to think long and hard,” Baddour added gravely, “about whether this university would continue those sports at all.”

I, too, once reflexively recoiled at the idea of paying college athletes and treating them like employees or professionals. It feels abhorrent—but for reasons having to do more with sentiment than with practicality or law. Not just fans and university presidents but judges have often found cursory, non-statutory excuses to leave amateur traditions intact. “Even in the increasingly commercial modern world,” said a federal-court judge in Gaines v. NCAA in 1990, “this Court believes there is still validity to the Athenian concept of a complete education derived from fostering the full growth of both mind and body.” The fact that “the NCAA has not distilled amateurism to its purest form,” said the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in 1988, “does not mean its attempts to maintain a mixture containing some amateur elements are unreasonable.”

But one way or another, the smokescreen of amateurism may soon be swept away. For one thing, a victory by the plaintiffs in O’Bannon’s case would radically transform college sports. Colleges would likely have to either stop profiting from students or start paying them. The NCAA could also be forced to pay tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars in damages. If O’Bannon and Vaccaro and company win, “it will turn college sports on its ear,” said Richard Lapchick, the president of the National Consortium for Academics and Sports, in a recent interview with The New York Times.

Though the O’Bannon case may take several years yet to reach resolution, developments on other fronts are chipping away at amateurism, and at the NCAA. This past summer, Sports Illustrated editorialized in favor of allowing college athletes to be paid by non-university sources without jeopardizing their eligibility. At a press conference last June, Steve Spurrier, the coach of the South Carolina Gamecocks football team (and the winner of the 1966 Heisman Trophy as a Florida Gator), proposed that coaches start paying players $300 a game out of their own pockets. The coaches at six other SEC schools (Alabama, Florida, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, LSU, and Tennessee) all endorsed Spurrier’s proposal. And Mark Emmert, the NCAA president, recently conceded that big changes must come. “The integrity of collegiate athletics is seriously challenged today by rapidly growing pressures coming from many directions,” Emmert said in July. “We have reached a point where incremental change is not sufficient to meet these challenges. I want us to act more aggressively and in a more comprehensive way than we have in the past. A few new tweaks of the rules won’t get the job done.”

Threats to NCAA dominion also percolate in Congress. Aggrieved legislators have sponsored numerous bills. Senator Orrin Hatch, citing mistreatment of his Utah Utes, has called witnesses to discuss possible antitrust remedies for the Bowl Championship Series. Congressional committees have already held hearings critical of the NCAA’s refusal to follow due process in disciplinary matters; other committees have explored a rise in football concussions. Last January, calls went up to investigate “informal” football workouts at the University of Iowa just after the season-ending bowl games—workouts so grueling that 41 of the 56 amateur student-athletes collapsed, and 13 were hospitalized with rhabdomyolysis, a life-threatening kidney condition often caused by excessive exercise.

Joescoundrel
02-11-2013, 11:55 AM
^ Conclusion

The greatest threat to the viability of the NCAA may come from its member universities. Many experts believe that the churning instability within college football will drive the next major change. President Obama himself has endorsed the drumbeat cry for a national playoff in college football. This past spring, the Justice Department questioned the BCS about its adherence to antitrust standards. Jim Delany, the commissioner of the Big Ten, has estimated that a national playoff system could produce three or four times as much money as the existing bowl system does. If a significant band of football schools were to demonstrate that they could orchestrate a true national playoff, without the NCAA’s assistance, the association would be terrified—and with good reason. Because if the big sports colleges don’t need the NCAA to administer a national playoff in football, then they don’t need it to do so in basketball. In which case, they could cut out the middleman in March Madness and run the tournament themselves. Which would deprive the NCAA of close to $1 billion a year, more than 95 percent of its revenue. The organization would be reduced to a rule book without money—an organization aspiring to enforce its rules but without the financial authority to enforce anything.

Thus the playoff dreamed of and hankered for by millions of football fans haunts the NCAA. “There will be some kind of playoff in college football, and it will not be run by the NCAA,” says Todd Turner, a former athletic director in four conferences (Big East, ACC, SEC, and Pac-10). “If I’m at the NCAA, I have to worry that the playoff group can get basketball to break away, too.”

This danger helps explain why the NCAA steps gingerly in enforcements against powerful colleges. To alienate member colleges would be to jeopardize its own existence. Long gone are television bans and the “death penalty” sentences (commanding season-long shutdowns of offending teams) once meted out to Kentucky (1952), Southwestern Louisiana (1973), and Southern Methodist University (1987). Institutions receive mostly symbolic slaps nowadays. Real punishments fall heavily on players and on scapegoats like literacy tutors.

A deeper reason explains why, in its predicament, the NCAA has no recourse to any principle or law that can justify amateurism. There is no such thing. Scholars and sportswriters yearn for grand juries to ferret out every forbidden bauble that reaches a college athlete, but the NCAA’s ersatz courts can only masquerade as public authority. How could any statute impose amateur status on college athletes, or on anyone else? No legal definition of amateur exists, and any attempt to create one in enforceable law would expose its repulsive and unconstitutional nature—a bill of attainder, stripping from college athletes the rights of American citizenship.

For all our queasiness about what would happen if some athletes were to get paid, there is a successful precedent for the professionalization of an amateur sports system: the Olympics. For years, Walter Byers waged war with the NCAA’s older and more powerful nemesis, the Amateur Athletic Union, which since 1894 had overseen U.S. Olympic athletes. Run in high-handed fashion, the AAU had infamously banned Jesse Owens for life in 1936—weeks after his four heroic gold medals punctured the Nazi claim of Aryan supremacy—because instead of using his sudden fame to tour and make money for the AAU at track meets across Europe, he came home early. In the early 1960s, the fights between the NCAA and the AAU over who should manage Olympic athletes become so bitter that President Kennedy called in General Douglas MacArthur to try to mediate a truce before the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Ultimately, Byers prevailed and effectively neutered the AAU. In November 1978, President Jimmy Carter signed the bipartisan Amateur Sports Act. Amateurism in the Olympics soon dissolved—and the world did not end. Athletes, granted a 20 percent voting stake on every Olympic sport’s governing body, tipped balances in the United States and then inexorably around the world. First in marathon races, then in tennis tournaments, players soon were allowed to accept prize money and keep their Olympic eligibility. Athletes profited from sponsorships and endorsements. The International Olympic Committee expunged the word amateur from its charter in 1986. Olympic officials, who had once disdained the NCAA for offering scholarships in exchange for athletic performance, came to welcome millionaire athletes from every quarter, while the NCAA still refused to let the pro Olympian Michael Phelps swim for his college team at Michigan.

This sweeping shift left the Olympic reputation intact, and perhaps improved. Only hardened romantics mourned the amateur code. “Hey, come on,” said Anne Audain, a track-and-field star who once held the world record for the 5,000 meters. “It’s like losing your virginity. You’re a little misty for awhile, but then you realize, Wow, there’s a whole new world out there!”

Without logic or practicality or fairness to support amateurism, the NCAA’s final retreat is to sentiment. The Knight Commission endorsed its heartfelt cry that to pay college athletes would be “an unacceptable surrender to despair.” Many of the people I spoke with while reporting this article felt the same way. “I don’t want to pay college players,” said Wade Smith, a tough criminal lawyer and former star running back at North Carolina. “I just don’t want to do it. We’d lose something precious.”

“Scholarship athletes are already paid,” declared the Knight Commission members, “in the most meaningful way poss-ible: with a free education.” This evasion by prominent educators severed my last reluctant, emotional tie with imposed amateurism. I found it worse than self-serving. It echoes masters who once claimed that heavenly salvation would outweigh earthly injustice to slaves. In the era when our college sports first arose, colonial powers were turning the whole world upside down to define their own interests as all-inclusive and benevolent. Just so, the NCAA calls it heinous exploitation to pay college athletes a fair portion of what they earn.

Taylor Branch is the author of, among other works, America in the King Years, a three-volume history of the civil-rights movement, for which he won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Sam Miguel
02-12-2013, 10:24 AM
The Shame of College Sports

A litany of scandals in recent years have made the corruption of college sports constant front-page news. We profess outrage each time we learn that yet another student-athlete has been taking money under the table. But the real scandal is the very structure of college sports, wherein student-athletes generate billions of dollars for universities and private companies while earning nothing for themselves. Here, a leading civil-rights historian makes the case for paying college athletes—and reveals how a spate of lawsuits working their way through the courts could destroy the NCAA.

By Taylor Branch

“I’m not hiding,” Sonny Vaccaro told a closed hearing at the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C., in 2001. “We want to put our materials on the bodies of your athletes, and the best way to do that is buy your school. Or buy your coach.”

Vaccaro’s audience, the members of the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics, bristled. These were eminent reformers—among them the president of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, two former heads of the U.S. Olympic Committee, and several university presidents and chancellors. The Knight Foundation, a nonprofit that takes an interest in college athletics as part of its concern with civic life, had tasked them with saving college sports from runaway commercialism as embodied by the likes of Vaccaro, who, since signing his pioneering shoe contract with Michael Jordan in 1984, had built sponsorship empires successively at Nike, Adidas, and Reebok. Not all the members could hide their scorn for the “sneaker pimp” of schoolyard hustle, who boasted of writing checks for millions to everybody in higher education.

“Why,” asked Bryce Jordan, the president emeritus of Penn State, “should a university be an advertising medium for your industry?”

Vaccaro did not blink. “They shouldn’t, sir,” he replied. “You sold your souls, and you’re going to continue selling them. You can be very moral and righteous in asking me that question, sir,” Vaccaro added with irrepressible good cheer, “but there’s not one of you in this room that’s going to turn down any of our money. You’re going to take it. I can only offer it.”

William Friday, a former president of North Carolina’s university system, still winces at the memory. “Boy, the silence that fell in that room,” he recalled recently. “I never will forget it.” Friday, who founded and co-chaired two of the three Knight Foundation sports initiatives over the past 20 years, called Vaccaro “the worst of all” the witnesses ever to come before the panel.

But what Vaccaro said in 2001 was true then, and it’s true now: corporations offer money so they can profit from the glory of college athletes, and the universities grab it. In 2010, despite the faltering economy, a single college athletic league, the football-crazed Southeastern Conference (SEC), became the first to crack the billion-dollar barrier in athletic receipts. The Big Ten pursued closely at $905 million. That money comes from a combination of ticket sales, concession sales, merchandise, licensing fees, and other sources—but the great bulk of it comes from television contracts.

Educators are in thrall to their athletic departments because of these television riches and because they respect the political furies that can burst from a locker room. “There’s fear,” Friday told me when I visited him on the University of North Carolina campus in Chapel Hill last fall. As we spoke, two giant construction cranes towered nearby over the university’s Kenan Stadium, working on the latest $77 million renovation. (The University of Michigan spent almost four times that much to expand its Big House.) Friday insisted that for the networks, paying huge sums to universities was a bargain. “We do every little thing for them,” he said. “We furnish the theater, the actors, the lights, the music, and the audience for a drama measured neatly in time slots. They bring the camera and turn it on.” Friday, a weathered idealist at 91, laments the control universities have ceded in pursuit of this money. If television wants to broadcast football from here on a Thursday night, he said, “we shut down the university at 3 o’clock to accommodate the crowds.” He longed for a campus identity more centered in an academic mission.

The United States is the only country in the world that hosts big-time sports at institutions of higher learning. This should not, in and of itself, be controversial. College athletics are rooted in the classical ideal of Mens sana in corpore sano—a sound mind in a sound body—and who would argue with that? College sports are deeply inscribed in the culture of our nation. Half a million young men and women play competitive intercollegiate sports each year. Millions of spectators flock into football stadiums each Saturday in the fall, and tens of millions more watch on television. The March Madness basketball tournament each spring has become a major national event, with upwards of 80 million watching it on television and talking about the games around the office water cooler. ESPN has spawned ESPNU, a channel dedicated to college sports, and Fox Sports and other cable outlets are developing channels exclusively to cover sports from specific regions or divisions.

With so many people paying for tickets and watching on television, college sports has become Very Big Business. According to various reports, the football teams at Texas, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, and Penn State—to name just a few big-revenue football schools—each earn between $40 million and $80 million in profits a year, even after paying coaches multimillion-dollar salaries. When you combine so much money with such high, almost tribal, stakes—football boosters are famously rabid in their zeal to have their alma mater win—corruption is likely to follow.

Scandal after scandal has rocked college sports. In 2010, the NCAA sanctioned the University of Southern California after determining that star running back Reggie Bush and his family had received “improper benefits” while he played for the Trojans. (Among other charges, Bush and members of his family were alleged to have received free airfare and limousine rides, a car, and a rent-free home in San Diego, from sports agents who wanted Bush as a client.) The Bowl Championship Series stripped USC of its 2004 national title, and Bush returned the Heisman Trophy he had won in 2005. Last fall, as Auburn University football stormed its way to an undefeated season and a national championship, the team’s star quarterback, Cam Newton, was dogged by allegations that his father had used a recruiter to solicit up to $180,000 from Mississippi State in exchange for his son’s matriculation there after junior college in 2010. Jim Tressel, the highly successful head football coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes, resigned last spring after the NCAA alleged he had feigned ignorance of rules violations by players on his team. At least 28 players over the course of the previous nine seasons, according to Sports Illustrated, had traded autographs, jerseys, and other team memorabilia in exchange for tattoos or cash at a tattoo parlor in Columbus, in violation of NCAA rules. Late this summer, Yahoo Sports reported that the NCAA was investigating allegations that a University of Miami booster had given millions of dollars in illicit cash and services to more than 70 Hurricanes football players over eight years.

Those two portions in bold say it all.

Sam Miguel
02-13-2013, 08:35 AM
Speaking of recruiting, maybe there are some fellas here who could use more money, or at least TV time...

Sea Lions wrest NCRAA title from PMMS Mariners

From The Wires

February 12, 2013, 07:17 pm

CAMEROONIAN Danny Masso and John Flores carried Olivarez College past Philippine Merchant Marine School, 78-66, on Tuesday to clinch the men’s championship of the 20th National Capital Region Athletic Association (NCRAA) basketball tournament at the Rizal Technological University gymnasium in Mandaluyong City.

The two scored crucial baskets in the last 90 seconds, allowing the Sea Lions to take the deciding game of the best-of-three finals of the cagefest supported by Mikasa and Molten Balls.

Masso, a 21-year-old tourism sophomore, just came back from a foot injury and scored only 12 points, but played his best game in the title series by sinking three of four free throws and scoring on a driving layup against Vicson Pajimola in the last 29 seconds that gave the Sea Lions a 71-66 lead.

Flores, one of five graduating Olivarez players, was adjudged the tournament MVP as he came up with his best output in the series with 18 points, including four free throws in the final 18 seconds.

His charities clinched it for the Sea Lions, 75-66.

“I told the boys to find their man and match up with them. They (Mariners) had a good start and PMMS had a big lead. But, I was confident in the boys,” said Sea Lions coach Michael Saguiguit, who also drew inspiration from his wife Shem, who is about to give birth to their third child, Shey, anytime this month.

Their second-born Mikee was born on the week of the Sea Lions’ first-ever crown in 2010.

With school owner Dr. Pablo Olivarez cheering them on, the Sea Lions fought their way back from a 44-54 deficit against the deposed champions in the third period.

Ardy Dizon, who led the team with 19 points, put the Sea Lions back on top, 59-58, in the last 6:56 with his two charities.

Jake Yagonia, named in the Mythical Team with teammate Dan Reverente, along with Dizon and Eldridge Corpus of Olivarez College, powered PMMS with 22 points, while Pajimola had 13.

danny
02-14-2013, 04:51 AM
So what are you guys going to do about the "pera-pera" system?

Joescoundrel
02-21-2013, 11:59 AM
NCAA’s Miami investigation exposes an organization in need of an overhaul

NCAA President Mark Emmert fired the organization’s vice president of enforcement in the wake of its investigation of the University of Miami.

By John Feinstein, Feb 20, 2013 05:08 PM EST

The Washington Post Thursday, February 21, 1:08 AM

The NCAA notified the University of Miami on Tuesday that the school is being accused of a “lack of institutional control,” because it allowed a booster named Nevin Shapiro to infiltrate its athletic department and have relationships with athletes that were both personal and — according to Shapiro — financial.

The timing of this notice is beyond laughable. It came about 24 hours after NCAA President Mark Emmert was forced to fire his hand-picked director of enforcement, Julie Roe Lach, for — wait for it — bungling the Miami investigation.

This is the Keystone Kops vs. Inspector Clouseau.

On Monday, Emmert described Lach’s decision to pay Shapiro’s lawyer for information in its Miami investigation, which was approved by Emmert’s No. 2 man, Jim Isch, as “missteps.” This is the NCAA way: Find a euphemism that fits in place of the truth. (The height of comedy came Tuesday when Shapiro’s lawyer, Maria Elena Perez, said that if she had known how incompetent the NCAA was, she would have advised her client not to cooperate with it. Meantime, she had no problem at all collecting almost $19,000 from the incompetents — while billing them for close to $58,000.)

But the enforcement debacle is not what ails the NCAA, and neither is Emmert. Both are symptoms of a system gone wrong, one that needs to be abandoned.

The NCAA needs to go the way of typewriters, the Edsel and black-and-white TV. Its time has passed. Collegiate sports can no longer be run with an iron fist — especially an incompetent one — or with the quaint notion that Quinnipiac women’s basketball can operate under the same rules as Alabama football.

The NCAA accelerated its path toward irrelevance years ago, when Emmert’s predecessors, Cedric Dempsey and Myles Brand, ceded control of football to conference commissioners — wanting no blame for the cartel that was the Bowl Championship Series when it was created 15 years ago. That abdication of ownership is a major reason why conference realignment has been allowed to burn out of control like a wildfire.

In absence of any central authority, conference commissioners have been able to pillage one another for schools in order to try to maximize their appeal to television networks. If the NCAA controlled football and if there were rules in place that prevented schools from jumping conferences haphazardly, the current chaos would never have started.

A private organization has a right to make rules. If the members agree to those rules, they must follow them.

If rules existed making it impossible for any school to change conference affiliation without approval from an outside committee, the lawsuits presidents might threaten in order to jump from, say, the ACC to the Big Ten, would be meaningless.

The NCAA blew it — following the Neville Chamberlain’s “peace for our time” route — and it has worked out about as well as Chamberlain’s approach worked in 1938.

That’s mainly because the organization is made up of academics such as Emmert, who lack a sophisticated understanding of all the forces at work in modern athletics. Seventeen of the 20 members of the NCAA executive council are either college presidents or chancellors. There are three token members who are involved in athletics — two commissioners and one athletic director — who apparently are there to explain to the other members which one is the funny-shaped ball and which one is the round one and, no doubt to fetch coffee when needed.

So not only is Emmert’s status under no threat — the presidents aren’t going to humiliate one of their own — any replacement approved by that group isn’t going to be substantially different

But even if the NCAA had competent leadership, it would be time to start all over again. For several years now, Duke basketball Coach Mike Krzyzewski has been saying that there should be three separate organizations, not one. “We need an organization that does what’s best for college football, one that does what’s best for [men’s] college basketball and one that does what’s best for non-revenue sports,” Krzyzewski proposes. “The needs of each are too different for us to keep acting like they’re the same thing. They’re not.”

Each should have a commissioner, someone who is of the sport and from the sport and familiar with the particular needs and nuances of each. It should be somebody smart, tough and experienced and not somebody concerned with image. That’s not easy to find but there are people out there. No one knew who Pete Rozelle and David Stern were before they completely re-made the NFL and NBA, respectively.

Mike Slive, the current commissioner of the SEC, would be a reasonable choice to run football. Potential basketball choices could include former Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese or Greg Shaheen, the former NCAA vice president fired last year by Emmert, or Terry Holland, the former Virginia coach who is now the athletic director at East Carolina.

The presidents should be completely removed from the process except (perhaps) to help in fundraising at their schools. College athletics need someone in charge, but the people in charge should know something about college athletics. It is time to go back to square one.

james_hunt
02-21-2013, 03:44 PM
So what are you guys going to do about the "pera-pera" system?

Kasama naman ang Ateneo sa ganyang kalakaran. I don't know why it's suddenly a big issue with them now.

LION
02-21-2013, 04:49 PM
Pati sa basketball weather weather din talaga. :-D

james_hunt
02-21-2013, 07:38 PM
Pati sa basketball weather weather din talaga. :-D

Touché! :)

bchoter
02-22-2013, 02:57 AM
How about the coaches?

http://espn.go.com/college-sports/story/_/id/8966388/ncaa-says-three-former-miami-hurricanes-coaches-misled-probe-report

...Several other former Miami coaches are named in the allegations as well, including onetime men's basketball assistant Jake Morton, who the NCAA said, among other things, accepted "supplemental income" of at least $6,000 from Shapiro.

How much is impermissible? Coaches? Players?

danny
02-22-2013, 04:40 AM
Touché! :)

Exactly.

Why all of a sudden people are concerned about "pera-pera"? Sino ba ang mga dating nakinabang? Sino ang mga nakikinabang? Sino naman ang mga bagong makikinabang?

abcdef
02-22-2013, 12:30 PM
Mas ok pa palang maging college player kesa sa PBA. . . . Di ka mag babayad ng tax habang college players ka.

Joescoundrel
02-22-2013, 02:29 PM
Pareng James, Pareng Lion, you both know how I feel about this money deal in college basketball. (I can't really speak with even small authority on the other sports...) Para sa akin simpleng-simple lang naman 'yan: Pwede naman talaga gumastos para sa magagaling na players. Sori na lang ang mga walang panggastos or mga ayaw gumastos. How much is even just a small computer lab worth? Or how about an entirely new five-storey wing on your campus? If you can afford that surely you can afford to give at least P20,000 a month each to three or four really good players on your team.

If those guys all play together for five full years, that's only P80,000 a month max times 60 months max, so that comes out to P4.8 milllion over five years, not even a million bucks a year. What is another one million bucks in OPEX every year to any UAAP or NCAA school? If you are a winning team, that is advertising exposure that no advertising / marketing campaign can match, certainly not for under a million a year for five years. Competitive lang kayo niyan ha, what more kung mag-champion kayo, or (ahem!) mag-5 Peat! F---ing McCann-Erickson and Saatchi and Saatchi combined couldn't build you that kind of brand equity for ten times that amount.

I honestly think - at least for UAAP basketball - that we should be paying every player. I'm not even talking about a ceiling. I want a floor! I want each and every UAAP college basketball player to get paid at least the minimum daily wage in Metro Manila plus 20%. So if its P450 a day now for a typical daily wage earner in the Metro, I think a UAAP basketball player should make at least P540 per day. Let's set that at a 20-day work-month and he should get P10,800 net every month. And yes, he should not have to pay any taxes.

Bahala na ang schools kung ano ang ceiling nila. If a school can afford to give ALL 16 GUYS on their roster the PBA-grade P350,000 net a month, then let them. Let them! It is their f---ing money, they can certainly do with it as they please. Besides, why deprive an honest citizen his Constitutional right to earn the best possible living in a free market economy? We let our kids become service crews for maybe minimum wage in the fastfood joints. What the heck is so wrong with finally letting them earn a legitimate living out of playing UAAP college basketball?

I'm pretty sure the UAAP makes pretty good bank, and by extension, every UAAP member-school makes good bank too. We'd probably be at least a 10-team league by now if the current eight members weren't so grubby about keeping their pieces of the UAAP pie, which can only mean that the UAAP is making MAJOR F---ING BANK. Nothing prevents expansion more than the current membership not wanting to upset their bottomlines.

If the UAAP wasn't making money the opposite would most likely be true: they'd try to get new members to spread coverage of the expenses. That's what happened four years ago with NAASCU when gameface helped that league with media and promotions management. And I'm quite sure ABS CBN wouldn't be wasting time with the UAAP if it wasn't a bankable property. It is ABS CBN property, right?

Maybe the Ateneo needs to start losing again, para magutom, at ma-miss 'yung feeling ng parating champion, tignan ko lang kung hindi biglang bumili ng dalawang 7-footer na imports kagad ang Ateneo when Dark Ages II starts to creep in.

A good friend of mine who also recruits players albeit not for the big spending schools (you know the guy too, Pareng James, and you've met as well him Pareng Lion) said papangit na daw ang UAAP when it is only one or two strong teams lording over everybody. Case in point: Ateneo's 5-Peat. Maybe from a competitive standpoint he is correct. But from the box office's perspective, shit, the UAAP has never rolled in this much money.

It's time the players - the guys who actually make this league worth watching in spite of what the competitive situation is like - get their piece of the pie. The schools can keep their revenue millions. But surely it wouldn't even take a 2% cut from those shares para bigyan ng minimum P10T each ang mga manlalaro natin.

They deserve it.

LION
02-22-2013, 10:03 PM
Hello Pareng Joe,

This is good reason to arrange another round table discussion. I just discovered last night that Green Label (no pun intended :) ) suits my taste when a friend offered me that fine scotch whisky. Will gladly bring a bottle or two for all of us. They say that Green Label has been discontinued and all stocks will be depleted this year. So try to buy as many bottles as you can before it becomes the target of collectors. I still like Blue but it’s too expensive for my taste. My favorite Label of course is Red, and it’s good for mixing with cola.

Talking about compensating our basketball players, I’m all for it too. Makaka luwag na rin ang bulsa ng mga boosters. :) But then again we have to change the status of the UAAP and NCAA from amateur to professional. And since the players will receive compensation, the schools can rightfully insert terms and conditions in their contract that would eliminate poaching, changing allegiances and prohibit working for the competitors. :D And sooner or later, players will probably establish a union and they can bargain for better terms and conditions every 3 years and if the negotiations bog down, they can stage a strike or the UAAP and NCAA can declare a lockout. Pag nangyari yan, patay na tayo at wala na tayong papanoorin. The mere thought of it sends shivers down my spine. Inom na lang tayo.

Mateen Cleaves
02-23-2013, 07:31 AM
If the UAAP wasn't making money the opposite would most likely be true: they'd try to get new members to spread coverage of the expenses. That's what happened four years ago with NAASCU when gameface helped that league with media and promotions management. And I'm quite sure ABS CBN wouldn't be wasting time with the UAAP if it wasn't a bankable property. It is ABS CBN property, right?
...
A good friend of mine who also recruits players albeit not for the big spending schools (you know the guy too, Pareng James, and you've met as well him Pareng Lion) said papangit na daw ang UAAP when it is only one or two strong teams lording over everybody. Case in point: Ateneo's 5-Peat. Maybe from a competitive standpoint he is correct. But from the box office's perspective, shit, the UAAP has never rolled in this much money.

It's time the players - the guys who actually make this league worth watching in spite of what the competitive situation is like - get their piece of the pie. The schools can keep their revenue millions. But surely it wouldn't even take a 2% cut from those shares para bigyan ng minimum P10T each ang mga manlalaro natin.

Here's the thing. I'd like to see something that shows exactly how much the schools supposedly get vs what ABS-CBN rakes in. I, sure as hell, haven't seen evidence of that largesse ever resulting in anything tangible for UP Sports, for example. If they really get that much money, why then would they need Danding, MVP, Henry Sy, Lucio Tan, etc. to put in their own money for each of their teams?

My take? The UAAP has had the business model staring them in the face, but they haven't been smart enough to take advantage... and make these godfathers unnecessary.

LION
02-23-2013, 08:46 AM
They are smart, I believe (at least for the private schools). It’s all cash inflow but they don’t want any outflow. Hence, the godfathers.

Mateen Cleaves
02-23-2013, 09:56 AM
Not smart enough, I think. The UAAP is a cash cow for ABS-CBN. Every block, every highlight play that is replayed brings in ad revenue for ABS-CBN. Kaya nga sandamukal na replay ang pinapalabas, even if they miss the live action. Does the UAAP even get a share on these? With the rising popularity of women's volleyball and cheer dance, plus the strong school brands, the UAAP could have a very convincing argument that they could do far better than what they have now with Studio 23.

Does anybody know exactly what the contract with ABS-CBN entails? Also, what are the details in terms of revenue sharing for the member schools from both TV and gate receipts? Finally, how much do the schools spend on their overall varsity programs? Ball park figures would be fine.

We're proceeding from an assumption that the schools are making a ton of money from the league. I'd just like to confirm that first. Just to find out exactly how much money we're talking about. Then we can have better perspective of what's fair for those who play.

danny
02-23-2013, 12:34 PM
Everything is a business model. Back to basics and forget about the profit of the UAAP. How much are the players of top schools being paid?How much does it take to get the services of so called prized recruits?

It appears that, given the discussion on the fair share of profit of the players, people here agree to pay the athletes for playing for their respective schools.

danny
02-24-2013, 11:49 PM
Just merge this thread with the existing one. Matagal ma itong napag-uusapan.

Sam Miguel
02-26-2013, 10:46 AM
Here's the thing. I'd like to see something that shows exactly how much the schools supposedly get vs what ABS-CBN rakes in. I, sure as hell, haven't seen evidence of that largesse ever resulting in anything tangible for UP Sports, for example. If they really get that much money, why then would they need Danding, MVP, Henry Sy, Lucio Tan, etc. to put in their own money for each of their teams?

My take? The UAAP has had the business model staring them in the face, but they haven't been smart enough to take advantage... and make these godfathers unnecessary.

Mateen, I'd have to agree with Lion's take that the so-called Godfathers are really there to make sure no outlays come from the UAAP schools themselves. Now I'm sure every UAAP school makes enough to pay its dues every year and stay in the league, with or without a Godfather. Adamson for one has never had a Godfather, or at least never had one on the scale of an ECJ or MVP or SM, and they will stay in the UAAP until the second coming.

I agree with you though, that perhaps the UAAP already has the business model to render these Godfathers unnecessary. Although I doubt any school would look a gift horse in the mouth.

How much for instance does it cost to send 18-20 people to the United States for say 15 days? Round-trip airfare alone should run up to more or less $40,000. If it's four guys to a room, and that room runs to say $300 a night for 15 nights, that's another $22,500. Let's figure in a food budget of say $20 a day per guy for 15 days, that's another $6,000. Let's further figure each guy gets an allowance of say $500 cash for the whole trip, that's another $10,000.

That all comes to a total of $78,500. For one trip. Let's round that off to say $90,000 for contingencies. At an exchange rate of 40 : 1 that will come out to P3.6 million. For one trip.

Up to around 2010 the allowance for a typical Big Money School player was at P5,000 per month per player. As in that is what they officially receive from the school, not counting anything (if any) they receive from Godfathers, other boosters, fag / hag admirers, and the odd commercial endorsement here and there.

Last I heard one former UAAP bench player who is now trying his luck in another league used to get his school allowance plus matching allowance off the personal coffers of an alumni booster, plus the odd hand-outs from other alumni. He might have easily been getting at least P10-12,000 a month total. You can only imagine how much the real stars were getting and continue to get in total every month.

Given those figures, if ten guys get P10,000 a month, and the other six guys get say P30,000 a month, that's P280,000 a month, or P3.36 million a year.

Add in meals, load (or line if the school is that well off or that well supported), transportation, training expenses, salaries of coaches (reportedly the Top 3 big spending schools pay their respective head coaches in the neighborhood of P500,000 a month, basic pay), medical care, plus sunk costs of scholarships, board and lodging, and other related expenses, and you could be looking at an average of something like P200-300,000 per player per year from the big spenders. That'll come to at least another P3.2 million per year for the whole roster.

All of that comes to P10.16 million for one year. If they house their maarte na Fil-foreign and / or full foreigner players in the big brand condos instead of campus dorms, plus their own food, you could tack on another P2-3 million a year to that figure. What more if the big spenders throw new houses, new cars, bring in siblings as scholars to the school too with allowances as well, maybe throw mom and dad a million bucks or two to sweeten the deal even further?

And that is a very conservative estimate. The real figure could easily be three to five times that amount, at least for the big spenders.

Mateen, is there any way you could compel UP, being a state school and all, to share with you how much the school spends and makes in the UAAP?

bchoter
02-26-2013, 01:22 PM
"Last I heard one former UAAP bench player who is now trying his luck in another league used to get his school allowance plus matching allowance off the personal coffers of an alumni booster, plus the odd hand-outs from other alumni. He might have easily been getting at least P10-12,000 a month total"... Enough please! I move that this thread be locked lest we risk a mutiny in Espana!

Mateen Cleaves
02-26-2013, 05:33 PM
It appears that, given the discussion on the fair share of profit of the players, people here agree to pay the athletes for playing for their respective schools.

I don't know. It appears to me that those in favor of paying the athletes, already are.

bchoter
02-27-2013, 03:58 AM
I don't know. It appears to me that those in favor of paying the athletes, already are.I look at it two-ways. Half full, at least those who choose to play with less money will now get paid (depending on the "share") or half-empty, where paid athletes will get paid more. So, yes, I am in favor of equal 'pay' accross all schools if there's a way to regulate what a student-athlete can receive outside of the "official pay".

LION
02-27-2013, 09:42 AM
Note that I’m in favor of paying athletes only because the UAAP and NCAA have become commercialized. If 1 or 2 teams have been doing it and are getting a big advantage in recruitment, and it’s legal, then you can’t expect other teams to just sit around and do nothing. The instinct of self-preservation kicks in. Matira na ang matibay. Those who refuse to adapt will not survive. The only options are wine and whine.

But personally, I’d like the UAAP and NCAA revert to “pure" amateur basketball. It’s much better that way. Especially that SBC has the best basketball HS program in the country which will take care of our college pipeline.

Sam Miguel
02-27-2013, 11:22 AM
^^^ Lion, if they were paying football players as much as basketball players then I would be sitting pretty wouldn't I? Hahaha!

Tokayo, the player in question passed your way in Espana but I don't think you guys could afford him, even though just between us I think that damn fool isn't even worth P500 a month, never mind P12,000...

abcdef
02-27-2013, 11:37 AM
If they are being paid. . .they are subject to CONTRACTS. are we asking them to mature straight away? or are we just wanting to solve he un equal distribution of wealth? Aba eh magandang trabaho maging player agent. . . Isipin niyo simula 4th year high school eh may representationna. PAANO PA MAG AARAL ANG MGA STUDENT-ATHLETE NA YAN!?

LION
02-27-2013, 11:48 AM
^^^ true Sam hahaahahaha. Scholar naman eh hehehehehhe.

LION
02-27-2013, 11:49 AM
^^^ Lion, if they were paying football players as much as basketball players then I would be sitting pretty wouldn't I? Hahaha!

Tokayo, the player in question passed your way in Espana but I don't think you guys could afford him, even though just between us I think that damn fool isn't even worth P500 a month, never mind P12,000...

True, Sam, hahahahhahaa. Scholar naman eh. :)

bchoter
02-27-2013, 11:52 AM
Tokayo, the player in question passed your way in Espana but I don't think you guys could afford him, even though just between us I think that damn fool isn't even worth P500 a month, never mind P12,000...He must have over valued himself because he could have passed himself off as a core player in Espana :D

Joescoundrel
03-15-2013, 02:09 PM
Big East fracturing emblematic of cracked college sports priorities

By Sally Jenkins, Mar 15, 2013 12:19 AM EDT

The Washington Post Friday, March 15, 8:19 AM

NEW YORK — I’m enough of a conspiracy theorist to suspect that the Vatican Bank had something to do with the dissolution of the Big East. This isn’t collegiate competition we’re watching any more. It’s thinly veiled money laundering, and it’s ruining the NCAA’s chief commodity, which is our affection.

To sit in a seat at the last Big East basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden is to feel a creeping suspicion that the craven executives who call themselves athletic directors and college presidents may have gone too far, overreached. In attempting to protect their access to lobster buffets, they’ve set in motion a fundamental destruction, the kind of sand slipping away from a foundation that creates a house-swallowing sinkhole. What fools, you wonder, thought it was a smart business move to breed this disenchantment?

The elemental love in Madison Square Garden during the annual Big East tournament is irreplaceable. The ring of nightclub lighting that makes the floor flare, the foot-long hot dogs at 11 a.m., the crowds wild with energy, the drab preppy grays and blues dueling with the oranges and scarlets, the drums keeping time with your pulse and the deep-throated swells of noise from the stands that rise and fall with the ball — these will be gone. In its place: liquidation, the selling off of assets.

The whole idea of conferences, back when schools first formed them, was simple geography: They were loose alliances meant to facilitate competition based on proximity, and to foster deep local fan interest. Now they’ve become cable-television deals.

It’s the scrabbling that’s so repulsive, the reek of desperation, first from the schools that succumbed to corporate raiding by the Atlantic Coast Conference, and then the shoulder-curling conduct of the Catholic Seven — DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, Seton Hall, St. John’s and Villanova — who have the nerve to call their abandonment of the Big East after 30 years a “philosophical” move. No, it’s a struggle over “brand.”

This is the scourge that is realignment: The constant shifting of alliances in quest of ever bigger paydays to offset budget shortfalls. And it overshadowed all the fun in the quarterfinals Thursday, made each tick of the clock regretful.

These are the sorts of things we won’t get to watch anymore: classic Big East pendulum swings, such as the one Georgetown suffered after it built a 25-8 lead over Cincinnati, only to surrender it and lead just 29-24 at halftime. The building of Garden roars, such as the one during the Syracuse-Pitt thriller, a steady ambient wave that sounded more machine-like than human. The fascinating effect of tension on individuals — Pitt Coach Jamie Dixon smiling radiantly even as a vein throbbed in his neck, when his Panthers cut the Orange’s lead to 58-57 with 30.1 seconds to go to set up a classic one-possession Big East finish, that ended with an “Oooooooooohhhhhh,” as a missed free throw doomed the Panthers. The whipsawing of emotions, such as those of Syracuse Coach Jim Boeheim, waxing nostalgic over 31 straight years of coaching teams in this tournament.

“The heartbreaks are what makes the good ones so great,” he said. “You have to have them both. I can’t really describe it accurately. It’s just — my whole life.”

All of that will be replaced by . . . what? Market cannibalization. And what comes next? A trans-continental conference with the Big East fiscal refugees forming a frantic alliance with remnants of the Mountain West? U-Conn. commuting to UNLV and Colorado State?

The prospect of it, coupled with the loss to Georgetown, made Cincinnati Coach Mark Cronin so mad he couldn’t contain himself.

“The whole thing is tragic,” Cronin said. “Nobody cares about student-athletes. All anybody cares about is money. Everybody in the NCAA, everybody in college administration, they talk about academics and student-athletes. If people cared about student-athletes, West Virginia wouldn’t be in the Big 12 with 10 teams flying 800 miles to their closest home game. That’s really conducive to studying. The whole thing is a hypocrisy . . .

“The economy has trickled down . . . so everybody’s just, ‘Well, let’s change leagues because we can solve our money problems.’ And people that suffer are the student-athletes. They’re the ones that suffer. And the fans, because, obviously, what made college sports so special is really tradition. The fact that we’re sitting here, and this is the last Big East tournament is beyond ridiculous. . . . It’s only gone for one reason: money.”

One thing is sure: The system as it’s currently operating can’t sustain itself. Something will break — probably the audience, who faithfully bought tickets and tuned in to watch regional rivalries, not Doomsday scenarios. And with which the bonds steadily loosen each time a regional conference fractures.

The dissolution of the old Southwest Conference and the ACC’s raiding of the Big East — the original conflicts that set all this in motion — were based not on geography or on the best thing for athletes, but on plundering for revenue, and therefore inevitably led to even more predatory behavior. The ACC ate the Big East alive, and now in order to survive, the Catholic Seven will turn around and plunder the Atlantic 10 for members, and pretty soon everyone will be eating their own tails.

