Call ’em Out Or Call ’em Off ! The NCAA Continues To Be Just One Big Joke !
I was always under the impression that one of the primary reasons and purposes of the NCAA was to oversee collegiate athletics. And also to be of benefit to the student athletes and to safeguard their interests and to make that sports at the collegiate available to all scholastic eligible student athlete. Somehow one equation that the NCAA is now hiding behind and not making available whole to the public is that of the graduation rates of the athletes in a number of programs, the different sports and from specific educational establishments. But yet the NCAA is able to avail itself indirect public funding from the federal government as well as its exempt status courtesy of the US Congress and Senate . Unfortunately what the NCAA’s mission statement sets out and what it practices are two different things completely !
Ed (13), a senior power forward, and brother Charles (31), a sophomore small forward, comprised two-fifths of the starting lineup for the UCLA team which won the 1995 NCAA men\’s basketball tournament. Known for their trademark shaved heads and explosive style of play, the O\’Bannon brothers have been credited with returning UCLA basketball to national relevance during the mid-\’90s. photo appears courtesy of Reuters / Dick Baldwin ……………
The entity itself is conducted as a private corporate enterprise but maintains its tax exempt status as a charitable organization. At the same time many of its perverse practices denies the student athlete the chance to actually part-take of earning a living in order to cover their costs while undertaking their education. But at the same time the NCAA itself and the educational establishments themselves are allowed to make tens of millions of dollars by using the likeness of the athletes in order to benefit themselves as an organization. We’re told that this is all done to benefit the student athlete . But in reality is there any tangible evidence to show that this is the case ?
Courtesy of Associated Press & ESPN
San Francisco — Former college basketball players spanning many eras have joined a lawsuit filed by ex-UCLA star Ed O’Bannon against the NCAA for profiting from the use of their images without permission.
In an amended complaint filed in U.S. District Court on Wednesday, four players involved in the 1966 national championship game that pitted a Texas Western team with five black starters against an all-white Kentucky team joined in the suit.
Those players include Harry Flournoy, who was team captain for Texas Western, which is now UTEP, which beat the 1966 Kentucky squad in a game now seen as a driving force in the integration of college sports. The game was also documented in the 2006 movie “Glory Road.”
Texas Western teammate David Lattin and 1966 Kentucky players Thad Jaracz and Bob Tallent also joined the suit as plaintiffs.
The lawsuit states “during broadcasts of the yearly NCAA tournament, the NCAA has run commercials … featuring the Texas Western team. The NCAA also prominently features the 1966 Texas Western team … in connection with products for sale.”
NCAA spokesman Erik Christianson says the allegations are false and that the NCAA does not license student-athlete likenesses or prevent former players from attempting to do so.
“The plaintiffs’ claim that the NCAA violates antitrust laws because it somehow prevents former student-athletes from capitalizing on their collegiate images or likenesses is fiction,” Christianson said in an e-mail.
The lawsuit also alleges video game maker Electronic Arts Inc., and NCAA partner Collegiate Licensing Co. also unlawfully profited from player images without compensating the athletes.
Players from other famous games and teams who also joined the suit include Alex Gilbert, who played on the same Indiana State team as Larry Bird in the notable 1979 championship game won by Earvin “Magic” Johnson’s Michigan State squad.
Eric Riley, a member of the University of Michigan’s “Fab Five” teams in the early 1990s is also a plaintiff in the suit, as are a number of former college football players including ex-University of Nebraska and Arizona State University quarterback Samuel Keller.
Currently within the US Federal Court System there’s a lawsuit that has been filed by ex UCLA Bruins’ basketball player Ed O’Bannon . He has since been joined by a number of ex NCAA athletes that’ve jointly signed unto the suit challenging the NCAA’s use of their likeness. The premise behind the lawsuit is that the NCAA violates antitrust laws that prevents the student athlete from capitalizing on the use of their likeness. Also joint defendants in the case are Electronic Arts Inc and Collegiate Licensing Co (the licensing arm of the NCAA ). There are those who view this as a way to make the NCAA transparent as to many of its dealings pertaining to the student athletes and the monies derived from their using of their image. There’s no denying that over the years the NCAA has derived billions of dollars by the use of the student athlete’s image. And one might make the claim that the NCAA has been judicious in using revenue to the benefit of collegiate athletics. But there’s no way to truly know how much of that money is actually reinvested into college sports and how much of it actually finds its way into the pockets of the board and faculty members around collegiate academia . If as such as is the case where the monies are being used for the benefit of collegiate sports and that of the various collegiate establishments and their programs. Then let the NCAA be completely transparent by opening up its books for public scrutiny.
Instead a great deal of the time the NCAA would rather punish with impunity any athlete who violates their rules . Even if it is any many cases just a minor transgression. If an athlete should be deemed as having some financial benefit from having worked off campus and has earned a salary. They are viewed as having violated on the NCAA’s most stringent and draconian rules. But never let it be said that the NCAA can’t go out and use the likeness of athletes such as Tim Tebow, Sam Bradford , Colt McCoy , Evan Turner , John Wall , Trevon Hughes , Sherron Collins , Maya Moore or Tina Charles for their own benefit. The NCAA would have you believe that what they’re doing is completely above board. And they’d be right if it wasn’t for the fact that this borders on being tantamount to enslavement. There are those who’d say that the reciprocal benefit to the athlete is an education. But that doesn’t equate with how the NCAA conducts itself and how it enacts its bye laws. They profit financially from using a student athlete’s likeness. But if that athlete were to go into business for themselves while still in school and use their likeness as a commercial enterprise as it relates to their sport . Then they’d run afoul of NCAA rules. How asinine is that to begin with ?
