U$C - Systemic Problem$?

Submitted by karpodiem on April 19th, 2009 at 8:41 PM

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/11/sports/11usc.html?_r=1&ref=ncaafootba…

Although I doubt anything will happen unless the feds get involved for unclaimed 'income', as I have a lack of faith in the NCAA to render anything against usc.

Rivals mods, who are rather very very tame when it comes to laying out claims other programs, have consistently hinted that USC runs a very dirty program.

Not saying the a Michigan Rivals' mod has absolute authority on such an issue, but I feel that Pargoff, Werner, and Balas have had a pretty accurate scope of things, historically.

Comments

the_white_tiger

April 19th, 2009 at 8:52 PM ^

Hah that's funny. Because they DO run a dirty program. Carroll gets tons of 5 stars and lets them be celebs out in L.A. I am positive that there is no money changing hands there or anything, right?

WolverSwede

April 19th, 2009 at 9:23 PM ^

The news is that the NCAA may have gone from investigating two individuals who attended USC to investigating the program itself in order to prove "systemic problems". The money quote was from the Duke lawyer who said that USC's counsel is probably concerned about this development.

old fan

April 20th, 2009 at 12:47 AM ^

Let's just entertain for a second that USC is rampantly cheating and that the meteoric rise is because of illicit activities. Where do you think our program is if we did not have to run into USC in the Rose Bowl in 2004 and 2007. Let's just say that we had more Washington State-like foes, like in 97-98.

Do these seasons end in wins and a generally better feeling throughout the program? Or do you think we end up at the same point with Rodriguez at the helm. Not that it matters, but I found it interesting to day dream. I think the 2007 victory would have defined that as a great season that would have lingered in the fans memories for a while.

West Texas Blue

April 20th, 2009 at 8:52 AM ^

I wouldn't expect anything to happen to USC until Carroll leaves, at the minimum. I don't know why Michigan fans are so obsessed with investigations on USC; every Michigan board has posters dying for the NCAA to bring the hammer down on USC. Our team has enough problems as it is; I could care less what happened to USC.

lunchboxthegoat

April 20th, 2009 at 8:52 AM ^

I've always been a firm believer that IF any of the big programs that are allegedly cheating OSU/USC/etc. Nothing will be said/done until their current coach bolts. Where's the NCAA's interest in cutting their own throat by killing one of their cash cows?

jmblue

April 20th, 2009 at 3:26 PM ^

Miami was one of the most successful (and popular) programs in the country when the Pell Grant scandal hit. FSU got nailed for the free shoes the year after they won it all. Heck, our basketball program was still very popular when the first Ed Martin investigation took place. The fact that many successful schools are suspected of wrongdoing but aren't found guilty likely has much more to do with the NCAA being limited in what it can do (it can't force people to talk) than in it actually choosing to look the other way.

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 3:28 PM ^

The fact that many successful schools are suspected of wrongdoing but aren't found guilty likely has much more to do with the NCAA being limited in what it can do (it can't force people to talk) than in it actually choosing to look the other way.

Or, them not being guilty.

WolverSwede

April 20th, 2009 at 10:33 AM ^

I would guess that Michigan fans are a bit more eager to see NCAA sanctions then your average fan because of our basketball team. If other programs are doing the things that we got punished for, it is only natural to want them to face the same punishment that UofM did. Its frustrating when we keep hearing about alleged abuses of the system and nothing seems to happen. I get the feeling that basketball programs get nailed more regularly then football programs. I have no evidence for this, and if it is true its likely because basketball recruiting is just sketchier. It just seems like football programs have some weird immunity.

Tater

April 20th, 2009 at 10:46 AM ^

UM had to give up five years of wins and a couple of Final Four appearances because of five players over five years taking money from someone who wasn't a UM booster. Meanwhile, OSU and USC won national championships in football with the admittedly dirty Maurice Clarett and the "allegedly" dirty Reggie Bush, and they are allowed to stand. We all "know" that OSU and USC run dirty programs, and it is natural for any UM fan to want them to forfeit games like UM had to.

