Well, a successful unionization drive could theoretically blow up the whole NCAA system in the worst/best case. Maybe that's what he's talking about?
Check your spam folder? Faced with the prospect of a potentially contentious Signing Day presser, Michigan tried to defuse things by inviting select media to talk to Hoke, whereupon he could issue the standard claims that he isn't allowed to provide details. One group was notably absent.
Surprise! The Daily was not invited to Hoke's pow wow with reporters.
— Zach Helfand (@zhelfand) February 3, 2014
Not a huge surprise, that. But the guy who polished up some turds to net the football program its first-ever "major" violations is cool.
Meanwhile, the content. Michigan isn't actively trying to make themselves look bad here, but it's hard to tell. Hoke issued a statement denying any influence over the university's internal investigations, echoing a statement made by Mary Sue Coleman in response to a question no one is asking.
No one wants to know that. They want to know which of the following possibilities is true.
The lack of an answer there looks horrible, because #1 is more implausible than #2. As the Daily put it in an actually-quite-good unsigned editorial, "at best, this case indicates an unbelievable lack of communication between University units." Brady Hoke knows if you miss one damned class. A months-long rape investigation is on the radar.
They are hiding behind FERPA and, worse, "university policy"* when that law is probably not applicable and they certainly could answer generic questions about when the athletic department is notified that one of their players has an issue before the OSCR. The logical conclusion is that telling the truth would make Hoke and the department look bad.
Worse. I mean, they had Gibbons at the Bust ten days before he got expelled and got caught in a stupid lie trying to make his departure look better. They already look bad. The picture here is the athletic department not taking the OSCR seriously—not taking a finding of sexual assault seriously—even after they had determined to expel him. That is the assumption the data suggests, and no one will add more.
*[I wonder how the U would react if MGoBlog "policy" was to show up at pressers with the ol' jibbles out and about, repeating the last thing anyone said at maximum volume prefaced the world "no."
NO, WHY ARE YOU NAKED
NO, WHY ARE YOU REPEATING ME AT MAXIMUM VOLUME
NO, ARE YOU HAVING A STROKE
NO, ARREST THIS MAN
Saying you have a policy not to do something does not change whether or not you should do it.]
Also in looking bad. Bill Martin says he'd never heard that Gibbons was in trouble.
“An incident of that nature never came to my attention at all,” Martin said in a phone interview with The Michigan Daily.
Martin's tendency to be a space cadet makes that barely plausible for a moment, and then I remember that I knew something sketchy had happened with Brendan Gibbons in 2009. I didn't know much more than that, but apparently that still made me better informed than the athletic director.
One thing that does not seem that mysterious. The epic delay in Gibbons's case is a question raised by many; it seems obvious to me that the combination of the stricter University standard that was in fact implemented in August 2013 and the near-simultaneous wide attention brought by the Washtenaw Watchdogs article/rant made Gibbons's case tractable despite non-participation by the victim and put it at the front of everyone's mind. There is no conspiracy here, just massive stupidity.
Actual football things. At the media pow-wow, Hoke offered up some news bits, mostly bad things about injuries:
The OL news is alarming. Magnuson is highly likely to be the opening-day starter at left tackle and did not play that spot last year. Bryant, meanwhile, has officially reached the point where it would be a shock if he was healthy enough to play consistently. He's a good example of where Michigan gets hurt by not oversigning: at a bunch of schools he would have been medicaled long ago and Michigan would have another shot at turning a recruit into a player.
Irvin. Here's Zak Irvin on The Journey:
Next up: Aaron Craft makes more pancakes!
Have-nots. New Miami (Not That Miami) head coach Chuck Martin took a virtual 200k paycut to take his new job:
Miami acquired Martin only after he agreed to forgo $650,000 at Notre Dame, a figure the Irish were willing to sweeten to coax him into staying. Martin, who received a five-year deal at Miami for $450,000 annually, said he wouldn’t have left “for just any MAC job” and was confident the infrastructure at Miami is sufficient to revitalize a program coming off a winless season.
