Watching From Afar

January 24th, 2018 at 10:13 AM ^

A MSU fan on Reddit made mention of the Appling/Payne thing (in relation to MSU fans not being allowed to bring signs into basketball games that speak out against these situations) and I had to stop for a second and remember that entire thing.

If the NCAA were competent and wanted to, that entire situation (plus the Brody Brawl) and the recent sexual assautls mixed with Nassar is... just a lot of bad things going on under the same AD for a decade+


January 24th, 2018 at 10:17 AM ^

The MSU trustees don't want to do anything about Simon because, hey, look at all the money.

I see the NCAA doing the same thing.  Maybe take down a non revenue sport, causing another men's non revenue sport to take a hit too for title 9, but they won't go after the cash cows both they and MSU make a ton of money off of.

I am just perplexed by the response of the trustees, the president, Hollis, Izzo and Dantonio.  I am so angry at every story that seems to come out. 


January 23rd, 2018 at 9:57 PM ^

No idea what a reasonable punishment would be here.  To give the whole damn school the death penalty (or even just the relevant sports) would be punishing the women again, which is no good.  Show-cause (and a jail term) for Klages is warranted, but she's not likely to work again anyway.  Show-causes for the remaining athletic trainers who ignored reports on Nassar, for sure.

Maybe a ridiculously punitive fine?

PSU seemed easy because it was obvious that the cult of Paterno/football had distorted everyone's sense of basic morality.  So you take away Paterno and you should have taken away football.

I'm still not clear on MSU's motives for what they failed to do, other than I guess the prestige of having a famous Olympic doctor on staff?  And general failure to believe victims of sexual assault.


January 23rd, 2018 at 10:45 PM ^…

It's absolutely on the table for non-coaches.

When you think about it, it's curious the NCAA didn't give PSU AD Tim Curley a show cause penalty, all things considered.  I think they were afraid of a direct lawsuit from Curley - that Curley would have challenged the NCAA's right to get involved as regards his behaviors in the first place.   

The NCAA has pervue here, absolutely.  And I get that it's hard to stand by when Joel Ferguson is basically saying "come at us, I DARE YOU!"  But I'm surprised the NCAA is thinking of wading in.  The NCAA is going to have to lean very heavily on the big umbrella of Bylaw 10.1 ("unethical conduct") once again here as regards any punishments.  


January 23rd, 2018 at 10:55 PM ^

I think your last sentence is pretty close. I don't think it was about the prestige of the university per se as much as it was a fear of breaking with a respected organization and (rightfully) attacking it. Nassar had his "nice guy" game on point, and was thus trusted by colleagues, parents, etc. People get kind of a cognitive dissonance when they hear the respected doctor is doing heinous crimes, and disbelief is one of the ways they dealt with that dissonance. Staying quiet is another. There were a lot of isolated adults who heard from victims, but even when they did believe them, no one wanted to be the one who lit the fuse.


January 23rd, 2018 at 11:24 PM ^

I mean, the death penalty actually seems reasonable here.  They should not have a gymnastics program.  If ever you could mad-lib a school and an athletic program into "____ should not have _____", it should be, "Michigan State should not have a gymnastics team."  Ever again.

I'm still hacked off that the NCAA eased up on Penn State with the rationale of "well they cooperated and put the required measures into place" when the actual thought process should've been "we will punish you more if you don't."

And yes, I do think the motive was protecting their reputation as the go-to place for orthopedic treatment for the country's top gymnasts.  When Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, and Aly Raisman are coming to your school on the regular, that's ordinarily something to be proud of.  That's why the NCAA should take away the program.


January 24th, 2018 at 5:56 AM ^

I'm still very upset over the PSU sanctions being reduced and you nailed it that further punishment should have been given if there was any thought compliance wasn't happening.

I understand the death penalty is a huge deal.  I also get that if you're the NCAA, you don't want to have to do that.  But that's another part of the PSU/Baylor issues that make me so upset.  The punishment for offenses along any kind of abuse situation should be so extreme that they make universities utterly terrified of what will happen if they don't comply with protecting the civil liberties of their students/guests.  

If I'm the NCAA, I would have made an example out of PSU or Baylor.  They didn't and shame on them.  If MSU gymnastics doesn't get the death penalty for this, honestly, what would a school have to do to ever get one?  


January 24th, 2018 at 10:10 AM ^

Well, it's not like they can sanction the basketball team.  I realize it's a small reduction in opportunity for female gymnasts, but let's take a look at what happened to the gymnasts who took that opportunity in the past.  This will sound worse than I mean it to, but not killing off MSU's gymnastics program because we're worried about future opportunity for scholarships is a little like letting Nassar continue to practice because we're worried about not having enough doctors.

I'm sure they promise to be so much better in the future, but they've proven they can't be trusted with the actual gymnasts that walk through their doors.  And gymnastics may not be a money-maker, but I think the logical conclusion of using that as a reason not to apply the death penalty, is that there's no punishment at all that will work.

