NCAA Athletics

Kop's Korner: How the NCAA Could Get Its Groove Back

10/22/13 in NCAA Athletics   |   Alex_Kopilow   |   10 respect

Oct 17, 2013; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; Miami Hurricanes mascot celebrates after the game. The Miami Hurricanes defeated the North Carolina Tar Heels 27-23 at Kenan Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY SportsIt only took four years, but the NCAA finally laid out its sanctions for the University of Miami.

Of the most notable penalties, the athletic program was placed on three years probation, losing nine football scholarships  and three basketball scholarships over the next three years.

As you can see there is no bowl ban for the football team. Take in mind Miami self imposed bowl bans in 2011-12 including not participating in the 2012 ACC title game.

That certainly came into play with the final decision, but it also had a lot to do with how the NCAA botched this case. In turn, the NCAA could not unleash as much of a penalty it handed down to programs like USC, Penn State, and Ohio State.

Clearly the NCAA dropped the ball in this case, and that's not what needs our attention. Yes, the NCAA mishandled this investigation, which is infuriating, but to me the bigger offense is the lack of consistency in penalties.

Lets review (vacation of wins not included below).

USC: Banned from postseason play for two years. Docked 10 scholarships each year for three years (2011-2013). Roster limited to 75 scholarship players (10 fewer than the typical allotment) until 2014.

Penn State: Fined $60 million, and banned from postseason play from 2012 to 2015. Docked 10 scholarships each year over those four years. Five years probation (penalties have been slightly reduced). 

Ohio State: One year postseason ban. Loss of three scholarships over three years.

When compared to each other lots of questions arise. 

Did it help OSU when it "cooperated" with the NCAA as opposed to USC which did not? Why were Penn State's penalties reduced, but USC's were not? Do you have to self-impose a two-year bowl ban like Miami (Ohio state self-imposed one-year bowl ban) to not receive a postseason ban?

The Problem

- There are no set parameters, so what's the next step for the NCAA?

My Solution

- Put together a committee with the sole responsibility of creating a new NCAA rule book.

- This group has a year to complete this task.

The Goal

- Create a system that answers the question "If this, than that." This will breed consistency in punishments. 

- From there precedent can be created from cases that will be handled correctly.

- Cases in the past that were mishandled should be reviewed again (and used as precedent) to see how the NCAA would handle it in hindsight.

- Each case in the future will have certain wrinkles that will make handing out punishments an inexact science. Levels of each punishment will have to be mapped out.

The NCAA is in desperate need of credibility. This process won't fix every problem, but it would be a great step in the right direction.

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