That article has some stunning stats: in 2010 there were 37 assistants nationwide who made more than the average MAC head coach. In 2013 that number had shot up to 86. Bill Cubit got fired by WMU and ended up getting a raise to be Illinois's offensive coordinator. These days, a big time coordinator is looking at a major pay downgrade if he takes a low-level job.
Why? The Packers CEO claims that a successful unionization drive in college football would put "more pressure on the NFL to establish a developmental league." Uh… why, exactly? From the NFL's perspective the distribution of funds entering college football is irrelevant.
One very far off and potentially interesting impact it could have: if Northwestern wins and basketball does the same thing, that does create the possibility that the NCAA could affirmatively end one-and-done by collectively bargaining with their athletes.
Your shot: at least decent. Inside NU catches up with Elliot Gould, a former NLRB chairman, on Colter and company's shot at winning:
“The principle reason for that is their work — they have conditions of employment, they have compensation, they’re directed and supervised by the coaching staff — their work is not related to the educational enterprise,” he said.
Medical interns who are students have been allowed to unionize because they work very long hours outside of typical instruction. For athletes, that goes a step further, in that they are required to participate in their sports to remain on scholarship, even though those outside duties are far less educational than the duties of medical interns.
“Athletes are separate from the educational institution,” Gould said. “They’re supervised by coaches, not faculty involved in the educational enterprise.”
Gould was a Clinton appointee who would be inclined to see it in the kids' favor, sure, but he is also talking sense.
Well, a successful unionization drive could theoretically blow up the whole NCAA system in the worst/best case. Maybe that's what he's talking about?
If I was the NFL, I would not want 18-19 yr olds in the draft. They could create a d-league to establish that buffer, let kids' bodies mature and then make them available to teams.
If college athletes do successfully unionize, there could be a recruiting advantage for schools in right-to-work states. Presumably student-athletes at schools in right-to-work states (like, uh, Michigan) could not be forced to join the union as a condition of their scholarships. Schools in these states could offer recruits a choice of whether to join the union or not. This would be especially interesting in the hypothetical Brian raises, where schools collectively bargain with the union to get rid of one-and-dones.
"You want to get to the NBA as soon as possible? Commit to Michigan and don't join the union. Go to Kentucky, you're stuck there for at least two years."
(I'm not trying to get political, and not passing judgement for or against right to work laws. Merely pointing this out.)
It's an interesting take for sure.
If only it was Elliott.
Isn't the counter move to have a "School of Athletics" that includes coaches among its faculty.
So would that be "Coach Professor Hoke" or "Professor Coach Hoke"?
Try addressing Bobby Knight without that appellation and see what happens.
1. The legal opinion from Frank LoMonte quoted in the Daily is refuted by the FERPA statute itself. The exemption he cites isn't for "sexual assault", it's for "forcible sex offenses." There's no reason to believe the university reached any finding as to force; it is not implied by the university's definition of "assault', which deals only with consent or its absence.
2. It's OSCR policy not to inform any department, including the athletic department of the status or result of a proceeding until the proceeding has been completed. Gibbons's process wasn't concluded by their letter to Gibbons announcing their preliminary finding. No one "bothered" to tell the athletic department at that time because it was OSCR policy not to tell the athletic department at that time.
It's for a "crime of violence or a nonforceable sex offense."
Damn you law.cornell.edu - the bain of subjective statute interpretation.
but the savior of people who hate navigating Westlaw/Lexis
This is very true. Westlaw "gurus" at my school didn't even like the service that much.
I have a friend (and formerly serious object of a high school crush) who works at Lexis. Them's fightin' words!
is defined elsewhere in the statute as "statutory rape or incest."
Alleged perpetrator of a nonforcible sex offense means a student who is alleged to have committed acts that, if proven, would constitute statutory rape or incest. These offenses are defined in appendix A to this part.