Education Secretary Arne Duncan , a keen basketball fan, much like President Barack Obama , has some very interesting opinions and observations concerning the participants in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament and how they’re made eligible for competition. His views make a great deal of sense but would run counter to how the conferences set about the qualifying standards for their respective schools. Conferences tournaments through knockout competition and then an empaneled group gets together to discuss the merits of the 34 at large bids that are then offered to make up the field of sixty five, with a play in game for the final entrant’s bid. Seems equitable enough doesn’t it ? However, what Education Secretary Arne Duncan would like to see is the participants entered based on graduation rates. As to how that would fly not only with the NCAA , the schools and conferences . Well , I’ll let you be the judge of that .
Education Secretary Arne Duncan seen here addressing the convened press having just formally accepted the position as the nation\’s highest education officer. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Travis Rourke …….
Courtesy of USA Today
By Erik Brady , USA Today
Washington , D.C. — If U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan had his way, a dozen of the teams in the men’s NCAA basketball tournament would not be eligible to play in it, including top-seeded Kentucky.
Duncan proposes teams with graduation rates of less than 40% be banned from postseason play.
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“That’s a low bar,” Duncan said Tuesday. “If you can’t graduate two out of five of your student-athletes, how serious are you about the academic part of your mission?”
The schools that have men’s basketball teams with graduation rates of less than 40% are Arkansas-Pine Bluff (29%), Baylor (36%), California (20%), Clemson (37%), Georgia Tech (38%), Kentucky (31%), Louisville (38%), Maryland (8%), Missouri (36%), New Mexico State (36%), Tennessee (30%) and Washington (29%).
Those figures come from NCAA rates compiled by The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at Central Florida. They do not include transfers or players who leave early for the NBA. They do not reflect athletes who will play in the tourney, as they include the most recent four-year classes that have had six years to graduate.
Duncan will participate in a teleconference today with the study’s primary author, Richard Lapchick.
The Department of Education cannot impose a 40% solution on NCAA schools, but Duncan said he would use his office to advocate for reform.
“Why do we tolerate the bad apples … when the vast majority are doing things well?” he said. “Everybody sees it. It’s out in the open. … And somehow things don’t change.”
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Though the Department of Education doesn’t have the power to enforce a rule concerning the competition and how the NCAA accepts the entrants for the men’s and women’s tournament. The very thought that such a proposal could be elicited and gain a wide view of acceptance where a 40 % minimum graduation rate would be deemed as the entrance level for the NCCA tournament would probably send shivers up down the spines of the coaches and athletics directors up and down the country. I’d dare say that it’d force the academic advisers and compliance officers and their subordinates to actually do their jobs more judiciously , with more veracity and most certainly with a great deal more transparency than we’re led to believe that now takes place. Can you imagine what that would actually force John Calipari to do ? Better yet don’t think about it because that was the same thing that led to both Memphis and U Mass to have sanctions enforced upon them by the NCAA. But yet Calipari , himself , was untouched by the scandal , even though he was the central figure in both cases.
It certainly makes you wonder if the cat was set amongst the pigeons how many schools would actually meet the criteria if entrance to the national championship events such as collegiate football, basketball, baseball , lacrosse , track & field and even soccer were to adopt such a policy where entrance were based upon the graduation level within the athletics’ programs and that level were at a base of 40 %. Does anyone think that a number of the entrants at both the mens and womens at this year’s national championships would actually meet that criteria ? It’s bad enough that some of the entrants at this year’s men’s tournament even fail that proposed minimum level. Schools such as Louisville , Baylor , Clemson , Maryland , Tennessee and Washington would all fail to meet that minimum entrance level. It makes you wonder what the kids are learning and why it is that there’s nothing at all being done by the NCAA to actual monitor athletic program’s graduation rate levels more judiciously.
With the NCAA still without a sitting President to preside over the body , after the death of Myles Brand . It is now essentially devoid of leadership while their search committee looks for a new leader to take over as President. Though for now , James L Isch is the Interim-President . Makes one wonder who does look after the hen-house while the rooster is away ? The more one takes to viewing the NCAA seriously, is actually the more you tend to view it as a particularly corrupt but yet extremely powerful organization. It even has member of both Federal legislative houses at its beck and call to do its bidding. That’s power that is extremely corrupt , most definitely dangerous. But yet they’re entrusted to oversee collegiate athletics. There’s something drastically wrong with this picture. And not even the US Congress or Senate is prepared to do a damn thing about it. I wonder why ? Could it be that they’re far to scared to upset the ‘gravy train’ that comes their way by way of assistance, courtesy of the NCAA ? Every sporting body has its lobbyists up on K Street. But perhaps , none is as powerful as the lobbyists that are in the employ of the NCAA. Just simply look out for the supporters of the body and you can very well see the power that they derive within Washington, D.C.
Alan Parkins aka tophatal …………………..
50 cent ……… ‘I Get Money’ This may well be the ‘one song’ that completely embodies what the NCAA is actually all about ! .