All of it is an anathema to the supposed goal of the NCAA, which is tenuously defined by the IRS as not-for-profit, because its revenue was never meant to be hoarded by colleges. It’s meant to be a profit-shared, the richer schools supporting the weakest, in the name of competitive balance and to provide opportunities for as many athletes as possible.

A few years back I mentioned this point to former Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese, during a news conference in which he defended cash grabbing by the football conferences in the BCS. He flippantly said, “This isn’t communism.”

No, it’s supposed to be education. But you live by the sword, you die by the sword.

bchoter
03-15-2013, 02:28 PM
So how much is too much?

BLUE HORSE
03-17-2013, 08:22 PM
Joe,

The Big East was created primarily by Dave Gavitt many moons ago to help the basketball programs of the Eastern schools. Football was a far second as many of the FCS were mostly independents and were not that good except for Notre Dame, BC and Miami. Notre Dame was very unique in that it had it's own football tv contract that televised all of their home games and did not have to share the revenue with other Big East schools.

Enter the league bowl affiliations and BCS. The presidents and AD's of the FCS in the Big East wanted to increase the profile of their program and the tv money that came with it. The ACC on the other hand was ripe to be picked to death by the SEC for their top FCS teams. As a preemptive strike, the ACC convinced BC, Virginia Tech and Miami to leave the Big East for the ACC and their bigger guaranteed income from the tv networks. The domino continued to fall when the Big Twelve conference imploded with Texas demanding a bigger slice of the football pie and Texas A&M chaffing under the thumb of Texas. The Big Twelve lost Nebraska, Colorado and Texas A&M to rival leagues while stealing West Virginia and TCU from the Big East. The death blow to the Big East was when Notre Dame abandoned the league by announcing that they were bound to the ACC which allowed ND to keep all of their football money. All of the FCS teams left in the Big East wanted to save the league but at the same time campaigned to be invited by the Big Ten or ACC. This years Big East basketball chamionship can be called the ACC II championship as Syracuse and eventual champion Louisville are headed to the ACC next season.

In all of this changes, the basketball coaches of the Big East FCS teams had very little input. Football and the money it brought was the driving force that prodded the AD's and school president to cannibalize the Big East. The Catholic 7 had no choice but to look after their best interest. Coach Geno Auriemma of Connecticut was being hypocritical in attacking the Catholic 7 for taking the money and run because his own school was looking for their best interest by lobbying hard for the ACC or Big 10 to take them. Very ironic that UConn who won multiple NCAA championships in men and women's basketball has been left in limbo temporarily by the ACC because of their small time football program. Cincinnati is also ready to bolt the FCS Big East if there is another league that will accept. The football facilities of Cincinnati is receiving a 70 million face lift for starters.

It turns out that the Catholic 7 left plenty of cash on the table thanks to their divorce from the rest of the FCS Big East. The final settlement was for the Catholic 7 to receive 10 million of the 110 million of league funds, rights to play their championship at MSG and the league name, Big East. The new Big East has a new TV contract from Fox sports that will pay almost twice as much as what ESPN offered the water downed league to the rights to televise league games. Geography wise, the new Big East teams will not have to travel both coast to play their games.

By the way, the new Big East will be split into 2 divisions to be called the Jesuits and the Ecumenicals. The Jesuits division will have Georgetown, Marquette and new comers Xavier, Dayton and Creighton. The Ecumenicals will have Seton Hall, Providence, St. Johns, Villanova and Butler. If expansion is needed Jesuit schools St. Francis, St. Joseph and Detroit are available together with VCU and Richmond for the Ecumenicals. Conspicuously absent are the LaSalle schools like Manhattan and LaSalle. Heh heh heh, mga kontrabida kasi. Joke lang!

Sam Miguel
03-18-2013, 10:03 AM
So how much is too much?

Tokayo, allow Ky-rics to answer that one, hehehe...

Signing bonuses the root of all evil in recruitment, says UP head coach

By Celest R. Flores

INQUIRER.net

1:01 pm | Saturday, March 16th, 2013

MANILA Philippines — “Fat” signing bonuses are being thrown around and the deep-pocketed universities end up with the blue-chip recruits—a harsh reality check in college basketball recruitment today as far as University of the Philippines head coach Ricky Dandan is concerned.

And for UP, which is familiar with the view from the cellar in the UAAP, it’s just a matter of swallowing that reality.

“We make do of what we have. At least the guys we have genuinely wants to go to UP, and not because they’re being paid to go to UP,” Dandan said in an interview with INQUIRER.net.

These realities have altered college basketball, one way or another — and the amended UAAP residency rule, which caused uproar online and among athletes themselves, is just one of the offshoots.

“Definitely, off shoot lahat ng yan,” he said.

From just serving a year of residency, a high school student who graduated from a UAAP school enrolling to a university of another member now has to sit out two years. And while, according to the UAAP, it protects one school’s juniors program– it limits choices of the players, who are also students first.

“There were reasons for that, for the most part, lahat nangyari because of player poaching. You can’t blame the other schools who are, well, “victims” of being poached players from,” said Dandan.

“But like the others say, I actually agree that playing for any school is a privilege and a high school kid who graduates has the right to choose which school he wants to go to. But then if there are rules, rules should be followed,” he added.

Dandan said UP doesn’t exactly take a direct hit from the amended residency rule, saying “We don’t actually recruit from the other UAAP schools.”

“Most of those who come to UP are mostly walk-ins. But then, not to mention any school, in UP we actually can’t afford what the others give,” he said.

But he believes there are far bigger concerns in college basketball here — where an alarming amount of signing bonuses and monthly incentives are dangled to the athletes, starts evil.

“I think the root of all the evil here is the signing bonuses, which all the moneyed schools will give to the recruits. That’s probably the realities of recruitment now,” Dandan said.

Stricter rules for recruitment, like in the US-NCAA, would be a good place to start.

“In my mind, I’d like for, specifically the college leagues, stricter rules regarding signing bonuses and fat monthly allowances — or salaries if you will — parang pang-pro na eh yung mga bibinigay sa iba eh,” Dandan added. “Of course, if there will be a rule against it I don’t think it would be a deterrent, but then if there’s a rule that’s better than not having one.”

But with whatever rule the UAAP has right now, “Wala naman ibang pwedeng gawin. Let’s just comply.”

It’s a big question, though, on how the Fighting Maroons – who Dandan says can’t afford to dole out tempting incentives to the recruits — plan on acquiring big-time players and become more competitive again.

“We actually don’t think about that anymore. We just to have move on and make the best [of what we have]. Like we say in UP, we may not have everything but we have enough. Those are the realities,” Dandan added.

Sam Miguel
03-18-2013, 11:07 AM
Speaking of amateurs...

A Field With Everything Except an Obvious Favorite

By ZACH SCHONBRUN

Published: March 17, 2013
A season of extraordinary upheaval in college basketball yielded an N.C.A.A. tournament field with few favorites, several more surprises and a landscape wide open for potential upsets.

Louisville, winner of the Big East tournament, earned the top overall selection Sunday. But the Cardinals (29-5) appear far from a dominating force, the way Kentucky proved to be last season, and the only distinguishable identity of this season’s bracket might be its parity.

Of the other three top seeds — Kansas, Indiana and Gonzaga — only the Jayhawks finished in the top 5 in the R.P.I., with a schedule ranked 19th in the country based on its toughness.

“I don’t think there’s any consensus favorite,” the CBS analyst Clark Kellogg said. “I just don’t think there’s a team that has distinguished itself.”

It was a year that saw five teams snatch the No. 1 ranking, none with a particularly firm grip. As a result, the tournament field presents a panorama of teams from big and small conferences, with no apparent favoritism shown toward the regulars that normally populate the brackets.

Just ask Kentucky, which was one of the last teams left out of the tournament, after winning it all last season. The Wildcats can blame Middle Tennessee State, an at-large out of the Sun Belt conference, for taking their last opening.

“Our job is just to identify who we believe are the best 37 teams,” said Mike Bobinski, chairman of the N.C.A.A. tournament selection committee. “I think it’s great for college basketball when, in the committee’s evaluation, there are good teams spread all around the country in a variety of different settings and leagues. That’s a positive as far as we’re concerned.”

Gonzaga (31-2) finished the season atop the rankings, but the Bulldogs were the third No. 1 seed to be chosen. It is the first time Gonzaga has been a top seed. Entering the weekend, Indiana was the committee’s only lock as a top seed, Bobinski said. But, after Indiana lost to Wisconsin, 68-56, in the Big Ten tournament semifinals, the seeding became that much more difficult.

“We really did give a lot of time and energy on that first line this year,” Bobinski said. “As much as I can recall in my five years on the committee.”

And Indiana was the closest thing to a dominant team, after beginning the season ranked No. 1, staying at the top of the rankings for eight weeks, and finishing ranked No. 3. The Hoosiers earned a No. 1 seed for the first time since 1993, but found themselves in the East Region that includes Marquette, Syracuse and Miami.

“It has been a long time and a long, hard process to get a program back to considered among the best in the country,” Indiana Coach Tom Crean said at a news conference. “The program has been considered for decades as one of the best in the country, but now to have a team and have this program back there with that seeding behind it is fantastic.”

The Hurricanes, a No. 2 seed, became the first program to win the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title and its conference title and fail to earn a No. 1 seed. The A.C.C. earned four bids, one fewer than the Atlantic 10 conference.

That was the landscape of college basketball this season, where confusion frequently reigned. Consider Louisville’s mercurial rises and falls: ranked No. 2 to begin the season, the Cardinals lost three straight games in January and another, in five overtimes to Notre Dame, in early February. But they have not lost since. They beat Syracuse to win the Big East tournament, and appear to be playing their best basketball of the season.

During one monthlong stretch in mid-January, four teams hopped to No. 1 and there were seven losses among top-five teams. Last week alone, four of the teams ranked in the top 6 — Indiana, Duke, Georgetown and Michigan — lost in their conference tournaments, opening the door for Kansas and Louisville, considered outsiders, to move into the top row.

Kellogg indicated he might slightly favor Louisville to advance to the Final Four, since the Cardinals went there last season with largely the same lineup.

“I think togetherness, unselfishness playing for each other, is often overlooked and undervalued,” Kellogg said. “Those attributes of unity and chemistry can often be an equalizer as long as the talent gap isn’t super great.”

The Big East put eight teams in the field for a fourth consecutive season, the most of any other conference, while the Pac-12 conference seemed to get little respect from the committee.

Oregon (26-8), the conference’s tournament winner, was given a No. 12 seed and will face Oklahoma State in the Midwest, the bracket’s toughest region. Bobinski said Oregon’s placement was a matter “an unfortunate circumstance” based on travel and seeding, but Kellogg saw it as indicative of the difficulty the committee had plumbing through all the balance in the country.

“The lack of clarity I think impacted the seed lines for a team like Oregon,” Kellogg said.

Kentucky (21-11) became just the fifth team since 1985 to miss the tournament after winning it the year before, joining Louisville in 1987, Kansas in 1989, Florida in 2008 and North Carolina in 2010.

And hours after winning the Atlantic 10 title, Saint Louis was stuck in traffic on the way to the airport and needed to stop in a Best Buy in Secaucus, N.J., to watch their selection. They were named a No. 4 seed in the Midwest, and they celebrated among appliances and electronic goods, instead of fans.

It was a fitting scene to cap a wild season in college basketball, with the fun seemingly only just beginning.

“I still think there will be a healthy chance to see some turbulence in the first weekend,” Kellogg said. “I think we’ll have an exciting tournament.”

Sam Miguel
03-21-2013, 09:15 AM
Tiny Butler’s NCAA tournament success provided a bounce beyond basketball

Another look at Butler: Back-to-back Cinderella runs hoisted the small liberal arts university into the national spotlight. Here’s a reintroduction to the Indianapolis-based private university.

By Jenna Johnson, Mar 20, 2013 11:37 PM EDT

The Washington Post Updated: Thursday, March 21, 7:37 AM

INDIANAPOLIS — When Butler University made it to the finals of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament in 2010 — and again in 2011 — it was the smallest school to do so in the history of the modern tournament, prompting swarms of people to Google “Where is Butler?”

The Butler Bulldogs lost both marquee games, but experts estimate that the television exposure and media mentions were worth at least $1 billion to the small, private school here. Butler T-shirt sales skyrocketed, the school Web site had record traffic, and applications for admission increased 40 percent. Suddenly, Butler had more students from out of state than from Indiana — along with a nationally known name.

With the announcement Wednesday that the school will join the new Big East Conference this summer, Butler now will regularly be on the same court as basketball and academic powerhouses such as Georgetown University. This week the Bulldogs head into March Madness for the sixth time in seven years, A No. 6 seed, they are slated to play Bucknell on Thursday with hopes of making it to D.C. for the East Regionals.

Butler officials are thrilled with the recognition and hope that the conference change — along with a lucrative television deal — will transform the university, further building its national reputation. But there also are worries about the rapid growth and what it could mean for a school that had existed in near obscurity for more than 150 years.

“I worry that it’s a dance with the devil,” said Margaret Brabant, a political science professor who is chairwoman of the Butler faculty senate. “It’s multimillions of dollars, and money changes people. And if we don’t remain vigilant and ask questions, we will go the way of other institutions.”

Many students say they were attracted by Butler’s small and quiet campus, tucked away in a historic, upscale neighborhood in north Indianapolis. Classes typically have fewer than 20 students, and most professors prioritize teaching over research. Star basketball players study, sleep and eat in the same places as non-athletes. On a recent tour, the student guide pitched Butler as being “a small campus with a big-campus feel.”

Recently, the boom in interest has caused a capacity squeeze; the number of undergraduates has grown about 8 percent in five years. The residence halls, university-run apartments and Greek houses are packed, with students sometimes living three to a room or in converted lounges. Parking is scarce. The university has struggled to staff all of its introductory courses without increasing class sizes.

“Right now it’s about perfect,” said Carley Thompson, 20, a sophomore pharmacy major. “I don’t want that to change.”

Right now, Butler operates much like a traditional liberal arts school. Its endowment sits at about $150 million, and it is highly dependent on tuition, making it one of the most expensive universities in Indiana, with graduates who have higher-than-average debt. There are only about 500 graduate students, and nearly all of its 4,200 undergraduates are younger than 24 and enrolled full time. More than 80 percent of the student body is white.

Though Butler continues to improve its academic reputation, it is not included in U.S. News and World Report’s latest national college rankings, but it does rank second on a regional U.S. News list of top Midwestern schools. (By comparison, Georgetown is ranked No. 21 on the overall national list, has more than 17,000 students and boasts a $1 billion endowment.)

Leading the change is Butler’s president of 19 months, James M. Danko, the former dean of the Villanova University business school. Like a growing number of presidents, Danko followed a nontraditional path. He ran a medical supply company for nearly 20 years, earned an MBA at the University of Michigan and then jumped into the world of academia.

Danko’s vision for Butler: Hire a vice president for marketing to pinpoint the “Butler brand” and then promote it. Launch an aggressive fundraising campaign to expand the endowment fivefold, to $750 million, in the next 12 years. Continue to offer the “luxury” of a traditional, four-year residential education, but also expand graduate program offerings, certificate programs and online education. And expand the “undergraduate market” to more than 5,000 in the coming years.

“We’ve got an unprecedented opportunity to move beyond what was once a local university, then regional, to more national prominence,” Danko said. “And we need to move aggressively on that.”

Basketball strategy

When Butler made it to the Final Four in 2010, it played the games at Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indianapolis, Butler’s back yard. That meant players could attend class on the same day as the biggest game in the school’s history — a feat captured by many of the reporters who descended on campus.

“The take-away has been, ‘Oh, yeah, that’s the place where the guys went to class,’ ” said Tom Weede, the vice president for enrollment management. “We couldn’t have planned it that perfectly.”

For more than a decade, Butler officials have invested strategically in the basketball program. That has paid off with 10 trips to the national tournament between 1997 and 2011, with back-to-back appearances in the championship game that busted brackets across the country.

Butler’s March Madness fame immediately provided results. Applications to Butler increased from 6,760 before its first Final Four victory to 9,522 afterward. Last year it was 9,683, and this year was in the same range, Weede said.

The history of March Madness includes many tales of relatively unknown schools with coaches on modest salaries doing well in the tournament and earning national attention, including Final Four appearances by George Mason University in 2006 and Virginia Commonwealth University in 2011.

In 1999, Gonzaga University in Washington state made it to the national tournament’s Elite Eight round, where it lost to the University of Connecticut, which went on to win the tournament. Gonzaga invested heavily in the basketball program, including recruiting top talent and building a new $23 million arena at a time of tight resources. This week, Gonzaga is making its 15th consecutive trip to the big dance. Though Gonzaga has yet to again make it as far as the Elite Eight, this year it is a No. 1 seed.

“The fact that we’ve been consistently in the brackets, now for 15 years, has really served us well,” said Gonzaga President Thayne M. McCulloh. “The real power of this is that it gives us a chance to say, ‘Hey, as long as your eye is on us, let’s throw you a little factoid.’ ”

The costs of success

Doing well at the tournament more than once can create an expectation that the team will continue to succeed. That can lead to spending more and more money on coaching salaries and facilities — or easing admission requirements for major recruits. It also thrusts tiny schools such as Butler into a megamillions race against perennial — and far wealthier — competitors.

Butler has nearly completed a $16 million fundraising campaign for the renovation of Hinkle Fieldhouse, an iconic shrine to basketball that towers over the campus and was made famous by the 1986 movie “Hoosiers.” The project will add more-comfortable seating for fans, a new scoreboard with more space for advertisements and more office space for coaches and administrators.

After Butler’s first Final Four win in 2010, Coach Brad Stevens began to receive offers from larger programs. He instead signed a 12-year contract with Butler. Stevens, 36, started at Butler as a volunteer coach in 2000, having quit a corporate marketing job, and became head coach in April 2007.

Stevens was paid more than $850,000 in 2010, according to the university’s latest public tax documents. By comparison, Georgetown’s John Thompson III made at least $2.2 million and the University of Kentucky’s John Calipari made at least $3.8 million.

Butler basketball has one of the highest player graduation rates in the country and for seven years has had a player named an academic all-American.

“I really try to emphasize: Don’t choose us because we’re on TV. Don’t choose here because you want the glory of what the past has experienced,” Stevens said of his recruiting efforts. “Choose it because it’s the right place for you to ultimately better yourself.”

The program has slowly begun to recruit outside the Midwest. An incoming class of recruits includes players from Rhode Island, Massachusetts and California.

Even before the Big East move was formally announced, Butler professors and students were dreaming about how to spend the new millions the school expects. If nothing else, they say, the money could allow the athletics department to more fully support itself, freeing up other funds for academics.

“There will be more costs,” Danko said, speaking on a cellphone as he boarded a plane after the Big East announcement in New York on Wednesday. “We will need to spend more on travel and things like that. There are more costs.”

Sam Miguel
03-21-2013, 09:19 AM
From Les Carpenter of Yahoo Sports - - -

Robert Morris taps its inner Rocky, knocks swagger right out of one-and-done Kentucky

20 hours ago

MOON, Pa. – This is what college basketball still can be in a world of one-and-dones and broken conferences and coaches draped in Armani. Yes, there can exist a steamy night in a tiny gym high on a hill by the Pittsburgh airport where the little guy stands strong, the giant topples and a swarm of students clad in red spill from wooden stands and dance on the remains of a national champion.

Never in an eternity could a school like Robert Morris get a team like Kentucky to come to its 3,000-seat Sewall Center, even if this is the hometown of Wildcats coach John Calipari. The dollars wouldn't allow it. And yet by the magic of a broken season, the NIT and the indignity of hated Louisville playing the NCAA tournament on the Wildcats' home court, there were Kentucky's players filing off the bus Tuesday evening, dripping of entitlement and stepping in the smallest locker room they will every see.

Then there they were, hours later, walking away losers in the first round of the NIT after falling 59-57. It's fitting that the first postgame question to Calipari was about when each of his players would say he was going pro.

Robert Morris coach Andrew Toole did not face such a query. Nobody wondered if his players who won 20 games playing in the overlooked Northeast Conference were going to leave school early. Instead, he gathered them in their locker room beneath the stands and told them about a movie made long before they were born.

John Calipari had picked them, he said. Once it was certain the Wildcats weren't going to the NCAAs – and because of the tournament games being played this week in Rupp Arena – they knew they were going on the road in the NIT, and the Kentucky coach selected his hometown school as his choice opponent. He wanted them. He was giving them a shot at destiny.

Toole continued, telling his players that this situation was reminiscent of a movie about a boxer named Apollo Creed, who picked a hardscrabble nobody named Rocky Balboa. And just like Rocky, who fought and fought and fought until he finally vanquished the mighty Apollo Creed in "Rocky II," they too would beat Kentucky.

"I guess that was the motivating factor for us," Robert Morris forward Russell Johnson said.

"Come on, everyone knows Rocky," guard Karvel Anderson said as he stood on the court, still in his uniform, long after the fans had left.

Off in Dayton, the NCAA was going through a contrived series of play-in games that is supposed to suffice for excitement in a sport with few national stars. But the real joy was here, where the basketball still felt real, and the Northeast Conference banners of Central Connecticut and Quinnipiac and Monmouth mocked the Kentucky players. Toole told his team to not be intimidated by the Kentucky name. He told them they were tougher and hungrier and could fight with anyone. He was sure they believed him.

Then, as the Wildcats warmed up, Toole noticed something else. The Kentucky players weren't as big as he thought. Their arms didn't ripple with muscles. Aside from 7-foot center Willie Cauley-Stein, his players were just as big, maybe even bigger.

Suddenly the Rocky analogy wasn't a locker room story told on a whim – he too believed his team could win.

So, yes, there can still be a night like this, a night away from the glaring eye of the NCAAs where last year's national champion could be forced to play in a 3,000-seat gym. And yes, the Kentucky players looked as if they wanted to be anywhere but Moon, Pa. on the night the big tournament began. But after falling behind 10-0, they did fight. They did storm back in the final minutes and they did seethe with rage when Robert Morris forward Lucky Jones took out one of their super freshmen Archie Goodwin with a vicious foul.

Only it wouldn't be enough. Even after Jones was ejected and had to walk away from one of the biggest games of his life, Apollo Creed couldn't beat Rocky. Kentucky's season ended on a missed three-pointer by Kyle Wiltjer.

The ensuing few minutes were college basketball at its core. The Robert Morris players danced. The fans swarmed them on the court. And from the locker room appeared Lucky Jones, who ran into the stands and hugged his mother Vicki.

"I did it," he told her.

She wanted to joke: "you weren't even out there for the final five minutes." Instead she hugged him and then later said: "Robert Morris has a lot of quick guys out there and given the opportunity they can take it to the other team."

Across the gym, in a room three stories off the floor, Calipari looked a mixture of disgusted and relieved. As much as he loved last year's version of the Wildcats, filled with a lineup of players off to the NBA, he seemed to despise this one just as much.

"The program got hijacked," he said. "I can't believe the stuff I had to put up with."

"This was humbling," he said moments later about the season.

"We will be a hard-nosed team next year," he added. "I can't sit through this again."

Then he was off to greet old friends and neighbors, sign autographs and laugh in the hallway. He dropped names. He seemed glad to be rid of the team that never came together. Outside, in the cold, the engine of the team's motor coach churned. His players, just thrown by him under a proverbial bus, headed slowly to the real one. It was a moment none of them could have imagined just months before when they started the season No. 3 in the nation.

Neither could the Robert Morris Colonials, who still stalked their home floor. Several of them had cramped during the game, something they don't normally do. But Toole had told them to pour everything they had into this one great moment. And so they had.

"I guess you could say we emptied our tanks out there," Anderson said.

Just as they should on the night when college basketball was good again.

bchoter
03-21-2013, 09:49 AM
... and Julius Randle commits to KU... deym

Joescoundrel
03-21-2013, 11:34 AM
O'Bannon case against NCAA sheds light on big-time athletic departments' fuzzy math

By Dan Wetzel

12 hours ago

The looming possibility that on June 1 a federal judge in U.S. District Court in Northern California could grant the potentially earth-shattering lawsuit of O'Bannon v. NCAA class-action status has left college athletic administrators concerned.

What started four years ago as a simple, if big-dreaming, lawsuit – former UCLA basketball great Ed O'Bannon suing over the NCAA's continued use of his likeness, long after his 1996 graduation, in a video game – has snowballed into a legal challenge of college sports' entire economic model.

The NCAA kept earning money off Ed O'Bannon long after he stopped playing for UCLA. Here on the eve of the 2013 NCAA basketball tournament, there isn't anyone in college athletics that isn't taking it seriously. One day soon, maybe even by 2015, the players themselves could be getting a share of the billion-dollar revenue, a once-unthinkable development.

The O'Bannon side is seeking a 50/50 split. The NCAA wants to keep it 100/0 and has expressed no interest in negotiating. Billions of dollars hang in the balance.

Last week, a cadre of college administrators, including Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany, Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds and Wake Forest president Nathan Hatch, submitted written declarations in an effort to persuade the judge from granting class action. They were mostly filled with gloom-and-doom predictions of what would happen should colleges have to actually share any of the money with current or past players.

Much of the media attention has focused on Delany claiming the Big Ten would never comply and instead would "take steps to downsize the scope, breadth and activities of their athletic programs," he wrote. "Several models exist … such as Division III."

There is zero chance the Big Ten will move to D-III. Ohio State is not going to become Kenyon College. Delany's claim is perhaps his most absurd in a career full of sky-is-falling, pouting proclamations.

Which isn't to say his declaration wasn't revealing. It was. By attempting to employ a scare tactic, Delany – and the others – clearly stated the value their universities place on field hockey, swimming and any other non-revenue sports.

Apparently it's not much.

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The University of Texas brought in $150.3 million in total revenue in fiscal 2011, according to Department of Education filings. According to Dodds, "approximately 82 percent of that can be fairly attributed to football, and 15 percent to men's basketball." That's 97 percent of incoming revenue. Yet Dodds testified that expenditures on football [$24.8 million] and basketball [$8.5 million] totaled just $33.3 million. That's just 24.7 percent of UT's $133.7 million in total expenditures.

Where does the rest of the football and basketball money go?

It pays for the entire department, including construction of opulent facilities, upkeep and debt service. There was a national high $22.2 million spent on coaching salaries in 19 sports and another $27.7 million spent on compensation for athletic department personnel. Seven million went to travel and there were 419 either full or partial scholarships that go mostly to athletes in sports that draw few fans and little revenue.

While the raw numbers are bigger at Texas – as is the rare profit – that's the basic formula. At most schools football and men's basketball picks up the tab for everyone else. And often there isn't any coupon clipping in the tab.

The Longhorns' tennis teams, for instance, have for years competed in the 1,800-seat Penick-Allison Tennis Center, dubbed "Outstanding Tennis Facility in the Nation" by the USTA. Despite that, UT just last month cut the ribbon on the new $8.8 million Weller Tennis Center, providing an additional six indoor and four outdoor courts, plus locker rooms and other amenities.

It's an incredible setup, the best getting even better. It is also an example of what critics call the "gold-plating" of college athletics.

Critics contend that athletic departments spend unnecessary millions in skyrocketing salaries, huge support staffs and over-the-top facilities as a way to claim they can't pay football and basketball players – or taxes – because at the end of the year they are broke. Usually less than two-dozen athletic departments turn a profit.

"They are using these sports to camouflage all of the high revenue," said Ramogi Huma, a former UCLA football player and president of student-athlete group the National Collegiate Players Association.

It's also a way of saying that if funding drops, something tangible – scholarship opportunities and first-class travel and facilities, especially for women – might be lost.

While non-revenue teams could continue playing – providing competition and camaraderie – scholarships may no longer be offered. And travel could be reduced to mostly busing around within the state or region to schools of all sizes rather than jetting across in expansive conferences that were designed to maximize football television revenue, not make sense for soccer or softball.

What Delany and others revealed is that those opportunities and experiences are overpriced, at least to the point Big Ten schools won't see reasonable value in using general funds to keep them going at current levels.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Revenues derived from college athletics are the sole property of the institution and should be expended in support of the broadest array of men's and women's educational and athletic opportunities, and not solely for the support of men's basketball and football players," Delany wrote.

Within the huge budgets of a major university, athletic revenue remains a drop in the bucket. Delany's assertion that football and men's basketball must support non-revenue sports – rather than, say, the history department or the dorm heating bill – is an attempt to make a moral claim on what is really an accounting and control issue. He is protecting athletic fiefdoms, where ADs dole out every penny, from funding decisions being made with a campus-wide view.

He, among others, testified that should the players get a cut of revenue, then suddenly athletic departments might not have enough cash to blindly support non-revenue teams.

As such, funding for those teams would then require the university as a whole to determine whether it's more aligned with their mission to fund full scholarships for 12 kids based on their field hockey skill or 12 kids based on their promise as biology students, let alone whether an athletic facility would need rehabbing over a computer lab.

Universities provide scholarships for any number of reasons – academic merit, socioeconomic, a determination to value the arts [dance, music], etc. It's the school's money. They can do whatever they want with it, prioritize whatever they see fit. If Texas wants to build an $8.8 million tennis facility, hey, more power to them.

It's just that Delany doesn't sound confident that less popular sports will make that cut.

"I believe," Delany wrote, "that paying football and/or men's basketball players would reduce opportunities for student-athletes overall."

It's a nice alarmist claim. Big, mean Eddie O'Bannon and his lawyers are trying to kill the swimming program, and who the heck could be against a nice swimming program?

It isn't true though. The only people who can kill the swim team – or cut scholarships and travel budgets – are some of the very leaders who are writing these legal testimonials.

The University of Michigan, for instance, is a Big Ten member with an endowment of about $8 billion. If it wants a field hockey team, it can most certainly afford one. Cutting football players past and present in on some of the tens of millions that program generates or allowing them to profit off their own likeness or to put a percentage of jersey sales into a trust fund, isn't going to bankrupt the school. And if Title IX can't be reworked (and it almost assuredly can), then Michigan would do just that to comply with federal law.

What Delany is saying is that left to its own decision, Michigan won't see field hockey as worth the money. He's acknowledging that outside the myopic prism of the athletic department, gold-plated, non-revenue sports don't make much sense.

Right now Michigan athletics gets 100 percent of the revenue and things roll on. If the players get a cut, then it will have to "reduce opportunities for student-athletes overall."

So it's the players' share of the revenue – the money the O'Bannon case is trying to divert – that is propping up the other sports … the same other sports that Delany doesn't believe the university itself considers a sound investment.

Which begs a simple, if inadvertent question: if Michigan doesn't think it should pay for a field hockey team, then why does it think Denard Robinson should?

Sam Miguel
03-22-2013, 12:57 PM
Sangalang free to join patron Pineda's team after getting unconditional NLEX release

By Snow Badua

March 20, 2013, 06:28 pm

SUDDENLY, the road to a fifth straight PBA D-League is no longer well-paved for NLEX.

Just days after seven-footer Greg Slaughter took a leave of absence from the team to attend to his studies at Ateneo, the Road Warriors lost another crucial piece when they released big man Ian Sangalang to EA Regenerative Medicine-Pampanga squad.

NLEX team manager Ronald Dulatre explained the move was a sacrifice made by the team to maintain a good relationship with the group of Sangalang’s manager, Dennis Pineda, who manages several marquee players suiting up for the different teams owned by Manny V. Pangilinan.

“Ni-release na lang namin, kasi we want to foster good relationship with Mayor Pineda,” said Dulatre, who admitted the team is letting Sangalang go with a heavy heart.

“Mabigat talaga sa loob namin, kasi siya na lang ang big man eh. Dati 6-7 ang average height namin, ngayon 6-1 na lang,” admitted Dulatre, who added NLEX tried to negotiate for a direct trade with EA ReGEN team‘s other big man Raymond Almazan.

“Kinukuha nga namin si Almazan, para naman magkaroon kami ng malaki. Kaso hindi sila pumayag. Hindi na namin pinilit,” Dulatre bared. “But even sa last minute, we are still hoping na we can resolve with Pampanga bosses the Sangalang-Almazan swap.”

Meanwhile, Pineda was surprised by the sudden turn of events, especially since NLEX initially refused to released Sangalang, whom the Road Warriors said is still under contract with the team until July.

“Magandang balita yun, kung talagang ni-release na nga nila si Ian. Pero hindi muna ako magsasaya at magbibigay ng comment hangga’t di ko nakikitang lumaro siya sa amin,” said Pineda, whose team makes its debut against fellow newcomer Hog’s Breath Café at 2 p.m. Thursday at the Ynares Arena in Pasig.

Prior to the start of the 2013 Foundation Cup, NLEX already allowed its other big man Gregory Slaughter to take a leave to focus on his studies at Ateneo, where he is enrolled in summer classes.

Dulatre, meanwhile, revealed that Slaughter has already agreed to suit up for the team come the playoffs.

“Yes, yun naman ang good news namin ngayon. Greg agreed to again play for us,” beamed Dulatre. “Aayusin lang daw niya `yung schedule niya sa school tapos lalaro siya ulit.”

The NLEX boss also told Spin.ph that the Road Warriors are now in search of a free agent big man who can fill the void temporarily left by Slaughter and Sangalang.

Sam Miguel
04-12-2013, 01:07 PM
Iowa State: NCAA case started with basketball aide

By RYAN J. FOLEY and LUKE MEREDITH |

Associated Press – Wed, Apr 10, 2013

Iowa State released fresh details Wednesday of its internal investigation into NCAA recruiting violations, saying it found "a significant number" of impermissible calls and text messages made by coaches in football, men's basketball and several other sports.

The report said Iowa State's two-year investigation started with the discovery of improper contacts with recruits by Keith Moore, a former Cyclones player who was working in his first year as an undergraduate student coach under Fred Hoiberg.

The report said Hoiberg ran into Moore in 2011 at one of Hoiberg's son's AAU games. Hoiberg asked why he was present at the game and whether he'd been contacting recruits. Moore acknowledged that he had been in contact with high school players that he had coached previously in AAU, the report said.

Hoiberg reported the incident to the athletics department, which removed Moore of his duties with the team and started an investigation. The basketball team also stopped recruiting two players from Moore's former AAU team, the All Iowa Attack.

Moore played at Iowa State from 1978-81. He was offered a chance to return to school as part of the athletic department's continuing education program in 2010 and assigned to work with the men's basketball team in return for Iowa State paying for his tuition, fees and books.

Moore did not respond to NCAA investigators' request for a statement on the case, and he did not immediately return an e-mail message seeking comment. A phone listing for Moore could not be found.

The report has been turned over to the NCAA's Committee on Infractions, though there's no specific timetable on when it might rule on the case.

The report says an audit of three years of telephone and text messaging by coaching staff found "a significant number of recruiting communication violations involving most of its sports programs." Moore sent 160 impermissible text messages to his former AAU players, including two that were being recruited by Iowa State at the time, the report found.

Coaches made 24 "clear-cut intentional" telephone call violations, and other employees made 55 impermissible calls, the report found. Employees failed to log another 1,400 calls that failed to connect with recruits for reasons such as no answer or dropped calls, the report said. In all, the university faulted itself for failing to monitor the calls.

The university said the improper calls were a tiny fraction of the 750,000 that were reviewed over the three-year period involving all 18 sports programs.

But six current and former coaches in men's basketball and football were named in the report for acknowledging personal involvement and could face further discipline.

The university said it agreed with NCAA's enforcement staff that the findings "constitute a major infractions case," given the number and frequency of telephone call violations and the volume of messages sent by Moore.

The university has asked the NCAA to accept its findings and issue a punishment of two years of probation, retroactive to November of 2011.

But six current and former coaches in men's basketball and football were named in the report for acknowledging personal involvement and could face further discipline.

"We've been committed to being as transparent as possible throughout this entire process, which has been challenging given it has been an ongoing investigation and we did not receive the final report until this week," Jamie Pollard, the Iowa State athletic director, said in a statement.

Iowa State spokesman Steve Malchow told The Associated Press on Wednesday that Pollard was out of his office and unavailable for further comment, adding that the NCAA discourages school officials to publicly comment on ongoing cases.

The school said that it has already self-imposed numerous penalties. Each of its teams forfeited a week of recruiting calls, and the school will spend $82,000 over the next three years in compliance and recruiting software to simplify the recording and monitoring of calls and text messages.

The Cyclones also said they've already taken a wide range of punitive actions against each of the coaches named in the report.

The university hired The Compliance Group, based in Lanexa, Kan., to assist in the investigation. Records released to The Associated Press on Wednesday show the firm billed the school more than $30,000 for its services.

This is the second major infractions case Iowa State has been involved with.

In 1986, the Cyclones were put on two years of probation because of violations within the football program.

Joescoundrel
04-17-2013, 10:17 AM
Alex Len, Otto Porter could have used more schooling, but NBA is to blame for early departures

By Mike Wise, Apr 16, 2013 10:37 PM EDT

The Washington Post Wednesday, April 17, 6:37 AM

Every April, my hoophead friends call or text with basically the same message: “He’s not ready.” Or, “If he doesn’t stay in school one more year, that kid is just flat-out stupid.” These are also the same unpaid talent evaluators, by the way, who thought Hasheem Thabeet was going to be the next Dikembe Mutombo. They also once sold me on high-flying Harold Miner. Unfortunately, “Baby Jordan” wasn’t in the league long enough to be Infant Julius.

These same virtual GMs are now positive that Alex Len made a colossal mistake by leaving Maryland for the NBA after his sophomore season. Some even think Otto Porter Jr., who also spent just two seasons at Georgetown, could use an extra year of dominating 20-year-old college kids before going pro.

I have just one retort for my basketball-genius brethren: They’re all ready, because enough NBA scouting departments have deemed them ready. And if the people with the purse strings believe you already can play or develop into a player at their level, it’s immaterial whether you become a 10-year pro or a three-and-out bust.

You have to go. Now. Or risk losing millions of dollars up front.

Both Len and Porter almost certainly will be lottery picks in the upcoming draft. Gauging by different draft Web sites, Porter could go as high as the third pick overall, and Len should be taken between the seventh and 10th picks.

All the hand-wringing, all the moral certitude, about how another year of college can benefit those two kids goes out the window with one unalterable fact: Through no fault of their own, their stock may never be higher in the league’s severely flawed system, an apprenticeship program that actually penalizes players such as Roy Hibbert and Jared Sullinger for having the wisdom to stay for another year of college.

Sullinger, a big piece of sheetrock in the post, bulled over the Big Ten as an 18-year-old. He was projected to be the No. 1 pick after his freshman season at Ohio State, ahead of Kyrie Irving. Instead, he stayed another season and was taken 21st, which became the difference between making $5.1 million his rookie year and $1.08 million. One more year of room, board and cafeteria privileges in Columbus turned out to be worth basically $4 million.

Hibbert’s story is more refreshing because he parlayed the confidence gained his senior year at Georgetown into his second NBA contract, a $55 million maximum deal. As a formerly uncoordinated 7-footer who morphed into an NBA all-star, he could be a role model for Len.

But should a still-raw 7-1 kid such as Len take that chance to buck the odds and become the next Big Roy? That’s a much bigger gamble for a player with a finite number of earning-power years than for the NBA front office executive who’s taking the chance, an official who will get another job after he’s fired.

Len isn’t a transcendent talent, but he had to leave school early simply because the NBA said he had to go.

Has Len developed the necessary back-to-the-basket skills to be a competent center in a game that barely employs any true big men anymore? No. Is he rugged enough to withstand a forearm in the throat from Metta World Peace and still come up with a loose ball? No. Can he put a couple of shots in Row D and make enough jump hooks and 10-footers to tantalize his new general manager into believing he can become the NBA’s next premier pick-and-pop guy? Definitely.

Because a relative unknown grew up to be Dirk Nowitzki and because a few great young Americans — many of whom, such as Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett, jumped to the league straight from high school — ruined the draft curve the past 15 to 20 years, NBA front offices became infatuated with overseas potential and child stars.