You are correct
And I assume we're in agreement that whatever this was, it wasn't "statutory rape or incest".
the statute only permits the disclosure of "final results," which presumably wouldn't include the November 20 document that announced a finding of culpability. Not sure why Brian would expect that this November finding would be shared with the Athletic Department at the time -- it seems like bad policy for departments/professors to be notified of an ongoing OSCR inquiry into alleged student misconduct, at least until this inquiry has reached its conclusion [edit: and as you mention, it is in fact OSCR policy not to provide this notice] [edit #2 (last one I promise): I see that BiSB has also made this same point below].
Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit an institution of postsecondary education from disclosing the final results of any disciplinary proceeding conducted by such institution against a student who is an alleged perpetrator of any crime of violence (as that term is defined in section 16 of title 18), or a nonforcible sex offense, if the institution determines as a result of that disciplinary proceeding that the student committed a violation of the institution’s rules or policies with respect to such crime or offense.
Was Gibbons an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence per Sec. 16 Title 18? If so, what crime? He was never charged. Is U of M supposed to determine what crime(s) he would have been charged with had a case gone forward? Can they rely on their own determination for FERPA purposes?
Further, what does it mean to violate an institutiion's rules or policies with respect to a crime of violence? Michigan's student code does not explicitly incorporate that definition. Gibbons seems to have been found guilty of violating the school's general "sexual misconduct" rule, but that did not require a finding of a "crime of violence." Do they make a finding within the "sexual misconduct" finding, i.e., a more specific finding?
I don't post this to say that this situation does not fall into a FERPA exception but rather to say that it's a murky issue. The wording of the law should be changed if Congress wants disclosure in these circumstances.
You mention the letter to Gibbons announcing their prelim finding. How do we know that document was for Gibbons and sent to him. The daily article states it as an OSCR document but makes no mention of it being addressed to Gibbons. This is despite them being very explicit about the Dec 19th letter being addressed to Gibbons at his Florida address. Is it possible that this Nov 20th document was just an internal document addressed to a supervisor detailing their preliminary findings and that it was never meant or sent to Gibbons. Nothing in the daily articles refute this possibility. This was just an assumption people here made.
So, Glasow is penned in at Center, eh...!?
Personally, I don't think unionization will happen in the classical sense because its sustained implementation may be difficult without a centralized, long-running institution around to handle all of the day-to-day, mundane membership issues. The thing with college athletes is that your involvement becomes moot within 4-5 years of stepping onto campus, which means there is going to be leadership turnover nearly every year, unlike in a classic union where people tend to stick around. Yes, the medical school example is similar, but without knowing the details, I'm guessing that they are more a part of a bigger organization like the SEIU or CIR, a hospital-specific union with long-term employees. With athletes, unless you get the AD or some other organization that remains unchanged and connected to the athletics side of the equation, it may be difficult to keep the process going more than a class or two.
That said, I do think the PR will force the NCAA to make some tough decisions and provide some general oversight and protections for these athletes, which is probable the end goal anyway.
I'm guessing that they are more a part of a bigger organization like the SEIU or CIR, a hospital-specific union with long-term employees.
I think this would be such an awful situation. I can't imagine the SEIU would want to include college athletes out of the goodness of their heart. Unions aren't particularly different than the NCAA when you get down to the real heart of it. They have goals. To pursue those goals they need money. They'll do what they have to in order to get it. Expanding the SEIU (or whoever) umbrella would just be a means to power and revenue expansion. I don't think a non-athlete-specific union would have the interests of athletes much more in mind than the NCAA does.
I don't think there'd be leadership turnover as much as you think. The head of the MLBPA, for example, doesn't turn over quickly just because there's a lot of turnover in the ranks of baseball players. A CAPA leadership council wouldn't necessarily be comprised of college athletes. In fact it almost certainly wouldn't be.
