Posted on: February 22, 2011 3:50 pm
Edited on: February 22, 2011 4:01 pm

NCAA nickel-and-dimed UConn

I can't make this math work, so maybe someone can help me. I'm talking about the arithmetic behind the NCAA's punishment of UConn for some fairly outrageous violations within the men's basketball program.

The math eludes me here. First you've got the NCAA deciding that the director of operations -- a de facto assistant coach under head coach Jim Calhoun -- was so scummy that he cannot work for anyone in the NCAA for two years. Then you've got a former UConn team manager, also working under Calhoun, becoming an agent and heaping illegal benefits on a recruit. Then you've got the NCAA saying that Calhoun "overlooked indications" that those violations were taking place.

I add all of that up, and I see a major penalty for UConn -- and for Jim Calhoun.

The NCAA added it up and didn't see it. Maybe because it's hard to see with your head buried in the sand. Or buried somewhere else.

Calhoun was suspended for three conference games. That's something, but not much. The team lost a scholarship or two, lost some recruiting days on the road, lost some phone calls. That's also something, but also, it's not much. Instead of giving UConn a meaningful smack across the chops -- a postseason ban of a season or two -- the NCAA threw a whole lot of small stuff at the Huskies. Maybe the NCAA was trying to fool people like you and me into thinking it was coming down hard on the Huskies.

Look at that long list of penalties! It just goes on and on!

Don't be fooled. Think of those penalties as a handful of nickels and dimes. I could throw coins at you for 30 seconds and it wouldn't add up to anything significant. That's what the NCAA did with UConn. It threw a bunch of nickels and dimes at the Huskies. Total cost? Nothing significant.

Unless my math is wrong, but I doubt it. I was always pretty damn good with numbers.

Category: NCAAB
Tags: UConn
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