Hence, the NBA draft has become like investing in a Greek mutual fund: In both cases, you have no idea whether your Euro will be worth anything in three years.

Once a millennium, such as 2003, it all works out, and LeBron James is the one coming out of high school and Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh are the freshmen leaving early. (Even then, Darko Milicic was the No. 2 overall pick.). Much more often, you end up with classes such as 2000, when Stromile Swift, Darius Miles and Marcus Fizer left college eligibility on the table, were picked second through fourth overall . . . and were barely heard from again. In hindsight, one group was ready and one was not. But the message to both was the same: Turn pro and you will be picked high and paid well.

Is Porter going to be special? Eventually, yes. He intuitively knows the game like few young players. But the guess is the frenetic pace of the league is going to take a while for even his loping strides to catch up to. By his third year, a young man who hadn’t taken an airplane ride until he came to Georgetown for his recruiting visit could be on an all-NBA team — or, who knows, playing behind Martell Webster. Either way, it was time for him to leave.

Len looked as if he was big for nothing at Maryland a year ago and, if we’re being honest, in several ACC games this season. Now, a Ukrainian kid who speaks halting English is months away from being a millionaire after averaging fewer than 12 points and two blocks per game in college.

They didn’t set the market for themselves; they’re only taking advantage of imperfect talent evaluators, whose predecessors decided in different years to use No. 1 picks on Pervis “Out of Service” Ellison, Joe Barely Cares and Kwame Brown.

You want to blame someone for Maryland not having a shot-blocking monster in the middle in the next season? Blame Michael Jordan; blame his front office ilk. They made it possible for everyone to leave early and believe they could get Kwame money.

Joescoundrel
08-16-2013, 09:50 AM
Revenge of the Nerds: How the 'smart schools' got good at football

By Stewart Mandel

Duke coach David Cutcliffe spent 25 seasons in the SEC. He knew he'd arrived in a different world upon boarding the bus for the Blue Devils' first road game in 2008. "I'd never seen a kid on a road trip carrying books," Cutcliffe said. "Guys were carrying laptops, working on papers. That was brand new to me."

Stanford assistant Mike Sanford spent a season at Western Kentucky before returning to The Farm in 2011. Amid the monotony of two-a-days that August, he noticed that stars Andrew Luck and Shayne Skov both had their heads buried in the tome-length A Song of Ice and Fire books. "I thought, 'Wow, this is not Western Kentucky,'" Sanford said.

Defying the stereotype of most teen sitcom and movies, today's nerds are proving they can play football, too. "There's nothing wrong with being a nerd," said Northwestern center Brandon Vitabile, a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar. "It's something I'm proud of."

Proud or not, nerds weren't very good at football for much of college football history. Suddenly, that's changed.

Last year four schools -- Notre Dame, Stanford, Northwestern and Vanderbilt -- ranked among the top 20 in both the U.S. News and World Report Best Colleges rankings and the final USA Today college football coaches rankings. In November the Irish became the first team to simultaneously rank No. 1 in both the BCS standings and FBS graduation rates. In December, Vanderbilt completed its first nine-win season since 1915, while Duke played in its first bowl game since 1994. And on Jan. 1, Northwestern won its first bowl game since 1949 by beating Mississippi State in the Gator Bowl, while Stanford beat Wisconsin for its first Rose Bowl win since 1972.

While Notre Dame's run to last season's BCS title game was surprising, it was not uncommon for the storied program. The new wrinkle is that fellow "smart schools" like Stanford (US News' No. 6 college), Northwestern (No. 12) and Vanderbilt (No. 17) are simultaneously enjoying historic peaks.

Last year the Wildcats earned a school-record fifth straight bowl trip (the previous high was two) and notched just the third 10-win season in school history. Stanford won its first Pac-12 championship since 1999 to earn a third-consecutive BCS bowl berth; the Cardinal's 35 wins over the past three seasons are more than all but one team nationally (Oregon). And Vandy, coming off its first back-to-back bowl seasons, finally won more SEC games (five) than it lost (three).

"As much as we can, we're going to change college football," said Stanford coach David Shaw. "Some of our guys are going to be CEOs and found companies and do all kinds of things outside of football. But when it comes to game day, they're just as tough and just as good as anyone in the country."

These teams have experienced pockets of success before, from the Jim Plunkett and John Elway eras at Stanford to Northwestern's out-of-nowhere 1995 Rose Bowl season. Instead of viewing the current stretch as an anomaly, however, these programs are attempting to create a new reality, and in so doing dispel generations of naysayers who assumed being smart and being good at football were mutually exclusive.

"I believe that was a truism, but it was one that the people at the schools created," said Vanderbilt vice chancellor and athletic director David Williams. "I don't think there was anything out there that was insurmountable, but it was like, no, we're a 'smart' school. Within the university itself, there was a perception that success in football must mean something negative academically."

Unfortunately, a recent incident at Williams' school has renewed doubts about whether it's truly possible to achieve big-time success in college football without suffering the ubiquitous ills. Last week, four former Commodores players -- who were dismissed from the squad in late June -- were charged with raping an unconscious 21-year-old female student in one of the player's dorm rooms. Amid the preseason excitement surrounding coach James Franklin's upstart program, the small, Nashville university is now dealing with the type of incident that gives major athletics a bad name.

"The events of June 23 ... are giving the university national attention for all the wrong reasons," wrote Tennessean columnist David Climer.

As a whole, however, the smart schools are garnering national attention for their newfound football prowess. Elite football players didn't suddenly become smarter, but the schools discussed here are doing a better job of recruiting and developing academically and athletically gifted players. And they're doing it by following the same formula as any other previously dormant programs: hiring great coaches and investing significantly in resources and salaries. Unlike any other programs, however, they face a specific set of challenges.

Admissions

Stanford outside linebackers coach Lance Anderson's desk includes many college coaching staples: practice scripts, play diagrams for opening opponent San Jose State, etc. What stands out, however, is a phone-book-high pile of around 1,000 potential recruits' transcripts. It used to be higher. "I'm making some progress," Anderson joked. If there's a remotely promising sophomore or junior football prospect in nearly any corner of the country, chances are Anderson -- whose job title includes the words "admissions liaison" -- has probably sent an e-fax requesting a transcript.

"We won't even watch the tape unless we get their transcripts," said Sanford, the Cardinal's recruiting coordinator. "I don't want to see what we're going to be playing against, I want to see what we have a chance to recruit."

Many major football programs are granted a certain number of "special admits" per recruiting class. Stanford is adamant that every player goes through the school's regular, stringent application process. (All of the schools profiled here are private institutions that do not disclose most admissions data.) In 2013, Stanford's general acceptance rate of 5.69 percent was lower than even Harvard's. In 2008, then-coach Jim Harbaugh told the Los Angeles Times that only about "100 to 150" of the approximately 3,500 annual FBS signees are realistically in play for Stanford.

But once Stanford coaches find a prospect they like, they take numerous steps to help navigate the admissions process. Anderson meets regularly with the school's admissions department so that both sides know what the other is seeking. If a player shows interest in Stanford, his recruiter serves as a de facto guidance counselor, advising the player on which courses he must take (most notably, at least two AP classes as a senior) and whether to re-take the SAT or ACT to best position himself for his eventual application.

Meanwhile, the admissions department knows whom the staff most covets. "They're football fans," said Anderson. "They do a pretty good job keeping up with recruiting." The coaches give the admissions officers a wish list by position in a given year -- i.e., three running backs -- though nothing is guaranteed. "Last year we only ended up taking one DB," said Anderson. "We told them we were hoping for more than that, but there just weren't enough kids on the board [who qualified]." Unlike most schools, Stanford can't plug a gap with a juco transfer or even, in most cases, a Division I transfer.

Northwestern's 13.9-percent acceptance rate is slightly less daunting, but its admissions department won't accept a player it feels might struggle to graduate. "If I have to sell a kid to the admissions department," said head coach Pat Fitzgerald, "I doubt he's a good fit." Fitzgerald keeps a database of every recent Northwestern player's high-school credentials so that he knows early in a prospect's recruitment whether he's on target for admission and can feel comfortable that the player won't be denied admission if he's offered a scholarship.

As with any school, the admissions process is subjective, and Northwestern seems more willing than some to forgive a player who started slowly in high school but improved his grades, or a player who dealt with extenuating circumstances like a family member's death. "Everyone is dealt with here on a case-by-case basis," said Fitzgerald. "I think our admissions department has a good moral compass of looking at a kid's academic credentials but also wanting us to explain who the young person is and whether we believe he will be able to graduate from here in four years."

At Vanderbilt (11.97-percent acceptance rate), Franklin, Williams and other athletic personnel meet with the admissions department before the start of the school year to discuss every player the program is recruiting. "They'll give us feedback like, 'absolutely,' 'absolutely not,' or, 'we need more information,'" said Williams.

The first challenge is identifying potential prospects who boast the necessary academic credentials. The second is convincing them to come.

Joescoundrel
08-16-2013, 09:59 AM
^ (Continued)

Recruiting

When Cutcliffe first started visiting high schools for Duke, he encountered coaches who would say: "'I've got a guy that would be good for you at Duke.' What he meant was, he wasn't good enough to play at another BCS-conference school, but he's good enough to play at Duke. Well, I wanted to talk about another [more talented] kid, but it was like we couldn't touch him."

The pervading assumption has long been that no player would voluntarily choose a doormat like Duke or Vanderbilt over a more established football power, despite the chance to earn a more prestigious degree.

Vanderbilt defensive lineman and Marietta, Ga., native Kyle Woestmann, a top 50 prospect at his position in 2010, committed to the Commodores despite offers from Georgia, South Carolina and Clemson, among others. "Everybody in Georgia loves UGA, and they're like, 'How are you not going to UGA?'" Woestmann said. "'You want to go to some program that UGA kicks all over the field every year?'"

To counter that sentiment, coaches at the smart schools have a well-rehearsed recruiting pitch like this one from Vanderbilt's Franklin: "You've got a chance to get a world-class education, but you've also got a chance to play in the conference that's won the last seven national championships. If you're a kid that wants to chase both of his dreams at the very highest level, where else would you go?"

It sounds pretty convincing, and perhaps like an obvious choice ... to an adult. Selling that to a coveted 16- or 17-year-old prospect who's certain that he's headed to the NFL and who has visited other campuses with sold-out 100,000-seat stadiums and national championship trophies on display is another matter entirely.

"I'm not going to lie and say I didn't fall for the party scene at some schools, the great facilities at others," said Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter, an Englewood, Colo., native. "... My dad played at Colorado and had a great time there, won a national championship, but he realized some of the degrees some of the players got there are meaningless. Football is going to end for us at some point. There's life after football, and Northwestern is the platform I needed to get that going."

Former Stanford AD Bob Bowlsby, now the Big 12's commissioner, recalled that when he hired Harbaugh in 2007, the coach said: "Mr. Bowlsby, you can't convince me that with 300 million people [in the U.S.], there aren't 25 good football players out there smart enough to play at Stanford."

Clearly there were -- but they didn't all live in the part of the U.S. closest to Palo Alto. Notre Dame is widely considered the sport's "national school," but Stanford's starting lineup for last year's Rose Bowl featured players from Georgia, Virginia, Wisconsin, Minnesota, New Jersey, Florida and Texas.

These schools' head coaches have all drawn raves as recruiters, and ultimately it's incumbent on them to get the teenagers they're pursuing to think beyond the next four years.

"It's not about a hashtag on Twitter, it's not about a fan that's illegally sending you, 'go to my school' messages," said Fitzgerald. "It's about using football as a vehicle to prepare you for life."

Academics

Graduation Success Rate rankings

The top 15 FBS schools in 2012

Rank School Rate 2012 record
1 Northwestern 97 10-3
1 Notre Dame 97 12-1
3 Boston College 94 2-10
3 Miami 94 7-5
5 Rice 93 7-6
6 Duke 92 6-7
7 Penn State 91 8-4
7 Rutgers 91 9-4
9 Stanford 90 12-2
10 Army 88 2-10
11 Navy 87 8-5
12 Air Force 86 6-7
12 Wake Forest 86 5-7
14 Vanderbilt 85 9-4
15 Miami (Ohio) 84 4-8

Total record: 107-83 (.563)

Annual winning % for GSR Top 15

Year Winning percentage
2012 .563
2011 .514
2010 .502
2009 .516
2008 .539
2007 .419
2006 .512
2005 .534

Once a football nerd arrives on campus, he quickly realizes that a high SAT score won't save him from the dumb jock stereotype.

"When you do well in classes of 300 people and you're high on the bell curve, it's rewarding to know you're competing with people who have more time and probably look down on you," joked Vitabile. "Most college students don't wake up until 9 or 10. By then we've been up for three or four hours -- and then we've got to start our day."

Balancing the demands of big-time college football -- which, it's no secret, consume far more than the NCAA-mandated 20 hours per week -- and the course load at a rigorous academic school is no small feat, especially if one believes each school's assertion that there are no joke classes for jocks.

"Sometimes, it's very easy to graduate kids," said Margaret Akerstrom, who retired in June after 26 years as Northwestern athletics' head of academic services. "Just make sure you put them in the right majors, give them more help than they should get -- not saying [other schools] are crossing the lines and writing papers, though that happens -- but they're babying them."

At Northwestern, freshmen athletes are required to spend six hours per week in the library during fall quarter and to meet twice weekly with an academic advisor. After freshman year, the lone requirement is one such meeting per quarter. Tutors are available, but players must request one. "Once you get through your freshman year we expect you to start taking control of your life and needing less and less support," said Akerstrom. "That's not necessarily true at a lot of other schools, and the reason is often because the coaches want them to continue."

Like most athletic departments, Vanderbilt's foots the bill for players to take two summer courses before freshman year. Unlike most, Vandy's support comes with a specific stipulation that any athlete who gets less than a C in either class will be ruled ineligible for his freshman season. That hasn't been necessary: The average summer GPA for the athletes is 3.34.

"People say we don't have as much talent as Alabama or Florida or Georgia," said Woestmann. "We have just as much talent, it's just a little bit different to the naked eye. We have guys that can kill it in school and come out and be great on the football field. In my opinion, that's a pretty serious talent."

That doesn't mean the "dumb jock" stereotype is dead, and grumbling persists nationwide about special treatment for athletes. Stanford faced questions on its own campus when a 2011 Stanford Daily investigation revealed the existence of an annual Courses of Interest list distributed to athletes. The classes were "always chock-full of athletes and very easy A's," said a women's soccer player. School officials contended the list was intended to help athletes find classes that fit their practice schedules. In March, star linebacker Skov took umbrage with a thread on the "Stanford Confessions" Facebook group that began, "How low are the academic standards for athletes? A lot of them are pretty damn smart, but they definitely wouldn't have all gotten in if they weren't recruited."

"Every time you're a school like us, you have success, there's going to be something new that comes at you as a negative," said Northwestern's Fitzgerald, who notes his team's 3.04 GPA last year. "I would challenge those people to look at the other schools and say, 'Why aren't their graduation rates higher? Why aren't their GPAs higher?'"

One smart school, however, is dealing with something far more serious than easy classes.

Joescoundrel
08-16-2013, 10:00 AM
^ (Continued)

Skepticism

In an interview in his office last month, Williams, a law school professor and vice chancellor who took over as Vanderbilt's de facto athletic director in 2003 (he's since added that role to his official title), recalled the challenges he faced convincing his fellow faculty and the university community that a successful SEC football team would help, not harm, the university's reputation.

"We had to convince everybody around here, including ourselves, that success adds value," Williams said. "You'll never do it if you're not graduating your kids, you'll never do it if your kids aren't maintaining an acceptable GPA for that place. You'll never do it if your kids are going to get it in a lot of trouble."

The program had remained largely trouble-free until this summer, when Franklin dismissed four players. Last Friday, following a seven-week investigation by Nashville police, Cory Batey, Brandon Banks, JaBorian "Tip" McKenzie and Brandon Vandenburg were each charged with five counts of aggravated rape and two counts of aggravated sexual battery in the alleged dorm room incident. A Vanderbilt fan site called it "the worst scandal to ever rock Vanderbilt football."

Reached by phone Wednesday, Williams said: "Obviously something of this magnitude when it's associated with the university -- we would be remiss if we denied the possibility that it would damage the reputation of the university and affect key progress we've made. ... You have to take every opportunity to review everything you do to make sure nothing like this happens again."

None of the four ex-players had seen the field yet for the Commodores, but all were members of Franklin's heralded past two recruiting classes. Vandenburg, a tight end from Palm Desert, Calif., was a highly sought-after junior college recruit who received offers from the likes of Nebraska, Texas A&M, Miami and Tennessee.

Vandy, long the SEC's punching bag, has clearly gone all in with football, paying Franklin a reported $3 million salary (more than in-state foe Tennessee pays Butch Jones) and investing significantly in facilities. In July, Williams did not shy away from the fact that he'd convinced the school to relax its admissions standards for certain athletes, so long as the program maintained its high graduation rate. "You're not going to compete in Division I football with all of your team acing the SAT," Williams said. "It just doesn't happen, because the Alabamas, the Georgias, the Tennessees, they're going to have a wide range in there."

Asked whether the rape incident might cause the program to reassess its recruiting strategy, Williams said: "You can only act on the information you have. You'd probably be surprised the number of kids James and his staff have had to stop recruiting because of something in their background. With these kids -- there was nothing in their background. That's all I can say about that. But even James wonders, did I miss something? Is there something else we need to be asking?

"It doesn't change the fact this incident happened, and the incident was terrible. As soon as we became aware of it, the action we took was swift and decisive."

Sadly, sexual assault is not an uncommon occurrence on college campuses, even among other academically rigorous schools, as illustrated by recent scandals involving football players at Navy and Notre Dame. But tawdry headlines, like nine-win seasons, are uncharted territory for the Vanderbilt program. A possible trial (the players will be arraigned Aug. 21) could make public some gruesome details and raise questions about whether Vandy is paying too steep a price to compete with the big boys.

Of course, all of these schools are paying a literal price in order to build the kinds of coaching staffs and facilities necessary to achieve success -- and then maintain it.

Continuity

Shaw, a former Stanford receiver and original Harbaugh staff member who became head coach in 2011, loves playing the disrespect card. Asked in the spring what he'd use for motivation now that Stanford was a likely preseason top five team (the Coaches' Poll has the Cardinal No. 4), Shaw replied: "Whenever you're watching TV and they're doing the preseason shows ... We're going to get, 'Yeah, Stanford is ranked No. 4 or No. 5 or whatever it is, BUT..."

Not surprisingly, the coaches of the schools featured in this article are universally adamant that their programs are here to stay. Revenge of the Nerds will garner a sequel, they say, and the sequel will be better than the original.

"We're just getting started," said Northwestern's Fitzgerald. "We're nowhere near where I think this program is going to be. ... Where maybe some other schools have had success since 1950 -- this is our 1950s."

Whether that proves true for these schools will largely depend on retaining their touted coaches.

Stanford has struggled on that front for much of its history. Former coaches Bill Walsh, Dennis Green and Harbaugh all left for NFL head-coaching jobs, while Tyrone Willingham left for Notre Dame. Last December the cerebral Shaw, 41, an oft-described "Stanford Man," agreed to a long-term extension (terms were not disclosed) shortly before an expected NFL courtship.

"I won't say who, but myself and my agent, we were contacted by more than half the open jobs in the NFL," Shaw said in describing the timing of the announcement. "... It was important to me, it was important to Stanford University and important for the football program to say, we don't have to worry about what's happened every single time Stanford's been successful, which is the head coach is gone. I want to be here, Stanford wants me to be here. Let's quiet the whispers."

While Shaw is rah-rah Stanford, Northwestern's Fitzgerald practically oozes purple. Already one of the most celebrated players in school history (the two-time All-America and Nagurski Award winner was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2008 ), the fiery, articulate 38-year-old coach is as beloved as any head man this side of Nick Saban. Fitzgerald already owns the school's career wins record, with 50. "He's the perfect coach in the perfect place with the perfect fit," said Northwestern AD Jim Phillips. "The stars have aligned from that perspective."

When Michigan briefly pursed Fitzgerald in January 2011, his boss moved quickly to broker a new contract that included assurances about facility upgrades.

"This is home on the football side, this is home on the family side," said the South Side Chicago native. "That's the selfish part of it for me personally, but professionally, I wouldn't want to work with any other group of young men."

Duke tried the young alum route once, with far less success. Carl Franks, protégé of former Blue Devils coach Steve Spurrier, went 7-45 from 1999-2003. With Cutcliffe, 58, Duke got a veteran SEC head coach (Ole Miss) and offensive coordinator (Tennessee) with instant credibility for coaching both Peyton and Eli Manning. He seems no risk to flee, especially after turning down the Vols in 2010.

"Joe Paterno once told me, 'David, find a job that really fits your personality,'" Cutcliffe said. "I don't know what my personality is, but I like the job I've got and I feel we're doing things that are important."

Vandy seemingly faces the biggest challenge of the group, as Franklin has quickly emerged as one of the sport's rock-star coaches. He was largely anonymous outside of Maryland (where he was head-coach-in-waiting) less than three years ago, but now most fans nationally are aware of the energetic coach and his "Anchor Down" mantra thanks in large part to an aggressive social media presence. Whether awarding a walk-on a scholarship in front of the whole team, overseeing a coach/player dance-off or diving off a 30-foot cliff, Franklin has cultivated a player-friendly persona similar to that of former USC coach Pete Carroll. And if he keeps winning nine games or more at Vanderbilt, he'll soon be in similar demand.

On the one hand, program history (LSU once hired coach Gerry DiNardo for going 5-6 at Vandy) and Franklin's own career history (he's changed jobs 10 times in 18 years) suggest his stay may be short. On the other, after decades of seeming indifference, the university has made crystal clear its unprecedented commitment to both the football program and its coach.

While Franklin's salary information is not public, the reported $3 million figure puts him among the top half of the SEC coaches and, as of 2012, the top 15 nationally. Meanwhile, with a heavy push from the coach, the school will open a new $31-million multi-purpose training facility and recreation center in October. Last year it completed a $10-million-plus makeover of its primary athletics building, the McGugin Center, and in September it will survey fans about a possible stadium renovations proposal.

Elsewhere, Northwestern will soon begin construction on a $220-million lakeside athletics facility that will include the football program's first on-campus headquarters (its current football complex, adjacent to Ryan Field, is a mile west of campus). Duke will begin a massive renovation of 84-year-old Wallace Wade Stadium at the end of this season as part of a $100-million athletic facilities upgrade. And Stanford's coaches are currently working out of temporary cubicles on top of a basketball practice court while construction workers complete a $17-million addition to the school's athletics building.

The investments are the latest sign of a changing climate in which the smart schools will no longer accept pats on the back for going 6-6 or keeping the score close against a Top 25 team.

"We will feel we've accomplished our goal," said Shaw, "when people are watching college football, and they can't remember a time when Stanford wasn't ranked."

If that happens, "Nerd Nation" may become as much a part of the sport's vernacular as "Roll Tide."

Sam Miguel
09-20-2013, 02:55 PM
Coming soon: High schools for athletes?

by Jee Y. Geronimo

Posted on 09/19/2013 8:03 PM | Updated 09/19/2013 11:55 PM

MANILA, Philippines – “We should stop producing athletes who are not educated.”

For Department of Education (DepEd) consultant Fr Carmelo Caluag, it's time to stop stereotyping athletes as jocks.

The solution? A national high school system dedicated to sports-inclined students.

During a Senate hearing on Thursday, September 19, Caluag and fellow consultant Sebastian Ripoll said a sports academy system will be more effective than a Philippine High School for Sports (PHSS) that lawmakers are proposing.

The measure to establish a PHSS was proposed in the previous Congress and refiled this time by 3 senators: Sen Juan Edgardo "Sonny" Angara, Sen Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada, and Sen Pia Cayetano.

“If we are to put up an effective sports academy, it has to be a system because one thing with sports is that you have to start as soon as possible. eyeing talents, DepEd is the main structure for that,” Calauag said.

Three high schools have been identified as pilot regional campuses should a Philippine Academy for Sports System be established:

Rizal High School in Pasig, Metro Manila
Abellana National High School in Cebu
General Santos City High School in South Cotabato

The proposal comes amid DepEd's preparations the additional senior high school level, where students may choose Sports and Arts as a track of specialization.

Currently, DepEd has a special sports program in every region which Caluag said may be the foundation of the proposed system.

"You need to take young people with what their passion is, and with that passion, lead them in academics," he said.

Provide support system

Philippine Sports Commission chairman Ricardo Garcia said many talents are spotted in high school, but a lack of specialized support system keeps them from pursuing their sport.

“Even if you find sponsors for all these kids, you really need a holistic system to support them,” Cayetano added.

When Angara asked Garcia about the situation of high school athletes in the country, the PSC chairman said it is getting worse.

“Before, we had a lot of college students in sports, but because of economics or some [personal] problems, we have more and more athletes who are not even high school graduates.”

Palarong Pambansa deputy secretary general Cesar Abalon noted that private school athletes “have more edge” than those from public schools in the Palaro.

“The more we need a Philippine High School for Sports: to produce athletes who will be the pride of the public school system,” Angara said.

The proposed system hopes to produce not only athletes but also sports practitioners after the curriculum, faculty development, and standards have been agreed upon.

Cayetano asked DepEd to give their official stand on the proposal next hearing in October. – [I]Rappler.com

abcdef
09-20-2013, 03:05 PM
^ I agree with this! not only in High school but also a College for Athetes. . .Ito yung pag kukuhaan ng national team! Na kung saan tailored sa school year nila ang mga competition calendar. . . Hinde na mahihirapang manghingi ng players sa schools para lumaro sa national teams! ;)

bchoter
11-28-2013, 12:43 PM
I'm not sure if this is different but the national high school in our province we already have a sports curriculum running in parallel with the science and arts curriculum

bchoter
11-28-2013, 12:46 PM
Sometimes even our stateside sports admins don't get it right...

Lucky shot could cost NAIA player

OKLAHOMA CITY -- A college basketball player who won $20,000 for hitting a half-court shot at an Oklahoma City Thunder game may have to either forfeit the money or his eligibility to play college sports.

Cameron Rodriguez, a 23-year-old sophomore forward for Winfield, Kan.-based Southwestern College, sank the promotional shot on Nov. 8 during the Thunder's home game against the Denver Nuggets.

read more here: http://espn.go.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/10047128/naia-college-hoops-player-give-20k-won-oklahoma-city-thunder-game

Sam Miguel
11-28-2013, 04:12 PM
I've long advocated to the SBP since Pato Gregorio's time to establish a National Basketball Academy already. Pattern it after the PMA, where the kids who go here will get a monthly stipend as well as free clothes, board and lodging. It can be a two-year non-degree program, or a four-year "liberal arts" degree program. This might finally go a long way towards minimizing or out and out eliminating all of those "mercenary" players who clearly are not even attending classes in their colleges and universities yet are on the varsity.

To showcase their skills they will compete in the (hello!) PCCL, pitting them against the (ahem) best college teams in the country.

Subjects will not only be daily practice, drills and video viewing, but also subjects on coaching, being a team manager, being a tournament director, game officiating, working towards getting a FIBA license as a referee / committee person / commissioner.

So yes, there will be real and practical basketball-related life skills to be taught and learned.

Joescoundrel
12-02-2013, 01:25 PM
Coaches Talk Transfer 'Epidemic'

Steve Helwagen

In college basketball these days, you truly can’t tell the players without a program.

We surveyed several college coaches, including Ohio State's Thad Matta, Tennessee's Cuonzo Martin and UCLA's Steve Alford, on the spate of transfers.

That’s because transfers between Division I schools seem to be at an all-time high. Last year, there were over 450 transfers. This year, this list compiled by CBSSports.com has over 425 transfers.

Players are transferring for different reasons. Some are the result of a head coaching change. Some leave in search of more playing time at a different school. Some at mid-major programs are openly recruited to play at major conference schools. And loopholes in NCAA rules that allow hardship transfers as well as transfers for graduates seeking master’s programs elsewhere seem to be large enough to drive a Mack truck through.

Here are some examples of some high profile transfers from the last two years:

* After a coaching change in the spring of 2012, wing Rodney Hood left his homestate school at Mississippi State to transfer to Duke. Hood, who sat out this past year, could be a key piece in the Blue Devils’ run at a national title.

* Jarrod Uthoff tried to transfer from Wisconsin to fellow Big Ten member Iowa last year before Badgers coach Bo Ryan tried to block the move. After a public outcry, Wisconsin lifted its objection and Uthoff – after sitting out this past season – will be eligible at Iowa this coming year.

* Memphis power forward Tarik Black had a year of eligibility remaining. He reportedly graduated and transferred to Kansas, where he can help the Jayhawks make their push for a national title.

* Baylor guard Deuce Bello, a key 2012 prospect, left the Bears for greener pastures at Missouri.

* Arizona State guard Evan Gordon transferred to Indiana, where he enrolled in graduate school. That makes him immediately eligible for the Hoosiers, who coincidentally could use some backcourt help alongside Yogi Ferrell after watching four starters leave after last season.

* Kentucky’s Kyle Wiltjer was a key reserve on the Wildcats’ 2012 national championship team. But with coach John Calipari recruiting a handful of blue chip prospects in this year’s class, Wiltjer actively pursued a transfer. Calipari tried his best to hang on to him. But in the end Wiltjer decided to move on to Gonzaga.

During the recent July observation period, 247Sports.com had a chance to discuss the transfer climate in college basketball with coaches from a variety of regions and conferences. Each coach we surveyed had different opinions on what’s happening within the sport as well as rationales for transferring.

“It seems like it has been that way for a long time and not just the last couple of years,” said newly hired UCLA coach Steve Alford, a former All-American at Indiana and head coach at Iowa and New Mexico. “Kids like to move. They get unhappy and they’re not very patient. They think moving is the answer.”

N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried played college basketball at Alabama and previously served as the head coach at Murray State as well as an 11-year stint at his alma mater.

“There are a lot more kids transferring today than it was five or 10 years ago,” Gottfried said. “Some of it is just the environment. The whole summer travel basketball culture has created a mind-set where, if it’s not happening for you early, these kids trade teams. They hunt for different teams at the high school level.

“It’s something we have to live with. It’s the climate today.”

Miami (Fla.) coach Jim Larranaga played at Providence and was the head coach at Bowling Green and George Mason before arriving in Coral Gables in 2011. He’s been around the game for over 45 years and had a simple explanation for the transient nature of college players.

“It’s become very fashionable that if you don’t play right away and you’re not making a major contribution to a program to look for a program where you do fit better and can showcase your talents,” he said. “It’s my understanding there are over 425 transfers this year. It’s become the trend and it will continue to be that way.”

Cuonzo Martin was a star player at Purdue in the early 1990s and was hired as the new coach at Tennessee in 2011. Martin understands why players may seek a change of scenery.

“I think every situation is different,” he said. “Guys transfer for different reasons – coaching changes, style of play differences, playing time. There are a lot of different reasons. You have to find out the particulars. The biggest thing from a coach’s standpoint is you have to evaluate them to the best of your ability. You have to find guys who fit into your program so they won’t transfer.”

Ohio State coach Thad Matta played at Butler and previously served as the head coach at his alma mater as well as at Xavier. He said honesty in the recruiting process can head off problems down the road.

“I think a lot of times you have to look at what creates the transfer. Sometimes in the recruiting process, a coach will paint a picture for a player. Then when that player gets to that school the situation or whatever it may be is not how it was portrayed to be.

“At Ohio State, we feel you have to be honest in the recruiting process so later on there will not be any surprises.”

Matta added, “I think it is an unfortunate time. Sometimes it is a process and it seems like everybody is looking for a quick fix. You understand it.”

Tim Miles arrived at Nebraska this past year after a successful stint as the head coach at Colorado State. He downplays the notion that transfers are a blight on the college basketball landscape.

“It is probably drawing more attention in the last couple of years than it’s really worth,” he said. “I don’t think it’s an epidemic. I don’t think it’s a huge problem. It’s simply a way of life. Kids are changing club teams at an early age. They are changing high schools on a regular basis. They are going to change colleges. It’s just a way of life.”

Gary Waters played at Ferris State in the early 1970s before embarking on a coaching career that has included head coaching stops at Kent State, Rutgers and, since 2006, at Cleveland State. He laments that lack of true player development at the middle school and high school levels as a root to this spate of transfers.

“I think it’s a product of how our basketball has progressed,” Waters said. “I’ve been in it a long time. When you look at individual development and training, I was talking to a coach today who talked about how the big men today don’t have any post moves. There is no big man camp any more.

“I remember a time when there was a big man camp in Michigan and Shawn Kemp was there as a player. All of the coaches working the camp were college coaches. They were developing them. There is none of that going on today.”

Waters said the nature of the travel basketball circuit also makes it easy for players to think they can move from colleges as simply as they slip off a reversible jersey.

“In this game of basketball with AAU, if you’re on a team and you don’t like what’s going on with that team you go over to another team,” Waters said. “There are no ramifications. You move on until you find your fit. The same thing is true with playing. Whether you win or lose these games, it doesn’t matter anymore. There’s another game in an hour.

“In elementary school today, they give kids timeouts for bad behavior and everybody gets a trophy for playing. There is no reality check in the process. Our kids, through the transferring, have caught on to that. It’s a microcosm of our society. If your marriage doesn’t work, you move on to something else.”

Waters put it bluntly when he said, “I feel bad for our kids today. Nobody is telling them, ‘Hey, stick it out and fight.’ It may not be right today but it may be right tomorrow if I stick it out and fight.”

Paul Biancardi served as an assistant at Boston College and Ohio State before a stint as the head coach at Wright State. Today, he is one of ESPN’s top college basketball recruiting analysts. He shared his two cents on what he sees going on today.

“Guys don’t want to stay where they are and fight for a position,” Biancardi said. “I don’t know what to do about it. Some people say it’s an epidemic.”

Joescoundrel
12-02-2013, 01:25 PM
^ Continued

It was noted in the Chronicle of Higher Learning that roughly one-third of all college students will transfer at some point. That’s a higher percentage than the 10 percent of college players who are now transferring on an annual basis.

And the college player transfer rate lags well behind the rate of coaches who change jobs. There were 50 coaching changes in 2012 and 42 this year. In that two-year stretch, there were no coaches at over one-fourth of the roughly 350 Division I schools.

“Coaches are transferring all over the place, too,” Biancardi said. “It’s a profession where guys are going to leave their place because they’re unhappy or unsatisfied. Coaches do the same thing.”

Below we surveyed our coaching panel on two key questions surrounding transfers.

Should There Be Veto Power?

The Uthoff transfer from Wisconsin to Iowa illustrated how coaches and schools retain power over a player’s career even after they attempt to leave.

Sentiment within the coaching profession, though, seems to say they should be very few strings attached to transfers. Here were some responses on that question:

* UCLA’s Alford – “That’s hard. I’ve seen both sides as a player and as a coach. You see both sides of that. Coaches can leave, just as players can leave. Who gets that control? That’s kind of a hard one.”

* N.C. State’s Gottfried – “I think if a kid wants to leave he needs to leave and he should be able to go wherever he wants to go. I don’t have a problem with that.”

* Miami’s Larranaga – “That would be like asking a coach should a school be able to keep you from moving to another job opportunity if you thought the opportunity was better for you. What kids are experiencing now is very normal. If you can transfer and find a place where you fit better, that is what you hope for.

“What we would prefer as coaches would be for kids to stay and earn their playing time. The school has devoted time and energy and money to recruit them. You hope they develop inside that program rather than transfer and do it someplace else.”

* Tennessee’s Martin – “I think that is every program’s right and prerogative. You never know what situations have taken place or caused a coach to make that decision. It’s not my place to say.”

* Ohio State’s Matta – “I think a lot of that is conference-driven. I know in our conference there are rules that we must abide by and that a player must abide by. I feel as long as we are working within those rules then we’re fine.”

* Nebraska’s Miles – “I’ve been on both sides of it. I’ve been the beneficiary of it. We got an innerleague transfer when I was a Division II coach and he really helped us. I do believe within your league there should be some type of protocol. Outside of that, I’m not sure there needs to be. I’ve always been against innerleague transfers without having to sit out a year.”

* Cleveland State’s Waters – “I disagree with that. You had your chance. Like myself, I lost a kid this year. If it didn’t work, it didn’t work. Now let’s make sure. If a coach really cares about a kid, you want him to make it in life and do things right. I think you really have to move on.

“Now I do understand the concept of moving within a conference. That should be established within the conference guidelines so it’s not on the coach.”

* ESPN’s Biancardi – “Years ago when I was coaching, I felt there should be some type of stipulation where a guy should go. He shouldn’t go to someone in your league or to another school that recruited him out of high school. But now I feel a lot differently.

“In today’s day and age, I feel like, ‘If you want to go, go ahead and go wherever you like.’ I don’t think you should hold back any kid from anywhere. I feel a kid should be able to go anywhere. But wherever he goes and for whatever reason, I think he has to sit. I don’t think any kid should be able to play right away.”

Is There Abuse With Hardship, Graduate Transfers?

For over a decade, college athletes have been able to initiate hardship transfers to move closer to home in situations of family need. Once approved by the NCAA, these transfers have not had to sit out a year.

In recent years, graduates with eligibility remaining have been able to change schools to pursue master’s degrees at other schools without sitting out. Some have decried this newer regulation, saying many of these transfers are made for basketball reasons more than academic concerns.

We asked this panel what they thought of possible abuses in these two areas.

* UCLA’s Alford – “There have been an awful lot of waivers. I think they are looking at that just on the number of waivers and what qualifies as a legit waiver. I think that’s good to examine that.”

* N.C. State’s Gottfried – “I think that is one of the rules that needs to get tightened up. I think kids are transferring after graduating just for basketball reasons. I think that rule was created for academic reasons, but I don’t think that is happening as much any more. That one is probably a bit too loose.”

* Miami’s Larranaga – “I think the fifth-year senior transfer who is immediately eligible, that was never intended to be as widespread as it has become. But, again, the young man is looking for an opportunity at the end of his career to do something different than he did in his first four years.

“From a coach’s standpoint, you have developed that player. You hope he stays and contributes in what is probably his best year.”

* Tennessee’s Martin – “I don’t think guys can take advantage of something that is a rule. If it’s a rule, it’s a rule. They can use it. You’re working under the rules and if it creates an advantage for you then you’re living by the rules. I don’t think you can take advantage of something if it’s in place to do it.”

* Nebraska’s Miles – “There is always a beat-the-system guy. I don’t care what line of work you’re looking at. There is always somebody taking advantage of the rules and going into that gray area. I don’t think this is anything different.”

* ESPN’s Biancardi – “You have the fifth-year graduate transfers and I think that has added to the list of transfers. It’s like a free agent market. Most master’s degrees are two years. Who goes to a school to get their master’s degree for one year? They go and they play and they probably don’t graduate from the graduate school. That defeats the purpose of the rule.

“If you really want to take a fifth year as a graduate student, give them two years to do it and they can play one. How many coaches would give two years for one?”

ironcoach
12-02-2013, 03:50 PM
Sapol dyan yung UAAP (Jerie Pingoy) rule wherein kelangan mag-sit out ng "2 years" ang isang UAAP high school player in order to play for a rival UAAP college. Sanay kasi tayo manupil owing to being under a dictatorial form of government for more than 2 decades.

Sa America (and in other democratic states) they give importance (uphold to the highest esteem) to democracy & FREEDOM kahit na hindi popular, may ma-agrabyado, or for any (un)justifiable reasons.