Oh no, I agree it would be a horrible situation. My point was that the SEIU and CIR were examples of orgs that exist on college campuses that made it possible for the interns to unionize.
Maybe I'm overstating the turnover, but the issue I see is that you are basically going to have to hire "professional" leaders for an amateur organization, and that would be jarring. Plus, you really don't have a single union as much as hundreds of little unions unique to each school. It wouldn't be a non-starter, but there are going to be dramatically different issues for a Stanford, for example, compared to a Maine because the only binding attribute for all is "sport", which is a weaker binding agent than even "medicine" or "manufacturing". You'd need lots of cooperation between the schools or a centralized organization to serve as an overseer, which is, um, what the NCAA is supposed to be doing.
Yeah, I don't know anymore. I think these kids should be protected and the idea of collective bargaining works in many contexts, but going the union route feels like a bad idea brought on by limited options.
I think people are jumping to the conclusion that unionization means negotiating with the NCAA for payment for their athletic services. It doesn't change the NCAA's Title IX requirements, therefore it's hard to see a major shift from the current value of 85 football and 13 basketball scholarships they already pay. A union doesn't guarantee they'll have success getting the NCAA to budge one iota.
The big difference for players will almost assuredly be the licensing of their likenesses to outside parties. Right now the University of Michigan through the CIC will make a #16 Michigan jersey and prosecute anyone who tries to make one, and they'll act like it isn't a Denard Robinson jersey. A players union becomes an entity that license purchasers can approach to make a jersey with 16 and "Robinson" on it. They'll still have to negotiate with the CIC to make that a Michigan jersey. Likewise, EA still has to get the NCAA's signature, which can be witheld if EA is talking to the players to use their likenesses.
So what I'm saying is the players can form a union, but the NCAA is still in a strong position to get favorable terms from that union, or make like hell on them.
The other benefit of the union, and the desired reasoning given for trying to form it is having a seat at the bargaining table. Currently the group representing the athletes is... the NCAA. Not only are monetary and other things handled without the athletes present, all the other random stuff that the NCAA bans is discussed. We talk about dumb NCAA rules all the time (What do you want on your bagel, is that allowed??) the kids having the ability to discuss those rules, what matters to them, what doesn't I think would be one huge benefit of collective bargaining. If the NCAA really wants to say it's all about the kids, why do they restrict bagel toppings at training tables? And that's before discussing the issues that Kain raised regarding extra years of study (It's about the education!!) and medical benefits.
The NCAA isn't their employer, Northwestern is, if anyone. That's a significant limitation. Anything the players negotiate with NW has to be consistent with NCAA rules. They can't negotiate for a salary for each game (or bonuses for TDs or interceptions). They can negotiate things like four year guarantees on scholarships or creation of a fund to provide scholarships for players after their eligibility ends or work rules relating to concussions.
Re: "cosa nostra-type silencio" - I believe the term is "omerta."
gets rid of 1 and done players and forces them to stay at least 3 years then I am all for it!
That would be awful. Why do we want to force athletes to stay in college when they don't want to? That will only make the problems bigger. If kids want out of their scholarship to do something else, by all means give it to somebody who wants it.
but at the same time if the schools were ordered to give a minimum guaranteed 3 year scholarship (obviously caveats will apply) then I see no problem with doing so....the college is putting up a lot of money for these players (tuition, room & board, would-be actaul money if the Union is approved, etc)...and if these 5 stars only want to use them for a resume builder to the pros then they should at least be on the hook for 3 years instead of the 1 or 2
You mentioned "No one in the OSCR or OIE bothered to tell Hoke that they had found Gibbons culpable in the 2009 incident on November 20th." as one of the possibilities, and that is a problem. I think it's very possible that's the case, and that it is actually part of the process.
