As the title says, MSU is under investigation for their use of planes operated by the state of Michigan for recruting trips by Dantonio and Izzo. The investigation began after the Lansing State Journal ran a series on the planes and how they are utilized. Over a five year period, Dantonio and Izzo combined for 102 flights on state-operated flights. As you likely assumed, The University of Michigan can handle it's own recruiting travel arrangements and is not under investigation.
MSU under investigation by FAA for use of state planes for recruiting
Hyperbolic time chambers....... Check
C3PO as translator......... Check
Well...seeing as you did use the magic word...
This post is Hawkeye Approved.
I don't really understand what the big deal is. Sounds like one of those stupid (Edit: FAA, not NCAA) things. As long as MSU is paying to use the planes just like anyone else would, then no one should have a problem with Izzo or Dantonio using them for a few recruiting trips.
what MSU's Athletic Deparement paid to use the planes owned by the State of Michigan. I mean, if it was at a "fair market value" price, then no harm, no foul, but if the rate was below market, then the State was getting ripped off by MSU.
Keep in mind that the article does not state that MSU underpaid, but that's the only reason I can think of as to why this would be a problem.
Everything I've seen indicates this is no big deal. It basically seems like an audit and if the state is being properly paid, no harm no foul.
If anything it looks like the Athletic Department is the one that always pays, and they book a lot more questionable flights with others. One of those where the LSJ put all that money into an investigation, really found nothing, so printed it anyway. It's not like we have never seen that happen around here before....
I'll hammer them or chortle when they deserve it, but this is more of a yawn, silly media.
I'm confused; why is this an issue?
MSU's AD reimbursed the state for the trips out of the AD budget. This is similar to what happens in Netjets or the planes in Delta's private jet lease/rental program, you pay per flight.
Aircraft get registered for their intended use by the FAA under the Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR, not to be confused with "Federal Acquisition Regulations", which is something else). You'll often hear/read about "Part 135", etc., which come from the FAR.
Parts 119, 121, 125 and 135 govern the usage restrictions of aircraft by private and commercial operators. If the State of Michigan was leasing its aircraft in violation of the FAR, there could be some serious civil penalties imposed. That doesn't mean MSU will necessarily be on the hook.
This was a pretty succinct and informative post.
Bad MDOT. Bad.
So they're using our tax dollars to recruit, and they still can't do very well at it? I would hope they could at least be pulling in some better recruits.
Edit: Yeah after actually reading the article, I would agree, this probably isn't an issue.
but I've done some stuff with high-altitude balloons, and the FAA tends to get mad when you don't keep them in the loop regardless of the technical legality.
In other words, this investigation could be taking place solely because these specific deals or practices weren't explicitly cleared with the FAA even if other MDOT leased flights to MSU were.
for your contributions to science...
Too many damn rules. Might as well lug around an NCAA rep when you recruit just to make sure you do everything right. Bullshit.
but seriously, in college athletics
- Reimburse state for use of state owned plane -> SERIOUS BUSINESS
- Pay people to influence high schoolers to go to Oregon -> nothing to see here
I know this is the FAA vs the NCAA, but college programs get punished for all the dumb things and all the real things get by
RABBLE RABBLE RABB...ah hell, even I give a crap about this.
Shouldn't it be NASA and not the FAA? You know, because they recruit intergalactically.
Actually, let me amend my previous post.
The more I think about this, the more I realize that we must not lose sight of what's really important here. And that is the fact that Michigan State deserves to be punished for no other reason than being Michigan State. If the NCAA, or the State of Michigan, or President Obama is unwilling to do what is neccisary for the betterment of society, then I have no problem with the FAA taking their crack at it. Let the FAA reign down their rightous and fiery judgement upon Michigan State University.
No, we're not obsessed with Michigan State. At. All.
but in the blog's defense, I find this to be a fairly interesting story. Never heard of a college program being investigated by the FAA of all people
This would have been posted if it were any other B1G school. It probably would have been posted if it were about any other D1 school period. It just happens to be MSU and that just allows us to snicker a little bit more loudly under our breathes.
