Tag:Tennessee
Posted on: June 24, 2011 3:02 pm
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Oregon hires NCAA troubleshooter Glazier

Oregon has hired noted NCAA troubleshooter Mike Glazier to assist in the processing of the Will Lyles' case, CBSSports.com has learned.

Glazier was one of the pioneering members of the cottage industry that sprung up in the 1980s after a rash of wrongdoing around the country. For a fee, and it's usually significant, schools hire troubleshooters to walk them through the process of an NCAA investigation -- how to "plead", organization of facts, etc.

In essence, Glazier is a defense lawyer for those accused by the NCAA. It should be noted that Oregon is merely under investigation. It has not received its letter of inquiry or notice of allegations from the NCAA. There is plenty of concern, though, in Eugene. The release of public documents Monday makes it appear that Oregon overpaid ($25,000) for a rather shoddy "national recruiting package" from mentor/trainer Will Lyles of Houston

Glazier works for Bond, Schoeneck and King, an Overland Park, Kan.-based firm that specializes in cleaning up high-profile NCAA cases. He is listed as the founder of the firm's Collegiate Sports Practice Group. Most recently, the firm helped both Tennessee and Boise State during its infractions committee hearings earlier this month in Indianapolis.

Glazier is a former NCAA investigator (seven years) who established a small practice with Mike Slive more than 20 years ago in Chicago to assist schools with NCAA cases. The Slive/Glazier Sports Group was the first sports law practice to concentrate exclusively on representation of schools in NCAA matters. Both have done OK for themselves. Slive is now the SEC commissioner trying to keep his schools out of trouble. His old partner is there to help him if they do.
Posted on: June 7, 2011 12:09 pm
 

Hamilton resigns, Vol Nation cheers, what's next?

 Contrition is all the rage in college sports these days. Jim Tressel made it a memorable Memorial Day by resigning before one more bit of shame could be heaped upon his program while he was in charge of it. If it helps Ohio State with the NCAA, all the better.

 That's why they call them "mitigating factors", moves that soften the blow of potential major penalties. In the NCAA's eyes, flight is definitely better than fight. Officially, Tressel resigned. Unofficially, he had become too much of a burden for Ohio State to carry headed into its Aug. 12 infractions committee hearing.

 The same might be said of Mike Hamilton and his relationship with Tennessee on Tuesday. Except that the school is cutting it close if it wants to make an impression with the NCAA. Three days before Tennessee goes before the infractions committee, Hamilton resigned after eight-plus years in the position and 19 years at the university.

 He will stay on through June 30, including for Friday's infractions committee appearance in Indianapolis. That just adds to the mystery. Is it proper to assume that Hamilton was pushed out? (These "resignation" announcements are frequently semantic mating dances so the affected party can collect buyouts etc.) UT chancellor Jimmy Cheek said no, but what was he supposed to say?

 Will Hamilton's departure and appearance as a lame duck in Indy, truly make any difference to the NCAA? It certainly makes a difference to UT fans who wanted him out as the NCAA closed in and instability continued.

 "If I could end the turmoil by stepping aside," he said. "I thought that was important."

 Are they dancing in the streets of Knoxville? Maybe just a small jig. The haters got their wish.  If you get close to the Tennessee border,  you can hear an entire state shout, "What took you so long?" Those voices will tell you that Hamilton's resignation was way overdue.  

 More importantly, the school continues to prepare its case in a dangerous bundling of alleged football and basketball violations. We know for sure that Bruce Pearl lied.  Lane Kiffin bailed after a year with slightly more wins (seven) than secondary violations. Forget the violations, the ultimate sin for Kiffin was UT's love was not reciprocal.

 More significant at this point is that Kiffin failed to promote at atmosphere of compliance according to the NCAA.

 Let's not ever forget that, at the time, Hamilton's hiring of Kiffin was considered a home run. No one blinked when Daddy Monte made $1.2 million a year as defensive coordinator or that Lane made $2 million in his first head coaching job. It was the price of being a big-time SEC program. And Vols everywhere crave to be big time in the SEC.