IMHO, you don't want the University to share info with the athletic department until the final determination has been made. Not knowing the process very well, it seems like the November 20th determination is a preliminary determination subject to appeal. If Gibbons had an option to appeal, the decision is not final, and therefore it could be reversed. And if you start telling institutions that might have a non-justice-based interest in seeing that reversed (i.e. an athletic program wanting to save a player from expulsion), you're begging for undue influence. Best practice would seem to be to wait until the decision is finalized, and THEN tell the program.
The more I read about the Nov 19 letter to Gibbons, the more it seems to function like an indictment (or at least a charge) - not a settled case - in that he is then called to make his case. Of course, if it turns out that OSCR had already asked him to appear and the December meeting was more of an appeal, then the process is different than I now assume it to be.
If this is the issue, it seems like the university could address it by just laying out their general procedures for cases involving athletes without referencing anything with respect to the Gibbons case. I agree that this seems to be more and more likely but the only thing that makes me question it is the inability for the university to address it laying out these general procedural details.
My thinking as well.
It's funny; I'm a semi-attorney so I tend to side with "process" and "byzantine bureacracy" over the more transparent response others have, and it seems like that's the typical divide here in general. Neither side is probably right; there are merits to both approaches. But it's interesting to see where everyone is coming from.
I think that the Ministry of Truth has just about finished with the narrative on the Gibbons case; instead of the Nov 20th letter being the notification to Gibbons that he needed to appear for a hearing (as OSCR policy states), it now has come to mean "that the University had already decided that Gibbons was — in the eyes of the school — responsible for a sexual misconduct" and that, far from this being a step in a process, was the end of the process. This is presumed to be true by those looking to find a reason to accuse Hoke of playing Gibbons after somehow knowing that Gibbons was going to be expelled a month later. Brian calls the idea that the process would work as advertised "implausible."
Somehow, the "stupid lie" has become, not claiming to know that Hoke knew something he apparently didn't know, but Hoke's own, innocent (as far as we know) claim that Gibbons was in Florida for family reasons.
The Daily story that claims that Gibbons told Hoke about his situation on Dec 19th has been since refuted by Ablauf (the Daily itself notes this). We still don't know when Hoke found out, nor do we know how and when the decision to finalize separation on the 20th (a decision made on the 19th, presumably after Gibbons notified OSCR that he would not appeal the tribunal's decision) was supposed to be communicated to Hoke. However, that uncertainty doesn't stop the Hoke-haters; they just assume that Hoke knew before the 23rd, because that gives them a reason to attack Hoke for what he said on the 23rd, rather than having to concede that maybe what he said on the 23rd was exactly what he believed to be true.
Stupid lies? Yes, perhaps there have been some. It isn't clear to me that Hoke is the one uttering them, though.
This whole thing is like a Rorschach test of one's view of the athletic department. Those who harbored a negative view (for whatever reasons) about Brandon and/or Hoke before this all came down seem particularly outraged; those who didn't generally don't see it as a big deal.
I just see Hoke as a bit over his head here and probably doing as directed, company guy all the way. But the fact that these guys continued to play after what the university clearly felt comfortable throwing Gibbons out of school for bugs the crap out of me. I don't have that difficult a time believing that rules were followed; I want the rules changed. I also think that quite possibly RR should have done the throwing, and I was a RR supporter to the bitter end.
I also don't quite get why the police report--though not leading to prosecution in the circumstance--shouldn't be seen as damning as hell. I'm not saying that Gibbons should be in jail (again), I'm saying that he should have been off the team.
On your last point: earlier this year I was pretty hard on programs--OSU among them--that had "treat women with respect" as one of their Team Rules. Didn't that go without saying? Was it really necessary to make a rule about it?
I take back everything I said on the subject. I get it now.
Your comment, "I also think that quite possibly RR should have done the throwing..." is mystifying.
You think RR should have thrown out a player who was a) not convicted, or even charged, with a crime by the state and b) was not found (in 2009-2010, when RR was here) by the University to be in violation of the university code of conduct? On what basis would RR have kicked him out, then?