May nakapag-isip ba man lang or does anyone out there care at all sa ginagawang injustice sa teenager na si Pingoy? At yung mga sumupil sa kanya, mga gurang na at marami ng narating o hindi narating sa buhay. Why punish the kid? Why hold him back? Is it his fault kung naging magaling siya at nagka-interes sa kanya ang isang tanyag (they said it, not me) na unibersidad tulad ng Ateneo?

Ok yung one-year residency if a college student-athlete is transferring from 1 college to another (regardless kung UAAP o NCAA o criss-cross) pero yung from high school going to college, siguro naman pwede ng gawing PREROGATIVE yan nung bata and his family. Why should anyone else decide, or much less, DEPRIVE another individual of his RIGHT TO CHOOSE? These are simple rules or practices in a DEMOCRACY. Unless...:)

And lets not be hypocrite about..FEU is not, and will not ever be an Ateneo. So lets go back to my question...why are these supposedly mature (old) individuals punishing/depriving this kid? Make no mistake about it...THAT UAAP RULE HAS VIOLATED A VERY ESSENTIAL INGREDIENT IN A DEMOCRACY.

Sam Miguel
02-05-2014, 02:43 PM
US college athletes take step toward forming union

From: Associated Press

January 29, 2014, 08:45 am

CHICAGO — Calling the NCAA a dictatorship, Northwestern's quarterback and the United Steelworkers announced plans Tuesday (Wednesday, Manila time) to form the first labor union for college athletes — the latest salvo in the bruising fight over whether amateur players should be paid.

Quarterback Kain Colter detailed the College Athletes Players Association at a news conference in Chicago, flanked by leaders of Steelworkers union that has agreed to pay legal bills for the effort. The NCAA and the Big Ten Conference both criticized the move and insisted that college athletes cannot be considered employees.

Colter said the NCAA dictates terms to its hundreds of member schools and tens of thousands of college athletes, leaving players with little or no say about financial compensation questions or how to improve their own safety. That college football generates hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue only bolstered the argument for a union, he said.

"How can they call this amateur athletics when our jerseys are sold in stores and the money we generate turns coaches and commissioners into multimillionaires?" Colter asked.

"The current model represents a dictatorship," added Colter, who just finished his senior year with the Wildcats. "We just want a seat at the table."

Colter said "nearly 100 percent" of his teammates backed the drive to unionize. But only he spoke publicly, saying the others wanted to keep a low profile.

CAPA's president, former UCLA football player Ramogi Huma, said a union would help ensure that scholarships, at minimum, cover all living expenses as well as tuition. Currently, he said, scholarship athletes come up thousands of dollars short each year. A union would also push for full medical coverage that could carry over past college.

While the effort to form a union among college athletes appears without precedent, there is recent a case that may help their cause. More than 600 graduate teaching and research assistants at New York University voted to form a union in December and to affiliate with the United Auto Workers. It was the first such union in the country to win recognition by a private university.

For now, the push to unionize college athletes is focused only on private schools like Northwestern — though large public universities, which are subject to different sets of regulations, could follow, said Huma, who is also the head of the National College Players Association he founded in 2001 to lobby for the interests of college athletes.

"This will be the first domino," Huma said.

If the players succeed, a union could fundamentally change college sports, said Brian Rauch, a New York-based labor attorney. He said it could raise the prospect of strike by disgruntled players or lockouts by schools.

The NCAA has been under increasing scrutiny over its amateurism rules and is currently in court, fighting a class-action federal lawsuit filed by former players seeking a cut of the billions of dollars earned from live broadcasts and memorabilia sales, along with video games, and multiple lawsuits filed by players who say the organization failed to adequately protect them from debilitating head injuries.

NCAA President Mark Emmert and others have pushed for a $2,000-per-player stipend to help athletes defray some of their expenses, but critics say that isn't nearly enough and insults players who help bring in millions of dollars to their schools and conferences.

Last season, Colter and football players from Georgia and Georgia Tech had the letters APU — All Players United — written on their gear during games as a show of solidarity in an effort organized by the NCPA. At the time, the NCAA said it welcomed an "open and civil debate regarding all aspects of college athletics."

The NCAA issued a statement Tuesday making clear where it stands on the athletes' quest to form a union.

"Student-athletes are not employees," NCAA chief legal officer Donald Remy said. "We are confident the National Labor Relations Board will find in our favor, as there is no right to organize student-athletes."

He added: "This union-backed attempt to turn student-athletes into employees undermines the purpose of college: an education."

A statement from the Big Ten Conference echoed that, saying it "does not believe that full-time students participating in intercollegiate athletics are employees."

"That said, the Big Ten Conference has the utmost respect for both the legal system and the rights of students to pursue their beliefs through that system," the league said.

NLRB spokesman Gregory King confirmed that a petition by the players to form a union was filed at the board on Tuesday. King said the board would likely conduct a hearing within the next 10 days.

The key issue the board must resolve is whether the football players are employees as defined by federal labor law, said United Steelworkers official Tim Waters. If they're deemed employees, he said, they would have the legal right to organize.

"It's crystal clear that college football players are employees," he said, arguing most put in a 40-hour work week and create revenue, though not for themselves. He and the Steelworkers president, Leo W. Gerard, said the relationship between colleges and athletes amounted to "pay for play."

William B. Gould IV, a Stanford Law School professor emeritus and former NLRB chairman, predicted the board will rule for the players.

"The major obstacle is the Brown University decision of a decade ago," he said, referring to a 2004 decision under a George W. Bush-era board that removed the right of graduate students at private universities to unionize.

The NLRB said in 2012 that it will reconsider Brown, and Gould thinks it will be reversed.

"I think these guys are employees because their compensation is unrelated to education, unlike the teaching assistants in Brown University, and they are supervised not by faculty, but by coaches," Gould said. "Their program for which they receive compensation does not have a fundamentally component. So given the direction and control that supervisory authorities have over them, I think they are easily employees within the meaning of the act."

Rauch, the labor attorney, said he thought union-minded athletes will have a tough time demonstrating they are employees, and he thought their chances of prevailing were slim.

"They have high hurdles to jump," he said.

Joescoundrel
03-27-2014, 11:00 AM
Bob Knight Makes Controversial Remark on NBA and College Basketball Process

By Mike Chiari , Featured Columnist

Mar 25, 2014

The one-and-done era in college basketball has generated plenty of criticism from those within the sport, and legendary former Indiana University head coach Bob Knight is the latest to speak out.

According to Chris Littmann of Sporting News, Knight lamented the fact that college basketball players are allowed to enter the NBA after their freshman season in an interview segment on ESPN's Mike and Mike.

Knight has never been known as the most tactful speaker, and that continued Tuesday when he used the word "raped" to describe the relationship between the NBA and college basketball.

If I were involved with the NBA I wouldn't want a 19-year-old or a 20-year-old kid, to bring into all the travel and all the problems that exist in the NBA. I would want a much more mature kid. I would want a kid that maybe I've been watching on another team and now he's 21, 22 years old instead of 18 or 19, and I might trade for that kid. On top of it all, the NBA does a tremendous, gigantic disservice to college basketball. It's as though they've raped college basketball in my opinion.

Joun Ourand of the Sports Business Journal provides ESPN's comments on the matter:

ESPN, on Bob Knight's comment that the NBA has "raped" college basketball: "We spoke with him. ESPN regrets the use of the word.”
— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) March 25, 2014

Not surprisingly, Knight received plenty of criticism for comparing the dynamic between college basketball and the NBA to such a heinous act. Zach Osterman of The Indianapolis Star was among those who chastised the Hall of Famer:

Ugh. Unacceptable word choice. RT @jeffborzello: Bob Knight: It's as if the NBA has "raped" college basketball: http://t.co/rhtp3W11vH
— ZachOsterman (@ZachOsterman) March 25, 2014

The bulk of college basketball's top freshmen opt to enter the NBA draft as soon as possible, and it seems likely that Kansas' Andrew Wiggins, Duke's Jabari Parker and Kentucky's Julius Randle will enter the fray once this season concludes as well.

Changes in draft eligibility have essentially forced top prospects to play a year of college basketball rather than entering the draft right out of high school. As a result, college basketball fans now have an opportunity to enjoy elite young players, even if it's only for a year.

Had this system been in place previously, players like LeBron James and Dwight Howard almost certainly would have played major college basketball for one season.

Despite the NBA seemingly trying to aid college basketball on the surface, Knight doesn't feel as though enough is being done. His preference is for the NBA to adopt the Major League Baseball model.

Major League Baseball has the best idea of all. Three years before they'll take a kid out of college, then they have a minor league system that they put the kids in. I'm sure that if the NBA followed the same thing, there would be a lot of kids in a minor league system that still were not good enough to play in the major NBA.

Knight's idea may seem like a great one to college basketball purists, but it's a tough sell to top draft prospects when they routinely watch players enter the NBA after their freshman years and assimilate seamlessly.

Some players ultimately flounder after entering the draft too early, like Sebastian Telfair, Darius Miles and Kwame Brown, to name a few, but it should be their decision to make.

Knight is entitled to his opinion, and there are many who seem to share it. As is often the case in sports, though, the old-school contingent is unwilling to accept inevitable change. And Knight isn't doing his cause any favors.

The relationship between college basketball and the NBA will continue to be a hot-button issue moving forward, and it is a fluid situation that could very well change in the coming years. This is likely far from the last that we've heard from Knight on the subject, but hopefully he's more aware of what he says in the future.

Joescoundrel
03-28-2014, 07:51 AM
Northwestern players get union vote

Updated: March 27, 2014, 9:23 AM ET

By Brian Bennett | ESPN.com

In a potentially game-changing moment for college athletics, the Chicago district of the National Labor Relations Board ruled on Wednesday that Northwestern football players qualify as employees of the university and can unionize.

NLRB regional director Peter Sung Ohr cited the players' time commitment to their sport and the fact that their scholarships were tied directly to their performance on the field as reasons for granting them union rights.

Even if Kain Colter and his fellow players succeed in unionization, the most interesting law here may be the law of unintended consequences.

Ohr wrote in his ruling that the players "fall squarely within the [National Labor Relations] Act's broad definition of 'employee' when one considers the common law definition of 'employee.'"

Ohr ruled that the players can hold a vote on whether they want to be represented by the College Athletes Players Association, which brought the case to the NLRB along with former Wildcats quarterback Kain Colter and the United Steelworkers union.

"I couldn't be more happy and grateful for today's ruling, though it is the ruling we expected," said Ramogi Huma, president of both the National College Players Association, a nonprofit advocacy group that has been around since 2001, and CAPA, which was formed in January. "I just have so much respect for Kain and the football players who stood up in unity to take this on. They love their university but they think it's important to exercise rights under labor law.

"The NCAA invented the term student-athlete to prevent the exact ruling that was made today. For 60 years, people have bought into the notion that they are students only. The reality is players are employees, and today's ruling confirms that. The players are one giant step closer to justice."

Northwestern issued a statement shortly after the ruling saying it would appeal to the full NLRB in Washington, D.C.

"While we respect the NLRB process and the regional director's opinion, we disagree with it," the statement read. "Northwestern believes strongly that our student-athletes are not employees, but students. Unionization and collective bargaining are not the appropriate methods to address the concerns raised by student-athletes."

Former Northwestern QB Kain Colter covers his future, his grievances with the NCAA, the NLRB's ruling that the school's football players can unionize, balancing athletics and academics and more.

In a statement, NCAA chief legal officer Donald Remy said: "While not a party to the proceeding, the NCAA is disappointed that the NLRB Region 13 determined the Northwestern football team may vote to be considered university employees. We strongly disagree with the notion that student-athletes are employees."

Remy added: "Over the last three years, our member colleges and universities have worked to re-evaluate the current rules. While improvements need to be made, we do not need to completely throw away a system that has helped literally millions of students over the past decade alone attend college. We want student athletes -- 99 percent of whom will never make it to the professional leagues -- focused on what matters most -- finding success in the classroom, on the field and in life."

The Big Ten also disagreed with the ruling and released a statement that read: "While we respect the process followed by the National Labor Relations Board, we disagree with the ruling. We don't believe that student-athletes are university employees. The issues raised during the hearings are already being discussed at the national level, and we believe that students should be a part of the conversation."

It was a sentiment shared by all of the big NCAA conferences, including the SEC.

"Notwithstanding today's decision, the SEC does not believe that full time students participating in intercollegiate athletics are employees of the universities they attend," Michael Slive, the SEC commissioner, said in a written statement.

CAPA supporters, meanwhile, celebrated the news. Colter tweeted: "This is a HUGE win for ALL college athletes!"

Later Wednesday, he told ESPN's Tom Farrey: "Obviously this is a huge day not just for Northwestern football players but all college athletes. It's about gaining basic protections and rights.

The Ruling

"I was pleased with how strong the ruling was. The regional director did not budge one bit, he backed us up on all of our points. I believe it's going to be hard to overrule his decision, given how strong it is.

"For me this was just an opportunity to make things right and stick up for future generations and make up for the wrongs of past generations."

Colter added that he was "confident" the Northwestern players would vote to unionize.

Colter, whose playing eligibility has been exhausted, said nearly all of the 85 scholarship players on the Wildcats' roster backed the union bid, though only he expressed his support publicly. The United Steelworkers union has been footing the legal bills.

CAPA attorneys argued that college football is, for all practical purposes, a commercial enterprise that relies on players' labor to generate billions of dollars in revenues. That, they contend, makes the relationship of schools to players one of employers to employees.

In its endeavor to have the players recognized as essential workers, CAPA likened scholarships to employment pay -- too little pay from its point of view. Northwestern balked at that claim, describing scholarship as grants.

Giving college athletes employee status and allowing them to unionize, critics have argued, could hurt college sports in numerous ways -- including by raising the prospects of strikes by disgruntled players or lockouts by athletic departments.

The NCAA has been under increasing scrutiny over its amateurism rules and is fighting a class-action federal lawsuit by former players seeking a cut of the billions of dollars generated from live broadcasts, memorabilia sales and video games. Other lawsuits allege that the NCAA failed to protect players from debilitating head injuries.

NCAA president Mark Emmert has pushed for a $2,000-per-player stipend to help athletes defray some of their expenses. Critics say that isn't nearly enough, considering that players help bring in millions of dollars to their schools and conferences.

CAPA's specific goals include guaranteeing coverage of sports-related medical expenses for current and former players, ensuring better procedures to reduce head injuries and potentially letting players pursue commercial sponsorships.

For now, the push is to unionize athletes at private schools, such as Northwestern, because the federal labor agency does not have jurisdiction over public universities.

During the NLRB's five days of hearings in February, Wildcats coach Pat Fitzgerald took the stand for union opponents, and his testimony sometimes was at odds with Colter's.

Colter told the hearing that players' performance on the field was more important to Northwestern than their in-class performance, saying, "You fulfill the football requirement and, if you can, you fit in academics." Asked why Northwestern gave him a scholarship of $75,000 a year, he responded: "To play football. To perform an athletic service."

But Fitzgerald said he tells players academics come first, saying, "We want them to be the best they can be ... to be a champion in life."

An attorney representing the university, Alex Barbour, noted Northwestern has one of the highest graduation rates for college football players in the nation, around 97 percent.

"Northwestern is not a football factory," he said.

Joescoundrel
04-11-2014, 08:30 AM
Senate hearing: New rules for UAAP, student athletes sought

by Levi Verora

Posted on 04/10/2014 3:13 PM | Updated 04/10/2014 3:59 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Alleged unethical practices that had gone unchecked in school athletics for years came up during a Senate hearing Thursday, April 10, on a bill that seeks to protect the rights of student athletes.

Most of the malpractices and the restricting effects of the residency rule cited were from various fields in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines, leading the a University of the Philippines professor to propose new rules to govern the UAAP.

"We are branded as the 'tulisans' in the UAAP but we want to propose a new set of rules," Ronualdo Dizer of the UP College of Human Kinetics told the committee on education, arts, and culture that was hearing for the first time Senator Pia Cayetano's Senate Bill 2166 or "An Act Providing for the Magna Carta of Student-Athletes."

Dizer said malpractices had gone on in the UAAP because there are no laws yet to regulate the practices that universities resort to just to keep good atheletes.

Among the many rules Dizer wants to get institutionalized are:

- banning foreign players from participating in the UAAP
- setting an allowance cap for athletes
- allowing students to transfer from one school to another if they have not been elevated to Team A status after a year

"There are no limits for financial packages or benefits. There should be an allowance cap. Students should also be allowed to transfer from one school to another without financial obligations if they were not promoted to Team A after a year," he said.

Cayetano: There should be no commercialization

Cayetano also called out athletic associations on the practice by some schools of offering excessive benefits just to lure athletes into transferring to or staying with them – as if the league is about money.

While Cayetano recognizes the right of student-athletes to enroll in the school of his or her choice, she believes there are some instances where student athletes transfer because of "scholarship with benefits."

"I have nothing against people earning money from sports, but not when you're a student athlete," said Cayetano. "We have to self-regulate. My challenge is to call it a student athletic association, not a commercial league."

She added the problem persists because parents allow their children to be treated as a commercial commodity and because there are benefits given without the amounts being disclosed.

"Lumilipat ang mga bata because of piracy, dahil sa scholarship with benefits. Some receive house and lots or cars. Ayaw natin mangyari 'yun," she added. (Some transfer because of piracy, because they're given scholarship with benefits. Some receive house and lots or cars. We don't want that to happen.)

Section 7.21 of Cayetano's proposed law wants to limit student-athlete benefits to tuition, board and lodging, uniforms, and reasonable living allowance.

"The student athlete is first and foremost a student and secondly an athlete; to this end, his or her rights as student shall be paramount at all times," said Cayetano, who also chairs the committee.

Among the many rights Cayetano wants to give student-athletes should the bill be legislated into a law are: the right to have their education needs prioritized by their school or organization (Section 5.1), the right to be provided with safe and healthy environment for practice (Section 5.2), choose his/her own school (Section 5.3).

Shorten residency rule

In the highly-tackled part of the bill (Section 5.3b) Cayetano wants to shorten to one year the current two-year residency requirement before college student athletes are allowed to transfer schools, and to remove the residency requirement for high school students wishing to transfer to another high school, college, or university.

The bill states: "It is the right of a student-athlete to be free from any act of restriction or punishment from his old and/or new school due to his transfer from the former to the latter, Provided, that a one-year residency shall be respected by the school and athletic association in case of a transfer from one college or university to another. In no case shall this residency rule apply to a high school student who transferring to another school or to a college or university."

In 2013, Cayetano lambasted the UAAP board for implementing a new rule for Season 76, popularly called the "Jerie Pingoy rule" as it was named after the former Far Eastern University (FEU) junior star Jerie Pingoy who decided to transfer to Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) for college.

Under the new UAAP rule, a player who shall transfer from one member school to another is required to sit it out for two seasons or get a release from their previous school; since Pingoy was not granted a release by FEU, he won't be eligible to play for the Blue Eagles until Season 78.

Cayetano deemed this rule as 'unconstitutional.'

Swimmer Mikee Bartolome of the University of the Philippines (UP) - who transferred from University of Santo Tomas (UST) - also faced the same controversy as she faced a two-year residency rule.

But with the help of Cayetano, a staunch supporter of student-athletes, the issue was taken to the Supreme Court, leading to a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) that allowed Bartolome to participate in the UAAP Season 76 swimming competitions.

Boycotts marred the swimming tournament last September 2013 with two member schools – UST and La Salle – refusing to join if Bartolome swims. Only Ateneo and UP went toe to toe in the competitions with the tankers from UP emerging as overall champions. READ: Bartolome wins, but boycotts mar UAAP swimming

Bartolome's father shared in the hearing on Thursday that their family had to go through hardships days before the swimming competition just to get a TRO. He added Mikee still has to serve a one-year residency.

"There is a directive that the UAAP shall bar my daughter from playing because she has not yet served a one-year residency."

Senator Cynthia Villar, who was present at the hearing, also expressed her disgust over the two-year residency rule.

"I don't understand this two-year residency rule. Students change schools. They go to different schools for better opportunities or education," she said.

Equal opportunities

Cayetano also exchanged ideas with representatives from athletic associations like the NAASCU, WNCAA, and SCUAA.

She wants to explore the possibility of giving a venue for differently-abled athletes to excel, and also giving equal opportunites to men and women.

"My perception is that a huge chunk of the benefit is going to men's basketball," Cayetano said during the public hearing.

Once passed, the bill will oblige schools to back their student athletes (Section 7), providing them with the proper support like shouldering their tuition fees, allowances, and providing them with medical care, proper equipment or facilities that shall help them in fulfilling their responsibilities as stipulated in Section 5. At the same time, Cayetano wants to limit the benefits as to not 'commercialize' the student-athletes.

Cayetano also challenged school officials to look at student-athletes' academic performances in such way there shall be no special treatment, like the fabrication of grades.

The student-athletes meanwhile (Section 6) shall be tasked to observe a set of responsibilities, like conducting themselves in a good manner, voluntarily joining trainings or workshops prioritize their academic performance, and refraining from using Performance-enhancing Drugs (PEDs). – Rappler.com

Joescoundrel
04-11-2014, 08:40 AM
We have to define "excessive" then. Tsaka kung ito ba ay galing lang sa school or sa alumni or even sa isang tao na wala naman kinalaman sa school ng isang palyer.

For instance, what if a Lasalle alum thinks so highly of say an FEU player, and gives the FEU player P10,000 a month out of the goodness of the Lasalle alum's heart, dahil lang bilib na bilib siya dun sa manlalaro? Bawal din ba dapat 'yon?

Papano kung totally walang kinalaman sa UAAP ang nagbibigay ng pera sa isang UAAP player? Kunwari isang alum ng University of the Visayas, gusto lang bigyan ng P10,000 a month ang isang dating UV player na kunwari nasa UST na. Bawal din ba dapat 'yon?

Kung ipagbabawal natin, papano natin ma-enforce ang reglamento na 'yan? Papano natin mapatunayan kung may mag-alegasyon ng ganyan laban sa isang player?

Sa dorm naman, what if a wealthy school says "Eh kulang po ang dorm sa amin, so we undertook a MOA with EDSA Shangrila, dun bali official dorm nung ibang athletes namin." How would you legally hold this against them? You mean to say you would begrudge a kid a chance to stay in posh digs and make some bank?

MrM
04-11-2014, 09:05 AM
Wow ah. The region is already talking about an integrated ASEAN and you want to ban foreign athletes? I thought the reason why some schools have already adjusted their academic calendars is so they can harmonize them with the rest of the region. Athletes can't enjoy whatever benefit that would bring? Talk about a step backwards.

Joescoundrel
04-11-2014, 12:29 PM
^ You said it.

This xenophobia just plain sucks. If there is a way to bring more international students (note I said STUDENTS) into Philippine schools, shouldn't that be a good thing?

admiral thrawn
04-11-2014, 09:20 PM
Alam ba nung taga UP na resource speaker sa senate hearing na may foreign player sila?

pio_valenz
04-16-2014, 02:30 PM
Alam ba nung taga UP na resource speaker sa senate hearing na may foreign player sila?

Of course he knows. He's the dean after all.

This is where Dean Dizer is coming from with regard to foreign athletes: there is reason to believe that many of the African imports plying their trade in the collegiate leagues have forged documents, ergo they are not who they claim to be. Many African nations do not have a reliable census, so it's easy to assume another identity. Ergo, many of them are either waaaay overaged or do not have the required documents to enroll, let alone play, in college. I do not totally agree on a complete ban, though, but instead maybe the league should tighten screening measures.

Now with regard to his other recommendations, I agree with him. There has to be a way to regulate all these perks. The amounts changing hands are now beyond obscene. So when a player says it is his dream to play for so-and-so school or that he is loyal to so-and-so school, well sure he is. Because alumni of that school have paid him and his family an ungodly sum of money. Will he still be loyal if he just gets a straight up scholarship with no brand new shiny car?

There is nothing wrong with giving an athlete a monthly stipend, but when athletes start turning recruitment into a bidding war, um, I do think there is already something fundamentally wrong with that. The system is now breeding student-athletes with the wrong set of values. We're telling them it's all right to go to the highest bidder, that it's all right for parents to turn their kids into meal tickets.

Call me old-fashioned, but I don't think that's right.

bchoter
04-17-2014, 11:18 PM
About meal tickets, we're close to missing out on a young and relatively unproven prospect because we couldn't cough up 100K which several schools readily offered. The was already telling his relatives and neighbors that he's going to UST but that offer is just too hard to resist for his family.

It's not only parents who turn kids to meal tickets but some coaches as well. We, again missed out on a prospect for a measly 80K.

These kids are largely unknown, hence, under tha radar. How much more for blue chips and Fil-Fors?

abcdef
04-19-2014, 10:13 AM
Political will is needed to prevent excessive perks provided to athletes. Declare everything that the school spends, register boosters, and if they are really earning that much money bakit hinde i tax ang mga yan. (Henares to the rescue) ;)

pio_valenz
04-19-2014, 10:43 AM
About meal tickets, we're close to missing out on a young and relatively unproven prospect because we couldn't cough up 100K which several schools readily offered. The was already telling his relatives and neighbors that he's going to UST but that offer is just too hard to resist for his family.

It's not only parents who turn kids to meal tickets but some coaches as well. We, again missed out on a prospect for a measly 80K.

These kids are largely unknown, hence, under tha radar. How much more for blue chips and Fil-Fors?

For blue chips? Monthly "allowance" pa lang ang 80K sa kanila. Mababa na nga yun eh.

admiral thrawn
04-19-2014, 04:42 PM
Everything revolves around money..lets not fool our selves. Schools join leagues like the uaap and ncaa as a marketing tool. And these athletes are "employed" by the school to wear and play for the school colors.the harsh fact is players break their backs during training and might get injuries that may affect his life thereafter. I think giving the players a reasonable compensation for the amount of time and work he puts in for the school..its worth stressing that this work that he puts in will definitely redound to the material benefit of the school. Reasonable compensation, aside from scholarship and board and lodging, for me is more realistic and fair for these athletes. Di talaga maiiwasan eh..trabaho pa rin ang tawag sa ginagawa nila.

gfy
04-19-2014, 06:27 PM
US NCAA just approved daily meal allowances for athletes(they didn't even have those before?). In addition to scholarship and lodging. No pocket money. No condos and cars. Let's just make the rules and the corresponding penalties for BOTH the schools and athletes. Unenforceable? We'll worry about that later. For as long as there are rules and penalties, matatakot din ang mga yan. An athlete for example would think thrice before accepting any money even from alumni if he knows he'll be banned from the league permanently if found out...

BLUE HORSE
04-19-2014, 11:28 PM
GFY,

The US NCAA athletes received meal allowances as part of their package. That is 3 square meals plus snack food. The problem lies in what is considered snack food and a meal. The prime example given was the ubiquitous breakfast bagel was an acceptable snack food. However, if the bagel was served with cream cheese and some meat, it was now considered a meal. It is like ok lang ang pandesal for merienda but if you put any kind of cheese, cold cuts or carne norte it becomes a sandwich and construed as part of a meal. Go figure.

What is not allowed by NCAA rules is for boosters and fans to pay for the meals of the athletes even if it is only a McDo. The after game dinner hosted by boosters and school alumni are also forbidden. For walk-on players not on varsity scholarship, they absolutely do not qualify for any meals and snacks. Walk- on have to pay for their own meals.

pio_valenz
04-21-2014, 08:13 AM
Everything revolves around money..lets not fool our selves. Schools join leagues like the uaap and ncaa as a marketing tool. And these athletes are "employed" by the school to wear and play for the school colors.the harsh fact is players break their backs during training and might get injuries that may affect his life thereafter. I think giving the players a reasonable compensation for the amount of time and work he puts in for the school..its worth stressing that this work that he puts in will definitely redound to the material benefit of the school. <b>Reasonable compensation</b>, aside from scholarship and board and lodging, for me is more realistic and fair for these athletes. Di talaga maiiwasan eh..trabaho pa rin ang tawag sa ginagawa nila.

We have to define reasonable compensation then. Because for me, receiving a monthly allowance that would rival the compensation of a vice president of a company is no longer reasonable. How much are the regular daily expenses of an average college student? Find that amount then add free board and lodging and free tuition. That should be more than enough for student-athletes. Why give a car or a house and lot? Also, doesn't matter to me if these players break their packs in practice. At this stage in their careers they're supposed to be playing this game because they love it, not because their parents are making them meal tickets. If they're afraid to get injured then they shouldn't be playing. Also, if star player receives, say, P100,000 a month just because he breaks his back in practice, then can walk-on benchwarmer now also demand P100,000 a month because he's also breaking his back in practice? They go through the same drills, after all.

Understood that varsity teams also double as a good marketing ploy for schools, but the athletes should still be treated as students. It shouldn't be a job to them, otherwise right then and there you have a big problem. They'll ultimately be loyal to whoever hands out the checks, and not to the school itself.

The UAAP and NCAA have to police their ranks because right now there is no governing body for collegiate sports. No one lays down the rules, no one metes punishment. The question is: will the schools allow themselves to be regulated? Almost all of the schools are already guilty of doing some form of illegal recruitment. The prevailing sentiment now is: well, since School A already started it, might as well do it ourselves. This has to stop. Players, parents, alumni and schools must live in fear of punishment if they are caught. But someone has to crack the whip. That's why I am monitoring Sen. Cayetano's work on this with great interest.

Joescoundrel
04-21-2014, 09:30 AM
US NCAA just approved daily meal allowances for athletes(they didn't even have those before?). In addition to scholarship and lodging. No pocket money. No condos and cars. Let's just make the rules and the corresponding penalties for BOTH the schools and athletes. Unenforceable? We'll worry about that later. For as long as there are rules and penalties, matatakot din ang mga yan. An athlete for example would think thrice before accepting any money even from alumni if he knows he'll be banned from the league permanently if found out...

Agree ako that rules should be instituted even if enforcement will be next to impossible. All it takes is one or two fools to be caught at matitigil din ang ganyang gawain.

As for what constituted a reasonable stipend / allowance, I've always advocated that it should be no more than 80% of whatever the prevailing daily minimum wage is in the locality of the school. So for Metro Manila schools the minimum daily wage is about P450. That means a typical varsity athlete should be receiving no more than P360 per day. Times 22 na natin para more or less tugma din sa typical number of working days in a month, that comes to P7,920 per month.

If an honest working man can live on a P450 minimum daily wage (at least according to our economic and labor authorities) then an honest varsity athlete should be able to live on P360 average daily allowance, considering he will not pay rent (lives in a dorm, or other school housing facility, or lives at home), and does not pay for food (yes, dapat libre pa din ang pagkain kapag sagot ng school ang pagbuhay sa atleta). Siguro naman sapat na P360 per day para sa pamasahe, load, other basic miscellaneous expenses. Ewan ko lang kung sapat 'yan para sa Internet rental at printing expenses.

Mag-lifestyle check na din kapag nakitaan ng kakaibang mga kagamitan at kilos ang atleta, ban kagad.

If he did not have his own car when he graduated from high school, then suddenly nagkaroon nung kunin ng isang university, ban! Kung dati simpleng Nokia lang ang cellphone tapos biglang nagkaron ng iPhone, ban! Kung dati ni walang pangkain sa Jollibee, tapos biglang siya na nagbabayad kapag may ka-date sa TGI Friday's, ban! Kung dati nangungupahan lang sa isang maliit na apartment, at biglang tumatawad ng P3 Million para sa isang house and lot, ban! Kung dati nanggugulang pa sa tong-its, tapos ngayon nakikita na sa Baccarat table ng Resorts World o Poker Clubs kung saan-saan, ban!

bchoter
04-21-2014, 11:24 AM
A couple of years ago posts about "leveling the playing field" were belittled as comments from "have nots". But when the Pingoy Rule happened similar comments are now raised by the same persons who laughed at schools with no basketball patrons. Tinawag nalang na "anti-commercialization".

We may not like Molina (or is it the other M?) but he made perfect sense in banning alumnis from giving benefits directly to students. 'ika nga ni manong pio "They'll ultimately be loyal to whoever hands out the checks, and not to the school itself".

We may, as well, apply it to coaches. Di ba nga Norman Black tendered his resignation after the disengagement. And there were loud whispers (by conspiracy theorists) on where coach Pido's loyalty lies (a little misguided since he was no longer under the SMC payroll that time).

And let's expand the rules further and follow the US NCAA's lead of banning agents. Kung hindi sila pwedeng maging meal ticket ng magulang, dapat hindi din sila pwedeng maging meal ticket ng hindi nila kaano-ano.

admiral thrawn
04-21-2014, 02:56 PM
We have to define reasonable compensation then. Because for me, receiving a monthly allowance that would rival the compensation of a vice president of a company is no longer reasonable. How much are the regular daily expenses of an average college student? Find that amount then add free board and lodging and free tuition. That should be more than enough for student-athletes. Why give a car or a house and lot? Also, doesn't matter to me if these players break their packs in practice. At this stage in their careers they're supposed to be playing this game because they love it, not because their parents are making them meal tickets. If they're afraid to get injured then they shouldn't be playing. Also, if star player receives, say, P100,000 a month just because he breaks his back in practice, then can walk-on benchwarmer now also demand P100,000 a month because he's also breaking his back in practice? They go through the same drills, after all.

Understood that varsity teams also double as a good marketing ploy for schools, but the athletes should still be treated as students. It shouldn't be a job to them, otherwise right then and there you have a big problem. They'll ultimately be loyal to whoever hands out the checks, and not to the school itself.

The UAAP and NCAA have to police their ranks because right now there is no governing body for collegiate sports. No one lays down the rules, no one metes punishment. The question is: will the schools allow themselves to be regulated? Almost all of the schools are already guilty of doing some form of illegal recruitment. The prevailing sentiment now is: well, since School A already started it, might as well do it ourselves. This has to stop. Players, parents, alumni and schools must live in fear of punishment if they are caught. But someone has to crack the whip. That's why I am monitoring Sen. Cayetano's work on this with great interest.

Still athletes deserve reasonable compensation regardless if he or she is a star player or not..as long as they play for the school they are enttled to it. If legislation should be needed then so be it...i think manong Joe's proposal is more realistic.. And yes the school should be one to shoulder it not its wealthy alumni.

Joescoundrel
04-21-2014, 03:48 PM
Mahirap mag-peg ng specific amount kaya dapat peg na lang sa minimum wage, which sometimes adjusts.

I honestly don't believe any kid deserves to be paid more than an honest working man just to play varsity sports.

bchoter
04-21-2014, 04:09 PM
^ One of the main arguments (mostly in the US NCAA but have been mentioned here and other sports boards) for paying athletes is that the school makes money off of them in the form of TV coverage fees and gate receipts and licensing. Dapat nga bang may share ang athletes from such revenues? Aba'y baka sa susunod sabihin ni Jeron Teng na siya naman ang main attraction every DLSU game so dapat he has a bigger slice from DLSU's share.

So let's say a bill on regulating student-athlete's benefits is signed into law, should the contract between the student-athlete and the school (benefactor) be rescinded? Pano na yung monthly allowance? Yung lupa't bahay? Yung wheels?

GreenArrow
04-21-2014, 04:54 PM
You don't need a law to regulate all of these. The benefits that athletes receive is not the problem. It is the proof that they actually received such benefits. These are all speculations unless somebody can show a proof of such contract. If there was indeed a contract, I'm sure somebody has a copy of this contract. Unless somebody comes out with the contract, stop blaming the innocent athletes. If it is really true that students athletes choose their school based on benefits and not because of academic reputation, how come Dlsu and ADMU continue to attract students despite their very high tuition fees? It is probably because of better quality. It's like a merchandise, why pay more if the quality is the same.

bchoter
04-21-2014, 05:01 PM
Ok. Tuloy ang ligaya then

admiral thrawn
04-21-2014, 05:27 PM
^ One of the main arguments (mostly in the US NCAA but have been mentioned here and other sports boards) for paying athletes is that the school makes money off of them in the form of TV coverage fees and gate receipts and licensing. Dapat nga bang may share ang athletes from such revenues? Aba'y baka sa susunod sabihin ni Jeron Teng na siya naman ang main attraction every DLSU game so dapat he has a bigger slice from DLSU's share.

So let's say a bill on regulating student-athlete's benefits is signed into law, should the contract between the student-athlete and the school (benefactor) be rescinded? Pano na yung monthly allowance? Yung lupa't bahay? Yung wheels?

Stat con would suggest that laws operate prospectively and not retroactively. In short wala ng bawian. Pero kung meron talagang ganitong klase ng batas magiging equal ang benefit at hindi na dapat hihingi pa ng kng ano ano pa. At dapat higpitan din ang academic requirement bago maka laro.

pio_valenz
04-21-2014, 07:03 PM
^Agree. Unfortunately, I don't think any rule can be retroactive. At mahirap na din bawiin ang bahay at lupa. Hehe.

Just to clarify, I am not against athletes getting compensation per se. Okay lang yan, pero dapat heavily regulated at hindi astronomical amount. Like Joe said, maybe something close to minimum wage. Also, dapat pantay-pantay regardless of talent level.

Agree din ako doon sa nag-suggest ng lifestyle check.

bchoter
04-21-2014, 07:21 PM
^ So the student-athlete shall receive the same astronomical benefits as long as he doesn't break any of the conditions in the contract even if a new rule deems such contracts illegal?

Agree din ako on most of the suggestions. Basta dapat may rule in place at hindi tayo aasa sa self-policing capabilities ng schools. It;s not that easy to cover one's tracks. There will always be the specter of somebody coming forward. Kung May Ed Martin and the Fab Five and US NCAA meron ding meron ding Awoo and the PEP Testers...

gfy
04-21-2014, 08:01 PM
^ Uso na ngayon ang mga whistleblowers. Pwede pa gawin state witness...

BLUE HORSE
04-22-2014, 12:55 AM
^^

No rules or law will prevent unscrupulous individuals from breaking the law. In the case of Ed Martin, kinarma siya at namatay ng maaga. Sa Pinas lang yata ang masasamang damo hindi namamatay ng maaga.

Do you treat all student-athletes equally? Will the UAAP mens basketball and womens volleyball players receive the same amount as the varsity players on the chess team ? How about the walk-on athletes who make a varsity team but do not receive scholarships? Members of the cheer-dancing competition? Certain basketball and football coaches of the US NCAA schools are also advocating stipends for the athletes. The question is how much and will it cover only the money producing sports or blanket coverage to all athletes.

Will the national law being pushed by Sen. Cayetano cover the free use of privately owned condo's or ancestral home turned into condo's that are donated to a school? How about the dining table for the DLSU basketball team? Players who participate in the D-league, is the players compensation part of the athletes stipend? Ipagbawal na rin ang pag benta ng comp tickets to games by athletes.

james_hunt
04-22-2014, 06:47 AM
Jerie Pingoy can be the state-witness and whistle blower we're all waiting for. He can spill the beans under oath and finally put an end to this. :)

Joescoundrel
04-22-2014, 10:26 AM
^ That'd be a blockbuster truly worth brewing from the bleachers. Tama ba Pareng James?

I would also like to follow up on the issue of student-athletes being actual students.

Sa totoo lang imbes na pinagtutuunan natin magkano at kung ano mga nakukuha ng manlalaro, hindi kaya mas magandang alamin natin kung mga tunay na magaaral sila?

I don't mean if they are officially enrolled, because that's the easiest thing to do. I mean are they at least meeting the minimum units-passed requirement of the league? Are they at least actually getting an education? Can they even define the basic terms that constitute their Major? Kung Interdisciplinary Studies major si Dagul, can he at least tell us the textbook definition of "interdisciplinary studies"?

Tignan na din ang schools mismo. Ano ba graduation rate ng mga manlalaro nila? Over the last 10 years, how many men's basketball players earned their college degrees within the five years of the mandated maximum eligibility?