As for any direct effect it would have on UM, I would love to see OSU have to forfeit a couple of Tressel's wins against UM, and I would also love to see USC forfeit a Rose Bowl victory against UM. Also, cleaning up both programs would give UM a more level playing field, both in games and in recruiting.

I'm not naive enough to think that nothing like this ever happens at UM, but OSU and USC are so blatant and successful at it that they have basically gone off of the Bell Curve, and need to be reined in.

Jay

April 20th, 2009 at 11:03 AM ^

So, I guess Tater would like us to forfeit our share of the '97 National Championship as one Charles Woodson should've been ineligible for the bowl game (at least) for taking money and gifts from an agent. West Texas Blue is absolutely right. The way some of you guys obsess on this is beyond ridiculous, but, I guess it makes some of you feel better when recruits like RoJo and Nick Perry dare to choose another school over us. You can all go on believing that duffle bags full of money were left on their porch by Pete Carroll personally.

There is no such thing as a "clean" program.

mjv

April 20th, 2009 at 11:57 AM ^

Jay -- I've heard this Woodson/agent item twice before, and the source for both was a Yahoo Sports writer. I've written him, asking for his source or a link and have never heard back.

My opinion is that this is incorrect, and that people are actually recalling the agent issue with Marcus Ray in 1998, not Woodson in 1997.

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 11:37 AM ^

What evidence is there that this is "rampant" at OSU and USC. At OSU, there is the Clarrett case, and there is the Bush case at USC.

Further, there is no "inequity" in punishments, largely because, and I can't stress this enough, The University of Michigan's sanctions against the basketball team were NOT handed down by the NCAA. They were self-imposed.

FURTHER, they were self-imposed the day the last guilty player left, and the team ceased to be successful. If you recall, the car accident and Ed Martin's arrest occurred nearly a year prior to Michigan's 1998 Big Ten Title run, yet all those guilty kids were still playing. At least Clarrett got kicked out of school.

The evidence against Bush and Mayo is that agents (or employees of agents) gave them money and goods. There is, to my knowledge, no formal tie to the University. Just as there was no formal tie to the University with Clarrett (aside from the University straining to keep him academically eligible) - Clarrett's money was from an agent.

So let's see - Ed Martin was a booster, who was given access to players by the University, and, according to both the players and him, gave money to kids in order to encourage them to go to U of M. He began this when they were in high school.

The guilty parties in the Bush/Mayo/Clarrett cases were unaffiliated with the University, and didn't contact them until their choice in college was already made. They are, essentially, trying to poach future clients before other agents can get them. Their motivation, in other words, is to sign up clients that will make them money - not the promotion of USC/OSU athletics. See the difference?

jmblue

April 20th, 2009 at 3:48 PM ^

Actually, the sanctions were imposed in 2002, three years after the last guilty player (Bullock) left. Also, the NCAA actually ruled out the possibility that Martin specifically paid players to come to UM. But your overall point is taken.

Jamal Crawford is another example of a player receiving benefits from someone who was not a booster. He lost his eligibility, but the program was not punished.

jamiemac

April 20th, 2009 at 12:51 PM ^

May not have been in an actual "booster" club, but he fits the definition of a booster, nevertheless.

Get your head of the sand on just how deep and systematic the problems at Michigan were during that era.

Nothing like a known bookie steering players to your program. That's peanuts compared to an agent, while wooing Bush, paying his rent. Because, that's obvioulsy evil.

jmblue

April 20th, 2009 at 3:41 PM ^

Actually, the NCAA ruled out the possibility that Martin specifically paid players to come to Michigan, since he seems to have paid players who went elsewhere, too. And the "rent" Bush is alleged to have received may have exceeded $100,000. On the surface, the two cases aren't that different: a player allegedly receiving large sums of money and compromising his eligibility. The main difference is that Martin, from April 1992 onward, officially became a UM booster, while the guys that reportedly paid Bush apparently aren't tied to the school.

jamiemac

April 20th, 2009 at 4:03 PM ^

with most of you say here, although we're parsing words a bit.