 It didn't work out and the big time seems like a Hail Mary away. For now, Derek Dooley is more famous for the NCAA rule that bears his name than for picking up after Kiffin. Even as the problems arose, Hamilton could boast about hiring Pearl. Not now. The man who tried to renovate Tennessee athletics left a lot of blank drywall, but not for lack of trying. Pearl lied. Kiffin bailed. The man who hired them both, failed to sustain the momentum. The athletic department he leaves behind is still waiting to be picked over by the NCAA.

 "I think today," Hamilton said Tuesday, "was inevitable."

 

Category: NCAAF
Tags: NCAA, Tennessee
 
Posted on: June 7, 2011 10:05 am
Edited on: June 7, 2011 10:10 am
 

Tennessee presser; Looks like Hamilton is out

Tennessee has just announced an 11 a.m. ET press conference in the athletic department.

A Knoxville TV station is reporting that the presser will be to announce the resignation of AD Mike Hamilton. The school would not confirm that announcement. It would not be surprising for Hamilton to step down especially for Vols fans who have been wondering, "What's it going to take?"

As football and basketball spiraled out of control, Hamilton's one trump card was that he hired Bruce Pearl. Three days from now Tennessee will be in front of the NCAA infractions committee, in part, because Pearl lied about recruiting violations to the NCAA.
Category: NCAAF
Tags: Tennessee
 
Posted on: March 28, 2011 6:06 pm
 

Haden plans to attend UT infractions hearing

LOS ANGELES -- USC AD Pat Haden says he wants to attend Tennessee's June infractions hearing as an "observer."

Haden told CBSSports.com he was in the process of making a request to the NCAA.

"I hope I'm able to attend as an observer," Haden said. "I have a request [in] ... I've been told by people I should be able to."

Obviously, Haden has an interest in the hearing beyond just the experience. Tennessee basketball and football have been accused by the NCAA of a combined 12 major violations. Current USC coach and former Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin is charged by the NCAA with a "failure to promote an atmosphere of compliance" and "failure to monitor the activities regarding compliance" while in Knoxville.

Haden has been on the job eight months wants to learn more about the NCAA process, he told CBSSports.com

Tennessee's hearing is June 10-11 in Indianapolis. USC is still waiting the NCAA answer to its appeal on the June penalties for major violations. The school considers the penalties too harsh and is seeking elimination of this year's bowl ban and relief on scholarship reductions.
Category: NCAAF
Tags: NCAA, Tennessee, USC
 
Posted on: February 23, 2011 1:30 pm
Edited on: February 24, 2011 10:42 am
 

It doesn't look that bad for Tennessee

What does it take these days to get lack of institutional control?

We may be about to find out. Connecticut basketball didn't get it on Tuesday. Tennessee's basketball coach went so far off the reservation in lying to the NCAA that he needed a sherpa to get back. Tennessee's former football coach, already allegedly a serial secondary violator, got more thrown at him Wednesday when the NCAA's notice of allegations finally came out.

Bruce Pearl lied. Lane Kiffin pushed the envelope ... off the table all the way into the paper shredder. All we get is "failure to monitor" and "failure to promote an atmosphere of compliance". If Jim Calhoun didn't blink after being suspended for three games next season consider the Vols. After 22 months of an NCAA proctology exam, Wednesday read a lot like a net win for Tennessee.

Major violations? Sure. It's conceivable that Ol' Mr. Unethical Conduct himself, Pearl, could be suspended for a year. He could also still return after that year which, you have to admit, would be a plus for the Tennessee basketball program considering his winning percentage. Outlandish? About as outlandish as how Tennessee got to this place meaning anything is possible. Assistant Tony Jones did all right (5-3) in Pearl's absence.

Kiffin has taken his act to USC where the penalties could follow. So how bad can it get? If you're Tennessee, it's damn embarrassing if a) the basketball coach gets suspended and b) if he comes back. For football, figure it will be nothing more than a slap on the wrist -- some recruiting visits, maybe some scholarships. 

That's what staying away from the dreaded lack of institutional control gets you. That designation from the NCAA is about as bad as it gets in these cases and indicates "a systematic breakdown in compliance," according to an association spokesman. Having it on their record keeps coaches and administrators from getting better jobs. The last two BCS schools to get slapped with institutional control were Arizona State baseball in December and USC football in June. Both schools were given postseason bans. That seemingly isn't going to happen at Tennessee.

For what it's worth, Arizona State is first all-time with nine major penalty cases.