Over 10 years there were 1,280 men's basketball players (assuming 16 roster spots X eight UAAP teams X 10 years). Ang acceptable rate sa akin should be at least 50% per school, meaning at least 80 sa 160 na naging manlalaro ng kada pamantasan dapat naka-earn ng college degrees nila on or before their eligibility is used up. Lahat ng schools na hindi umabot ng 50% graduation rate over the last 10 years dapat one full year na banned from all UAAP competition, with that year counting against eligibility of all their current athletes, kung maubos ang eligibility ng ilang stars nila dapat lang tutal pabaya naman sila bilang pamantasan.

At lahat ng mga poor-performing schools hindi pwede mag-line up ng rookie for three consecutive full UAAP seasons in all events, tutal pinababayaan nila pag-aaral ng mga bata nila eh, huwag na sila mag-recruit muna, three years should be more than enough for them to set up full-fledged academic support services for their athletes. Sori na lang kung meron ng tapos ang residency, or masasagasaan pa residency, ganyan talaga kapag shit ang pinasukan mong pamantasan. If that means there will only be three or four participants in the UAAP so be it, after all the league started with only four founding members naman talaga.

Kung hinahayaan rin lang nila ang pag-aaral ng mga atleta nila, and remember ang totoong papel ng pamantasan sa mundong ibabaw ay ang mag-provide ng matinong pag-aaral sa mag magaaral nila, dapat lang makalos na mga bagsak-bagsakan na manlalaro, kasi pandaraya na 'yon eh.

Kung pwede nga bigyan ng CHEd ng standardized test after every UAAP season lahat ng atleta depending on their declared curriculum year (i.e. freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, fifth-year senior, grad student, etc). Wala naman makakalusot diyan eh, kasi kung paulit-ulit lang ang ine-enrol na subject ng isang bata e di ibig sabihin binabagsak or dina-drop niya ang subject, sasabit pa din siya sa minimum units passed rule. Kung progressing naman ang subjects taken niya e di dapat kaya niyang sumagot ng isang standardized test like any other student.

bchoter
04-22-2014, 11:04 AM
^ Parang UCONN sa US NCAA.

BTW, wala bang law against schools who deliberately make their students repeat a level (or 2, or even 3!!!), especially in HS? Most high schools blatantly do this. I'm not just talking about UAAP or NCAA or Tiong Lian, but nation wide. In high school we regularly went up against 18/19-year old HS student-athletes. Try to watch Palarong Pambansa or Little League baseball.

yungha
04-22-2014, 11:11 AM
Joe, there should be a lot less than 1280 basketball players over the last 10 years because you don't change the full roster every year. i'm guessing there should be less than 500. this smaller number would make it easier to study how they fared in life after uaap - did they graduate, get decent jobs or establish a sustainable business, which ones are prosperous, which ones are struggling, etc. if we're pushing for student-athlete rights, we should also consider if schools did their part in preparing their athletes for life after college sports.

agree 100% on standardized testing to determine if an athlete is academically qualified. parang sa us ncaa, may minimum required SAT score in order to qualify to play.

Joescoundrel
04-22-2014, 11:24 AM
^ Ah yeah, sori ha, my math is very bad looking kasi, hehehe!

I agree with all your added points though. College is supposed to be formal preparation for trying to live in the real world. If you're not working towards getting a college diploma, siguro naman wala ka dapat sa isang pamantasan.

After all, iilan lang ba sa isang batch ng players ang pang-10 year PBA All Star ang husay at galing? Maybe less than two out of every roster of 16? Papano pa kung fencer ka, or chess player, obviously it is next to impossible to make a decent and full time living out of those sports. So dapat lang na ang pamantasan inaalagaan at inaalalayan ang pag-aaral ng manlalaro, that is after all supposedly the core competence of any halfway-decent university.

Let's face it, the "dumb jock" is not just a stereotype, lalo na sa UAAP. Student-athletes generally really do need a lot of hand-holding in academics. Talaga bang saksakan ng hirap para sa isang pamantasan na mag-assign ng isang faculty member na mag-tutor one-on-one or kahit group tutoring para sa mga atletang nangangailangan ng ganito?

GreenArrow
04-22-2014, 12:05 PM
Jerie Pingoy can be the state-witness and whistle blower we're all waiting for. He can spill the beans under oath and finally put an end to this. :)Will you testify against your self? Will you confirm the benefits that you received? Baka Hindi Lang feu sumabit. But the more important question is if the athletes are really students? Dapat may standard exam to play sa UAAP.

gfy
04-22-2014, 02:12 PM
It's not just Pingoy but several others particularly in the past few years where the bidding has gone berserk. Since it would be very laborious, the UAAP could start with basketball which IMO should get little more generous benefits for the players compared to the other sports since it brings in more money. But the other sports should get reasonable meal allowances for their athletes (besides the standard scholarship and lodging) and not only during the season but throughout the year especially for the ones who need them. At Ateneo I understand those who are relatively well-off don't get full scholarships and other benefits like food allowance.

james_hunt
04-22-2014, 04:35 PM
Will you testify against your self? Will you confirm the benefits that you received? Baka Hindi Lang feu sumabit. But the more important question is if the athletes are really students? Dapat may standard exam to play sa UAAP.

When summoned by the Senate, he won't have a choice.

GreenArrow
04-22-2014, 09:24 PM
When summoned by the Senate, he won't have a choice.Sorry but there is a law that allows a person from testifying against himself.

Jeep
04-22-2014, 10:28 PM
ilang araw na rin naming pinag-uusapan ni joe by text ito. then he pointed me this morning toward this direction hehehe. same observations, i.e., political will by the leagues (UAAP, NCAA, etc.) will get this done. but as joe told me, when it comes to the boards of these leagues, it may be more "political" than "will" that emerges victorious at the end of the day.

still, puede namang mangarap, and i long for the day when a commish for these leagues will hold the job for longer than a season. make it a 9-to-5 thing for, say, 3 years, subject to renewal if he performs well, someone like a david stern. there has to be someone to oversee all the drastic changes needed to weed out the rot in these so-called amateur leagues. sobra na kasi ang mga nababalitang inilalabas na pera para sa mga batang 'to. it's no longer funny.

i guess the americans have it right in principle to disallow more than the 3 square meals at the dorm that the US-NCAA has just recently said is now OK. if you allow more than a fast-food meal, what comes next? susunod na ba diyan ang iPhone? vios o altis? bahay at lupa? franchise ng drug store? that's why they nip it in the bud before it gets outta hand. and i can understand why.

do we have that kind of puritanical zeal? nah, we're too laid back, everything's all hunky-dory all the time, which is both good and bad -- as with american puritanism. i'd argue that, being the fiesta people we are, a nice pakain after a game, where everyone's so full you'd have to roll them out the restaurant is OK with me. anything beyond that, dapat nang busisiin ng liga. ano at magkano ang sakop ng pagbusisi? nasimulan na ninyo ang pag-uusap. hopefully, this kicks up a $h1+storm with the powers-that-be. sure, cedric lee and vhong navarro make better news fodder for the masses, but we are college buddies with these powers-that-be as well. surely, they will not countenance their alma maters having to look one way even if it means conveniently ignoring the very principles on which their alma maters -- i'd like to believe -- were founded. principles of fair play, honesty, loyalty, righteousness, among others, which are now being set aside -- for mammon.

Joescoundrel
04-23-2014, 01:34 PM
^ Is the big money genie something we can really stuff back into its lamp?

I'm not holding my breath on the political will of the UAAP Board if only because there are eight vested interests in constant competition there. In the NCAA there are 10 vested interests, and if we are to go with our Bedan friends, actually two vested interests, San Beda and the other nine schools.

Tama din 'yung isang sinabi dito na we cannot trust the leagues to police themselves. Kapag ganyan ng kalaki ang mga institusyon hindi na madaling pagkatiwalaan sila, lalo na kapag mismong kabuhayan na nila nakasalalay.

That is why I think there really ought to be legislation that regulates varsity tournaments / leagues. Sa totoo lang kung titignan natin 'yung Republic Act that created the PSC dapat PSC ang may hawak sa mga ligang pampaaralan sa lahat ng antas. Kaya lang wala naman ginagawang reglamento ang PSC, at hinahayaan na lang ang mga liga.

So here we are, unbridled, unabated, uncontrolled throwing of money and other perks at so-called star varsity athletes.

How bad has it gotten? Some kid - I won't say who - from the province has been shopped by his money-grubbing dad to at least four college teams.

Anyone with half an iota of basketball sense would take one look at this kid and make an immediate monetary valuation of what he is worth now, as is where is.

I'd say he's worth exactly ZERO pesos up front, and no more than a subsistence-level allowance for his first year on college ball. In fact he should probably spend at least one year on a B Team, that's how raw he friggin' is.

Potential? Plenty. Whether or not it will be realized is the tricky part. He might become the next Arwind Santos. But he might also become the next Adrian Santos. Splitting that at the middle he might become the next Badong Canlas, as Bchoter has declared.

Yet his friggin' dad wants P100,000 UP FRONT. His son is not worth P10,000 up front, much less P100,000.

Yet we can't really nail the dad for anything can we? Even our laws say it is every Filipino's right to try to earn the best possible living in a free market economy, as long as it is within the law. Gustong gumawa ng pera nung pobreng tatay eh, at ang anak niya ang natatanging pinakamadaling paraan na ligal para makagawa sila ng pera, aba'y sino ba naman ako para sabihin na mali siya? And take note, hindi mayaman na pamilya ito, sa pagkakaalam ko nangangailangan din talaga sila ng pera or they might lose their home.

Kaya lang his son just isn't worth that kind of money.

Tarages, eh kung si Junemar Fajardo Part II ba anak niya, kahit siguro P1,000,000 up front ibigay ko sa kanila.

redlion123
04-23-2014, 06:50 PM
Kung iregulate ang pagbigay ng allowance sa isang atleta, papaano kung may dleague team ang benefactor ng iskuwelahan at dun ibigay ang kabuan ng allowance ng atleta? O kaya may malaking kumpanya ang benefactor at lagyan ng item ang magulang ng atleta as consultant? Ipagbabawal ba ito gayun hindi naman atleta ang tumangap at magulang ang nag trabaho? Eh kung may tv station ang benefactor at kinuhang artista ang atleta iregulate din ba ang kikitain ng atleta sa pag aartista niya dahil ang benefactor ng iskuwelahanang may ari ng tv station? Ireregulate ba ito gayun walang kinalaman ang paglalaro niya sa pag labas sa telebisyon?

Sam Miguel
04-24-2014, 07:45 AM
^^^ In terms of media values one could make the argument that the star athletes are worth a lot in terms of media value for a company, brand or product. Besides, the lines between sports and showbiz are so indistinct as to be nearly nonexistent, not only in our country but elsewhere in the world. Depending on how the legislation would be worded, one could therefore argue that receiving any income as a showbiz personality or brand endorser would already be "excessive" and thus "illegal" as a benefit for the star athlete. I guess the simple logic there is, if the athlete is a superstar, she is popular across a wide demographic. If she is that popular then putting her in some silly sitcom or making her hawk say a line of shampoos would bolster ratings / brand equity. The more popular she is the bigger her star becomes the more income she earns off non-varsity activities, all of which however can be traced directly back to her varsity activities. Bench riders never endorse anything.

But I'm with Joe here. I'd never begrudge a kid or his family the opportunity to make bank as much as they can as long as it is within the law.

Joescoundrel
05-15-2014, 12:49 PM
The five types of athletes' parents

By Jude Roque | College Hoops Experts' Blog – Wed, May 14, 2014 10:39 AM PHT

Over a month ago, a disturbing photo caught the attention of social media, as an adult man appeared to be hitting a teenage soccer player with a solid object. It was later on revealed that the incident occurred in a football game in Cebu City, in a tournament participated by mostly high school student-athletes under 18 years old. The assailant was later on identified as a customs police who ran into the field to rescue his godson from being “grappled” by the victim.

This incident in Cebu may have been viral for days but there have been several similar cases in sports that have not made the news in the past. Brawls are not uncommon in many sporting events. Neither is the over-involvement of parents, or adults in general, in games where their kids play.

I have been coaching basketball for over fifteen years now and I’ve seen some of the worst cases of parents trying to get too involved with their kids’ games.

From what I’ve seen, I can name five types of parents that can be considered as getting too involved in the games.

1. The Overprotective Parent

This type definitely fits the bill of the adult in the Cebu incident, although in that case, he was trying to protect his nephew. Basketball and football are both contact sports that can be highly physical at certain times. When emotions are high or when the pressure is too much, players tend to get into fights. But parents should not. As spectators, parents should leave the game officials to address the situation.

There had been some sensationalized incidents before in basketball of parents attacking players from the opposing team who got entangled with their sons during the game. I remember one case in the UAAP in the late '90s when a father tried to confront a player who gave his son a hard foul during the game.

I also remember when I once coached the San Beda Red Lions in a pre-season game against the Ateneo Blue Eagles. The taller and heftier Bam Bam Gamalinda was “physically” guarding a young Jai Reyes. From the stands of the Blue Eagle gym I heard Jai’s mom, Manet, yell, “Hoy Jude, pag nasaktan yang anak ko ha!”

We would laugh about it after the game though as the Reyeses are good friends.

Okay, I get that parents don’t want their children getting hurt while playing the games and that emotions drive some of them to do crazy stuff. But it’s all part of the game and there are proper ways of handling these situations, like letting the league officials do their jobs.

Better yet, if you are too scared for your child, have them play chess or tennis instead.

2. The Parent-Agent/Manager

There are also those who are trying to make future superstars out of their children in sports that they’ve built their world around their child’s playing career. It’s perfectly normal to admire your child and even believe that he is the best in the world. But to be too hands-on in laying out the path towards the kid’s future stardom may be going a bit too far. This is especially prevalent with high school players going into college.

Parents, especially fathers, tend to act as agents or managers when negotiating with college squads. Again, this is fine, especially when the player is still a minor. As a parent, you would want the best for your child.
But some parents attempt to take advantage of the situation by asking ridiculous perks from the recruiting school. Today, they are no longer contented with scholarships and free board and lodging. Oftentimes, monetary compensation on a monthly basis is made part of the deal. This then subjects the kid to a bidding war among schools.

Parent-agents (or stage parents) tend to sell their kids too hard. But many of them really do believe what they say about their kids. More often than not however, it becomes a case of “too much icing and not enough cake.”

There are also parents that demand more playing time for their kids. I completely get it that you want to see your son play the entire 40 minutes of basketball. But be reasonable. The coach will always act according to how he thinks the team can win. And oftentimes, you won’t meet eye-to-eye because you are more concerned about seeing your son play. Many parents just can’t see the fact that other kids are better than theirs.

Controlling the kid’s playing career too much puts a lot of pressure on his performance that often results to failure.

3. The Parent-Coach

This type of parent is more common among retired athletes, or frustrated athletes. They would want their kids to achieve more in the sport than they have ever achieved. In the case of former star athletes, they would want their kids to achieve the same success.

Nothing wrong with this for sure. But many of them tend to over-coach their kids.
In many cases, this type of parent pushes the kid too hard that he eventually loses interest in the sport because it’s no longer fun.

I have witnessed several times fathers (mostly ex-PBA players and/or current coaches) that even approach the bench during time-outs to give their own instructions and tips. They also constantly talk to their sons from the stands during the game.

The worst scenario is when the parent teaches his son something that contradicts the coach’s own instructions. This puts the kid in a tough situation of choosing which instruction to follow.

4. The Whiner Parent

This type complains a lot when things don’t go his kid’s way. He does not demand from the coach like a Parent-Agent does. But he whines indefatigably about it. He can’t sleep until he has vented his hard feelings out on ten people.

Usually, this parent is unhappy about his kid’s playing time. Some are not agreeable on how his kid is being used in a game, like the position or role that he (the kid) plays.

In some cases, they pull their kids out of the team because they feel it’s just a waste of time being in it. I have seen some young players being brought by their parents from one school to another until they are satisfied with one team. In most cases, they are never satisfied, so the kid ends up giving up the sport.

5. The Passionate Parent

All the four previous types can also fall under this type. After all, they are driven by their passion towards their kid’s game. But passion is something that must be controlled as well. It is good to be passionate about something but not to the point of embarrassing one’s self, or the kid.

You will find some of the most passionate parents in the under-10 years old games. They cheer loud and hard. They jeer the refs and even other kids. And they fight with parents of the other squad. In these games, you will rarely see players fighting. But the parents? They get into word wars with opposing parents.

Occasionally, you can see some fisticuffs between them.

One parent in an under-12 years old basketball tournament stormed the opposing team’s coach after his son’s team lost a game and accused the coach of fielding in over-aged players. Another parent attacked a referee for slapping a foul on his son during a crucial play.

If you can’t control your emotions, just ask the other parents to “tweet” what is transpiring during the game.
A little bit of each of the five types can be healthy. Just don’t overdo it.

Getting too involved in your kids’ game usually makes him uncomfortable.

You can be supportive, give advices, encourage, even sometimes lend a hand to your child, or make a pitch for him. But everything in moderation. More importantly, try to relax and enjoy.

After all, it’s just a game.

ironcoach
05-16-2014, 12:23 AM
The five types of athletes' parents

By Jude Roque | College Hoops Experts' Blog – Wed, May 14, 2014 10:39 AM PHT

Over a month ago, a disturbing photo caught the attention of social media, as an adult man appeared to be hitting a teenage soccer player with a solid object. It was later on revealed that the incident occurred in a football game in Cebu City, in a tournament participated by mostly high school student-athletes under 18 years old. The assailant was later on identified as a customs police who ran into the field to rescue his godson from being “grappled” by the victim.

This incident in Cebu may have been viral for days but there have been several similar cases in sports that have not made the news in the past. Brawls are not uncommon in many sporting events. Neither is the over-involvement of parents, or adults in general, in games where their kids play.

I have been coaching basketball for over fifteen years now and I’ve seen some of the worst cases of parents trying to get too involved with their kids’ games.

From what I’ve seen, I can name five types of parents that can be considered as getting too involved in the games.

1. The Overprotective Parent

This type definitely fits the bill of the adult in the Cebu incident, although in that case, he was trying to protect his nephew. Basketball and football are both contact sports that can be highly physical at certain times. When emotions are high or when the pressure is too much, players tend to get into fights. But parents should not. As spectators, parents should leave the game officials to address the situation.

There had been some sensationalized incidents before in basketball of parents attacking players from the opposing team who got entangled with their sons during the game. I remember one case in the UAAP in the late '90s when a father tried to confront a player who gave his son a hard foul during the game.

I also remember when I once coached the San Beda Red Lions in a pre-season game against the Ateneo Blue Eagles. The taller and heftier Bam Bam Gamalinda was “physically” guarding a young Jai Reyes. From the stands of the Blue Eagle gym I heard Jai’s mom, Manet, yell, “Hoy Jude, pag nasaktan yang anak ko ha!”

We would laugh about it after the game though as the Reyeses are good friends.

Okay, I get that parents don’t want their children getting hurt while playing the games and that emotions drive some of them to do crazy stuff. But it’s all part of the game and there are proper ways of handling these situations, like letting the league officials do their jobs.

Better yet, if you are too scared for your child, have them play chess or tennis instead.

2. The Parent-Agent/Manager

There are also those who are trying to make future superstars out of their children in sports that they’ve built their world around their child’s playing career. It’s perfectly normal to admire your child and even believe that he is the best in the world. But to be too hands-on in laying out the path towards the kid’s future stardom may be going a bit too far. This is especially prevalent with high school players going into college.

Parents, especially fathers, tend to act as agents or managers when negotiating with college squads. Again, this is fine, especially when the player is still a minor. As a parent, you would want the best for your child.
But some parents attempt to take advantage of the situation by asking ridiculous perks from the recruiting school. Today, they are no longer contented with scholarships and free board and lodging. Oftentimes, monetary compensation on a monthly basis is made part of the deal. This then subjects the kid to a bidding war among schools.

Parent-agents (or stage parents) tend to sell their kids too hard. But many of them really do believe what they say about their kids. More often than not however, it becomes a case of “too much icing and not enough cake.”

There are also parents that demand more playing time for their kids. I completely get it that you want to see your son play the entire 40 minutes of basketball. But be reasonable. The coach will always act according to how he thinks the team can win. And oftentimes, you won’t meet eye-to-eye because you are more concerned about seeing your son play. Many parents just can’t see the fact that other kids are better than theirs.

Controlling the kid’s playing career too much puts a lot of pressure on his performance that often results to failure.

3. The Parent-Coach

This type of parent is more common among retired athletes, or frustrated athletes. They would want their kids to achieve more in the sport than they have ever achieved. In the case of former star athletes, they would want their kids to achieve the same success.

Nothing wrong with this for sure. But many of them tend to over-coach their kids.
In many cases, this type of parent pushes the kid too hard that he eventually loses interest in the sport because it’s no longer fun.

I have witnessed several times fathers (mostly ex-PBA players and/or current coaches) that even approach the bench during time-outs to give their own instructions and tips. They also constantly talk to their sons from the stands during the game.

The worst scenario is when the parent teaches his son something that contradicts the coach’s own instructions. This puts the kid in a tough situation of choosing which instruction to follow.

4. The Whiner Parent

This type complains a lot when things don’t go his kid’s way. He does not demand from the coach like a Parent-Agent does. But he whines indefatigably about it. He can’t sleep until he has vented his hard feelings out on ten people.

Usually, this parent is unhappy about his kid’s playing time. Some are not agreeable on how his kid is being used in a game, like the position or role that he (the kid) plays.

In some cases, they pull their kids out of the team because they feel it’s just a waste of time being in it. I have seen some young players being brought by their parents from one school to another until they are satisfied with one team. In most cases, they are never satisfied, so the kid ends up giving up the sport.

5. The Passionate Parent

All the four previous types can also fall under this type. After all, they are driven by their passion towards their kid’s game. But passion is something that must be controlled as well. It is good to be passionate about something but not to the point of embarrassing one’s self, or the kid.

You will find some of the most passionate parents in the under-10 years old games. They cheer loud and hard. They jeer the refs and even other kids. And they fight with parents of the other squad. In these games, you will rarely see players fighting. But the parents? They get into word wars with opposing parents.

Occasionally, you can see some fisticuffs between them.

One parent in an under-12 years old basketball tournament stormed the opposing team’s coach after his son’s team lost a game and accused the coach of fielding in over-aged players. Another parent attacked a referee for slapping a foul on his son during a crucial play.

If you can’t control your emotions, just ask the other parents to “tweet” what is transpiring during the game.
A little bit of each of the five types can be healthy. Just don’t overdo it.

Getting too involved in your kids’ game usually makes him uncomfortable.

You can be supportive, give advices, encourage, even sometimes lend a hand to your child, or make a pitch for him. But everything in moderation. More importantly, try to relax and enjoy.

After all, it’s just a game.

Haha! I've witnessed AND encountered so many of these...funny, and borderline ridiculous...sad to say, ITS ALREADY IN OUR CULTURE..patented pa yata. :)

Joescoundrel
06-03-2014, 01:03 PM
http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/sports/06/02/14/senate-passes-student-athletes-protection-act

Senate passes Student-Athletes Protection Act

ABS-CBNnews.com

Senate Bill No. 2226 was approved with 15 affirmative votes, zero negative votes and zero abstention.

The proposed legislation also prohibits schools from giving "commercial consideration" to any of its student-athletes or their immediate family members.

"Schools shall not offer a student-athlete or his immediately family members benefits or incentives beyond that enumerated under Section 5, which are contrary to the nature of amateur sports and which may result to the commercialization of a student-athlete," Cayetano said.

Currently, schools are allowed to give incentives to student-athletes including tuition, miscellaneous school feels, books and other learning materials, board and lodging, uniform, equipment, and reasonable living allowance, and other similar benefits.

I'd like to see this Section 5.

Dapat kasi diyan 'yung nakalahad na kung magkano ba talaga, kung may "ceiling" 'yan. Admittedly pahirapan ang enforcement diyan given all of the under-the-table deals this country is so famous for.

Ulitin ko lang, I think this should be pegged at maybe 80% of the prevailing minimum daily wage in the locality where the varsity league is held.

Lifestyle check lang naman katapat niyan eh.

Tsaka dapat may penal provisions ang proposed law na ito. Hindi naman pwedeng nahuli na tapos suspension lang ang parusa. Dapat may jail time at fine, lalo sa paglabag sa Section 5 na 'yan. I think six months and one day to two years would be sufficient, plus a P100,000 fine on the part of the errant individual. Kung may conspiracy (two or more persons) dapat P200,000 per conspirator.

kerouac82
06-04-2014, 08:49 AM
I'd like to see this Section 5.

Dapat kasi diyan 'yung nakalahad na kung magkano ba talaga, kung may "ceiling" 'yan. Admittedly pahirapan ang enforcement diyan given all of the under-the-table deals this country is so famous for.

Ulitin ko lang, I think this should be pegged at maybe 80% of the prevailing minimum daily wage in the locality where the varsity league is held.

Lifestyle check lang naman katapat niyan eh.

Tsaka dapat may penal provisions ang proposed law na ito. Hindi naman pwedeng nahuli na tapos suspension lang ang parusa. Dapat may jail time at fine, lalo sa paglabag sa Section 5 na 'yan. I think six months and one day to two years would be sufficient, plus a P100,000 fine on the part of the errant individual. Kung may conspiracy (two or more persons) dapat P200,000 per conspirator.

Looks like we're looking at different versions of the Bill. The one I'm reading now has details re: compensation and allowances in Section 7. The nitty-gritty part, though, will be dealt with in the implementing rules and regulations that will come much later, perhaps after the SONA unless the House pushes their counterpart bill with the speed they used to get Blatche naturalized.

Eighty percent of the minimum wage works to somewhere around PhP 7,500 per month or PhP 373 a day, non-taxable of course. If board (which refers to meals), lodging, and books are free, that's a pretty good amount for a college kid. One can go unli-data, go out on dates once a week, and have some left over for photocopied readings.

Joescoundrel
06-05-2014, 11:17 AM
^ Kerouac, haven't actually seen any copy of the bill kaya gusto ko sana makita ang sinasabi nilang Section 5, maybe its my browser or our firewall settings preventing it.

Everything else you mentioned I fully agree with, mukhang buhay na nga diyan ang any typical student, although baka mabitin if he does not have access to free printing services for turn-ins and other submissions that have to be printed.

kerouac82
06-05-2014, 04:37 PM
Here's a copy of Senate Bill 2226:

http://www.senate.gov.ph/lisdata/1910116220!.pdf

And you can find a screen capture of Section 7 that deals with benefits and incentives below.

duphaR007
06-07-2014, 09:26 PM
The five types of athletes' parents

By Jude Roque | College Hoops Experts' Blog – Wed, May 14, 2014 10:39 AM PHT

Over a month ago, a disturbing photo caught the attention of social media, as an adult man appeared to be hitting a teenage soccer player with a solid object. It was later on revealed that the incident occurred in a football game in Cebu City, in a tournament participated by mostly high school student-athletes under 18 years old. The assailant was later on identified as a customs police who ran into the field to rescue his godson from being “grappled” by the victim.

This incident in Cebu may have been viral for days but there have been several similar cases in sports that have not made the news in the past. Brawls are not uncommon in many sporting events. Neither is the over-involvement of parents, or adults in general, in games where their kids play.

I have been coaching basketball for over fifteen years now and I’ve seen some of the worst cases of parents trying to get too involved with their kids’ games.

From what I’ve seen, I can name five types of parents that can be considered as getting too involved in the games.

1. The Overprotective Parent

This type definitely fits the bill of the adult in the Cebu incident, although in that case, he was trying to protect his nephew. Basketball and football are both contact sports that can be highly physical at certain times. When emotions are high or when the pressure is too much, players tend to get into fights. But parents should not. As spectators, parents should leave the game officials to address the situation.

There had been some sensationalized incidents before in basketball of parents attacking players from the opposing team who got entangled with their sons during the game. I remember one case in the UAAP in the late '90s when a father tried to confront a player who gave his son a hard foul during the game.

I also remember when I once coached the San Beda Red Lions in a pre-season game against the Ateneo Blue Eagles. The taller and heftier Bam Bam Gamalinda was “physically” guarding a young Jai Reyes. From the stands of the Blue Eagle gym I heard Jai’s mom, Manet, yell, “Hoy Jude, pag nasaktan yang anak ko ha!”

We would laugh about it after the game though as the Reyeses are good friends.

Okay, I get that parents don’t want their children getting hurt while playing the games and that emotions drive some of them to do crazy stuff. But it’s all part of the game and there are proper ways of handling these situations, like letting the league officials do their jobs.

Better yet, if you are too scared for your child, have them play chess or tennis instead.

2. The Parent-Agent/Manager

There are also those who are trying to make future superstars out of their children in sports that they’ve built their world around their child’s playing career. It’s perfectly normal to admire your child and even believe that he is the best in the world. But to be too hands-on in laying out the path towards the kid’s future stardom may be going a bit too far. This is especially prevalent with high school players going into college.

Parents, especially fathers, tend to act as agents or managers when negotiating with college squads. Again, this is fine, especially when the player is still a minor. As a parent, you would want the best for your child.
But some parents attempt to take advantage of the situation by asking ridiculous perks from the recruiting school. Today, they are no longer contented with scholarships and free board and lodging. Oftentimes, monetary compensation on a monthly basis is made part of the deal. This then subjects the kid to a bidding war among schools.

Parent-agents (or stage parents) tend to sell their kids too hard. But many of them really do believe what they say about their kids. More often than not however, it becomes a case of “too much icing and not enough cake.”

There are also parents that demand more playing time for their kids. I completely get it that you want to see your son play the entire 40 minutes of basketball. But be reasonable. The coach will always act according to how he thinks the team can win. And oftentimes, you won’t meet eye-to-eye because you are more concerned about seeing your son play. Many parents just can’t see the fact that other kids are better than theirs.

Controlling the kid’s playing career too much puts a lot of pressure on his performance that often results to failure.

3. The Parent-Coach

This type of parent is more common among retired athletes, or frustrated athletes. They would want their kids to achieve more in the sport than they have ever achieved. In the case of former star athletes, they would want their kids to achieve the same success.

Nothing wrong with this for sure. But many of them tend to over-coach their kids.
In many cases, this type of parent pushes the kid too hard that he eventually loses interest in the sport because it’s no longer fun.

I have witnessed several times fathers (mostly ex-PBA players and/or current coaches) that even approach the bench during time-outs to give their own instructions and tips. They also constantly talk to their sons from the stands during the game.

The worst scenario is when the parent teaches his son something that contradicts the coach’s own instructions. This puts the kid in a tough situation of choosing which instruction to follow.

4. The Whiner Parent

This type complains a lot when things don’t go his kid’s way. He does not demand from the coach like a Parent-Agent does. But he whines indefatigably about it. He can’t sleep until he has vented his hard feelings out on ten people.

Usually, this parent is unhappy about his kid’s playing time. Some are not agreeable on how his kid is being used in a game, like the position or role that he (the kid) plays.

In some cases, they pull their kids out of the team because they feel it’s just a waste of time being in it. I have seen some young players being brought by their parents from one school to another until they are satisfied with one team. In most cases, they are never satisfied, so the kid ends up giving up the sport.

5. The Passionate Parent

All the four previous types can also fall under this type. After all, they are driven by their passion towards their kid’s game. But passion is something that must be controlled as well. It is good to be passionate about something but not to the point of embarrassing one’s self, or the kid.

You will find some of the most passionate parents in the under-10 years old games. They cheer loud and hard. They jeer the refs and even other kids. And they fight with parents of the other squad. In these games, you will rarely see players fighting. But the parents? They get into word wars with opposing parents.

Occasionally, you can see some fisticuffs between them.

One parent in an under-12 years old basketball tournament stormed the opposing team’s coach after his son’s team lost a game and accused the coach of fielding in over-aged players. Another parent attacked a referee for slapping a foul on his son during a crucial play.

If you can’t control your emotions, just ask the other parents to “tweet” what is transpiring during the game.
A little bit of each of the five types can be healthy. Just don’t overdo it.

Getting too involved in your kids’ game usually makes him uncomfortable.

You can be supportive, give advices, encourage, even sometimes lend a hand to your child, or make a pitch for him. But everything in moderation. More importantly, try to relax and enjoy.

After all, it’s just a game.

Si Alvin Teng ba bago naging parent/agent eh part ba talaga siya ng coaching staff ni Jonathan Reyes sa Xavier? Saw about 2 or 3 pre season games of Xavier years ago and I would see him together with Coach Reyes give instructions on the bench.

Joescoundrel
07-07-2014, 11:56 AM
We will never really know how the Student Athletes Protection Act would eventually look until it is signed into law by the President, whenever that may be.

For now however some issues still need to be threshed out:

1) There is apparently a provision prohibiting excessive benefits not just to the athletes but to parents. I can't recall if this included managers / agents / handlers.

Those crafting the law have to be very careful about how to define "excessive benefits".

Again I'd like to peg monthly allowances at a maximum of 80% of the prevailing daily minimum wage of the locality where the varsity league is held, so that at least there is a specific amount against which cross-checking can be done. If this works out to say P7,000 per month, and the student-athlete in question is not independently well-off, at least the lifestyle check will be a little easier.

2) Speaking of lifestyle checks, this has to be done by legitimate authorities, or any licensed private investigator engaged in writing for such purpose by any private individual. Meaning private individuals on their own may not snoop into say the lockers or bags of athletes they suspect to be violating this law.

3) I have mixed feelings with reducing the college-to-college residency to only one year. That will make it too easy for bigger schools to pirate talent from smaller schools. I'm not just talking about UAAP schools. Imagine a volleyball player from say a NAASCU school, who gets nowhere near the media exposure of her UAAP counterparts. Even if the allowances were leveled, there is still too much incentive for a player from a smaller school to transfer to a bigger school.

I think a good compromise here would be to count the one residency year against remaining eligibility years, i.e. Say the star CEU volleyball player is pirated by the Ateneo. If that CEU player already played two years for CEU, under current UAAP rules she can play a maximum of three years in the UAAP, with its maximum five playing years. Let's count the residency year against that to make it only two UAAP playing years.

Some will scream that his is unfair to the athlete who should have full freedom to ply their wares where they think is best for them, but again, we're talking about curbing of the ever-sticky topic of player piracy here, which I think was not really addressed by the Senate bill. Remember, we are not preventing the CEU player from transferring to the Ateneo, only reducing the number of years she can play in the UAAP.

4) Foreigners should be allowed to compete on an even level.

The Senate bill has a provision that lets varsity leagues keep their current (racist) rules on foreign athletes. This is just plain ridiculous.

I'd still keep the maximum of two foreigners per roster. In multi-sport events like track, two foreigners for the whole team na din, kunwari isa sa jumping events, isa sa middle distance vents.

Sa totoo lang naman kasi if we just apply the same rules and standards to all students who happen to be varsity athletes there really should be no problem with "mercenaries". If two athletes of a given university, one American and one Filipino, both happen to not attend classes, not take tests, just get "special projects" to pass their courses every sem, and do all this simply to comply with being legitimately enrolled to play varsity ball, who cares what their nationalities are? Both of them are mercenaries just the same.

Hindi ba parehong kalokohan na din 'yon mapa-Pilipino pa o mapa-Amerikano ang pinag-uusapan natin?

College-to-college transfers should only be one year of residency, in the same way, even if the foreigner came from overseas and has yet to set foot in the country, he sits out only one year of residency.

5) High school students without a single minute of college varsity experience should be able to compete in college varsity right away, again regardless of nationality.

This is where the NCAA really rocks. Besides, in the case of the UAAP, foreigners who finish high school in Philippine-based high schools can play right away, like Kirk Long (Faith Academy). What difference could it possibly make if say the athlete graduated from Oak Hill Academy or Mater Dei High School or Xavier School or Manila Science High School?

bchoter
07-07-2014, 04:01 PM
Brod kailangan pa ba ng student-athlete ng protection from schools na nang iipit ng papeles, kasama na yung mga nag t-threaten na ibagsak kung hindi mag commit sa college? I know there are enough legal remedies to make sure na makukuha yung papeles ng bata pero it would be easier kung spelled out talaga siya

Joescoundrel
07-09-2014, 08:36 AM
^ Isa pa 'yan.

I can understand that a school would be pissed at ANY piracy of their athletes, lalo na kung talagang sila naman ang naka-discover at gumastos to bring the athlete over to Metro Manila.

Still, if we look at that as an "employer-employee" relationship, kung naglaro naman ng matino or nanalo pa nga ang athlete or led his team to victory, that means "bayad na" siya sa kung ano man ang ginastos na ng school sa kanya.

We see guys moving to better jobs with better pay all the time. Bakit pagdating sa atleta parang gusto natin huwag na silang umasenso kahit may pagkakataon naman silang umasenso talaga?

Like I said, huwag na lang sa palakihan ng allowance, sa media exposure na lang. I'm pretty sure Allysa Valdez would not be the volleyball demigod she is now if she was still just playing in her native Batangas instead of the Ateneo. Imagine the opportunities she would never have known had she stayed in Batangas.

Sam Miguel
10-22-2014, 08:34 AM
There's a Reason Why Your Kids Aren't Playing - They're Not Good Enough

Bill Speros

@realOBF

Boston.com Correspondent

OCTOBER 18, 2014 12:49 PM

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Obnoxious Boston Fan is long-time sports journalist Bill Speros and offers a fun, unique and biting perspective on the Red Sox, Celtics, Bruins, Patriots and whatever else people are talking about in the world of sports.

The fall sports season is reaching its zenith. Boys and girls at all levels and grades are running, stretching, planning and preparing for cross-town or cross-county rivals. Fall, especially in New England, is a wondrous time of year even if the Red Sox aren’t participating. [Here in Florida, it’s cause for a street party whenever the temperature falls below 70 during the day.]

For high school athletes, it means all those sweaty summer practices, workouts and sports-camps are finally going to pay some dividends.

The heart of any school athletic season brings with it busy schedules, frantic parents or older siblings driving kids from one field to the next, competition, camaraderie, joy, and disappointment.

One question every coach from Pop Warner and Youth Volleyball, on up through the highest levels high school competition in Texas, has heard in their coaching career is this:

“Why isn’t my kid playing?”

This topic came up in the wake of a column that ran in the Boston Globe last week about the lack of play for some in youth sports.

The absurdity of many “win-at-all-cost” coaches in youth sports is neatly matched by the fanaticism of “play-my-kid-or-else” parents at the high-school level.

When the games start to count, the main reason why your kid isn’t playing is simple:

“They’re just not good enough.”

“He/she just isn't fast enough.”

“He/she just isn’t strong enough.”

“He/she just isn’t tall enough.”

“He/she is too fat/too skinny.”

“He/she just didn’t try hard enough in practice.”

“He/she should not play over Jimmy/Jenny because they're faster, quicker, stronger, taller, and/or try harder.”

Good coaches, however, are not usually that blunt or honest.

We’ll focus on football for the rest of this conversation. Although much here applies to all sports, regardless of the game or gender. Many coaches are notorious for not telling what you and I would consider the “truth.”

The coach of New England’s NFL entry has mastered that skill. And high school coaches who fancy themselves as the “Belichick of the _______ League” are likely to follow his lead.

Parents get a little nutty at times when it comes to their children and youth/high school sports. Nearly every parent ever [this one included], at one time or another in the dark recesses of their minds, fancies a scenario where their son or daughter can master this or that sport well enough to earn a free-ride to college. When that dream/delusion is squashed after meeting the reality of genetics, talent, and/or interest, it’s hard to reconcile.

For the parents, that is.

