Pac-12: Nevin Shapiro

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Knock, knock (Who's there?!)

Mailbag. (Mailbag who?!)

Mailbag your pooh pooh face.

(Knock-knock joke just dictated to me by my 4-year-old).

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To the notes!

Donald from Eugene, Ore., writes: First off, I agree with Andy Staples that Oregon's punishment was appropriate and what USC SHOULD have received. But I was wondering if Chip Kelly had forewarning about the "Show Cause" punishment and knew Oregon would have been forced to fire him if he had stuck around Eugene? So he didn't really escape, as some people suggest, as he wasn't going to coach The Ducks in 2013 anyway. He actually did Oregon a favor by leaving before spring practice.Also, why doesn't the NCAA mandate a standard contract clause for all head coaches making them financially liable for any violations occurring under their watch regardless if they are still at the school or not?

Ted Miller: You know in the movie, "Being John Malkovich," when everyone just starts going "Malkovich!" "Malkovich!" "Malkovich!" That's what it sometimes feels like being a college football writer with Staples around, "I agree with Andy Staples!" "I agree with Andy Staples!"

I mean, really, how hard is to be right all the time when you're bacon's biggest advocate?

I agree with Staples' idea about allowing recruits to take official visits beginning in January of their junior year of high school as a good way to reduce cheating.

And yet I don't agree that Oregon coach Chip Kelly would have been fired after the NCAA ruling, in large part because we don't know what the NCAA would have ruled if Kelly were still the Ducks coach. I do know Oregon would only have done that as an absolute last resort.

For one, Kelly and Oregon have had each other's backs in this from beginning to end, even when Kelly left for the Philadelphia Eagles. I sense zero hard feelings between school and former coach.

If the NCAA had given Kelly a "show cause" as a sitting coach, Oregon would have had the option of firing him or going back in front of the Committee on Infractions to defend Kelly and itself against additional sanctions. The NCAA can't make an institution fire its coach.

Kelly might have been suspended, or the school might have been hit with other penalties. It's difficult to say.

But I think Kelly's 18-month "show cause" was largely symbolic and was given specifically because he was no longer at Oregon. If he were still in Eugene, I don't think that he would have been given that sanction. I think the NCAA would have found an additional way to hit him and the program -- in order to support the NCAA's attempt to hold head coaches more accountable -- but I don't think, based on my reading of the ruling, the NCAA would have wanted to hit Kelly with the worst penalty he could get as a sitting coach.

As for the NCAA mandating contract standards, that won't happen because institutions don't want to surrender their authority on contracts. Further, NCAA efforts to standardize penalties also have run into resistance through the years.

(Read full post)

USC to Miami: Karma is a harsh mistress

August, 17, 2011
The word of the day is "Schadenfreude."

"Enjoyment obtained from the troubles of others," says Merriam-Webster.

That aptly describes the feelings at USC, where Trojans fans surely are grinning ear-to-ear over revelations of myriad alleged NCAA rules violations at Miami, most of which occurred under the watch of former athletic director Paul Dee.

Yes, the same Paul Dee who was the Committee on Infractions chairman in the USC case. Yes, the same Paul Dee who said, "high-profile athletes demand high-profile compliance."

Or, in the case of Miami under his watch -- 1993-2008 -- what appears to be the worst compliance IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD.

Know what Dee told the Palm Beach Post about the allegations of Miami booster Nevin Shapiro, who is presently chilling in jail for his part in a $930-million Ponzi scheme?

Dee told the Post, "We didn't have any suspicion that he was doing anything like this. He didn't do anything to cause concern."

Let that sink in for a second.

Or how about this from Dee? Here he waxed sell-righteously -- and inaccurately -- over the USC case: “This case strikes at the heart of the principles of amateurism.” ("Inaccurate" because booster pay-for-play strikes at the heart of amateurism, not agents trying to lure players AWAY from amateurism).

Or this from Dee's Infractions Committee report on USC? “The general campus environment surrounding the violations troubled the committee. At least at the time of the football violations, there was relatively little effective monitoring of, among others, football locker rooms and sidelines, and there existed a general postgame locker room environment that made compliance efforts difficult.”

You want questionable monitoring? Shapiro, whose activities were supposedly unknown to Dee, once picked a fight with Miami's ... wait for this ... director of compliance!

In the press box. During a football game.

From the Yahoo! Sports report:

Shapiro, intoxicated, said he confronted Miami’s head of compliance, David Reed. According to a witness to the event, an incensed Shapiro was stalking through the Orange Bowl press box at halftime when he spotted Reed.

In a rage, Shapiro began cursing at the compliance director, calling him a “sissy” and other derogatory names, while attempting to draw him into a fight. In Shapiro’s mind, Reed was part of the problem in a slumping Miami program, largely for what Shapiro thought was too much oversight on relationships between players and boosters. And in Shapiro’s mind, that was worth fighting picking a fistfight with the head of compliance in a crowded press box.

That. Is. Rich.

The good news, USC fans, is you are not alone in your outrage. My guess is Sports Illustrated's Stewart Mandel does a fine job summarizing your thoughts here. This image is particularly well-wrought.

Dee, Miami's AD during most of the period covering Shapiro's allegations, is retired and no longer under NCAA jurisdiction. Still, it seems only fair he should spend a day at USC's Heritage Hall wearing a sandwich board with the word "Hypocrite."

And if you need more, Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports adds his thoughts.

It's one thing to ignore Shapiro. It's an insult to our intelligence for any high-ranking Miami administrator to say they had no idea what he was all about.

"Karma," said one individual affected by that USC decision, "is a b----."

Read the entire Yahoo! Sports story here.

Schadenfreude isn't a good thing. In fact, too much of it imperils your soul. Or, to employ more moderate terms, makes you no fun to be around.

But, at least for today -- OK, for a week or so -- Dee-light in the Dee-liciousness of it.



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