Kiffin is the gift that keeps on giving in Knoxville. He was on that USC staff during the years in question. (To be fair, he is not named in the infractions report.) He was the head coach for one tumultuous year with the Vols. The NCAA wouldn't drop the institutional control label until the final infractions report. But for now, overall, it looks "good" for Tennessee. The NCAA alleged "failure to promote an atmosphere of compliance ... and failure to monitor ..." in the football program. That's almost always considered a major violation. Bad. In this case, not damning.  

The "atmosphere of compliance" allegation is the same one that Rich Rodriguez and Michigan vigorously fought. It was eventually left out of the NCAA's final report in the case regarding abuse of weekly workout time limits under Rodriguez. The dropping of that charge essentially made it much easier for Rodriguez to find his next job. 

A further question is what will follow Kiffin to USC? Kelvin Sampson was found to be a serial violator at Oklahoma and Indiana. He was eventually given a five-year show-cause order, the NCAA's kiss of death when it comes to being able to find work. Rick Neuheisel was in a similar situation at Washington. After he moved from Colorado, the NCAA banned him from off-campus recruiting for a year. Could the same happen to Kiffin, and what would his new boss, Pat Haden, think about it? It would be hard to rebuild USC without being able to go out on the road for a while.

"The penalties are directed at the [originating] university," said NCAA spokesman Stacey Osburn. "However, there are things like a show-cause order that could follow a coach regardless of where they are, where it limits their athletically-related duties."


There is precious little in the allegations about the Tennessee Orange Pride scandal, at least on the record. The New York Times reported 14 months ago that the student ambassador group had been used to make improper contact with recruits. The Times report said Tennessee hostesses were traveling to South Carolina to see recruits play. Former assistant David Reaves is mentioned in a heavily-redacted section mentioning impermissible phone calls and text messages.


 The most interesting part of the allegations might be in section 9 c. The NCAA says Kiffin allowed recruiting intern Steve Rubio to make impermissible contact with the staff at Ft. Lauderdale (Fla.) St. Thomas Aquinas, Rubio's old school. The NCAA says the contact occurred after Kiffin and Rubio were both told by Tennessee's football operations guy that Rubio couldn't enter the grounds while accompanying a coach on a recruiting visit. This occurred, the NCAA said, before Rubio was certified to recruit off campus.


Rubio is now current Tennessee coach Derek Dooley's director of player personnel.


Vacating wins are at least on the table: Tennessee is being asked by the NCAA for "a list of the institution's win-loss record for the past four seasons." I'm told that's fairly boiler plate in these types of investigations. But it's also the type of language that was included at Florida State before Bobby Bowden had to give up those wins.

Is all that enough reason to be worried? After 22 months during which it was jilted by one coach and suffered the lies of another, Tennessee still has to feel "good".
Category: NCAAF
Tags: NCAA, Tennessee
 
Posted on: February 14, 2011 3:31 pm
Edited on: February 14, 2011 5:53 pm
 

Urban Meyer becoming CFB watchdog

Wow, Urban Meyer sure did pop off didn't he? 
In a widely distributed (on Twitter) radio interview , Florida's former on-again, off-again coach made some pretty damning statements. Well, damning considering they came from him. 

Meyer: “What I’ve seen the last five years is a complete turn in the integrity of the college coaching profession. It’s completely turned the other way. Maybe I wasn't exposed to it because I was in the profession. Right now, it’s not good because the risk-reward is 'Have at it, do what you’ve got to do to get the great player, go win games and at the end of the day we’ll find out what happens down the road …'"

The news here is not that Urban Meyer sees a radical change in the coaching profession. The reaction should be: duh. The "last five years"? That does coincide with the SEC's current championship run, but the coaching profession was fairly sketchy before 2006. I seem to remember Alabama being on probation a couple of times before that. 2006 was after Reggie Bush had left USC but before he would burn the program to the ground. And there were those approximately 30 players arrested at Florida while Meyer was there. 

Of course, coaches weren't directly involved with those cases. But it remains hypocritical for coaches to take credit for Johnny's 3.5 GPA then claim ignorance when the spit hits the fan. If Meyer was a part of that system, then he is turning into the Carrie Nation of college football.

And let's not forget he profited greatly -- and continues to profit -- off a system he calls corrupt. Meyer is ESPN's latest in-between-jobs coaching analyst superstar.

