Fiu's Daily Cavalcade of
Florida State's Vacated Wins ... March 9
Frank Costanza's Festivus Airing of the Grievances ... or the obvious attempt to keep readers coming to the site on a
regular basis during the off-season.
What's your beef? ... Fire
"Listen, everybody. Let's
see "As" across the board. I'll tell you what ... a ten percent bonus
for every grade over "B." And an A+ gets you a free trip to Hawaii...
I'll ask the politically incorrect question: why does the NCAA
get to have any say in the matter when it comes to academic cheating and
what happens on the field?
The NCAA, who took time out from its
daily treasure bath, was forced to pretend like it cared about rules and
regulations after Florida State reported a major cheating and academic
scandal that swept across several sports in 2006 and 2007. The football
program figures to be the most prominently hit with Bobby Bowden likely
to lose wins off his all-time victory total.
It's all silly.
UCLA doesn't get handed the 2006 Emerald Bowl now, and the 2007
Maryland team doesn't suddenly get credited with a winning season.
Florida State's wins with players who cheated in the classroom happened,
and they should still count on Bowden's record (while the wins over
Millington Naval Air Station, the University of Mexico, and Gordon JC
shouldn't, but that's a fight for another day). The results don't just
magically change because the NCAA says so.
Vacating wins doesn't
do anything but create a false sense of justice. By applying this
"punishment," the NCAA doesn't actually hurt the offending school, even
though it seems like it's a big deal, therefore making sure the big-name
ACC program doesn't really suffer. (Keep this concept in mind over the
next several years. After signing on for $500 million for the BCS, ESPN
might have a huge problem if the NCAA ever drops the hammer on a
superpower ... but don't hold your breath. Doesn't it seem just a tad
odd that no one appears to be doing anything wrong out there
while other controversies are getting swept under the rug?)
Florida State football team might be penalized a total of six
scholarships over the next three years ... oooooh, crippling. FSU will
be on "probation" until 2013. Well, gee, what's the point of even
keeping the program? None of these minor slaps on the wrist make the
headlines like the concept of vacating wins does.
It shouldn't be
the NCAA's business to dole out punishments for academic issues. If
Florida State wants to be seen as a credible and reputable academic
institution, then the university powers-that-be should be able to handle
a cheating issue internally. And that's exactly what happened with
several Seminoles being suspended at the end of 2007 and early in 2008.
But for the vice chair of the NCAA Committee on Infractions, Dennis
Thomas, to claim that FSU's wins with offending players should be
automatically vacated doesn't make any practical sense.
Florida State and the NCAA is threatening to take your wins, when you
did all you were supposed to do to handle the problem like a major
university, you simply tell them no and to go get you a soda.
The NCAA should be trying to deal with the steroid and human growth
hormone issue that's being shockingly ignored. The NCAA should be far
more proactive than reactive in finding and punishing infractions as
they're happening. The NCAA should do more to put restrictions on the
recruiting process (especially for basketball), do more to address the
gross inequity and hypocrisy of big-time college athletics when it comes
to the players' inability to make a buck, do more to make sure that
athletes can be student athletes (like eliminating weeknight games ...
oh yeah, the TV contracts), and do more to root out the schools that
have academic issues and aren't handling them in a proper manner.
Florida State, by the NCAA's admission, has done everything above
board and has bent over backwards to make sure this current situation is
rectified. For the NCAA to then get all heavy and push further with the
punishments will only mean that schools might think twice the next time
they want to report an infraction they feel could be handled best from
the inside. Just ask Oklahoma what good it does to report your program's
mistakes after the rigmarole it had to go through with the Rhett Bomar/J.D.
Quinn no-show job issue a few years ago. This isn't a positive since
some schools that aren't as big or as powerful as FSU or OU won't be
quite as forthcoming to potentially mess with the cash cow.
the end, the NCAA will likely pull back the vacated win concept in this
case for FSU, even if it takes a year or so, and nothing will really
come of all the kicking and screaming. Academic cheating is, of course,
something that has to be dealt with severely and harshly ... by the