The thing is that many kids know what they’re good at, and what they’re not good at. When it comes to football, for instance, most of the middle-schoolers or freshman already know the one or two kids who are good enough to play on the varsity team. And be the ones likely to catch the eye of a college recruiter. Their parents do not.

The rest play because they enjoy it, need the discipline, want to belong to a team, have dreamed of it since they were 5 or 6, are trying to make their parents happy, need a varsity sport on their college application, or some combination thereof.

There is another level of high school athlete, the non-elite, that encompasses about 99 percent of those who play high school and/or youth sports. They’re the ones whose career in organized athletics will end with their final high school game. Some of these kids are very talented and skilled. They’re able to throw the ball AND catch the ball, much to the delight of Gisele Bundchen. They can beat anyone in a footrace. They can bench twice their body weight.

Others possess marginal athletic skills, but make up for it practice, by getting stronger and quicker, and with on-field effort.

And no matter how much little Billy tries, no matter how much little Billy wants to play, there’s no guarantee that he will play. [Unless he’s participating in a league that mandates or guarantees playing time.] Participating in high school sports, for instance, is no different than any other education experience. You learn about winning and losing. You learn about bad calls and bad breaks. And some kids just aren't good enough to play, at least on a routine basis.

Far too many children today are living in a world where they never learn "no." They don’t know how to handle disappointment and failure. Nor do they know how to react and move on when they don’t get their own way. Interacting with actual people, and not just the screens on their iPhones or iPads, is a challenge, if not an impossibility. I won’t call this “abuse,” but it’s pretty damn close.

This is a world constructed by “well-meaning” but dangerously naïve parents. The children know no better because this is what they’re taught. Real-life doesn't come with "Participation Awards," "8th-Place Trophies" or laudatory bumper-stickers telling everyone that you're able to do your job without screwing up.

Playing a team sport, like football, with the right coaching can help students learn life’s difficult lessons, including Mick Jagger’s truism that “you can’t always get what you want.”

The joy of winning, the life-time friendships that are crafted among teammates, the sense of accomplishment and, for some, that varsity letter, makes the effort worth the risk. Some kids just aren't good enough to play at any competitive level . This is not a moral judgment. They’re too big, too small, too slow, don’t work hard enough off the field, or aren’t physically strong enough to be safe while being on the field against better athletes who won’t take it easy on them.

It sucks when your kid isn’t playing. Been there, done that. No reasonable parent wants to see their child hurt. But no one escapes this life unhurt, emotionally if not physically.

When these kids move on in life, they are going to get rejected when they apply for college, turned down when they ask out someone for a date, fail to get the job they want, the shift they want at work, and taste failure and disappointment on multiple fronts.

Legitimate safety concerns aside, coaches should try to get make sure everyone gets some playing time. But that should never come at expense of other kids who are more talented, try harder or spend more time practicing.

My son earned a starting spot senior year on his varsity football team. When it became evident he wasn't going to play much after the first few weeks of the season, he made the difficult decision to leave the team. He focused full-time on his studies and conditioning, so he could qualify for a military scholarship. The sophomore who replaced him is now playing at a Div. I-AA school on scholarship. This turned out to be a great decision for my son, who is a third-year US Army ROTC cadet. Win-win.

Their coach wasn't very good, and would be fired before my son graduated. This taught my son another important life-lesson: All your bosses aren't going to be great. Sometimes, leadership is going fail and take everyone down with it.

No child should be forced to play sports. And no child should ever go out for any team thinking they're going to be guaranteed a spot or playing time, no matter how loudly their parents complain. There is, however, much on the upside to playing team high school sports that barely gets mentioned nowadays.

In that sense, sports is a true metaphor for life. No one is guaranteed "playing" time in life. For the most part, hard work, effort, planning and desire is rewarded. The benefits can be wonderful. But it’s good to prepared when it doesn’t work out that way.

The OBF column is written by award-winning journalist and Bay State native Bill Speros. Bill has written and reported for ESPN, CBSSports.Com and was a sports/deputy sports editor at several metro daily newspapers. Reach Bill on the OBF Facebook page, on Twitter @realOBF or at his OBF email Address. Thanks always for reading.

Sam Miguel
10-24-2014, 08:02 AM
UNC report forces school to face truth about its culture of cheating

By Pat Forde

October 22, 2014 5:36 PM

Yahoo Sports



There was an emergency in the North Carolina football program in the summer 2009.

Deborah Crowder, architect of a massive and long-lasting academic sham, was retiring. Before she left the school, the Tar Heels needed her for one more round of bailouts.

As a member of the academic support staff urgently emailed a director of football operations: "Ms. Crowder is retiring at the end of July . . . if the guys papers are not in . . . I would expect D's or C's at best. Most need better than that . . . ALL WORK FROM THE AFAM DEPT. MUST BE DONE AND TURNED IN ON THE LAST DAY OF CLASS."

The players in question needed A's and B's from Crowder in African and Afro-American Studies classes in order to be eligible to play for the Tar Heels. And that's what she was there to provide in exchange for little or no work – year after year, player after player, for football and basketball and other sports as well. Regular students also benefited from a scheme that disgraces a once-proud university, but athletes flocked to her no-show classes in disproportionate numbers.

That email was part of a 131-page report spearheaded by independent investigator Kenneth Wainstein of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP that was released by UNC on Wednesday. The report laid bare North Carolina's abdication of academic integrity in order to serve up easy grades that kept athletes eligible and on track to graduate.

For years, as the revelations accumulated and no fewer than six other reports were filed, North Carolina refused to look honestly at itself and acknowledge what it saw.

Today, the school can squirm away from the truth no more. Wainstein's report provided a devastating house of mirrors for UNC to gaze into. The loud-and-proud claims to being a special place, capable of both athletic and academic success without cutting corners, are now hollow.

North Carolina spent many years operating like a lowest-common-denominator football/basketball factory. Regardless of whatever else comes from this thorough and painstaking investigation, that label sticks.

The level of academic fraud exposed is staggering: 3,100 students benefitted from the AFAM class scam; of that number, more than 47 percent were athletes – disproportionately high for the student population as a whole. And of that 47 percent, more than half were football players. Men's basketball made up 12 percent of the athlete population that was given gift grades.

The report finds it believable that neither basketball coach Roy Williams nor then-football coach Butch Davis knew the extent of the AFAM scam – specifically, that players were getting gift grades. However, Davis was said to be present during a 2009 power-point presentation by academic support staff to the football staff that included a slide saying that players had been enrolled in classes which featured the following perks: "they didn't go to class; didn't take notes, have to stay awake; they didn't have to meet with professors; they didn't have to pay attention or necessarily engage with the material." (Butch told investigators that he didn't recall seeing that slide. If the current ESPN analyst ever works in college coaching again, someone please shut down the university that hires him.)

Should a coach know what classes his players are taking? I don't know. My son is a student-athlete at Missouri and I'd bet his coaches know his major, but not his specific course load. Then again, he's not an eligibility risk, nor is he vital to a coach maintaining a seven-figure salary. The star football and basketball players are.

But the deniability of Williams and Davis is largely immaterial. Their programs thrived thanks to athletes who couldn't or wouldn't do the work of most normal students. If those Tar Heels who were winning national titles in basketball and going to bowl games in football took anything educational away from their time in Chapel Hill, chances are decent that it was an "A" in a Swahili class that never met. That's something to be proud of.

As UNC wallows in the shame of this scandal, the next question is whether Wainstein has given the NCAA enough ammunition to aim and fire at the school.

The governing body of college sports took its sweet time launching its own investigation of UNC, to the frustration of many. For years, the stated reason for inaction was that the academic benefits enjoyed by the athletes also was perfectly available to the student body as a whole, and thus not a violation of NCAA rules.

It's true that more than 1,500 regular students did benefit from no-show classes, per the report. But if nearly an equal number of athletes were involved in flagrant academic fraud that resulted in a clear competitive advantage – stars were eligible to play, and to beat the pants off opposing teams – then this would seem to be a case where the NCAA should intercede.

If the association's baroque and bewildering rules manual prevents it, well, shame on the NCAA. It would be one more example of why it is a failed investigative force.

We can wait and see what results come from Indianapolis, but don't hold your breath in anticipation of a deathblow for Carolina – especially Carolina basketball.

If anything, the school should react on its own to this report. Don't wait for the NCAA to step in, do something yourself.

Now that UNC knows the independently reported facts, it can act. For years, its championship basketball teams were populated by players who benefitted from academic fraud – the 2005 national title team alone had 10 AFAM majors. If those titles were won with players who wouldn't have been eligible without sham grades, take down the banners yourself. Take the hardware out of the trophy cases. Wear your shame.

For a school that long proclaimed to be a special place, that would be a start on restoring its integrity.

Joescoundrel
11-14-2014, 08:13 AM
Is a Bad College Education Illegal for the NCAA?

Sean Gregory @seanmgregory

Nov. 11, 2014

Former North Carolina football player Michael McAdoo is suing the school over sham classes. Does the case have a shot?

When the University of North Carolina was recruiting Michael McAdoo, Tar Heels head coach Butch Davis made a pledge that helped lure the high school football star to Chapel Hill. “I can’t guarantee that Michael will play in the NFL,” Davis told McAdoo’s mother, grandmother, and grandfather while at their home in Antioch, Tenn. “But one thing I can guarantee is that he will get a good education at the University of North Carolina.”

It didn’t quite work out that way. After enrolling at UNC and playing defensive end during the 2008 and 2009 seasons, the NCAA ruled McAdoo ineligible because he received improper help from a tutor in writing an African-American studies paper. That sort of extra assistance was all too common for top athletes at the highly-regarded public university. According to a devastating report released in October, former federal attorney Kenneth Wainstein found that between 1993 and 2011, over 3,100 UNC students took “paper” classes in the school’s Department of African and Afro-American Studies. These courses required no classroom time, little work, and produced inflated grades that were often assigned by a department administrator, not a faculty member. Of the 1,871 paper classes taken by athletes between 1999 and 2011, 63.5% of the enrolled students were football or men’s basketball players.

McAdoo says he was put in such sham classes against his will. So he’s added another headache for the beleaguered school. On Nov. 6, McAdoo filed a class action suit in federal court against the University of North Carolina, on behalf of himself and other football players on scholarship between 1993 and 2011. The suit accuses North Carolina of fraud, deceptive trade practices, and breach of contract: the school promised a legitimate education in exchange for athletic services, but allegedly failed to deliver. “Legal action was in the ether when I first met Michael earlier this year,” says Jeremi Duru, one of McAdoo’s attorneys (McAdoo declined to comment directly). “But the Wainstein report put the engines in motion.”

The complaint says that “almost immediately after arriving at UNC to begin his freshman year, Mr. McAdoo realized that the promises Head Coach Davis and his assistants made about the football’s program’s commitment to academics were false.” McAdoo says he expressed interest in becoming a criminal justice major, but football players were steered into three options for a major: Exercise Sport Science, Communications, or African-American Studies. Per the complaint: “When Mr. McAdoo asked why he should not pursue other majors, he was told these were the only majors that would accommodate his football practice and playing schedule, and that the football program had ‘relationships’ with professors in those departments.” McAdoo, who majored in Exercise Sport Science and African-American Studies, says that an academic counselor gave him and his teammates pre-assigned course schedules that included paper classes. “Mr. McAdoo had no role in selecting the courses,” says the complaint. “The same thing happened every semester Mr. McAdoo attended the University of North Carolina.”

UNC said in a statement that “the University will reserve further comment until we’ve had the opportunity to fully review the claims.”

Davis, who coached UNC from 2007-2010 after being the head coach at the University of Miami and the NFL’s Cleveland Browns, tells TIME that he wasn’t aware of the sham classes when he promised McAdoo a good education. (Davis was fired after the 2010 season, in part because the turmoil surrounding the program after some of the academic impropriety came to light). “After we recruit the athletes, then everything about their academics was handled outside the athletic department,” says Davis, who is now an analyst for ESPN. “Their classes, their degree programs, their teachers, their mentors, their tutors, and everything fell completely under the supervision of the university academic advisement or career counseling program. The only role that I or my assistant coaches had is they would ask us from an academic standpoint ‘what days would you like to practice and what times would you like to have your athletes?’ … Our coaching staff didn’t know that there was anything corrupt, fraudulent, or cheating going on in those classes. We didn’t know.”

At least one former player doesn’t absolve Davis. A man who identified himself as former North Carolina defensive tackle Tydreke Powell told a Greensboro, N.C. radio station that Davis “came into a meeting one day and he said, ‘If y’all came here for an education, you should have went to Harvard.”

Davis acknowledges the remark, but insists that Powell misunderstood the point. “I said that, OK, in the context that I made that statement one time, and it was a poorly phrased context, but I said it half comical and half in the form of ‘stop complaining,’ Davis says. “Your days are long. It’s a long, hard day. You’ve got to practice, you’ve got to study, you’ve got to go to class, you’ve got to take notes, you’ve got to do extra work. If you wanted to just get an education period, and you didn’t want to play in a high profile football program, and you didn’t want to chance to go to the NFL, you should have gone to Harvard. It was totally kind of halfway joking and halfway whimsical, comical, and halfway saying ‘hey guys, I hear you. I know being a student-athlete in a Division I major college program in any sport is harder than just being a student.’ If you just wanted to be a student, you should have gone to Harvard, you know?”

Joescoundrel
11-14-2014, 08:14 AM
^ Continued

The Legal Odds

McAdoo’s suit will keep the glare on North Carolina, but will it hold up in court? “I think it’s an absolutely brilliant strategy,” says Marc Edelman, a sports law expert at Baruch College in New York City. “The thrust of what the NCAA purports to be based on is education in exchange for athletic services. That’s supposed to be the quid pro quo. The implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing is a basic tenant of contract law. There’s a very strong argument that North Carolina violated the quid pro quo.”

But McAdoo isn’t the first college athlete to make this argument, and the existing case law could throw a wrench into his suit. In 1992, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit largely upheld a lower court decision to dismiss a case involving Kevin Ross, a former basketball player at Creighton University who sued the school for negligence and breach of contract for failing to educate him. “We agree — indeed we emphasize — that courts should not ‘take on the job of supervising the relationship between colleges and student-athletes or creating in effect a new relationship between them,’” the judges wrote. Courts are reluctant to judge the quality of a student’s education, because “theories of educations are not uniform.” How can you objectively measure the quality of a student’s academic experience? It may be a ‘practical impossibility to prove that the alleged malpractice of the teacher proximately caused the learning deficiency of the plaintiff student.’”

“Courts have consistently been very reluctant to get into the quality of education,” says Phillip Closius, a professor at the University of Baltimore School of Law. “This is not binding precedent. But it seems highly unlikely for a court to ignore it.”

The judges were also concerned about the potential “flood of litigation against the schools.” If McAdoo wins damages because his education is deemed insufficient, what’s to stop other dissatisfied students from bringing their own claims?

But the appellate ruling in Ross’s case did leave a small opening for McAdoo’s suit. In order to avoid the murky matter of judging the quality of Ross’ education, the lower court was ordered to answer a very narrow question. “To adjudicate such a claim, the court would not be required to determine whether Creighton had breached its contract with Mr. Ross by providing deficient academic services. Rather, its inquiry would be limited to whether the University had provided any real access to its academic curriculum at all.”

Under this precedent, McAdoo would have to show that North Carolina offered him no education. That’s tough to prove. (Ross, who left Creighton with seventh grade reading skills, reached a $30,000 settlement with the school, which admitted no liability). And it begs the question of why McAdoo didn’t fight harder to enroll in a major of his choosing. “He’s not a minor,” says Closius. “If you know classes have no content, why don’t you do something about it?”

Duru, McAdoo’s lawyer, argues that for young athletes who’ve trained their whole lives to play college football, taking such a stand isn’t so easy. “Think about the expanse of the academic impropriety, and channeling into these courses, going on at North Carolina,” he says. “It was almost part and parcel of being part of the football team. It was just systematic and normative that an 18-year-old kid drop into it.”

McAdoo declared for the NFL’s supplemental draft after he was ruled ineligible and spent two seasons with the Baltimore Ravens on injured reserve. His suit isn’t just seeking money. He wants the court to appoint someone to review the curriculum and course selection for all North Carolina football players for the next five years, and for the school to guarantee athletic scholarships for four years.

“He’s not trying to vilify North Carolina,” says Duru. “He’s trying to right a wrong.”

Joescoundrel
12-09-2014, 10:00 AM
Repeating as National Champions Next to Impossible in College Basketball Today

By Kerry Miller , College Basketball National Columnist Dec 1, 2014

Connecticut is learning the hard way that it's beyond difficult to win back-to-back college basketball national championships in the 21st century.

After a hard-fought win over Dayton in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off semifinals, Connecticut head coach Kevin Ollie said, per The Associate Press (via ESPN.com): "It's going to be some ups and downs. ... Everybody wants to beat the champion, so our team is understanding that."

Two days later, the Huskies experienced one of those downs, suffering their first loss of the season to West Virginia.

It certainly won't be their last, because these Huskies look absolutely nothing like the ones who won the 2014 national championship.

Even if you truly believe that Ryan Boatright has filled the void left by Shabazz Napier's graduation, who is replacing the role Boatright played last season? Where is this year's DeAndre Daniels? And is it possible that Niels Giffey's 48.3 percent three-point stroke was the biggest loss of all?

What else is new, though? Making the transition from "national champion" in the first week of April to "rebuilding program" by the first week of May is practically a rite of passage now.

Just take a look at this chart of how much the past 16 national champions have lost after cutting down the nets. A single "x" represents a player who graduated, while "xx" signifies a player not on the roster the following season due to reasons other than graduation—primarily early entrants to the NBA draft.

There are a total of 96 players (including repeats) represented by these 16 teams, and 55 of them did not return the following season. Thus, on average, national champions are forced to replace 3.44 of their six most important players. There is an 88 percent chance that their most crucial player isn't on next year's roster.

This isn't exactly breaking or shocking news.

Teams that make deep runs into the NCAA tournament tend to have at least one or two critical seniors, and an underclassman's NBA draft stock is never higher than when he has just helped lead a team to a title.

Every now and then we get a Russ Smith or a Kyle Singler who wins a title and decides to come back for one more season, but there are significantly more instances of guys like DeAndre Daniels, Marvin Williams and Wayne Ellington bolting for the draft despite barely any indication that it would have even been an option before the tournament.

If Kentucky had won instead of Connecticut, would the Harrison twins have come back for another season? What about Dakari Johnson, Willie Cauley-Stein and Alex Poythress? And if Wisconsin had won it all, can't we safely assume that Frank Kaminsky and Sam Dekker would be gone?

As far as the following season or two are concerned, great teams with a lot of underclassmen are almost better off getting painfully close to a title than actually winning it.

To an extent, we see this in professional sports as well. Championship teams are ravaged by free agency and the players who do stay end up costing more money in the not-so-distant future.

But at least Super Bowl-winning teams have the option of paying their key players enough money to stick around. The peril is so much more pronounced in college basketball where you're lucky to get so much as two years out of a player who is talented enough for the pros.

Let's dig one step further into the above data, though, because it's how these makeshift teams fared the following season that is most interesting to us and most ominous for Connecticut.

Of the last 15 champions (excluding 2014 Connecticut), 10 lost their most important player and had at least one player leave early for the NBA. The ensuing season, those 10 teams had a combined record of 227-107 (68.0 percent). Not a single one advanced beyond the Sweet 16. Three missed the tournament altogether.

On the flip side of that coin, five of those 15 champions either got to keep their most important player for another season or didn't lose a single non-senior. Those teams had a combined record of 157-25 (86.3 percent). All five advanced at least as far as the Sweet 16.

Not only did the Gators not have a single important senior on the 2006 championship team, but Billy Donovan didn't have a single player leave for the NBA, either—even though he had two of the best current big men in the NBA in Al Horford and Joakim Noah and an excellent 6'9" shooting guard in Corey Brewer. (Man, what ever happened to Taurean Green?)

So, yes, one team in the past 22 years repeated as national champions, but the conditions under which the Gators accomplished that feat were so far from the norm that it's hard to believe anyone would have picked against Florida in 2007.

What does all this mean for Connecticut?

It's not promising, that's for sure.

The Huskies lost four of their top six players from last year's team. Six of the previous 15 champs lost at least four players. On average, those teams won 22.7 games, lost 11.2 games and won 0.8 NCAA tournament games. All three of the reigning national champions who missed the tournament were in that camp.

Worse yet for the Huskies, each of those six teams was drastically better in its championship season than Connecticut was last year. All six were No. 1 seeds and had an average record of 34.8 wins and 3.7 losses. Even before losing Napier and company, Connecticut was a No. 7 seed that went 32-8.

With that in mind, were the early struggles against Bryant, College of Charleston and Dayton all that shocking? If undeniably great teams who lost at least four key players proceeded to lose an average of about 12 games the following season, how many losses might Connecticut accumulate in 2014-15?

This is the point where the people who aren't fans of Connecticut run out and bet on anyone other than the Huskies (Memphis? Cincinnati??) to win the AAC. It's also the point where Connecticut fans decide it's all a bunch of hooey that doesn't apply to their beloved team—even though the Huskies followed up their last three championships with records of 25-10, 23-8 and 20-14, respectively.

It's really nothing against Connecticut, though. It's just the way things are today.

In fact, unless the one-and-done rule gets modified, we're left to wonder if we'll ever see back-to-back college basketball champions again.

There are a few teams potentially equipped to win in both 2015 and 2016, but it's only because they're so ridiculously young and deep.

For instance, if Kentucky were to win it all this year, there's a pretty good chance that at least six or seven players bolt for the NBA. But even if Tyler Ulis, Devin Booker and Marcus Lee are the only players who return next season, that's still one heck of a core trio around which John Calipari can build with his next inevitable batch of three to six McDonald's All-Americans.

Jonathan Holmes would graduate, and there's little doubt that Myles Turner, Cameron Ridley and maybe Isaiah Taylor all declare for the draft. However, Rick Barnes could still go to war with a nucleus of Javan Felix, Kendal Yancy, Demarcus Holland, Jordan Barnett, Connor Lammert, Prince Ibeh, Maryland transfer Shaquille Cleare and however many freshmen he ends up signing.

But even a great team with a great recruiting class like Arizona would be hard-pressed to repeat as champs.

If the Wildcats win it all this year, T.J. McConnell graduates and there's about a zero percent chance that Stanley Johnson, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Brandon Ashley or Kaleb Tarczewski come back for another season.

Sean Miller has already signed three 5-star freshmen in next year's class and would have some key returnees in Gabe York and Craig Victor—as well as players like Ryan Anderson and Kadeem Allen who are currently redshirting—but it would be a very inexperienced team with a very big target on its back.

As we're seeing this year with Connecticut, that's the case with most reigning champs. Guys like Kentan Facey and Omar Calhoun who played limited minutes last season and guys like Rodney Purvis and Daniel Hamilton who are brand new to the team are needed to come in and immediately fill the shoes of players who were indispensable to last year's team.

Throw in the mathematics that even the best team in the country only has about a 25 percent chance of winning an NCAA tournament and it's hard to believe we'll see another team talented enough and lucky enough to repeat.

Best of luck, Connecticut. You'll need it.

bchoter
01-30-2015, 11:25 AM
Seahawks stars rant against NCAA
http://espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs/2014/story/_/id/12249290/richard-sherman-michael-bennett-seattle-seahawks-bash-ncaa

PHOENIX -- Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman and defensive end Michael Bennett both gave impassioned speeches Thursday about how student-athletes are unfairly maligned and how universities don't do enough for them.

"I think the NCAA is one of the biggest scams in America," Bennett said. "These kids put so much on the line. They [the NCAA] say, 'We give you a free degree.' That's like me owning a restaurant and saying, 'I'll give you a free burger.' It makes me so mad and irate. Universities need to do more for the student-[athletes].''

Sherman graduated with honors from Stanford, earning a degree in communications. But he feels the public doesn't understand how difficult it is for student-athletes.

Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett calls the NCAA "one of the biggest scams in America."
"I don't think college athletes are given enough time to take advantage of the free education they're given," Sherman said. "It's frustrating because a lot of people get upset with student-athletes and say you're not focused on school and not taking advantage of the opportunity you're given.

"I would love for a regular student, for just one semester, to have a student-athlete schedule during the season and show me how you balance that. Show me how you would schedule your classes when you can't schedule classes for 2 to 6 o'clock on any given day.

"Show me how you're going to get all your work done when you get out [of practice and meetings] at 7:30 or so and have a test the next day and you're dead tired from practice and you still have to study and get the same work done."

Sherman said most regular students have it much easier than the college athletes.

"Most of these kids are done with class by 3 o'clock and you have the rest of the day to do what you please," Sherman said. "You may spend it studying and then you may go have coffee with friends.

"As a student-athlete, you don't have that kind of time. You wake up in the morning and have weights. Then you go to class. Then you might get a bite to eat, then you go to meetings and then you have practice. And you have to try to get all your school work done."

Both Sherman and Bennett emphasized the financial hardships some college athletes have.

"And people are upset that student-athletes need a little cash," Sherman said. "I tell you from experience that one time I had negative 40 bucks in my account. It was in the negative more times than positive. You have to make a decision whether you put gas in your car or get a meal.

"People say you get room and board and they pay for your education. But to [the school officials'] knowledge, you're there to play football. Those are the things coaches tell you every day. Luckily I was blessed to go to Stanford, a school primarily focused on academics. But as [former Stanford coach] Jim Harbaugh would attest, we were still there to play football."

Harbaugh left the San Francisco 49ers after this season to become the head coach at the University of Michigan.

"Of course, [Michigan] can afford to pay Jim Harbaugh $48 million because they don't have to pay any of the athletes,'' Bennett said. "If Nick Saban doesn't have those five-star recruits, can he still be who he is at Alabama?

"I think the NCAA should come up with a plan for college athletes to receive some of the money they bring into the schools. My school, Texas A&M, I think makes $50 million just on jersey sales. So I would say pay $60,000 [to student-athletes] for every year you stay in college. Keep that in a 401(k). After you graduate, hold that money until you are a certain age and then you get the money."

Bennett said college athletes aren't living the easy life that some people think.

"I think there are very few schools that actually care about the players," Bennett said. "Guys break their legs and they get the worst surgery they could possibly get by the worst doctors with the worst treatment."

Bennett also said he feels other students sometimes look down on athletes.

"They don't understand," Bennett said. "When I was in college, I was going to class and some student came up to me and said, 'I'm paying your tuition.' I said, 'You don't pay my damn tuition. My mom paid that when she worked two jobs and I woke up every morning at 6 a.m. and worked hard.' Student athletes don't get enough credit.''

Sam Miguel
02-03-2015, 08:45 AM
^^^ Tokayo we are of course here referring only to the REAL student-athletes, i.e. mga totoong pumapasok, nagte-test, nagki-quiz, nagbabasa at nagri-research, nagre-recite sa klase, at higit sa lahat mga totoong pumapasa at ang unang nasa isip ay makakuha nung diploma nila.

This is what I am most proud of in our own program at Loyola Heights. In spite of the likes of Al-Hussaini, Salamat, and Buenafe, a good majority of our athletes, across the board, eventually earn their diplomas and graduate.

Perhaps you can share some of the success stories from Espana about Tigers (and even Goldies since that was closer to our era) who also earned their diplomas.

bchoter
02-03-2015, 11:07 AM
Two younger ones come to mind: Melo Afuang and Ungria. Afuang now works with MWSS while Ungria makes use of his BS Math (part-time DL) in an IT company in Makati. Chester Taylor and Mel Gile are back down under and working 9-5. among the older ones, coach Binky is now a Kosehal in Paranaque. There are two Tigers who went to another field after graduation, Udoy Belmonte and AC Marquez are both certified pilots with PAL. Khasim is on his way to earning his license.

Some of the 4-peat Tigers who earned their degree but chose to pursue basketball-related job: Alfrancis Chua, Patrick Fran, Rey Evangelista, to name a few.

Sam Miguel
03-27-2015, 08:30 AM
These UCLA athletes are students too

Bill Plaschke

LOS ANGELES TIMES

bill.plaschke​@latimes.com

The UCLA basketball players gathered in their tiny locker room here Friday afternoon looking like they had just endured a difficult test.

They stretched. They yawned. They rubbed their red eyes.

"Man, I'm glad that's over with," Tony Parker said.

"Really stressful, glad to be done with it," Gyorgy Goloman said.

Turns out, they weren't talking about the previous day's dramatic South Regional victory. Stunningly, they were actually talking about real tests.

Shortly after the UCLA players awoke Friday following their 60-59 victory over Southern Methodist, nearly half the team was herded into a converted suite at the nearby Hilton Gardens Inn to take UCLA's second-quarter final exams.

They were arranged at separate desks. They were monitored by proctor Veronica Rodriguez-Mora, a learning specialist from the school's athletic department. They were given tests similar to those given their fellow students back in Los Angeles, and allowed the same amount of time to complete them. Then they climbed on the bus and drove to the arena and attended practice in preparation for Saturday's round-of-32 game against Alabama Birmingham.

"That's pretty crazy, huh?" Goloman said.

And, oh yeah, it was the second such testing session for the Bruins here in the last three days, with 11 players taking tests, nearly the entire team.

"It's pretty nuts, actually," Kory Alford said.

It's actually pretty cool. It's these sorts of tests — not the ones on the court with millions watching — that have long quietly defined UCLA athletics.

The school is one of about 10% of the nation's universities — one of five in the Pac-12 — that operates on the quarter system instead of the semester system. This means that UCLA is that rare school whose athletes are often facing final exams during NCAA championships.

Rarer still, there is no university policy requiring professors to make concessions for student-athletes. When it comes to final exams, they are treated like any other student representing the university on an extracurricular trip. Professors insist that their student-athletes take those final exams on time, and in the allotted amount of time, which means the Bruins are often attempting to win a title with a pencil in their mouth and a book on their lap.

"It's who we are, and we're very proud of it," said Christina Rivera, UCLA's associate athletic director for Academic & Student Services. "At UCLA, student-athletes are students ahead of athletes."

This is not just talk. Hang around the Bruins teams during their championship trips and it's obvious that even some of this country's greatest college athletes are still school kids.

There have been women's softball players pulled out of the middle of games to take exams. There have been athletes who travel separately from the rest of the team to accommodate exams. Then there was softball star Megan Lagenfeld, who said the most interesting thing as she was being hugged by Rivera after hitting a walk-off homer in first game of 2010 Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City.

"Hey, what time is the econ exam tonight?" she said.

The Bruins basketball players know the feeling. They were studying for finals on the trip to Louisville, so much that the UCLA athletic department even tweeted out a photo of Norman Powell sitting on the plane while peering into a laptop. They have also been studying for finals since arriving here, several of them staying up until 2 a.m. after Thursday's win for some last-second cramming.

"I know this is the NCAA basketball tournament and all that, but you have to understand one thing, man," Parker said. "We are still in school."

Parker took two final exams here, one for a science class, another in paleontology, and if he looked exhausted while making a minimal contribution in the Bruins' win over SMU, who can blame him?

"The tests and the tournament are two totally different monsters, but there is way more pressure with the tests," Parker said. "You've been playing basketball your whole life, you have not been taking final exams on fossils your whole life."

The tests actually affect Coach Steve Alford's tournament practice plans. Unlike most other coaches, he has to guide his players through book fatigue.

"We have to be careful what we do with them physically because mentally they get worn out," Alford said.

But instead of complaining, the coach is celebrating, saying, "That's one of the reasons I wanted to come here, I know it's not just about excellence athletically, but excellence academically."

So how did the Bruins do on their tests?

Said Parker: "Let us pray, let us all pray."

Said Goloman of his economics final: "I have an idea, and I hope that idea is wrong."

One guy was certain he had just completed a slam dunk. Powell sat in front of his locker Friday afternoon bleary-eyed and giddy. He had just taken an art history final that he's sure he aced. If that's the case, he will have enough credits to graduate. It would be his final college exam.

"I ran out of that testing room like, 'I'm done, I'm out!" he said, smiling as if he had just cut down some nets. "It's hard to put into words. I still can't believe it. Man, I think I just finished college!"

Far from the court, far from the cynical perception of today's student-athlete, it was quite a moment. One might even say it was a shining one.

Sam Miguel
03-27-2015, 08:32 AM
Syracuse basketball NCAA investigation: How far did the school go to keep Fab Melo eligible?

By Chris Carlson | ccarlson@syracuse.com

on March 07, 2015 at 9:00 AM, updated March 07, 2015 at 4:39 PM

Syracuse, N.Y. — Syracuse prioritized winning a second national championship over academics, breaking rules and protocol in order to keep Fab Melo on the floor for a potential Final Four run, according to the NCAA's investigation.

In the most vivid section of the 94-page report released Friday, the NCAA detailed a lack of institution control that included members of the basketball staff doing work for players, athletic department officials crossing boundaries into academics and the attempted destruction of evidence.

"In order to keep one of their best players eligible the institution simply did not take 'no' from the NCAA for an answer," the NCAA report said.

Melo's case, and the day-by-day timeline, highlight the decisions of an institution that valued athletics over academics playing out in real time.

On Jan. 15, 2012, Syracuse sat atop the country with a No. 1 ranking and a 20-0 record, beating opponents by an average of 19.6 points per game with Dion Waiters, the No. 4 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, coming off the bench.

Melo was the centerpiece on defense, altering shots on his way to the Big East's Defensive Player of the Year Award.

When the second semester began, Melo had failed to make enough progress toward his degree. The issue would make him ineligible.

Melo tried to get a waiver, arguing he had medical and personal issues. It included a personal statement. In the end, it would turn out, the statement wasn't particularly personal.

The waiver was denied Jan. 16 and, five days later, Melo was out of the starting lineup for the first time all season. Syracuse lost its first game without him, falling on the road by nine points to a Notre Dame team led by Ben Hansborough.

Four days later, athletic director Daryl Gross called a meeting with at least seven other members of the Syracuse athletic department, the NCAA reported. It was an effort to brainstorm how to keep Melo in uniform. And to keep the Orange's national championship hopes alive.

"As the institution acknowledged at the hearing, a meeting like this, aimed at an individual student-athlete's eligibility options, had previously never occurred at the institution," the report said.

The Brazilian center "needed basketball," Gross said, according to the report.

Without it, Melo would have been on a plane home "the next day," Boeheim said in the report.

Boeheim wanted "the best defensive player in the country to play" but hoped Melo's return would be within the rules, the report said.

For the meeting, Gross called in director of basketball operations Stan Kissel, an assistant provost, the school's faculty-athletics representative, the director of compliance, the director of student-athletic services and both his deputy directors of athletics, two members of his so-called "Dream Team."

The group scanned Melo's transcript and debated three academic alternatives, eventually culminating in an effort to obtain a grade change from a class he'd taken the previous year.

It was Jan. 25.

"There was a sense of urgency," the report said, "as the institution's next scheduled basketball game was only three days away."

The next morning Melo and a former professor agreed he could submit a paper to raise his old grade.

Starting at 11:19 a.m. the paper, which was based heavily on Melo's personal statement to the NCAA that had been saved on Kissel's computer, was revised seven times in 27 hours. Each of the revisions was made by either Kissel or Debora Belanger, a basketball receptionist.

The pair exchanged seven e-mails and three phone calls during that time.

By the next morning, Melo had turned in four or five pages The professor ruled it "inadequate" because it did not include citations. Those changes were made by the afternoon.

"Unfortunately, the director of basketball operations and the basketball facility receptionist, not (Melo), completed and submitted the assignment," the report said.

"Word circulated and eventually multiple athletics and academic personnel involved themselves in ensuring that the grade change occurred as soon as possible and before institutional offices closed for the weekend," the report read.

"With time of the essence, the director of compliance (Erlease Wagner), the director of student-athlete support services (Kevin Wall) and the deputy director of athletics, as well as the professor, went to the registrar's office to ensure that the grade change form was processed 'appropriately.'"

Melo was not cleared by the next game and, over the weekend, Wagner, the university official in charge of enforcing rules, emailed the executive vice president/chief financial (Lou Marcocia). She noted that vice chancellor Eric Spina would be "very disappointed" if the request were not approved.

Representatives from the College of Arts & Sciences, Melo's home school, questioned the grade change Jan. 30. Two days later, though, he was cleared, back in action for a game against St. John's.

"No, I was never nervous," Melo told reporters at the time. "I knew at some point I would play. I wasn't nervous about it."

The Orange were back at full strength, beating St. John's by 25 points, No. 12 Georgetown in overtime and running off nine straight wins before a Big East Tournament loss.

"The last three games, you didn't see us get as many transition points and as many bench points," Brandon Triche said at the time. "Everything seemed interrupted, but now that Fab's back everything is normal again."

Syracuse earned a No. 1 seed for the NCAA Tournament and was one of the favorites.

Behind the scenes, however, the NCAA began questioning how Melo had regained eligibility so quickly. Syracuse investigated and uncovered the unauthorized assistance.

When an investigator went to meet with Melo, they discovered someone had tried to delete the paper from Kissel's computer a day earlier.

Melo ultimately earned an "F" on the paper and was suspended for academics March 14, taking him out of the NCAA tournament.

Belanger was fired. Kissel resigned. Wall was reassigned. Nearly everyone else remained, as Syracuse lost 77-70 to Ohio State in the Elite Eight.

Said the NCAA: "The academic leaders (including the faculty athletics representative and associate provost) were convened by the director of athletics, developed a game plan going forward and then left it to the director of basketball operations to get the job done."

bchoter
08-29-2015, 01:48 PM
Before it gets out of hand, now is the time for UAAP to look into this pera-pera recruitment. I don't mind giving them reasonable allowances but giving other perks like condos, cars and so on should be prohibited.
So when will the board go after schools who give excessive perks? The excessive residency period is just part if the law. It also states that: Section 5 of the new law states that schools may only grant the following:
tuition and miscellaneous school fees, including books and learning materials;
full board and lodging;
school and athletic uniforms;
regular monthly allowance;
medical services,
other reasonable and similar benefits that would enhance the academic and athletic performance of student-athletes.
To prevent the commercialization of student-athletes, Section 6 states that "schools shall not offer a student-athlete or the immediate family members benefits or incentives beyond those enumerated under Section 5 of this Act which are contrary to the nature of amateur sports and which may result in the commercialization of a student-athlete."

How hard is it to prove that Mbala's former school received a bounty in echange for his release? How hard is it to trace the real source of fund for the cars, condos and town houses?

Should we also include plane tickets as excessive?

bchoter
10-19-2015, 01:20 PM
Pinggoy and Cani are already playing but we have yet to hear of any effort to curtail excessive perks and allowances. I guess the real intent of the bill filed by the good senator is to let the athletes play now. Never mind if the root of all evil... err... unfair and excessive residency law is greed.

Joescoundrel
10-29-2015, 11:43 AM
^ Brod, mukhang ang mahirap kasi diyan is to establish that trail of evidence and link it to the culprits, i.e. those that give these excessive perks. I'm sure hindi naman bibigyan ng OR in the player's name ang kotse or condo. So papano kaya natin sila mahuhuli?

mrjumbo03
10-29-2015, 08:17 PM
http://www.spin.ph/basketball/ncaa/news/mcjour-luib-letran-san-beda-ncaa-season-91-basketball-champions-turnover-bounced-back

YOWZA! At talagang inannounce pa niya kung magkano. 100K bonus for every Letran player. Hmmmmm...

Pacquiao just injected some recruitment punch into Letran with that statement. Even without intending it, I'm pretty sure that incoming recruits will now give Letran a second look and more consideration.

BLUE HORSE
10-30-2015, 08:16 AM
Pacman must not have voted for the Cayetano bill or he did not read the fine print of the bill concerning perks to athletes. Heh heh heh, If Mayweather can shower money in Vegas strip clubs why can't Manny do the same thing in Intramuros.

