Recent actions in Miami case reflect well on NCAA President

The recent “lack of institutional control” allegations by the NCAA against University of Miami have put a hot spotlight on the southern Florida program while simultaneously casting a shadow over the NCAA. The Miami situation has caused many to question the NCAA’s practices and its president, Mark Emmert.

But not our Seth Davis.

Davis said the way the NCAA handled this situation bodes well for Emmert and that the prez should keep his job despite calls for him to be ousted.

Emmert was the one who instilled the rule change making head coaches responsible for the transgressions of their assistants. Shouldn’t the same rule apply to Emmert and the NCAA?

“That argument is flawed,” Davis said on Courtside with Seth Davis. “If Mark Emmert were forced to resign in this situation, that would be like firing a chancellor or the university president because of an assistant coach’s transgressions. I’d argue actually that what happened this week reflects well on Mark Emmert’s leadership.”

Davis is speaking about how Emmert reacted once he discovered the institution’s missteps.

Emmert was in the dark for most of the investigation. But when he was finally informed of staffers ignoring the NCAA’s lawyers, believing the word of a con man and paying a lawyer to ask questions not pertaining to a case that she [Shapiro's attorney Maria Elena Perez] was working on and other unethical conduct, Emmert halted the Miami investigation. He then revealed to the public what he discovered, hired an outside lawyer to collect the details and then took action on wrongdoers.

Investigators who were initially involved with the case were fired, and so was the NCAA’s vice-president, Julie Roe Lach, who directed the investigation.

“Emmert should be allowed to stay on the job and try to find ways to fix this mess,” Davis said. “Because if he doesn’t, the bad weeks will keep coming for an organization that unfortunately is rapidly losing the public’s trust.

“He has made his share of missteps in the past, but let’s keep in mind he’s only been the NCAA president for less that three years. He didn’t create these enforcement problems; he inherited them.”

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The NCAA and Emmert say any accusations discovered via con artist Nevin Shapiro were dropped and not considered in the “lack of institutional control” allegations that were given to the university this week. Although Miami has already self-imposed sanctions, including sitting out two bowl games and a conference football championship game, the NCAA is still contemplating further penalties.

Miami president Donna Shalala said the university should not suffer anymore sanctions and the NCAA’s “lengthy and already flawed investigation has demonstrated a disappointing pattern of unprofessional and unethical behavior.”

It could take about three months for Miami to receive a sanctions hearing and then another few weeks for penalties to come down -- or the two sides could settle.

Should the NCAA president be fired? Leave us a comment below and also follow @hoopsoncbs on Twitter and watch Courtside with Seth Davis on CBS Sports Network, Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. ET. You can also follow Adena Andrews on Twitter here: @adena_andrews.

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