While he was on his stump, Meyer also seemingly took a run at Tennessee basketball coach Bruce Pearl. 

Meyer:  “You tell me how a young man who is a wide receiver (Dez Bryant of Oklahoma State) and he lied to the NCAA and they took away his eligibility and he was never allowed to play again. And then there are violations in other areas of the country and that doesn’t happen.”

Radio host: “Coach of Tennessee basketball (Bruce Pearl) did the same thing (lied to the NCAA). Sat out eight games lost a little money and he’s back coaching right now.”

Meyer:And Dez Bryant is out of the profession."

Meyer agreed with host, former coach Dan Dakich, that coaches should be fired if they are found guilty of major violations.

Meyer: "That's the only answer. There's a reason why people don't rob banks. The risk-reward is you're going to jail. Right now, if you commit -- they call them secondary violations, which is comical; they're not secondary -- if you commit a secondary violation, it's a slap on the hand." 


Meyer also said he developed "a recommendation" that he sent to "a good chunk of athletic directors and presidents and commissioners." It would have been nice to get some specifics -- you know, names of coaches, specific recommendations -- out of Meyer. For now, the news is that he said these things, not necessarily that these things are going on.

Meyer: "I've had a couple of meetings already. It's a question of how much do they want help? I think there were 28-something players suspended last year. If that's not a red flag ... We don't want this to turn into minor leagues for the NFL, or maybe we do..." 

"I'm no longer a football coach and that's had a part with why I stepped away."

Once again, it would be nice if the coach named names and provided us with the list of recommendations. We can only hope they're coming. Soon.



Category: NCAAF
Posted on: November 20, 2010 8:39 am
 

Two Cam Newton developments

Two indirect developments in the Cam Newton case:

* Bruce Pearl's suspension Friday came through new powers given to SEC commissioner Mike Slive. According to the Birmingham News, the SEC bylaws were changed in June to give the commissioner significantly more leeway in taking coaches and players off the field.

The bylaw:

"The Commissioner has the duty and power to investigate the validity of violations and impose penalties and sanctions against member institutions, their athletic staff members or student-athletes, for practices and conduct which violate the spirit, as well as the letter of NCAA and SEC rules and regulations. This shall include the ability to render prospective student-athletes or current student-athletes ineligible for competition due to their involvement in a violation of NCAA or SEC rules that occurs during the individual's recruitment. The Commissioner also has the authority to suspend institutional staff members from participation in recruiting activities or participation in practice and/or competition due to their involvement in violations of NCAA or SEC rules."

The language seems to suggest that Slive could take a player off the field if the evidence was there -- no having to wait for an NCAA case to conclude, no having to wait for the FBI.

Pearl was suspended for eight games by Slive for lying to the NCAA. Tennessee could get its penalties from that case and from the Lane Kiffin secondaries next month.

* New NCAA president Mark Emmert suggested the association isn't going to fast track the Newton case. While not speaking directly about Newton, he told the Chronicle of Higher Education:

"You’ve got to get the facts right,” Emmert said Friday. “The burden of proof is higher than what it is for somebody who’s writing in a blog ...

 “You’re dealing with young people’s careers and education. You’re dealing with institutional reputations. You’re dealing with a process that is, by its very nature, complicated. We have to get it right.”

Category: NCAAF
Tags: NCAA, Tennessee
 
Posted on: October 13, 2010 10:44 am
Edited on: October 13, 2010 10:45 am
 

National notes

It only seems like Alabama obsessed all offseason about facing six SEC opponents coming off bye weeks.

The SEC schedule wasn't finalized until late summer as the school and league tried to move opponents around to keep from the dreaded six-pack. The Tuscaloosa News had revealed that over a three-year period Alabama had faced more bye-week opponents (17) than any SEC school. The best Bama could do was move Georgia State from a Saturday to a Thursday in November, thus allowing nine days before the Nov. 26 Auburn game.

That doesn't help things now. The Tide are on the brink of falling out of national championship contention after Saturday's loss to South Carolina. Their fall from No. 1 to No. 8 in the AP poll is the second-biggest fall for an in-season No. 1 since 1996. (Nebraska fell to No. 8 that year after losing to Arizona State). While Bama can still win the SEC and compete for the national championship, the final six conference opponents are going to be well rested. At least one columnist said the schedule already has caught up to the former No. 1.

