Letter from Barry Markowitz to Mark Emmert
President Mark Emmert 12/24/12
PO Box 6222
Indianapolis, Indiana 46206
Aloha Honorable President Emmert,
My best to your family and staff for the holidays.
We last met on the field in 2007 pre-game of the University of Washington vs Hawaii Football Game at Aloha Stadium. My son Abe Markowitz (Punahou School, Honolulu) was recruited by UW. Abe and I met that morning with the UW staff (led by Coach Chris Tormey) at the Ihilani Hotel for a formal presentation.
Respectfully I seek your input and beg relief for a situation that eludes any element of fairness and timely resolution. Time is critical.
Due to unique specialized academic programs, my son entered USC in 2008 as a student/athlete (walk on for football and track.) My son turned down Div 1 scholarship offers from Michigan State, University of Buffalo, Portland State, Miami Ohio, etc, and financial aid opportunities to Brown University, Occidental College and others. This May, my son graduated with an undergraduate degree in Policy, Planning & Development. He has just completed his first semester at the USC Grollier Graduate School of Education.
Because of NCAA sanctions/APR/early entry waiver rules, my son a USC starter (co-starter) cannot apply for an NCAA Medical Hardship 6th year through his own university. Apparently, Abe cannot apply through USC because if my son is successful in his appeal, the Trojans would have to provide a scholarship that they may not have due to current NCAA imposed scholarship limitation sanctions. This is a definitive "Catch 22" unfair situation.
Another NCAA Div 1 member school can apply on behalf of my son for a 6th year. But is that fair to that member school to apply for a student athlete currently under scholarship at another university? How do other member schools justify the expense of recruiting my son when there is no absolute guarantee that my son is eligible for a 6th year, even though USC has kindly allowed a release to many other universities?
Our family financial resources are limited as I am permanently partially disabled. I informed my son that I would sell our home to finish his education and football eligibility at USC.
If allowed a 6th year, my son is not permitted by the NCAA to return to the 2013 USC Football Team as a walk on. Is that fair that an impeccable character NCAA role model two sport student athlete cannot return to his beloved university despite his personal and our family commitment and sacrifice?
How does my son, who requested an NFL Evaluation make an informed decision whether to stay in college or turn professional when there is no mechanism for Abe to immediately submit his request directly to the NCAA for a 6th year? Does he lose an opportunity for a professional livelihood while he awaits for another university to undertake the time and costs of submitting his Medical Hardship appeal? Does he have to go to the NFL prematurely because the options to seek a 6th year are just too unfairly elusive?
My son has honored his obligations to USC and the NCAA. I beg you for relief so that my son has an avenue to negotiate for completion of his collegiate opportunities.
I request the following, Sir:
1) Please allow my son to request a Medical Hardship 6th year directly to the NCAA, immediately. His personal letter, timeline, and medical records can be provided as soon as you allow. They are ready for submission.
2) Please allow my son, if he receives his approval for a 6th year to continue under scholarship at his current university. Punishing a walk on who earned a scholarship and achieved status as a starter cannot be what the NCAA intended when it authorized punishment to his university. I sincerely request you allow USC to reinstate one football scholarship for 2013-2014, if and only if it is used for Abraham Markowitz on approval of his 6th year of eligibility, by the NCAA.
3) Please allow Abraham Markowitz, if granted his 6th year of eligibility, to return to his former walk on status if no scholarship can be provided.
I would hope that the NCAA would concur, that these circumstances commanding my son to seek a transfer to continue his education and eligibility are not what the founding members of the NCAA intended. It is counter to every principle the NCAA seeks to uphold.
Thank you in advance for your kindness in promptly considering my requests. University registration requirements and NFL declaration deadlines require immediate action.
A righteous resolution would be for my son to remain where he is at, under scholarship, with eligibility.