Tourney, March 3,4,5

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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby Eyes of Old Main on Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:04 am

I understand the distinction the NCAA drew between something organized from the academic side versus the athletic side, but the athletic side benefited without question and the courses were not openly available to all students. Strong evidence existed that the system was set up with athletics in mind even if those that were involved were only trying to independently benefit the program. Not to be political, but this is similar to the current Russian election interference investigation where few deny involvement and many will acknowledge potential benefit, but coordination is inconclusive at this point. Did the UNC athletic administration direct the creation of the scheme, or did they just benefit is the question.

Why did UNC fight so hard and for so long? Reputation and media coverage was a big part, but they were particularly forceful in their efforts to not allow the investigation to extend back into the Dean Smith years. By all accounts Dean Smith was a fine coach and even better man, but the determination not to have his era investigated really makes it look like there might have been something there. I am not one to throw out someone's accomplishments due to one stain, but fraud of that type needs to be exposed completely all the way back to its origination. Maybe I'm reading too much into that posture, but most things happen for a reason and this is suspicious to me.

My take on Duke is different. They are following the rules even if the rule circumvent the true nature of what is supposed to be going on. Even though I suspect their "one and done" players are no more committed to spring semester courses than any other player of that type, I con't see where they are violating the rulebook as currently constituted. I can't make the same argument with regards to UNC. I don't like "one and dones" any more than you and I think that system needs to be fixed, but I can't say that "one and dones" are a bigger problem.

My point is that I believe the investigation ended the way it did for two reasons. First, because UNC fought it and threatened to continue to fight which would have been costly to the NCAA and potentially a PR nightmare for all involved, and second, because UNC is one of a few programs with enough clout to be virtually untouchable.

My belief is that UNC should have been penalized by the NCAA and also had their academic accreditation suspended (I know SACS put them on "probation", but I doubt that amounts to much). This wasn't a lone wolf violation. It was systemic, it was ongoing and it involved a number of people. As it worked out, the message her is not to obey the rules, it is that you can do what you want because of who you are and so long as you take an aggressive posture you can escape anything more than a black eye in the press.

Maybe this story garnered more headlines because it was North Carolina, but had it taken place at a school with less laundry hanging in the rafters I feel certain the penalty would have been much harsher, but now we will never know.
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby lawdog on Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:20 am

Boulder is correct. NCAA had no jurisdiction over the UNC situation for the reasons he states. The academic rating organization did take probationary action against the school on the basis of the phantom class (taken mostly by non-athletes), and some UNC academicians were separated involuntarily for the infraction. John Swofford, ACC commissioner, recently came out in favor of the NBA creating a minor league for those athletes who want to pursue professional status for pay without having to take classes; that in my view is the biggest step toward beginning to address excesses and corruption in the college game and AAU.

As Jay Bilas, an attorney, correctly pointed out, the NCAA backed off because it was crystal clear it had had no jurisdiction and it was going to lose if it went further. The NCAA has no sayso as to the quality of courses generally offered and taken. If it did, the majority of the larger schools, who can hide such courses, would be on the carpet, almost all ahead of UNC.
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby boulder3m on Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:01 am

I would like to add also that the members of the faculty knew full well that the whole AfAm program was a sham, but was so affected by the politically correct movement that no one spoke up. There are courses being taught at virtually every Power 5 conference school that are a joke. I wrote earlier that when speaking with a close friend who is a Trustee at a Power 5 school all the athletic committee needs to do is check the records of the top athletes and see what classes they are taking. If there is a pattern they should dig in and see why. It is very simple to correct if there is a problem. IMO the faculties of these schools bear lots of the responsibility. If a degree from those schools is to be kept sacred they need to step in.
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby fgs44 on Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:06 am

just a comment on the prevalent of one and does at a few of the elite programs. I grew up in Durham and outside Wilmington nc. I was a diehard Duke fan growing up--Went to Cameron from my earlier memories with my Dad--Watched Dick Groat, Art Heyman, Jeff Mullins, went to the Dixie Classic--kept my interest in Duke sports and basketball through Hal Bradley, through Vic Bubas, Bill Foster, to Coach K. Coach K and his conduct and success at Duke, and his players from Make Alarie, Jay Bilas Tommy Amaker, Johnny Dawkins, Danny Ferry, Christian Laettner, Billy King, Jeff Capel, Bobby Hurley, Grant Hill, Shane Battier, Wojo and on and on and on were for the most part good students and great basketball players and they all stayed four years. Coach K used to have a policy where he would not post their championship banners until all members of that team graduated. I thought they were a great statement for college basketball. Somewhere a few years ago that started to change at Duke. Then subtly I began to watch fewer and fewer games. This year I have only watched a couple of games. The reason is simple, I cannot identify with the players anymore. They are great players, but every year there is a new batch, and my interest in the program has declined to where it is today. My primary basketball interest is the Wofford Terriers. Coach K has decided to get the very elite guys every year, and its hard to criticize him for that, he is a great coach, and even though he is 71 years old, he is as relevant to these 18 year old basketball players as ever. I do not think any kid should be unable to pursue a professional career--However, as for me I moved on-The greatest statement in the Power Five conferences about college basketball is now coming from the University of Virginia, and if Virginia were to play Duke in the tournament, I think it is possible that I could pull for Tony Bennet and the Virginia Cavaliers over Duke Blue Devils and Coach K--
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby lawdog on Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:43 am

I hear you FGS. I too have lost a lot of my interest in Duke for that reason. Watching Coach K on the bench he appears less engaged and happy these days. I think a big reason is his one and dones. He is at heart a teacher. He has thrived on the challenge of helping his young recruits grow as players and men. In his current situation, he hardly knows his players before they leave, essentially after one semester. He does not get to teach or see them grow. He is especially attached to Grayson Allen, primarily because Grayson has stayed four years and Coach K feels invested in Grayson’s success and helping Grayson work through his issues.
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby boulder3m on Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:45 pm

FGS- You stated the problem beautifully. However, I will give K this: The kids coming out of high school these days for the most part are really coming out of AAU programs that are ALL STAR teams that play little or no defense. The coaches have to teach the freshman players to play defense for the first time in their lives. It has to be extremely frustrating to them. The foreign players who come to the US ARE learning to play defense early, and their fundamentals are much better. I don't like the foreigners dominating college teams (some in our league, Davidson, etc) but that is the way it is. Virginia is the new Duke, and they are fun to watch. UNC, if you can believe it, has no 5 star recruits on its team. That is probably why they don't have the underclassmen leaving like many others. College basketball on the Power 5 level has become something that no longer has the fun of the past. If the NBA thinks the public wants to watch The D League or the G League or anything else between college and NBA they are in for a rude awakening. I pull for Wofford because I believe we have a bunch of young men who are playing for a scholarship and because they want to play together and for our school.
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby T-Dog 4 on Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:34 pm

Harvard (whom we beat) was invited to the NIT and made a #7 seed. They lost to Marquette tonight 67-60.
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Re: Tourney, March 3,4,5

Postby woffordgrad94 on Thu Mar 15, 2018 3:42 pm

UNCG with a great effort, but loses to Gonzaga 68-64. The Spartans made a key mistake when they tried a fancy alley-oop up by two points with under a minute left instead of simply running clock and forcing the Zags to foul them. It ended up being a turnover and it was all downhill for UNCG from there. Disappointing.
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