Joescoundrel
03-07-2018, 02:49 PM
Don’t Just Shut Up and Play

MAY 10 2017

Nigel Hayes, Forward / Wisconsin Badgers - The Players' Tribune

You'll have to forgive me - I don't know all the rules when it comes to writing a commencement address. I've been told that it's standard procedure to start out with a famous quote. Or a cliché about what college really means. Or maybe an allegory that involves an animal.

Small problem: This isn't an official commencement speech. (Lucky for all involved, to be honest.) And anyway, I've never really liked standard procedures.

So instead I'm gonna go a little bit rogue. I want to talk about Twitter.

Ah yes, Twitter. The magical land where opinions are made of gold and facts are made of cotton candy. Stay with me here, I'm trying to write a rogue commencement address and I've never done anything like this before.

Actually, what I really want to talk about is being a student-athlete (or "athletic student," as I like to say - because it's no secret that I came here primarily to play basketball). Twitter just plays a role in the story.

Four years ago, before I got to college, a lot of my friends and family back in Toledo asked me why I had decided to go to Wisconsin, which at the time hadn’t been to a Final Four since 2000. After all, I'm an Ohio kid - why not go somewhere closer to home?

And I remember exactly what I said to them: "I'll let you know when I'm done there."

This week, as I'm set to graduate, I've been doing a lot of reflecting about what Wisconsin has meant to me. Going to school here has truly been a life-changing experience. I could go on forever about how proud I am to have been a part of two Final Four teams, a Big Ten title and a 115–35 record. The teammates and coaches I've had the honor to learn from have made me a better player and a better human being. I'll always be proud to say I wore the the cardinal and white.

But as I count down the days to my graduation, and then to the NBA draft, I want to focus on what my four years here have meant to me off the court. Not just as an athlete, but as a student and an athlete. A student-athlete.

Student-athlete — I know you’re familiar with the term. (Though you might not be familiar with its legal distinction, which lets the NCAA off the hook for normal labor protections.)

It's funny how many people are still surprised to learn that - yes, it's true - there are still four-year college basketball players who plan to graduate and then turn pro. We’re not the endangered species that we've been made out to be.

But we are sometimes misunderstood. Like do we just get free A's without going to class or taking any tests? The answer, of course, is no. Contrary to popular belief, student-athletes like me work extremely hard to juggle what amounts to two full-time jobs - going to school and playing a sport. In other words, you may only see us in a uniform for a few hours a week, but there is a lot more going on.

You're probably asking, So what's Twitter have to do with all of this?

I'm getting to that … but I wasn't picked to give a speech at my high school graduation, and was passed over again at Wisconsin … so, damn it, I’m going to take my time.

Before I came to Wisconsin, I was never heavy into politics or things like that. I thought of myself first and foremost as a basketball player. College seemed like a means to an end — more basketball. Like most teenagers, I had a worldview that had been passed down to me from my parents and their peers. Nothing wrong with that, but I didn't question a lot of assumptions I'd formed about the world. I was going with the flow.

What I knew about college, I knew mostly from movies. And out of the infinity movies depicting the American college experience, my unscientific research tells me that most of them boil down to a simple equation:

college = freedom

I remember the day my parents helped me move into my dorm. We said our goodbyes, the door shut behind them and suddenly I was standing by myself with my fob in my hand. That fob … it felt like it represented independence itself. And that's when it really hit me … Alright, now I'm in college. I'm really on my own. The next four years were going to be just like those movies: Hang out with whoever you want, stay up as late as you want, go wherever you want, do whatever you'd like to do. In a word, freedom.

But what kind of freedom? As the years went on, I found out that there are a few different types.

I was a shy freshman. Off the basketball court, recognition of any kind made me uncomfortable. In fact, it's still how I am to this day. I used to arrive early to lectures just so I could sit in the back row of the classroom or whatever seat was closest to the door - arrive first, leave fast, lie low. But I remember one day my freshman year, in Micro Econ 101, when the professor singled me out to congratulate me because our team was going to the Final Four. Everyone stood up and applauded because I was the only representative of the basketball team in the class. I was sitting in the back row practically trying to crawl under my desk to avoid the attention.

I'd always planned to pursue a degree in finance, but during my sophomore year I started to discover books that sparked my interest in history and politics, especially books about African history, civil rights, and the African-American experience in the U.S. It started with "The Autobiography of Malcolm X" and took off from there. I found myself thinking about things I'd never considered before. For example, when Muhammad Ali passed away last June, I remember being surprised at the way his stances against war and racism in the '60s had been "cleaned up" in present-day depictions of him. Back then he was a radical who risked going to jail for his beliefs. Now he was being praised by some as some kind of Disney-movie-type hero. History told me that the story was more complicated.

I started to follow the news more closely, too. My four years in college were marked by a lot of news about violence between police and African-Americans, from Ferguson to Baltimore and beyond.

I was growing intellectually and spiritually. But maybe just as important, I was also being drawn out of my shell. I started to realize that I needed to develop my own beliefs and then be able to defend them with facts. One of the best things about Wisconsin is that you’ve got thousands of students from different backgrounds and they all seem to want to debate ideas. I remember more than a few times when I found myself walking behind groups of students walking around campus just to listen in on their political conversations.

(You'd be surprised at some of the things you hear.)

Soon I was sharpening my mind, and my views, on our basketball team's group chat. We've had some riveting conversations, as well as just some plain ol' stupid discussions. Jordan and Ferry are two of my favorite contributors. After all, a good idea isn't worth a dime if it stays sleeping in your head.

I was tweeting more about stuff, too - sometimes about sports, sometimes about music and sometimes about my thoughts on life, politics and race.

And that's how Twitter comes into play in all of this. I started noticing an interesting trend in my mentions.

Whenever I - Nigel Hayes, Wisconsin student and basketball player, class of 2017 - tweeted about something that had to do with sports, I didn't notice anything out of the ordinary.

But whenever I - Nigel Hayes, Wisconsin student and basketball player, class of 2017 - tweeted about something "political," "serious," "racial" or what have you … I noticed a pattern.

The replies usually fell into three general categories.

The first category, I'll just call trolls … commenters trying to demean, not engage in dialogue, while hiding behind egg avatars. Need I say more?

The second type of response, and always appreciated, went something like this: Thanks for using your platform to speak your mind.

And the third response went something like this: Just shut up and play basketball! People also said things that were much worse, of course, but given that children may read this, I'll spare you the graphic details.

Joescoundrel
03-07-2018, 02:50 PM
^ Continued ...

And it's this third type of response that I want to focus on for a second. I've been thinking a lot about it in my last days as a student.

Now, maybe you're reading this and saying, I would never say that. But that's not my point. And Twitter is not really the point here, either.

The point is, this kind of response is nothing new. As we've seen with athletes from Muhammad Ali to Colin Kaepernick, just to name two, there's a long tradition in this country of telling athletes to "stick to sports." Even my own teammate, Bronson Koenig, who had the courage to speak up for his fellow Native Americans at Standing Rock last fall, has been on the receiving end of criticism.

The message was clear: The views of athletes are of no value - we're dumb and we should accept our roles as robots that make baskets and give brief press conferences.

It's funny how sports is one of the only areas in which it's "controversial" to speak your mind. We don't tell doctors to hold their tongues about their beliefs and "stick to medicine." We don’t tell firemen to "stick to fighting fires" at the expense of standing up for what they think is right. And we don't even tell students to "stick to being students" and keep our mouths shut about the things that matter in society. If you look closely at the history of social movements for positive change, all over the world, you'll notice that the college student has been the catalyst for some of modern history's major social changes. In fact, one of the reasons you go to college - correct me if I'm wrong - is to learn how to think critically about your role in society. So do we judge athletes by different standards?

Maybe you know about the racist fan incident at a Wisconsin football game last fall. And about how the university, at first, tried to accomodate the fan.

I was part of a group of black athletes that came together to write a letter to the university, calling for Wisconsin to, and I quote, "create real programs, initiate meaningful change and understand that students of color deserve to thrive in this institution just like our peers." We called for real action to address racial inequality on campus. We saw something that was wrong and we couldn’t hold our tongues.

To Wisconsin’s credit, it responded quickly to our letter and promised to address our concerns - and I hope it will continue to follow through. We received a lot of support from classmates and from the university community. I think a lot of people realized that standing up for what's right is part of what college is supposed to teach you.

So one of the ugliest moments in my four years on campus turned into one of my proudest moments here at Wisconsin.

If you're still with me, thank you for reading. I want to finish up with a message to my classmates.

I don't have much profound advice. Our real commencement speakers will probably have much wiser things to say. But I do want to end by issuing a challenge - a challenge for us as a class, as we go out into the "real world." What I want to say is bigger than a Twitter argument, and bigger than sports or student-athletes or any of that.

My challenge to the class of 2017 is this:

Never accept it when someone says, "Just shut up and play." Or whatever the equivalent is in your field.

Don't accept it when they say, "Stay in your lane."

Let's use all possible lanes. Let's create new lanes. Each of us is more than just the job we do for a few hours a day.

Whether we play basketball or not.

"The paradox of education is precisely this," James Baldwin wrote, "that as one begins to become conscious, one begins to examine the society in which he is being educated."

Thank you, Wisconsin, for helping me learn that.

(There, I just quoted a famous writer like you're supposed to do in a graduation speech.)

And thank you to all my classmates, teammates, coaches, professors and friends for being part of a community that I will always be grateful for. If you care about something, you want to make it better. I hope that in some small way I challenged Wisconsin to be better. I know it made me a better student, athlete and person.

Oh, and one last thing: We really need to come up with a plan to pay student-athletes.

Wait, you thought I wasn't going to mention that?

It shouldn't even be a controversial notion. After all, I'm a finance major. It’s just the simple law of supply and demand, sprinkled with principles of the American market economy. Isn't it interesting that collegiate athletics is one of the only American industries that doesn't feel the need to abide by those same rules?

(Psst, I learned that in college, while playing basketball.)

So with that, my fellow classmates, let's do this. Let's graduate.

Truly, thanks to everyone. Much love.

On Wisconsin.

Joescoundrel
03-07-2018, 03:02 PM
Let Athletes Be Students

OCT 24 2016

Shane Battier, Glue Guy / Retired - The Players' Tribune

When I think back on my college experience, of course, some of the first memories that pop into my mind are on the basketball court.

I'll start reflecting on the intense practices, emotional victories in front of the Cameron Crazies and the experience of cutting down the nets after winning a national championship in the Metrodome.

Those are some of my best memories from college. But they aren't my only memories.

I also think about Wiffle ball.

Back in the day myself, Mike Dunleavy, Jay Williams and a few other guys on the team used to play Wiffle ball on the quad. It got pretty competitive. We drew some small crowds, I have no doubt they were impressed at my ability to hit the second floor windows of Wilson dormitory. We had some game. In the fall, before the season started, we were at the football tailgates and sitting in the student section.

During the basketball season, we were an elite athletic team that looked to go to the Final Four every year. But after the season was over Coach K would remind us, "Alright, don't forget to be college kids. Hang out on the quad. Catch a baseball game. Experience it!" He'd have us do two one-hour workouts a week but beyond that, we were regular college kids. We'd hang out, grab pizza at 2 a.m. and then stay up the rest of the night trying to cram for a test the next day, like all of our dorm mates did weekly. Stupid (but ultimately important) stuff like that. And honestly, those are really some of my best memories from that time in my life.

A lot of things have changed since I was in school. Today, many student-athletes have schedules that budget their time down to the very last minute. Teams who are out of season have workouts that are "voluntary" in name only. The reality is that for a lot of student-athletes there is no off-season, and certainly no time for Wiffle ball. The reason for this is pretty clear. With so much money and so many jobs tied to the success of an athletic program, the athlete is often just treated as a proxy for a coach's competency. If an athlete isn't working on his game, then a coach must not be working him enough (or the coach is incompetent.) As a result, overscheduling is not just something that is afflicting suburban kids everywhere - it's also affecting our college athletes as well.

More or less every person not directly employed by the NCAA will readily admit that there needs to be serious reforms made to college athletics. Unfortunately, that's about as far as the conversation usually gets, because saying you want reform is one thing, but once you start discussing the details, it gets murky and uncomfortable. But, hey, you don't grow unless you are uncomfortable.

How can student-athletes be properly compensated for the value they bring a university? Should they be paid or are there appropriate alternatives? Which players then? Which sports? If a school doesn't have the resources to provide payment, then what? And thinking broader, what does success look like given the current state of affairs? Is the current model sustainable? Should we start from scratch?

All of these are legitimate questions with no clear solutions. There are solid arguments on all sides of these issues.

One metric for success the NCAA likes to tout is graduation rates and eligibility. In 2015, a report indicated that the Graduation Success Rate among student-athletes was 67%, two percentage points higher than the overall student rate.

On the surface, this is laudable, but when you examine it further, it doesn't really paint a full picture of the outcomes that schools are providing for their student-athletes.

How many students found a job in their preferred field after graduation?

How many of them were guided into a major that they had a passion for while in school?

You hate to ask, but how many of those degrees were simply the path of least resistance?

And ultimately, what percentage of athletes felt prepared to take on the world once their eligibility was up and they no longer had advisors and coaches mapping out their lives?

While graduation rates are celebrated externally as a measure of success, the message many programs give to student-athletes is simple: Stay eligible and win. That's success.

In order to do that, players will be registered in easy-A classes and the least demanding majors. This is hardly a secret. Just follow the premed students - they seem to have a keen nose for the classes that bolster GPA.

So, because it's known that the actual academic support is sometimes questionable, people argue that college athletes should be paid. This is complicated not only for the reasons I listed above, but also, in a lot of ways, because it's a Band-Aid solution.

If I had gotten paid $10,000 per season when I played for Duke, it would have been great. No complaining from me. I generated much more than this yearly for the NCAAs business partners, and on the surface it seems like a reasonable compensation. Maybe I could have had some slightly nicer clothes and put a down payment on a car. That stuff would have been awesome, but ultimately it would also have been temporary. It wouldn't actually have been life-changing.

Joescoundrel
03-07-2018, 03:10 PM
^ Continued ...

I've always thought that there are simple steps that programs can take to give their student-athletes better chances at success after college is over. And the tools to do so are right at their school's disposal.

For starters, I do think that it's essential to have student-athletes spend less time practicing their sport, and more time living the college experience and discovering what it means to be a productive member of society. You don't necessarily learn these lessons in a classroom. You learn them navigating your group projects, interacting with your classmates and discovering what it takes to become an adult. Producing a well-rounded human being should be one of the highest goals of our institutions of higher education. The first core value listed on the NCAA's website states that the organization believes in and is committed to: "The collegiate model of athletics in which students participate as an avocation, balancing their academic, social and athletics experiences."

Exactly.

The real value of attending college isn't just the degree that looks pretty sitting in a frame in your office, it's also creating meaningful connections that pay dividends for your future. Any person in any industry can attest to how vital connections and networks are to progressing in a career.

I would argue that the true value of any degree is the alumni network that shares that same degree. The saying, "It's not what you know, but who you know," is becoming more true every day. Networking matters. Maybe more than ever. For the most part, alumni networks strictly benefit the universities and athletic program budgets that inspire them. But what if universities began leveraging alumni networks for the benefit of the athletes. I'm talking about programs that match up athletes with alumni capable of providing genuine mentorship, networking opportunities and internships. That's the kind of thing that will actually give student-athletes practical directions in careers outside of their sports.

Now, I can probably guess your reservations about this idea. You might be envisioning no-show jobs and $200 handshakes. That's how the booster-athlete relationship is often portrayed. I even hate the term booster. The connotations are so negative. But this fear of improper benefits - which still occur despite current rules - does the athlete a huge disservice. Because a dinner with an expert in the field you hope to go into is truly life-changing. It provides a young person with guidance that can help them once they're on their own, without the help of an army of academic advisors. The concern over a college kid getting steak dinner bought for them shouldn't outweigh the concern over them leaving school with more uncertainty about their future than when they arrived.

Schools being proactive about setting up meetings and whiteboard sessions between their student-athletes and alumni is a simple - and free - way to increase the value of a college education.

I think setting up such an arrangement would ultimately pay dividends in terms of graduation rates because athletes won't just be working towards a degree. They'll actually have an idea of what their degrees mean, and who they can call once they get them. As the founder of the Shane Battier Take Charge Foundation, I deal directly with the issues surrounding the gap in educational opportunities and access in our underserved areas. The No. 1 reason why minorities in economically depressed areas give up their pursuit of college degrees is not because of finances or support. We have found that those who abandon the path of a college degree do so because they simply do not see the value and implications of earning a degree. It is an inspiration problem. Supplying inspiration by showing college athletes what is possible will not solve the issue of graduation rates by itself (especially with minority students) but it'd be a hell of a place to start.

Schools being proactive about setting up meetings and whiteboard sessions between their student-athletes and alumni is a simple - and free - way to increase the value of a college education.

Of course, setting up a program such as this would mean that schools would need to budget the time for student-athletes to pursue such opportunities. They'd have to put in the work to learn what the student is actually interested in outside of their sport, and design opportunities based on what they find out. But what if that became a top selling point for a coach/school when talking to high school prospects. It would be worth the effort for both the students and the university to pursue such a course.

Right now, universities are pitched to regular students and student-athletes alike basically as, If you come here, you're set for life. But ultimately, that's a stretch. Anybody who has attended college knows that what you do with your life isn’t determined by where you go, but what you do, how you go about it, who you meet while you’re doing it and how you foster those relationships.

That is why I think the alumni base should be utilized more as an added benefit for student-athletes. It would be a way to recruit kids not just based on top coaches, trainers and facilities, but also because of the potential to have relationships facilitated with a rich alumni network that will set the student up for success in their post-career. Every school has an area of expertise - an industry they are proud to trumpet.

If athletes don’t show passion for topics outside of their sports, then that is on them, and that’s fine. It has been my experience that there are more athletes that are interested in preparing for life after college to create a fulfilling successful life for themselves. The NCAA likes to parade the number of athletes who don't play in the professional ranks and its numbers are spot-on. Let's use the unbelievably strong resources of our universities: their networks. Universities have the tools at their disposal to make this happen. It just takes a little bit of creative thinking, and a willingness to place importance on something less tangible than a transcript.

We're in a different economy now. A degree does not equal success. So it's on the college programs to stop selling that myth and to be more proactive about ensuring their athletes find success after they graduate. That doesn’t mean paying their athletes while they're in school. It means making sure somebody else does for many years after they graduate.

Joescoundrel
03-12-2018, 10:22 AM
Goodbye one-and-done: With scandals rocking youth basketball, NBA readying to step in

5 Mar, 2018

Brian Windhorst
ESPN Senior Writer

In 2005, then-NBA commissioner David Stern celebrated a victory when he successfully created an age limit -- a player had to be 19 years old or one year removed from his high school class graduation to be drafted -- that accomplished his goal of removing pro scouts from high school gyms.

Now, though, there is turbulence, as the underbelly in the youth and college basketball systems is being exposed. The NBA has watched it unfold. Seeing both a responsibility as the world's leading basketball league and an opportunity to move in on valuable territory, the league is preparing to get involved again with elite high school basketball players, multiple sources told ESPN.

Current NBA commissioner Adam Silver and several of his top advisers have been engaged in listening tours and information-gathering missions with an array of stakeholders for months. That has included formal meetings with the National Basketball Players Association about adjusting the so-called "one-and-done" age-limit rule. But Silver's aim is much more comprehensive than simply re-opening the door for 18-year-olds to play in the NBA, sources said.

Australia's major professional league is creating a rule aimed at the best American draft prospects who want -- or need -- an alternative to college basketball. Can it work?

A plan is expected to include the NBA starting relationships with elite teenagers while they are in high school, providing skills to help them develop both on and off the court. It would ultimately open an alternate path to the NBA besides playing in college and a way 18-year-olds could earn a meaningful salary either from NBA teams or as part of an enhanced option in the developmental G League, sources said.

The NBA is focusing on getting involved in two important periods in which they currently have minimal contact with prospects: the high school years and the time between high school graduation and when a young player is physically and emotionally ready to join the NBA.

Silver could present a plan within the next few months, though the league is planning to wait until after the Commission on College Basketball presents its report this spring. Both Silver and NBPA executive director Michele Roberts have appeared before the commission, which is chaired by Condoleezza Rice.

"We are looking at changing the relationship we have with players before they reach the NBA," one high-ranking league official said. "This is a complex challenge, and there's still a lot of discussion about how it's going to happen, but we all see the need to step in."

In recent days, influential voices such as former President Barack Obama and LeBron James, a vice president of the players' union, have called for the NBA to expand its G League to give teenagers another option besides the NCAA route. NCAA president Mark Emmert has said repeatedly he doesn't believe players should come to college if only to use it as a pit stop toward being in the NBA.

These concerns have been on Silver's desk for some time, and he has been seeking input on the topic, reaching out to influential basketball minds across the sport to hear ideas. Recent events have convinced him that some concepts need to be accelerated, sources said.

"We're spending a lot of time on [youth basketball]. I think there is a big opportunity, on a global basis, focus on elite players in terms of better training, better fitness, so that they ultimately can be successful at the highest level," Silver said during All-Star Weekend. "That is something from a league standpoint, together with our teams, we're putting an enormous amount of energy and resources into."

Within the past year, league officials began canvassing teams on their ideas and interest in the NBA creating academies that would house and train dozens of the country's elite high school basketball players, sources said. This academy concept has been floated for years, notably by Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban.

These academies would've been modeled after European-style operations that soccer and basketball franchises use and after the NBA's own international academies. The NBA currently operates three academies in China, one in India and one in Senegal and has a global academy with prospects from across the planet at the Australia Institute of Sport. They recently opened another academy in Mexico City to serve standout Latin American teens.

However, after discussions with teams and examining challenges and possible unintended consequences with establishing these operations in the U.S., the NBA has decided not to go down the academy path at this time, sources said.

Instead, the league might be looking at how it can get in touch with prospects while they're playing in high school with camps, tournaments and other connection points as they move through high school, with the summer being a focus point.

In this way, the league could bring in some of its experts to advise high-level prospects on training methods, recovery, nutrition and life skills. All this in addition to providing professional coaching and playing techniques that could better translate to the professional game and make the eventual transition to the NBA, G League or even high-level college basketball easier.

"We've talked a lot about youth development in terms of whether we should be getting involved in some of these young players even earlier than when they come into college," Silver said. "And from a league standpoint, on one hand, we think we have a better draft when we've had an opportunity to see these young players play an elite level before they come into the NBA. On the other hand, I think the question for the league is, in terms of their ultimate success, are we better off intersecting with them a little bit younger?"

The league also has engaged in conversations with USA Basketball and the players' union, which each have operated camps for elite high school players for years. They also are expected to eventually seek partnerships with shoe companies, which have guided elite high school basketball for decades but are now under scrutiny after an Adidas executive was indicted as part of an FBI investigation in the fall.

"People have been saying we need to fix the AAU system for a long time," said one NBA general manager who has discussed these changes with the league office. "At least for some of the kids we may end up having on our roster one day, this may be our chance to start that process."

After the high school years, there is the issue of preparing prospects for the NBA. When high school players were allowed to immediately be drafted, there were high-profile success stories such as Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. But there were plenty of examples of players who made mistakes by turning pro too early, and the league wasn't as equipped to manage young, raw players.

A new plan could establish a way for the ultra-elite level of players such as Bryant or James to go to the NBA as 18-year-olds and also create a way for high school graduates who might not be ready to immediately go to the NBA to continue their development with NBA teams while enabling them to earn money that could help their families. This would be an alternative to college and perhaps the seedy and legally questionable world of looking for under-the-table payments.

The NBA currently permits 18-year-olds in the G League, but the salaries are not competitive. Currently, G League players can earn a maximum of $26,000 per season. In recent years, prospects such as Brandon Jennings, Emmanuel Mudiay and Terrance Ferguson played overseas and earned as much as $1 million while waiting to be eligible to be drafted -- which they all were in the first round.

The Australian National Basketball League, where Ferguson played last year before being drafted by the Oklahoma City Thunder, has opened a window for players looking to go this route. Perhaps in an attempt to get ahead of the NBA, the NBL has just announced the "Next Stars" program, creating roster spots for players who want to develop in Australia starting next season. ESPN has reported it will come with a salary of 100,000 Australian dollars, or about $78,000 in U.S currency.

The NBA already has created an "in between" for the G League and NBA rosters with two-way contracts, in which players earn the equivalent of $75,000 when in the G League and then earn an NBA minimum salary when with the parent club. A plan to create another version of this could be launched for 18-year-olds that would make it more financially attractive for them to stay in the U.S. and get more NBA-level coaching and training as they prepare to eventually be formally drafted into the league.

All of these options and many more are on the table for the NBA now. These changes would require amendments to the collective bargaining agreement with players, and the current one isn't up until 2024. But Silver and Roberts are trying to work together on this so that amendments can be made in the short term and are trying to use the unrest in college basketball to find a way to make changes that can hopefully help the entire youth basketball environment.

"We realize that the whole issue of the one-and-done is that we don't operate in isolation, and where we choose to set with our players' association, the minimum age has a direct impact on college basketball as well," Silver said. "We're not by any means rushing through this. I think this is a case where, actually, outside of the cycle of collective bargaining, we can spend more time on it with the players' association, talking to the individual players, talking to the executive board and really trying to understand the pros and cons of potentially moving the age limit."

Joescoundrel
03-12-2018, 10:24 AM
How Australian basketball is targeting one-and-dones

2 Mar, 2018

Jonathan Givony
ESPN

The college basketball world is still reeling from the FBI's investigation into the allegedly corrupt business practices of coaches, agents and financial advisers. With many more names to be revealed, possibly more arrests to be made and more programs likely to incur significant NCAA penalties, quite a bit of uncertainty looms regarding the status of dozens -- maybe even hundreds -- of athletes enrolled in college or about to enroll this summer.

And the Australian National Basketball League is looking to capitalize. The NBL has already proved to be a soft landing spot for one U.S. high schooler facing NCAA eligibility concerns in Terrance Ferguson, the No. 11 high school recruit in ESPN's 2016 Top 100. Ferguson elected not to enroll as a freshman at Arizona, instead signing with the Adelaide 36ers. He ended up being drafted in the first round by the Oklahoma City Thunder at No. 21 a year later, despite an up-and-down season abroad.

After benefiting from the exposure of helping Ferguson reach the NBA, the NBL has formalized a rule that should make it much easier for future prospects in his mold to forgo college and develop in Australia instead. As part of its new "Next Stars" program, the NBL will be adding an extra roster spot next season intended strictly for draft-eligible players such as Ferguson, the league told ESPN. Sources told ESPN those players will be paid 100,000 Australian dollars gross guaranteed (approximately $78,000 U.S.), funded directly by the league.

"Unlike other countries where players and agents deal with clubs, the NBL will directly contract the players," NBL owner and executive chairman Larry Kestelman said in a release provided exclusively to ESPN. "We will make sure the players get the development they need as part of the program with our clubs, giving them the best chance of success.

"The NBL provides strong visibility back to the U.S. Our league is closest to the NBA in terms of style of play and game day presentation. We will work to build a program to provide the right access to NBA teams and scouts alike."

Players must be NBA draft eligible to qualify for the roster spot, and they will be evaluated, contacted and contracted directly by the NBL, not its individual teams. The mechanism in which they will get to specific clubs is yet to be decided.

"The NBL is considered one of the best leagues in the world and this initiative will give these up and coming stars an opportunity to create a name for themselves on the way to being drafted into the NBA," NBL CEO Jeremy Loeliger told ESPN. "As Terrance Ferguson demonstrated, there are a number of players who for whatever reason won't be part of the U.S. college system but have NBA aspirations and are good enough to be drafted. This will give them the chance to develop in a world class league in the NBL and push their claims for the NBA."

Currently, the NBL restricts its teams from having more than three foreign players on a roster at any time, which had made it difficult for coaches to justify using one of those spots on an unproven and inexperienced teenager such as Ferguson. While the coaching staff at Adelaide did an admirable job of incorporating Ferguson into its roster and ended up finishing the regular season in first place, the young wing proved to be too raw and physically immature at times. He averaged just 15 minutes per game and posted modest numbers of 4.6 points and 1.2 rebounds per game. Examples like these have made other NBL teams (as well as clubs in Europe) somewhat hesitant to invest significant resources in attempting to lure similar prospects, as it could hamper them from winning games and potentially result in coaches being fired for poor results.

With a fourth import spot now in place, intended to be used strictly for NBA draft-eligible prospects, there is little to no risk for teams. Depending on the deadline date to sign players (yet to be decided), they could potentially pursue older players such as USC sophomore De'Anthony Melton or Auburn freshman Austin Wiley, both of whom have been suspended from all competition by their respective schools in the wake of their involvement in the FBI investigation. This is especially relevant since any player who enrolled in college is ineligible to compete in the NBA G League during the calendar year without being ruled permanently ineligible by the NCAA.

While looking to recruit elite high schoolers in the summer may be a possibility, it wouldn't be surprising to see NBL teams in Australia and New Zealand also consider saving their roster spot for players like Melton, Wiley or Mitchell Robinson (who withdrew from Western Kentucky after just a few weeks) and adding them to their roster during the season. Not only will they be able to pick up a talented player, they could also put themselves in place to earn a significant financial windfall.

NBA rules currently allow franchises to pay up to $700,000 in buyout money to international teams. Should the NBL be able to convince a high-level NBA draft prospect to join one of its team on a multiyear contract, it could be richly rewarded with a buyout the following summer, which would then be split between the club and the league itself .

Kestelman told ESPN that a major priority for the NBL will be stressing development off the court as well as on it, to produce "complete basketball players, and better adjusted young men. We want to get them outside of the glitz and glamor, and make this a mentoring school for basketball and professionalism."

As more American star players' names trickle out as the FBI's investigation progresses -- something that could continue for years once potential trials start -- it will be fascinating to see how this new NBL option is evaluated by players caught up in the investigation, as well as others who would simply prefer to explore alternatives to playing college basketball. The NCAA's leadership and model has seemingly never been less popular than it is at the moment, with LeBron James being the latest to criticize the system. It was only a matter of time until challengers tried to take a bite out of its billion-dollar apple.

The NBL is betting that its increasingly respected status as an international league and the high quality of life found in Australia and New Zealand will combine to make for an attractive option for draft-eligible Americans. Prospects will be able to get paid to practice and play, and the league has a unique schedule that ends in February (with playoffs going into March).

One potential hurdle is the amount of money being considered as compensation, though the 100,000 AUD number may still be tweaked. Will it be enough to entice players to travel halfway around the world rather than sign in the G League, which pays salaries that range from $19,500 to $26,000?

There may be scenarios in which sneaker companies (like Under Armour, which played a significant role in sending Ferguson to Australia and Emmanuel Mudiay to China) could be willing to supplement this number.

While NCAA rules still prevent players from cashing in on their likenesses and signing endorsement deals, the NBL is under no such restrictions. Will the likes of Nike, Adidas and Under Armour attempt to get ahead of the competition and lock up elite-level prospects a year (or more) before they enter the NBA draft and send them to Australia? A sneaker company supplementing a playing contract with a multiyear shoe deal, like we've already seen happen with Brandon Jennings, Mudiay and Ferguson, would be a powerful incentive that would likely be very difficult to turn down.

The initiative is not only aimed at Americans. It can also be used as a tool for teams to potentially attract Australians weighing the NCAA, such as Ben Simmons, Patty Mills, Josh Green and others.

"Absolutely we would like to see Australians spend at least a season playing in their home country before moving on to the NBA," Kestelman said.

In recent years, the NBL has made more of an effort to keep top young basketball players in Australia, rather than see them take the familiar and well-forged path of being recruited by NCAA schools. Australian national team coach Andrej Lemanis has been outspoken about the need to keep more players home.

"There have been lots of unfortunate cases of kids going to college and having poor experiences, and that's becoming more known," Lemanis has said. "The kids who stay in the NBL tend to have good experiences and have great development. I think the NBL is becoming a pathway."

"We currently have a record number of Australians playing in the NBA right now and Australian basketball is probably more highly regarded around the world than it has ever been," Loeliger wrote in the release provided to ESPN. "We see this [as] an opportunity to further strengthen the talent pool of the NBL and enhance its standing both domestically and globally."

Joescoundrel
03-12-2018, 10:26 AM
LeBron James calls NCAA 'corrupt' in wake of scandals

28 Feb, 2018

Dave McMenamin
ESPN Staff Writer

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio -- In light of the federal investigation into college basketball recruiting, Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James called the NCAA a "corrupt" organization and said the NBA should further develop its minor league system to give young ballplayers a viable alternative.

"I don't know if there's any fixing the NCAA. I don't think there is," James said Tuesday. "It's what's been going on for many, many, many, many years. I don't know how you can fix it. I don't see how you can fix it."

James skipped college to enter the NBA right out of high school in 2003, but he had major Division I schools lining up for his services before he made that decision.

Kentucky head coach John Calipari says college players should be able to make money off their likeness and signature: "It's not ours, it's theirs."

Stan Van Gundy didn't mince words about the NCAA in wake of the FBI's investigation into college basketball, calling it "one of the worst organizations" in sports.

LeBron James says he's flattered by three billboards in Ohio that are asking him to join the 76ers when he becomes a free agent.

"I can't even talk about that, man," James said. "Me and my mom was poor, I'll tell you that, and they expected me to step foot on a college campus and not to go to the NBA? We weren't going to be poor for long, I'll tell you that. That's a fact."

James questioned the compensation that some student-athletes receive -- a free education -- when the institutions they enroll in benefit the most from their athletic performance, not their academic one.

"Obviously, I've never been a part of it, so I don't know all the ins and outs about it," James said. "I do know what five-star athletes bring to a campus, both in basketball and football. I know how much these college coaches get paid. I know how much these colleges are gaining off these kids. ... I've always heard the narrative that they get a free education, but you guys are not bringing me on campus to get an education, you guys are bringing me on it to help you get to a Final Four or to a national championship, so it's just a weird thing."

James' two sons, 13-year-old LeBron Jr. and 10-year-old Bryce, are highly touted youth basketball players who are on track to play in college. He said they will have to weigh their options as a family, with NCAA enrollment not a foregone conclusion by any means.

"I'm not a fan of the NCAA," James said. "I love watching March Madness. I think that's incredible. I'm not a fan of how the kids don't benefit from none of this, so it's kind of a fine line and I've got a couple boys that could be headed in that direction, so there's going to be some decisions that we as a family have to make. But I know, as the NBA, we have to figure out a way that we can shore up our farm league, and if kids feel like they don't want to be a part of that NCAA program, then we have something here for them to be able to jump back on and not have to worry about going overseas all the time, I guess.

"We have to figure that out, but kids getting paid is nothing new under the sun. You all seen 'Blue Chips'? It's a real movie, seriously. ... The NCAA is corrupt, we know that. Sorry, it's going to make headlines, but it's corrupt."

James said the NBA can step in by expanding its G League, which was founded in 2001 and now includes 26 teams -- each individually affiliated with an NBA franchise -- with an expansion to 27 planned for the 2018-19 season.

"We have to shore up our G League, continue to expand our G League," James said. "... I just looked at it like the farm league, like in baseball. Or you look at pros overseas; some of those guys get signed at 14, but they get put into this farm system where they're able to grow and be around other professionals for three or four years. Then, when they're ready, they hit the national team, or when they're ready, they become a pro. So I think us, we have to kind of really figure that out, how we can do that.

"We're worried about kids coming into the league early, but they're not ready, then out of the league because of that," James continued. "... We have to figure out if a kid feels like, at 16 or 17, he doesn't feel like the NCAA is for him, or whatever the case may be, [then] we have a system in place where we have a farm league where they can learn and be around the professionals but not actually become a professional at that point in time. Not actually play in the NBA, but learn for a few years. Learn what the NBA life is about, learn how to move and walk and talk and things of that nature. Then in two years, they're able to ... just like guys do overseas."

James cited Argentine soccer sensation Lionel Messi, who began playing professional soccer at 13 in Barcelona, as a success story that basketball in the United States can emulate.

"I think it's a cool thing how they do that over there," James said. "They have a system in place that maybe we can copycat. I don't know. We'll see."

James clapped his hands together as he lauded the G League's direction. But he also said he plans to talk to NBA commissioner Adam Silver about further plans for expansion the league can potentially make to support teenage basketball players.

"We've had so many call-ups in the last 10 years and guys have actually been max guys, champions, people who are inspiring guys because they took that route," James said. "We've also had guys that went overseas and then came back into the G League and been a part of our league. So we're doing a great job, but we want to continue to get better and better. I do like this, I've got a real good idea about this whole farm system thing, but I want to go over it with the commish and some of the people. That's a longer dialogue."

Joescoundrel
03-13-2018, 10:22 AM
Industry: $10B will be bet on March Madness, most illegally

Associated Press / 09:43 AM March 13, 2018

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — America’s gambling industry predicts $10 billion will be bet on the March Madness college basketball tournament — nearly all of it illegally or off-the-books.

That’s one of the reasons the American Gaming Association favors the full legalization and regulation of sports betting in the United States.

The U.S. Supreme Court is weeks away from ruling on New Jersey’s challenge to a law limiting legal sports betting to just four states: Delaware, Montana, Nevada and Oregon, and a ruling that legalizes sports betting nationwide could provide new revenue opportunities for cash-strapped state governments, as well as casino companies.

The group found 54 million people — or about a quarter of the U.S. adult population — participated in a sports betting pool last year, spending $18 billion on entry fees. That includes 24 million who filled out basketball brackets pools and spent $2.6 billion on entry fees.

It also conducted a survey that found that roughly two-thirds of U.S. states make it illegal to participate in sports betting pools if money is involved. Enforcing those laws, however, has not been a priority for law enforcement.

“Our current sports betting laws are so out of touch with reality that we’re turning tens of millions of Americans into criminals for the simple act of enjoying college basketball,” said Geoff Freeman, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association. “The failed federal ban on sports betting has created an illegal, unregulated sports betting market that offers zero consumer protections and generates zero revenue for state and tribal governments.”

Freeman said only 3 percent of the $10 billion the group predicts will be wagered on the games will be done through legal Nevada sports books, or about $300 million.

The group also counted 48 pieces of sports betting legislation active in 18 state legislatures across the country as lawmakers anticipate a favorable Supreme Court ruling and prepare for the advent of legal sports betting.

Freeman predicted “a flood of new products” if sports betting is legalized, including increased opportunities for bets on events within a game and not just on its final score or statistics.

“There’s a lot of money that’s going to go to innovation that’s currently sitting on the sidelines,” he said.

The Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey says “sports betting is a cause for concern.” While neutral on gambling, the group has been contacting New Jersey lawmakers to discuss needs that will arise if sports betting is legalized.

“Sports betting may have more appeal to our children, it has the potential to affect the integrity of the games, and it may put many more people at risk for problem and disordered gambling,” said Neva Pryor, the group’s executive director.

Joescoundrel
03-19-2018, 11:59 AM
Reggie Miller Sounds Off on Paying College Athletes

Plus: Why one-and-done is a "joke."

BY JACK HOLMES

MAR 15, 2018

Who Reggie Miller is to you depends, at least in part, on where in this fine country you hail from. If you're a Los Angeleno, he's the UCLA legend who finished second on the program's all-time scoring charts behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. If you're an Indianan, he's the single greatest Pacer of all time, who scored more than 25,000 points and sunk upwards of 2,500 threes—good for 2nd in NBA history—as he dragged the franchise as far into the playoffs as they've ever ventured. And if you're a New Yorker, he is simply the Knick Killer.