Meanwhile, Nick Saban is trying to turn that offseason obsession into an in-season footnote. After 19 consecutive victories that included a national championship, Saban said this week his team may have believed a bit too much in itself.

"It's drinking the Kool-Aid, thinking that just because they say it on ESPN, it's so. Reading the newspapers all week. Just because you beat Florida 31-6, people start talking about you being the best team in the country. We're not the best team in the country. We had the best team in the country last year, and we proved it. We proved it over 14 games.

"This team hasn't proved s---."

Rhymes with spit.

Hey, that's the best Sabanator outburst since my question led him to the famous "pimp" line in July. 
 
"Excuse my language," Saban immediately told reporters on Monday. "That's how I feel about it. I'm really upset that I used bad language."

Anything colorful from Saban is always appreciated. It beats "behind-the-scenes" mini-docs where the only thing behind-the-scenes is what you don't see. This was raw emotion, a glimpse at Saban's soul at this point in the season. The message got through. Saban won't be taking bye weeks as an excuse going forward. It's clear that playing three consecutive top-19 opponents (in the AP poll) took something out of the Tide. Now they have to play Mississippi, Tennessee, LSU, Mississippi State and Auburn coming off byes. Both teams will have a bye coming into the Nov. 6 meeting at LSU.

"Everybody out there assumes that having a bye week is an advantage," Saban said last week. "I've always answered that question by saying, 'I don't know if it's an advantage or disadvantage.'"

Maybe we're starting to find out.

 


**There is a dicey situation developing at Penn State where Joe Paterno is approaching his 400th career win.

But when?

The Nits are 3-3 after a depressing home loss to Illinois. Joe needs three more wins to become the third coach ever to win 400. There is growing doubt, though, that JoePa doesn't reach that mark this season. And what if he doesn't? What does that do to the program if Joe holds on (or is held over) for 2011?


In one sense, a 5-7 season can be written off as rebuilding year. Quarterback Rob Bolden is a true freshmen and has loads of upside. In other sense, there has to be concern. This is the first time in a long time, Penn State hasn't had at least one playmaker on either side of the ball.

The (mostly) cushy non-conference schedule has gotten Joe halfway to those six he needs, but the road ahead is littered with broken glass -- or at least formidable Big Ten opponents. Penn State still has to play the Big Ten's top three teams -- Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State. Assuming losses in those, Joe will have to win at Minnesota, at Indiana and at home against Northwestern to get to 6-6, 400 wins and a bowl game.

Is that a sendoff or a rebuilding year?



**
I'm starting to get intrigued by Oklahoma State. Coach Mike Gundy has ridden new offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen to a 5-0 start, the team's third such beginning since 2004.

The problem with OSU is that its schedule is typically backloaded with second-half meetings with Big 12 South heavies Texas and Oklahoma. In fact, Gundy has never beaten the LongSooners, or is it the SoonHorns? (Combined 0-10 against the two schools and 21-23 after Oct. 1.) Holgorsen has been the difference this year with his version of the spread option,  getting the most out of new quarterback Brandon Weeden, established tailback Kendall Hunter and breakout receiver Justin Blackmon.

The problem remains a defense which has finished above 89th nationally only once in Gundy's previous five seasons. This season's unit is marginally better in its second year under coordinator Bill Young. It is No. 88 nationally allowing more than 400 yards per game.

The difference is Holgorsen, a 39-year-old Mike Leach discipline who spent eight seasons at Texas Tech as an assistant, the final three as offensive coordinator. Holgorsen came to Okie State after a couple of seasons tutoring Case Keenum at Houston. Keenum is out with a season-ending injury but is seeking a sixth year of eligibility in 2011 during which he could become the NCAA's career passing yards leader.

Weeden, who turns 27 this week, is a former minor-league pitcher who is finding a new career playing pitch and catch out of the shotgun. Almost halfway through the season, Weeden has the fourth-most passing yards in the country leading the No. 2 scoring unit.

"[Weeden] was just a poor practice player," Gundy said. "There's a reason why we changed offenses. He can't execute [OSU's 2005-09] offense. It wasn't set up for him. ...We thought he could function at a high level, but we didn't know."

 

 

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com