If this was about Minnesota or Purdue anyone would care about it.
that's under the assumption that Minnesota or Indiana have airplanes at all. In which case, I am not quite sure.
Purdue has its own airport and at least one plane, but it would seem the football and basketball coaches aren't using it. Even the president of the university has cut back, which is costing students in the in the aviation program some serious coin:
When I was a TA at Purdue in the 1980s, the students I had from aviation were regularly missing class to fly President Beering around.
How the hell is discussing something as unusual as this obsession?
Unusual? They rented a plane. And as others have pointed out, any irregularities are with MDOT, not MSU. This isn't even "snicker at them" material. It's nothing.
To me it raises an additional issue, and that is, what kind of priority is given for these recruiting trips. As long as the state isn't maintaining surplus planes that aren't essential, as long as the true cost is being paid by the MSU AD, and as long as the coaches are at or near the bottom of the list of who gets dibs on the planes, I have no problem with this.
that this is one circumstance where the "death penalty" could certainly be justified. It all depends on exactly what was witnessed on those flights, when the AD learned that the flights actually existed, and if he reported these trips to campus police or simply punted it up the chain of command.
There wouldn't be a problem if DatBull hadn't tagged all the planes inside the passenger cabins.
The issue is the usage of the planes. The planes are supposed to be used for the purpose of saving state officials time and the tax payers money since an air shuttle to the UP is cheaper than driving if you fill the plane up.
MSU Atheltics and such are supposed to have access to the planes moreso when they're not in use as a way of helping MDOT generate some kind of revenue off the equipment they purchased. However there are allegations that MSU was using the aircraft as their own private aircraft pool and in turn costing the taxpayers money. As an example, MSU reserves the plane for a recruiting trip and thus some state official has to drive (which costs more than the flight and of course the state eats the costs since the official expense reports his driving costs). Plus you also have to factor in the time cost. Having some high level policy maker from Treasury sitting in traffic on I-96 and accomplishing nothing is potentially much more expensive than having the WR coach of a college do the same. Part of this of course would be MDOT's fault as they should have only rented out the planes when they were available, but it may be the case some MDOT official happens to have a really awesome season ticket package to Spartan Stadium or something of that nature.
That makes sense. Thanks for clarifying the issue.
Now if MSU needs to find a new plane to use in recruiting I think I've found one that might be available...
"The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the state of Michigan’s practice of leasing its passenger planes to officials at Michigan State University."
Per story referenced in ESPN's "story." Your title is intentionally misleading.
I am not sure what difference it makes to the FAA if Michigan leases its planes or at what price they lease them. The legislator may not be happy if it costs more than they charge, assuming that all the right safety paper work was filed for these flights, all the proper maintenance was completed as required why the heck would the FAA be involved? Did they not properly screen the passangers? If the FAA is worried about how Michigan State recruits, the answer is poorly by the way, they must have nothing else to worry about.
Any entity that provides air transportation and in turn charges for it must be properly certificated by the FAA. MDOT does not hold such certification. I don't think the rub is with MSU but MDOT in a possible violation of the rules. There's a big difference between leasing and chartering.
They need all the help they can get. So sad for sparty.
This explains the Arjen Colquhoun recruitment in Windsor...
Time is money people...
The FAA is no doubt interested/investigating because the agency believes that the State of Michigan violated the terms of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR) Part under which their aircraft are registered.
The FAR (not to be confused with Federal Acquisition Regulations - also called "FAR" but are obviously something else) covers every aviation-related activity in the United States.
Depending the Part under which the State of Michigan registered its aircraft, operating them for the purpose of generating revenue (whether simply to reimburse actual cost or make a profit) may have been a violation of their operating certificate. FAR Part 119 covers the various types of operating certificates for commercial use. Part 121 covers air carrier certification and operational control.
MSU isn't likely to be held accountable by the FAA for its use of State of Michigan aircraft. FAA isn't likely to have jurisdiction at any rate (however, state lawmakers might be very interested if penalties are imposed the FAA against the state). Therefore, any fallout directed at MSU is most likely to be political (or potentially even the NCAA if it was somehow a sweetheart lease/rental rate) rather than legal.