Nowadays, though, Miller has carved out a fine career as a broadcaster. He regularly calls NBA games on TNT, and when March Madness revs up, you can find him calling college ball for Turner Sports. The NCAA Tournament tips off Thursday, and Miller will call four games on the day, starting with Oklahoma-Rhode Island around noon. Along the way, he'll offer his particular brand of no-nonsense insight into the tactics and mental games at play in one of the greatest single-elimination tournaments in sports. Miller offered some of that to Esquire earlier this week, as he touched on who's a contender and who's a potential Cinderella, why the "one-and-done" model is "a joke," and whether college programs need to start paying their players.

The second game you’re calling is Iona vs. Duke. Are the Blue Devils the real deal this year despite that setback against North Carolina?

Obviously you know the pedigree of Coach K, where he's been at the helm now 33, 34 years at Duke and you know championships and Hall of Famers. He's coached them all. This is a different type of bunch for him, because he's been getting these blue chip players now, these one-and-dones. I think this is arguably some of his best coaching, because he’s always had the luxury of keeping guys for three or four years [before recently]. But now you get the McDonald’s All-Americans that are coming in for one year, it’s almost coaching and teaching 101, on-the-fly. He's done a great job with Bagley, and that young group mixed in with a senior champion like Grayson Allen.

What does it say that even Coach K is adopting that one-and-done model now?

Well you’ve got to roll with the punches, and roll with how the game has evolved. If you’re going to be competitive versus the likes of Kentucky, whom Coach Cal has gotten just as many as Coach K, you’ve got to be able to adapt. In any sport, there’s always evolution. Coach K understood this, just as when we think of the Duke teams, we think of that tough, grity, man-to-man, slap-the-floor defense. But what’s been their success this year? The zone. And he got that from Coach Boeheim. You’ve got to take the temperature of your team, and Coach K has. That’s why they’re one of those teams that could possibly go deep.

Who are your other contenders?

My Final Four is Duke, Villanova - in my opinion, they probably have the easiest trek, coming out of that East region. I have Virginia coming out of the South, and out of the West—this may surprise you—I have a repeat in Gonzaga getting all the way to the West final. I have Gonzaga beating Xavier and I had Gonzaga beating Michigan. That's another surprise—I have Michigan beating North Carolina.

Championship game I have the two Vs: Virginia and Villanova. And I know I’m going to be kicking myself. But for some reason finally I think Tony Bennet’s offense has crept up and they're going to meet their defense. I know what they are going to do at the defensive end. But I do think they have enough offense this time around.

Do you have Cinderellas lurking in there?

Yes. Here’s how you word this now: I wouldn't be surprised if South Dakota State beat Ohio State. I would not be surprised if Loyola Chicago beats Miami. I would not be surprised, and this is more of a dig at Charles, if Charleston beats Auburn.

How does the single-elimination format of the tournament affect your approach, and how is it different from an NBA playoff game?

You can lose home court advantage and still win the series. The cream will always rise to the top in a seven-game series in the NBA. You don't have that luxury In March Madness. You have to be—I wouldn’t say perfect for six games. To me, the key to winning in March for these college teams is being able to adapt on the fly. Over six games, your offense is not always going to be there. You’ve got to be able to change your style of play. My Final Four teams—Virginia, Villanova, Duke, Gonzaga—have all been able to change the way they play: zone, man, offense, winning on the defensive end, rebounding, low turnovers. You’re playing teams you’re not familiar with from conference play, and you don’t have a lot of time to prepare. So you’ve got to be able to adjust on the fly.

When you’re playing a best-of-seven series, you may lose Game One, but you can easily go into someone else’s building and recapture that. In March Madness, Charleston could easily beat Auburn on a neutral floor—all these games are on neutral floors. On top of all that, I’ve done games where, with lower seeds, if it’s a close game, it’s like Braveheart. The crowd chants and they all start rooting for the underdogs to beat the upper seeds. So if Charleston is in a close game, if South Dakota is in a close game with Ohio State, in that venue it becomes like a home game to them and that motivates them.

The three-pointer was introduced while you were in college.

My senior year.

And it sort of became your calling card. How has it changed the college game and the NBA game since?

I think freedom of movement has changed both leagues. But because Steph Curry has been so spectacular you know over the last several years, I think that has changed all of basketball. all these young kids, they want to be Steph Curry. As great as LeBron and James Harden are—and Harden is a three-point shooter as well—Steph Curry is making it look so easy. These kids see the highlights, and they want to shoot 30-footers now, 35-footers. They think they can. I don’t know if that's a good or bad, because I’ve seen a lot of bad threes, especially in high school and college basketball. It has also eliminated the big man. You’ve got to be able to play multiple positions, your fours and fives have to be stretch fours and fives who can knock down threes.

It goes back to our earlier thing - it’s about evolution. It used to be throw the ball down to Kareem [Abdul-Jabbar] and play inside out. That’s irrelevant now. More threes will beat more twos.

Has the game become overly reliant on the three?

Oh, absolutely. People want to see high scoring games, and they want to see freedom of movement. In the college game, I think it penalizes defense. Great defensive teams like Virginia and Villanova play very aggressive man-to-man—as Virginia calls it, that pack-line defense. At the tournament, when you don’t have ACC officials who understand what that is, you can get penalized because a lot of the officials aren’t familiar with that and they know they want freedom of movement.

Joescoundrel
03-19-2018, 12:00 PM
^ Continued ...

More than one school you’ll be calling games for, including Duke and Villanova, are caught up in the NCAA’s paid players investigation. How should it be handled when we learn a player or his family has received financial benefits before they go pro?

Number one, let’s just say this: This has been going on a long time. This didn’t just happen. I’m of the belief - I’m not so much into paying players, but I feel every player should control their own likeness. If a player wants to do a local television commercial for a car dealership and get paid for it, they should have that right. I don’t think once you sign on the dotted line, particularly at a university, you have zero rights and they get all the licensing money. Because the regular student, they have the ability to do that. Why can't a student athlete?

If you get into paying players or a stipend, it’s generally just the football and basketball players. And do you pay quarterbacks more than you pay offensive linemen, or wide receivers, or defensive ends? It’s too difficult to figure out. But every player should control their ability to market themselves and make money. That’s the American Dream.

So sort of the Olympics model.

Absolutely, they should model it on the Olympics. And to take it a step further, I really believe college basketball should model what Major League Baseball does. If you think you're big and bad enough to come out of high school, then so be it. But if you signed a letter of intent, they have you for three years. Both will win.

And let's talk about this, too, Jack. We're only talking about what? Five players, maybe ten, out of thousands. So we’ve got to be honest here. If they’re bad enough to come out of high school—a 17, 18-year-old—I mean, tennis players do it all the time, and I don’t hear the uproar about tennis players. If you’re able to turn pro at 18, and you want to take that next leap, then so be it. But if you think, “Ah, I’m on the fringe. I need work,” and you sign a letter of intent, they have to have you for two years then. One and done is a joke. They’re not going to school. It’s a joke.

What do you make of the new idea that if a player declares for the draft and they don’t get drafted, they should be able to go back to the school they were at?

Agreed. Test the waters. Why not? It baffles my mind, like what did they get by declaring for the draft and not getting drafted? How are they any better in that three to four month process than they were? So why would they be able to go back? Absolutely they should be able to go back.

What are the games to watch over the next couple of weeks?

That Virginia-Arizona game - let me backtrack. Arizona-Kentucky, first of all, is going to be fantastic in the south. The winner of that is going to be great, whether that's Virginia-Kentucky, Virginia-Arizona. To me, Virginia has a very difficult path to get to the Final Four. And personally, just because I'm an adopted Hoosier, I would love to see Butler and Purdue in that second round. That would be fun.

Sam Miguel
08-09-2018, 09:59 AM
NCAA adopts college basketball reforms for agents, NBA draft

Associated Press / 08:25 AM August 09, 2018

RALEIGH, N.C. — The NCAA is taking steps to try to clean up college basketball, carving out a limited role for agents to work with players and changing pivotal parts of its rules-enforcement system as part of numerous reforms in the wake of a corruption scandal.

The Indianapolis-based governing body for college sports announced Wednesday that its Board of Governors and Division I Board of Directors had adopted a “series of significant policy and legislative changes” as part of an effort to “fundamentally” change the NCAA’s structure. Some are immediate, while others first require action from other agencies — such as the NBA changing the age limit for draft-eligible players that has fueled the wave of “one and done” at the college level.

That follows late-April recommendations from the commission headed by former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice following a federal investigation into alleged bribes and kickbacks designed to influence recruits on choosing a school, agent or apparel company. Georgia Tech president and Board of Directors chairman Bud Peterson said the NCAA had pushed through changes in about 3 1/2 months that would “normally take us about two years through the governance process.”

“Today was obviously a very important day for the NCAA and especially for men’s basketball, and … Division I,” NCAA President Mark Emmert said in a teleconference with reporters Wednesday afternoon.

While many agree the reforms are a step in the right direction, it is unclear how effective they will be.

“It’s important to be mindful that we won’t reach perfection; however, we can’t let that stand in the way of significant progress,” Atlantic Coast Conference John Swofford said in a statement.

In terms of agents, the changes are as much about transparency and offering a legitimate avenue for communication or advice that previously could’ve taken place in the shadows — and raised the likelihood of attracting unscrupulous characters.

Now college basketball players can work with an NCAA-certified agent while testing the waters of declaring for the NBA draft. College players first would have to request an evaluation from the NBA Undergraduate Advisory Committee about their draft prospects after the season, and that would clear the way to enter into a written agreement — disclosed to the NCAA or school — with the agent.

That agreement must end if the player returns to school.

Agents would be allowed to cover minimal expenses such as meals and transportation associated with meetings or workouts with pro teams, but that could be complicated. The NCAA noted that might first require revisions to the Uniform Athlete Agent Act — a version of which is in place in more than 40 states to regulate unethical agent conduct. And because pro teams previously could cover some of those expenses, the monetary benefit could be minimal.

The agents would have to be certified by the NCAA by no later than August 2020, agents certified by the NBA players’ union would qualify until a formal deadline is set.

The NCAA included a provision allowing agent relationships for high school players identified as an elite prospect by USA Basketball beginning July 1 before their senior year, though only if the NBA changes its age-limit restrictions. If the NBA and its players’ union decide to lower the age limit of draft-eligible players to 18, it would clear the way for elite players to go from preps to pros.

It’s unclear when — and if that would happen — or what impact that would have on colleges recruiting NBA-ready prospects.

The changes also include allowing a player to return to school if undrafted, but only if he sought the NBA advisory evaluation and participated in the scouting combine — a number that NCAA senior vice president of men’s basketball Dan Gavitt said would be “very limited in scope.” That, too, would first require tweaks to NBA and players’ union rules.

At least one prominent coach, Kentucky’s John Calipari, wondered aloud as to how that will work.

“My question is, what if there are no scholarships at that school because they gave the scholarships away because they thought he was leaving?” Calipari said in an interview on ESPN. “What does that kid do now? Does he go to another school?”

There were also significant changes to the enforcement process to handle cases of rules violations. That included the appointment of Rice-recommended independent groups to handle and resolve complex cases, with Emmert estimating it would apply to maybe five cases annually.

The changes also allow the NCAA to accept outside information that has been “established by another administrative body or a commission authorized by a school.” The NCAA says that will save time since investigators would no longer have to independently confirm those details, which could apply to the current corruption case with federal investigators having access to information through subpoenas and wiretaps — tools the NCAA doesn’t possess.

The changes also include requiring school presidents and athletics staff to commit “contractually” to cooperate fully with investigations, stiffer penalties for violations and regulation of the summer recruiting circuit.

Federal prosecutors announced last fall they had charged 10 men — including assistant coaches at Arizona, Auburn, USC and Oklahoma State along with a top Adidas executive — in a fraud and bribery scandal. The case has entangled schools such as Kansas, North Carolina State, Maryland and Louisville, among others, though prosecutors withdrew a criminal complaint in February against one of the defendants.

Sam Miguel
10-30-2018, 04:03 PM
From the New York Times online - - -

Brian Bowen II and the Real Victims of N.C.A.A. Scandals

By Marc Tracy

Oct. 11, 2018

The lead prosecutor’s opening questions for Brian Bowen Sr. were basic, establishing how he figured into a case that has once again exposed the seedy underbelly of college sports.

Bowen wore a blue suit and a blue tie.

“What is his name?” Edward B. Diskant, an assistant United States attorney, asked Bowen about his son last Thursday.

“Brian Bowen II.”

“Does he go by any nicknames?”

“Tugs.”

As a baby, Bowen Sr. explained later, Tugs Bowen had a habit of tugging on his mother’s hair. This was long before he became the seemingly most undeserving victim in the latest college basketball scandal.

“Is Tugs presently in college?” Diskant asked.

“No.”

“Why not?”

Bowen Sr., 50, never answered that question directly. His voice caught. His eyes filled with tears. Then he began to sob. He did not stop for some time. After 10 or 15 seconds, Diskant asked the judge if this might be a good time for a break, and the judge, Lewis A. Kaplan, eagerly agreed. As the jury filed out in front of Bowen Sr., he half-turned away from them and the rest of the room, and continued to sob.

Tugs Bowen, 20, was not there, on the top floor of Manhattan’s federal courthouse, to see his father break down during this trial. He was 10,000 miles away, in Australia, where his professional basketball team, the Sydney Kings, was preparing for its season.

Tugs Bowen is not in college because prosecutors said his father agreed to accept $100,000 from Adidas if his son agreed to play for the University of Louisville, one of the most prominent teams Adidas sponsors. In testimony, which began Thursday and concluded Tuesday, Bowen Sr. confirmed his role in the alleged scheme.

And yet, according to prosecutors, Tugs Bowen is not the formal victim in the case.

And that is why Tugs Bowen is in Australia, instead of embarking on a traditional basketball career path in college, bearing the brunt of the punishment for adults behaving badly.

Here are the charges in the case that turned college basketball on its head, prompting fears that the ordinary way of doing business — quietly compensating top players in violation of N.C.A.A. amateurism rules — could lead not only to college discipline but to criminal penalties:

The United States attorney for the Southern District of New York accused Adidas’s former head of global basketball marketing, Jim Gatto; another former Adidas employee, Merl Code Jr.; and an aspiring agent, Christian Dawkins, of committing fraud by scheming to funnel money from Adidas to the families of basketball recruits. In exchange, those recruits would commit to college teams the sneaker company sponsored. The three men have all pleaded not guilty.

The charges, first filed in September 2017, prompted the formation of a blue-ribbon N.C.A.A. panel and reforms, though those reforms are unlikely to change college sports significantly. They felled the career of a Hall of Fame coach who is a millionaire many times over.

They also terminated the college career of Tugs Bowen, a highly rated player, before it ever got started. Tugs Bowen will never play a minute of college basketball. A career in the N.B.A. now seems like a murky proposition.

Brian Bowen Sr. arriving at federal court in New York. He has testified that he accepted money in exchange for committing his son to basketball teams.CreditMark Lennihan/Associated Press

When the allegations were publicized, on the eve of last college basketball season, Louisville removed Bowen, a freshman, from practices. He later transferred to South Carolina, though he was not permitted to play. Then he elected to turn pro, with the N.C.A.A. indicating he would need to sit at least another season because of the allegations. Then he withdrew from the N.B.A. draft a few weeks before it happened. Later, he landed in Australia.

The average man on the street would probably identify Tugs Bowen as the apparent innocent harmed by the defendants’ alleged misdeeds. But according to the prosecution’s legal theory, the four universities — Louisville, Kansas, Miami and North Carolina State, all Adidas-backed — are the victims. The actions of shoe company executives and members of these college’s basketball staffs defrauded them because their actions exposed the universities to the economic harm that could result from N.C.A.A. penalties, prosecutors said.

“These defendants caused universities to give scholarships based on fraudulent information, and that fraud occurred because of the defendants’ lies and deceit and greed,” Eli J. Mark said in the prosecution’s opening statement.

The four universities have generally pledged their cooperation with the prosecution (and a likely N.C.A.A. investigation in the future) while refraining from extensive comment.

A Louisville spokesman said the university was “monitoring the proceedings” and in contact with the N.C.A.A. On Tuesday, Bowen Sr. testified that the former associate head coach for Louisville gave him $1,300 last summer.

“The prosecution has not suggested any wrongdoing by the university or its coaches,” a Kansas spokesman said.

“We have no tolerance for those who would choose to damage the reputation of this great university,” North Carolina State’s athletic director, Debbie Yow, said in a statement.

Miami declined to comment.

The government has attempted to piece together the scheme in which the defendants sought to give Bowen Sr. four $25,000 installments over a year and cover their tracks via phony purchase orders and his fake designation as a “consultant.”

Bowen Sr. had accepted cash in exchange for his son’s basketball play for years, he said: for playing for an A.A.U. team sponsored by Adidas, for playing for a different A.A.U. team sponsored by Nike, for playing for an Indiana prep school and for playing for Louisville.

Assistant coaches from other teams, all sponsored by Nike — Texas, Arizona, Creighton, Oklahoma State — had offered Bowen Sr. substantial sums for Tugs Bowen’s commitment through Dawkins, a family friend, Bowen Sr. said.

The athletic directors at Texas and Creighton said in statements that internal reviews had found no evidence to back up Bowen Sr.’s testimony. An Oklahoma State spokesman declined to comment. Arizona did not respond to a request for comment.

The former sports agent Christian Dawkins has pleaded not guilty to charges he plotted to pay Brian Bowen Sr. $100,000 in exchange for his son’s commitment to play basketball for Louisville.CreditMark Lennihan/Associated Press

Tugs Bowen had no idea about any of this, Bowen Sr. insisted repeatedly.

For instance, Bowen Sr. detailed a 2015 meeting in his family’s hometown, Saginaw, Mich., in which a coach on Adidas’s A.A.U. circuit, T.J. Gassnola, offered him $25,000 if his son played for an Adidas-backed team. (Gassnola, who has pleaded guilty to a fraud charge, began his testimony Wednesday afternoon.)

When Diskant asked whether Bowen Sr. had invited his son to the meeting, he replied: “Of course not, no.”

“Why not?”

“I mean, I don’t want him to be involved in something that’s wrong or something like that,” Bowen Sr. said.

The defendants’ strategy has been to acknowledge that they broke N.C.A.A. rules but that it is not criminal behavior. And, they add, the colleges cannot be victims because the defendants saw themselves as benefiting the colleges by helping them obtain top players.

“This isn’t going to be a ‘who did it’ kind of case or even so much of a ‘what did he do’ kind of case,” Mark C. Moore, one of Code’s lawyers, said in his opening argument. “This case is all about the why.”

It is also not a case likely to be decided on the relative likability of Brian Bowen Sr.

He admitted on Tuesday to lying to the F.B.I. more than once and to disposing of a second phone that he had used to make illicit recruiting-related communications after it was subpoenaed. (He had referred to the second phone as his “Batphone.”) He agreed that he had illegally sold food stamp cards, though he said he had been trying to help people. He signed a nonprosecution agreement in exchange for his testimony.

But he also insisted that throughout his son’s basketball career, his first priority had been placing his son in the ideal on-court situation, not cashing in on his son’s talents.

He had wanted Tugs Bowen to play at Arizona, he said, and though Dawkins had told Bowen Sr. there was money on the table for that, Bowen Sr.’s main reasoning was that Arizona excelled at developing tall shooting guards like his 6-foot-7 son. When two players similar in style to his son elected to return to Arizona after testing N.B.A. waters, he said, the Bowen family turned its attention to Louisville, whose shooting guard, Donovan Mitchell, had chosen to enter the N.B.A. draft.

Throughout his testimony, Bowen Sr. usually stuck to a few words per answer: “Yes.” “That would be fair.” “I don’t recall that.”

But at one point on Tuesday, he issued a rare editorial comment when, during the direct examination, the discussion of Tugs Bowen’s tattered college eligibility arose.

“I still think my son is a victim,” he said, “and I always will.”

Sam Miguel
10-30-2018, 04:04 PM
From the New York Times online - - -

N.B.A. G League to Offer Prospects $125,000 as Alternative to ‘One and Done’

By Victor Mather and Kevin Draper

Oct. 18, 2018

Elite 18-year-old basketball players will soon have another alternative to playing a “one and done” year at college. The N.B.A. announced Thursday that, beginning next year, select players would be able to earn $125,000 to play in its development league, the G League, for a year before entering the N.B.A. draft.

In 2005, after several years of players going straight from high school to the N.B.A., including Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, the league began mandating a minimum age of 19.

After the rule was put in place, the vast majority of talented high school players chose to enter the N.C.A.A. ranks and then usually declared for the N.B.A. draft after only a year.

Eight of the top nine picks in this summer’s draft spent only one year in college. Many of those players, like Marvin Bagley III of Duke and Trae Young of Oklahoma, might well have chosen the G League as an alternative.

The N.B.A.’s new program was first reported by ESPN.

The N.B.A. promised that players would receive training in basketball as well as in “life skills” as part of the program. It did not disclose how many players would be invited into the program, but the G League said it would be “a very specific group of elite players.”

As professionals, those players would also be able to accept endorsement money, something they could not do as amateurs in college.

It was not yet known how the players would be assigned to G League teams, but regardless of which team they were on, they would be eligible for the next year’s draft and could wind up with any N.B.A. team.

The unexpected result of the minimum age has been the prevalence of the one-and-done player. While some college basketball fans and coaches appreciated the chance to see top stars at least for a year, others rued the transitory nature of the players’ stays on campus.

The N.B.A. justified the age limit by saying it was concerned that recent high school graduates were not ready for the rigors of the N.B.A. and life as adults. They also wanted to get agents and league personnel out of high school and A.A.U. gymnasiums and the seedy world of sneaker companies and recruiting. David Stern, the commissioner until 2014, wanted an age limit of 20 but compromised with the players’ union to make it 19.

“We appreciate the N.B.A.’s decision to provide additional opportunities for those who would like to pursue their dream of playing professionally,” Mark Emmert, the president of the N.C.A.A., said in a statement on Thursday. “Obtaining a college education continues to provide unmatched preparation for success in life for the majority of student-athletes and remains an excellent path to professional sports for many. However, this change provides another option for those who would prefer not to attend college but want to directly pursue professional basketball.”

This could be something of a stopgap measure for the development league. In a few years, 18-year-olds may be able to enter the N.B.A. directly again. Adam Silver, the commissioner, has said the N.B.A. was ready to get rid of “one and done.”

The G League has 27 teams in mostly smaller cities, affiliated with N.B.A. teams. They play in front of mostly small crowds with players who for the most part will only be N.B.A. journeymen at best. Every once in a while, a player will have a star turn in the big league, like Andre Ingram, the 32-year-old G League veteran who was called up for a game by the Los Angeles Lakers and scored 19 points in an exhilarating performance.

The 18-year-olds in the new program would not be eligible to be called up to the N.B.A. during their year in the G League.

G League players tend to be in their mid-20s. They make significantly less than the $125,000 a year that will be offered to the elite 18-year-olds, often as little as $35,000, although players who are called up to the N.B.A. can earn more.

While 18-year-olds can play in the G League now, few have taken that route given the low pay on offer. The $125,000 salary should prove more attractive.

Players in the N.B.A., of course, can earn millions of dollars. Deandre Ayton, who spent one year at Arizona before being drafted No. 1 over all, will earn more than $8 million this season.

The change is part of the continued evolution of the N.B.A.’s development league into one that can compete seriously with top European leagues for talent. The development league has long offered the best shot at getting onto an N.B.A. roster — when an N.B.A. player is injured, it is much easier for an N.B.A. team to sign a player already in the United States — but the pay has been minuscule.

N.B.A. players have been critical of the one-and-done rule, saying it unfairly prevents players with the ability to play in the N.B.A. from earning income.

Condoleezza Rice, chairwoman of the Commission on College Basketball, said this spring that the one-and-done rule should go.

A few players, including Brandon Jennings and Emmanuel Mudiay, have chosen to play overseas rather than spend a year in college. LaVar Ball, the father of the Lakers player Lonzo Ball, started the Junior Basketball Association to provide another option for such players.

The first class eligible for the program includes current high school stars like Anthony Edwards of Atlanta and Jaden McDaniels of Washington State. A few of them have selected a college, but many are still uncommitted.

Players like that may soon be canceling their visits to Duke and Kentucky and instead be plying their trade for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants or the Capital City Go-Go.

Sam Miguel
10-30-2018, 04:06 PM
From the New York Times online - - -

Three Found Guilty in N.C.A.A. Basketball Recruiting Scheme

By Marc Tracy

Oct. 24, 2018

A jury returned unanimous guilty verdicts against two former Adidas employees and an aspiring sports agent in Manhattan federal court Wednesday after more than two days’ deliberation, concluding that it constituted fraud for the defendants to funnel money to the families of college basketball recruits in exchange for the prospects’ commitment to teams sponsored by Adidas.

James Gatto, Adidas’s former head of global basketball marketing; Merl Code Jr., another former Adidas employee; and an aspiring agent named Christian Dawkins were found guilty of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud, after a three-week trial.

The three men could face several years in prison. Judge Lewis A. Kaplan set sentencing for March 5, just before the start of N.C.A.A. basketball’s postseason. But the larger question is whether the verdicts will have any effect on what is still widely considered business as usual in college basketball.

Current and former college sports officials say basketball operators likely are still connecting families of valuable prospects with money in violation of N.C.A.A. amateurism rules. However, some operators may be chilled by the fact that, as of Wednesday, three people involved in such a scheme have been convicted of federal crimes.

Gatto’s attorney indicated afterward that his client would appeal.

The allegations, first revealed in September 2017, laid bare what many had long assumed or known about college basketball at its highest levels: that its top players — who for a decade have been required to wait at least a year after high school before entering the N.B.A., and who are prohibited by N.C.A.A. rules from accepting payment beyond scholarships and related costs — were getting money under the table via a murky underworld of agents, “runners” and other interested parties.

The charges in this case also further exposed the outsize influence of the major basketball apparel companies — Nike, Adidas and Under Armour — on college sports. They invest millions of dollars establishing a pipeline of loyalists that begins with their own pre-college “grass-roots” leagues, runs through college teams they sponsor and culminates in star players whom they sign to endorse their clothes, gear and sneakers.

In this case, federal prosecutors said that the defendants had funneled money from Adidas to prospects who wound up at three teams sponsored by the sneaker giant: Louisville, Kansas and North Carolina State.

These schools, prosecutors asserted, were victims, since they were unwittingly playing ineligible athletes, risking N.C.A.A. penalties.

“As a jury has now found,” said Robert S. Khuzami, the Deputy United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, “the defendants not only deceived universities into issuing scholarships under false pretenses, they deprived the universities of their economic rights and tarnished an ideal which makes college sports a beloved tradition by so many fans all over the world.”

In a statement, Adidas said it had “strengthened our internal processes and controls and remain committed to ethical and fair business practices.”

Though the verdicts’ larger impact on college basketball was not immediately clear, after Wednesday the following may be safely said: There is precedent that cheating N.C.A.A. bylaws can have consequences beyond collegiate infractions.

“Now you don’t just have to worry about what the N.C.A.A. does to you — you have to worry about going to jail,” said Dan Beebe, a former Big 12 commissioner who consults with conferences.

There are still two other trials stemming from the charges to come, involving four assistant coaches from different major programs who were accused of plotting to direct players to various managers, including Dawkins, in exchange for kickbacks.

The basketball establishment has already started reacting to the charges. An N.C.A.A. commission convened to reform the sport, chaired by Condoleezza Rice, the former secretary of state, had its proposals implemented a couple months ago.

At the same time, the college sports establishment has indicated no movement toward reforming the economic system that appeared to prompt the scheme: multimillion-dollar apparel sponsorships; huge financial incentives to win big; and amateurism rules that bar paying players.

The scandal eventually may lead to the end of the N.B.A.’s “one-and-done” rule, which currently bars players from entering the draft until one year after their high school class’ graduation. Last week, the N.B.A. announced a new program in its development league designed to encourage the best would-be freshmen to skip college and instead enter the G League and train for a year while receiving a $125,000 salary.

The N.C.A.A. is also expected to, at some point, investigate the schools involved for violations. Prosecutors had asked the organization to hold off on such probes as long as their own process was still playing out.

Wednesday’s news also demonstrated that universities may be considered victims of fraud in a legal sense even when their employees, such as assistant coaches, are in on the schemes. There was testimony, for instance, that suggested that an assistant coach at Louisville knew that Adidas employees had arranged for money to be sent to the father of a prospect.

“They’re defrauding their own organization, their own employer,” Beebe said, “because they sign off on compliance forms that indicate they’re going to comply.”

Kansas Coach Bill Self announced Wednesday that Silvio De Sousa would sit out an exhibition game Thursday pending an investigation, after an attorney said in his closing argument that Self had asked that an Adidas employee arrange to pay his guardian.

Rick Pitino, the Hall of Fame former Louisville coach who was fired in the wake of the charges, was also aware of the scheme involving his team, the attorney said. Neither head coach was clearly implicated in witness testimony, although text messages and phone calls suggested they were aware that Adidas associates were involved in recruiting. Pitino has denied knowledge of the plan. Self declined to comment Wednesday morning while the trial was still pending.

In a statement Wednesday afternoon, Kansas’s president and athletic director said: “Some of the information we were aware of, and some is new to us. The new information needs to be evaluated and understood. We have already been in contact with the N.C.A.A. regarding trial developments and will continue to work with N.C.A.A. staff moving forward.”

Louisville had no comment Wednesday.

In the most prominent scheme, Dawkins, Code and Gatto worked to send $100,000 in four installments to the father of Brian Bowen II after the son, a top prospect, committed to Louisville in the spring of 2017.

Munish Sood, a money manager who was initially charged before reaching an agreement with the government, testified that he was in on the plan. Bowen’s father, Brian Bowen Sr., confirmed much of the allegations in his own testimony, though he said that his son never knew about the deal, or the thousands of dollars he received from other sources related to where his son plied his ample talents.

Brian Bowen II was removed from practices at Louisville when the charges came out. He transferred to South Carolina but was not permitted to play, and then entered the N.B.A draft before withdrawing to play for a professional team in Australia.

The three men charged in the case had pleaded not guilty, and none of them took the stand. Their primary defense was that their behavior may have violated N.C.A.A. bylaws, but that it was not a federal crime.

“N.C.A.A. rules were broken,” Michael Schachter, one of Gatto’s attorneys, said in his opening argument. “Jim and Adidas helped out financially a few families whose sons are among the most talented athletes in America. That happened.”

However, he added: “The N.C.A.A.’s rules are not the laws of this country. The N.C.A.A. is not the U.S. Congress.”

fujima04
03-13-2019, 11:43 AM
Whilst not exclusive to Basketball.

Nine coaches, 33 parents among 50 charged in US$25 million college admissions scam (https://www.spin.ph/multisport/coaches-parents-charged-college-admissions-bribery-scam-a994-20190313-lfrm?ref=home_featured_2)
by ASSOCIATED PRESS

BOSTON — Fifty people, including Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, were charged on Tuesday (Wednesday, Manila time) in a scheme in which wealthy parents allegedly bribed college coaches and other insiders to get their children into some of the nation's most selective schools.
Federal authorities called it the biggest college admissions scam ever prosecuted by the US Justice Department, with the parents accused of paying an estimated $25 million in bribes.


At least nine athletic coaches and 33 parents, many of them prominent in law, finance, fashion, the food and beverage industry and other fields, were charged. Dozens, including Huffman, the Emmy-winning star of ABC's "Desperate Housewives," were arrested by midday. "These parents are a catalog of wealth and privilege," US Attorney Andrew Lelling said in announcing the results of a fraud and conspiracy investigation code-named Operation Varsity Blues. The coaches worked at such schools as Yale, Stanford, Georgetown, Wake Forest, the University of Texas, the University of Southern California and the University of California at Los Angeles. A former Yale soccer coach pleaded guilty and helped build the case against others.

Two more of those charged — Stanford's sailing coach and the college-admissions consultant at the very center of the scheme — pleaded guilty Tuesday in Boston. Others appeared in court and were released on bail.

Huffman appeared in a Los Angeles courthouse where a magistrate judge said she could be released on a $250,000 bond.

No students were charged, with authorities saying that in many cases the teenagers were unaware of what was going on. Several of the colleges involved made no mention of taking any action against the students.

The scandal is certain to inflame longstanding complaints that children of the wealthy and well-connected have the inside track in college admissions — sometimes through big, timely donations from their parents — and that privilege begets privilege.

College consultants were not exactly shocked by the allegations.

"This story is the proof that there will always be a market for parents who have the resources and are desperate to get their kid one more success," said Mark Sklarow, CEO of the Independent Educational Consultants Association. "This was shopping for name-brand product and being willing to spend whatever it took."

The central figure in the scheme was identified as admissions consultant William "Rick" Singer, founder of the Edge College & Career Network of Newport Beach, California. He pleaded guilty, as did Stanford's John Vandemoer.

Singer's lawyer, Donald Heller, said his client intends to cooperate fully with prosecutors and is "remorseful and contrite and wants to move on with his life."

Prosecutors said that parents paid Singer big money from 2011 through last month to bribe coaches and administrators to falsely make their children look like star athletes to boost their chances of getting accepted. The consultant also hired ringers to take college entrance exams for students, and paid off insiders at testing centers to correct students' answers.

Some parents spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and some as much as $6.5 million to guarantee their children's admission, officials said.

"For every student admitted through fraud, an honest and genuinely talented student was rejected," Lelling said.

Several defendants, including Huffman, were charged with conspiracy to commit fraud, punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

Lelling said the investigation is continuing and authorities believe other parents were involved. The IRS is also investigating, since some parents allegedly disguised the bribes as charitable donations. The colleges themselves are not targets, the prosecutor said.

The investigation began when authorities received a tip about the scheme from someone they were interviewing in a separate case, Lelling said. He did not elaborate.

Authorities said coaches in such sports as soccer, sailing, tennis, water polo and volleyball took payoffs to put students on lists of recruited athletes, regardless of their ability or experience. Once they were accepted, many of these students didn't play the sports in which they supposedly excelled.

The applicants' athletic credentials were falsified with the help of staged photographs of them playing sports, or doctored photos in which their faces were pasted onto the bodies of genuine athletes, authorities said.

Prosecutors said parents were also instructed to claim their children had learning disabilities so that they could take the ACT or SAT by themselves and get extra time. That made it easier to pull off the tampering, prosecutors said.

Among the parents charged was Gordon Caplan of Greenwich, Connecticut, co-chairman of the international law firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher, based in New York. He and other parents did not immediately return telephone or email messages for comment.

Caplan was accused of paying $75,000 to get a test supervisor to correct the answers on his daughter's ACT exam after she took it. In a conversation last June with a cooperating witness, he was told his daughter needed to "be stupid" when a psychologist evaluated her for learning disabilities that would entitle her to more time to take the test, according to court papers.

The witness described the scheme as "the home run of home runs."

"And it works?" Caplan asked.

"Every time," the witness responded, prompting laughter from both.

A number of colleges moved quickly to fire or suspend the coaches and distance themselves from the scandal, portraying themselves as victims. Stanford fired the sailing coach, and USC dropped of its water polo coach and an athletic administrator. UCLA suspended its soccer coach, and Wake Forest did the same with its volleyball coach.

Loughlin, who was charged along with her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, appeared in the ABC sitcom "Full House" in the 1980s and '90s. Huffman was nominated for an Oscar for playing a transgender woman in the 2005 movie "Transamerica." She also starred in the TV show "Sports Night" and appeared in such films as "Reversal of Fortune," ''Magnolia" and "The Spanish Prisoner."

A magistrate judge in Los Angeles set a $1 million bond for Giannulli who appeared in court Tuesday afternoon. He and Huffman both were told to surrender their passports. Prosecutors in the case said they have agreed to let Loughlin travel to Vancouver for work, but her whereabouts are currently unknown.

Loughlin and her husband allegedly gave $500,000 to have their two daughters labeled as recruits to the USC crew team, even though neither participated in the sport. Their 19-year-old daughter Olivia Jade Giannulli, a social media star with a popular YouTube channel, is now at USC.

Court documents said Huffman paid $15,000 that she disguised as a charitable donation so that her daughter could take part in the entrance-exam cheating scam.

Court papers said a cooperating witness met with Huffman and her husband, actor William H. Macy, at their Los Angeles home and explained to them that he "controlled" a testing center and could have somebody secretly change her daughter's answers. The person told investigators the couple agreed to the plan.

Macy was not charged; authorities did not say why.

The couple's daughter, Sofia, is an aspiring actress who attends Los Angeles High School of the Arts.

Messages seeking comment from Huffman's representative were not immediately returned. A spokeswoman for Loughlin had no comment.

In another case, a young woman got into Yale in exchange for $1.2 million from the family, prosecutors said. A false athletic profile created for the student said she had been on China's junior national development soccer team.

Prosecutors said Yale coach Rudolph Meredith received $400,000, even though he knew the student did not play competitive soccer. He did not return messages seeking comment.

Sklarow, the independent education consultant unconnected to the case, said the scandal "certainly speaks to the fact that the admissions process is broken."

"It's so fraught with anxiety, especially at the elite schools," he said, "that I think it can't be surprising that millionaires who have probably never said no to their kids are trying to play the system in order to get their child accepted."

fujima04
04-07-2019, 01:23 PM
Duke launching probe into allegations Nike gave money to Zion Williamson's mom (https://www.spin.ph/basketball/duke-investigation-zion-williamson-nike-payment-bribe-college-recruitment-a1931-20190407?ref=home_featured_2)
by FROM THE WEB

DUKE University is launching a probe into allegations Nike paid Zion Williamson’s mother during the recruitment period.

Controversial lawyer Michael Avenatti made an allegation on social media on Friday that Williamson’s mother Shonda accepted money and Duke said it is looking into it.

Avenatti also said “Carlton DeBose, a Nike executive, has bribed over 100 high school players over the last 4 years to play college basketball at colleges affiliated with Nike as opposed to other schools. He has used bogus invoices and countless coaches to further the scheme & deliver the $...”

“About this denial by Coach K the other day relating to payments by Nike...Can you please ask Zion Williamson’s mother - Sharonda Sampson - whether she was paid by @nike for bogus ‘consulting services’ in 2016/17 as part of a Nike bribe to get Zion to go to Duke? Thx,” Avenatti tweeted to Duke Basketball.

Avenatti was charged last month with attempted extortion from Nike and is out on bail.

Duke director of athletics Kevin White said on Saturday (Sunday, Manila time) the university is making its investigaton.

“We are aware of the allegation and, as we would with any compliance matter, are looking into it," White said in a statement to media outlets in the US.

"Duke is fully committed to compliance with all NCAA rules and regulations. Every student athlete at Duke is reviewed to ensure their eligibility. With regard to men’s basketball: all recruits and their families are thoroughly vetted by Duke in collaboration with the NCAA through the Eligibility Center’s amateurism certification process.”

Williamson was named AP men’s basketball player of the year and is the projected No. 1 pick for the next NBA draft.

An injury sustained in February after his Nike shoe fell apart during a game kept Williamson sidelined for a month. He managed to lead Duke to the Elite Eight where the Blue Devils fell to Michigan State.

".@DukeMBB - About this denial by Coach K the other day relating to payments by Nike...Can you please ask Zion Williamson’s mother - Sharonda Sampson - whether she was paid by @nike for bogus “consulting services” in 2016/17 as part of a Nike bribe to get Zion to go to Duke? Thx." — Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) April 6, 2019

1/3 - Carlton DeBose, a Nike executive, has bribed over 100 high school players over the last 4 years to play college basketball at colleges affiliated with Nike as opposed to other schools. He has used bogus invoices and countless coaches to further the scheme & deliver the $... — Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) April 5, 2019

Source: www.spin.ph