They clearly felt there was a pretty big benefit to having an elite, go-to orthopedic doctor on staff.  Certainly it made them a name in the gymnastics world, if nothing else.  So let the punishment fit the crime: erase their name from the gymnastics world.


January 23rd, 2018 at 9:54 PM ^

This is great news! If there is anyone that will get to the bottom of this situation, it's the laughingstock semi-professional body with no real law enforcement experience or authority or ability to coerce testimony that has a reputation for either finding nothing, or finding everything and responding with nothing. By the end of this, the NCAA will somehow get Nasser released from jail...  


January 24th, 2018 at 4:26 AM ^

This is directly from the 2012 article:

"Simon said she worries about ethics in college sports and at Michigan State as well. She reminded school employees by email last month of their obligation to report sexual abuse and assault. She said everyone from janitors to student-athletes have been spoken to about the issue."

Fucking. can't. make. this. up. This was 4 years before MSU fired Nassar. And over 15 years after MSU coaches and staff first starting hearing complaints. 20 years after the first assault. But hey, at least Simon sent that 2012 email.

Simon had the audicity to give lip-service to "building trust and confidence" after the PSU scandal while all this was going on under her very nose. I am speechless.


January 24th, 2018 at 9:58 AM ^

The NCAA abolished the "executive committee" and replaced it with the "board of governors."  Simon is no longer on this committee; the Big Ten representative is Eric W. Kaler, President of the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, and the chair is "Bud" Peterson, President of Georgia Institute of Technology.



January 23rd, 2018 at 9:57 PM ^

There is 0.0000000% chance that the NCAA returns anything useful here, mostly because MSU doesn't need to talk to them and the NCAA is unlikely to unearth anything both state and federal investigative mechanisms failed to unearth.

But sure, have at it NCAA.  Might as well deflect from your own hypocrisies and missteps.

Mr Miggle

January 23rd, 2018 at 10:00 PM ^

of asking MSU a lot of questions. I have a hard time seeing much coming from it, but given how MSU has handled things lately, they will probably struggle to give decent answers. Most likely it ends with MSU having to put some new policies in place. It's hard to ask much more of the NCAA here.


January 23rd, 2018 at 11:11 PM ^

Not really. Some programs have gone down the tube for quite a while after NCAA penalties. MSU was pretty bad the last few years under Perles and every year except the last for Saban because of how many scholarships they lost. Alabama took a long time to recover from violations under Stallings also. If they had a spine and still kept the scholarship restrictions for PSU they would still be struggling. That was the real horseshit thing they did. Ole Miss and Baylor are gonna suck for a while. OSU just happened to have an opening for a certain coach that decided to take some time off. Such is life for us.

Everyone Murders

January 23rd, 2018 at 10:02 PM ^

Seriously, this is a great development.  Not that I expect that the NCAA has a really strong basis (although in pure terms, it's hard to think of a worse example of lack of institutional control).

What makes this great is that it strikes MSU where it hurts.  They apparently don't care about their academic or moral reputation (at the administrative and trustee level).  But their sacred sports?  That might get the trustees' attention.

Man, I am amazed at what pieces of shit Lou Anna Simon and Joel Ferguson in particular are.  Have they no sense of decency?*

*Rhetorical question, of course.


Longballs Dong…

January 23rd, 2018 at 10:27 PM ^

people seem to think this will impact football or basketball. I see no evidence of that. Instead, they'll nuke the gymnastics team, but that feels like punishing these girls for coming forward. I wouldn't want to give a predator another reason to silence a victim ("you'll hurt your teammates"). I'd rather see jail sentences for klages and others.


January 24th, 2018 at 10:09 AM ^

I think if the NCAA wanted to send a message, then instituting a program-wide 2 year probation, including post-season bans and a 10% across-the-board scholarship reduction might do the trick.  If you wanted to get the attention of all college Athletic Departments across the country, you have to hit them in the wallet. 

Now, there is absolutely 0% chance that MSU would ever accept that penalty without a fight, and I think there is no chance that the NCAA would ever have the balls to take such a strong and radical stance on the issue.


January 24th, 2018 at 1:56 PM ^

True, this didn't involve a particular sport, it's an institution-wide problem, and thus, I think warrants an institution-wide solution.  Slapping every athetic program under the MSU Athletic Department would definitely hurt, without annihilating any particular sport in particular.  And before we entertain the whole, "well Dantonio and/or Izzo had nothing to do with this" argument, let's not pretend for a moment that part of this culture of silence around Nassar wasn't about protecting the public image of MSU sports, including the revenue-generating ones.

Yes, putting some kind of sanction on every MSU sport as punishment is unfair to those student-athletes currently enrolled who have nothing to do with this, but it's the only stick that carries any weight.


January 23rd, 2018 at 10:03 PM ^

I suspect the Michigan AG investigation will be the supporting evidence for any NCAA determinatuon. NCAA doesn't have the means or intelligence to do a thorough deep dive investigation here...nor do they want to be the bad guy...they can just blame the Michigan AG.