I get on coaches for being too lenient for when their charges are convicted of something (e.g., DUI) but I expect them to let the university and/or law enforcement investigate & make determinations of facts regarding serious conduct outside the team.
Coaches have no time or ability to correctly investigate and pass judgment on whether a player has done something wrong in these matters -- it should be left to others whose job it (literally) is.
against whom there is strong evidence of wrongdoing. This happens all the time, not just in sports but in many professions. The standard is different than in a court of law.
That seems reasonable at first, but define how a coach determines what is "strong evidence," esp in cases where the "evidence" is so in dispute (a police report isn't proof -- it's just a report of the events gathered by the police, and often contains contradictory information from the parties involved). The coach has zero investigative powers beyond asking the player "Did you do this?" and if he says, "No, I didn't coach." -- what then?
How would you, as a coach, apply this "strong evidence" standard in a consistent, readily explainable manner to all involved (players, recruits, AD, the fans, the media, etc)?
...to make him testify as to everything Gibbons has ever said to Hoke inside a closed office at Schembechler Hall?
I'm one of your upvoters, robpollard.
But I thought coaches were gods. Their decisions needn't be either consistent, fair or obvious.
The fact that the Gibbons story was a not so well-kept secret and had made it into the public realm (via websites & the incident at the Regents meeting) was enough to embarrass the University and the football team. If I were a coach and a player had created such a mess, he'd be gone...or at least benched until he's fully exonerated.
It also makes me a bit curious about the old days, before shit could leak to internet. How many sketchy stories that never made it out and were effectively forgotten about while the player redeemed himself on the field. Likewise, how many times were players let go, rather than risk any future fallout from a borderline criminal.
Paterno went to his grave thinking that these things should be dealt with internally. Kind of makes one wonder what these old coaches know.
Disagree. Or else, I'm an exception. I've had a positive view of Hoke, and, in wanting him to succeed, the main thing that he had going for him that differentiated him is his integrity and desire to mold men rather than just football players. So, for me, having that leg potentially kicked out from underneath is both personally distressing but also I worry about the consequences out there on the recruiting trail.
What about this story would make you question Hoke's integrity?
Uhhhh, did you read the article that these comments are related to? Just assume I agree.
Let me also be very clear...I do still believe in Hoke's integrity, but the actions of the athletic department in response to the actions of the university create an EXTREMELY easy case to question said integrity, and that's ultimately the issue because media and recruits don't begin with the same biased affection that we do.
"The Daily story that claims that Gibbons told Hoke about his situation on Dec 19th has been since refuted by Ablauf (the Daily itself notes this)."
Well, except in their most recent editorial, where they quote this portion of tthe original story without noting the retraction they already noted elsewhere.
Confusion over the meaning of the FERPA exclusions is understandable. This is inexcusable.
Not inviting the Daily immeidately after they wrote a piece that appears negative about the University seems if not petty and ill-intentioned, then merely unwise. You have to figure that someone in PR knows how that's going to look to outsiders.
As far as the process, if the biggest problem is that the Athletic Department is not going to know that their players are under investigation by OSCR, then I'm not sure that's a bad thing. I'd much rather that than the AD acutally know about it in advance. Even if they wouldn't try to infringe on the process, the possibility is one that should be avoided at all costs.
I don't know, doesn't the voluntary nature of the student-athletes' sports participation, and the fact that most will not matriculate to a higher professional level, make them more like employees and less like educational interns?
To my non-lawyer mind, it's much easier to classify a medical internship, which must be successfully completed for a degree, as an educational experience rather than a job. Wheras the optional participation in sports makes that more like a job, and their scholarships more like employee compensation.
On the other hand, if all it takes to nix the union is to convince the courts that athletics is primarily educational, then it seems a simple argument to declare the coaches as part of the faculty in the School of Professional Athletics.