I said "steered" not paid to specifically go to UM. He indeed steered kids to UM, but he steered kids to other places as well. That point is well taken.

The only reason I commented is Tater always minimizes the Martin scandal by saying he was not a legit booster.

I think we can both agree that is a head-in-the-sand comment.

Also, why are we worrying about what other programs are doing? Isnt that a bit obsessive? LOL

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 11:52 AM ^

They were literally self-imposed. You can argue that they would have occurred anyway, and most likely be correct, but the University vacated the seasons and took a 2-year post-season probation (a year after they had won 10 games - huge punishment!) before the NCAA did anything. That is, literally, the definition of self-imposed. So, laugh away.

bronxblue

April 20th, 2009 at 12:32 PM ^

While I really could care less how other programs are run (Michigan has its skeletons, as do most major programs), I think the reason certain fans fixate on the recruiting allegations at places like OSU, USC, Miami, and Florida is that the media appears to give them a pass will vilifying other programs for basically doing the same thing. UM received years of torment for the Fab Five debacle, but I doubt USC basketball will receive a similar punishment even though people were saying Mayo was trouble when he was still in high school. UConn has had some recent troubles with recruits, but I doubt anything will come of that until Calhoun leaves, and if he sticks around a few more years I doubt people will even remember it.

Similarly, the story surrounding Bush (not to mention other guys on that team) has been floating around since before he left Southern Cal, but the NCAA seems to be dragging its feet while ESPN/ABC/etc. pay millions to televise USC in bowl games. For God's sake, FSU has been called Free Shoes University for over a decade, yet the NCAA is still waffling on stripping them of a dozen or so wins due to a school-wide cheating scandal. At the same time, schools like Mississippi St. are put on 4 years of probation for similar recruiting violations, and Minnesota basketball was trounced by the NCAA for their own academic improprieties.

It is this inconsistency, this favoritism toward "big money" teams at the expense of everyone else, that strikes me as hypocritical and, frankly, makes me angry about what is allowed and disallowed in college sports. If the NCAA is not going to enforce a consistent set of rules for all teams across all sports, then why even exist.

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 12:49 PM ^

But the Martin scandal was as bad because Martin was closely tied to the University.

The agent that gave Bush money has no tie to USC (at least none that has been established).

If you're arguing that he should have the Heisman stripped, that's a valid argument. But the two situation aren't analogous.

U of M's basketball scandal was the 2nd largest NCAA scandal in history. It's not small potatoes.

karpodiem

April 20th, 2009 at 1:41 PM ^

Willful ignorance of even possible violation(s) (the 's' is key here), provides the bridge to allegations of $ystemic violations. (that $ is for you Chris)

It's like saying, I'm going to leave the bank everyday without checking whether the vault is locked or not, even though upper management says I occasionally should take a look.

And you might get away with being looted once, but after a second time, certain people are going to start asking the right questions.

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 1:43 PM ^

I'm legitimately asking, as I don't know the answer:

Is there evidence that Carroll or Floyd knew Bush or Mayo was in contact with these people? Given, again, that these people sought future clients, which has nothing to do with USC nor does it express a desire for the players to BE at USC, I'd guess "no".

karpodiem

April 20th, 2009 at 2:02 PM ^

I doubt Pete Carroll has the moral compass to confirm or deny unless subpoenaed.

The only way you are going to pin these guys is you uncover e-mail's, calls, txts; and the NCAA to my knowledge, does not have the power to demand these. I believe?

At the end of the day, you and I have two fundamental positions on the issue that will not be reconciled, and can be boiled down to this:

I believe, based on the totality of accusations made, that there is fire, somewhere, that goes along with all this smoke. You do not. The only problem is, to prove my point that there is a fire, I would require the legal authority to do things that the NCAA cannot do.

But based on the documents this agent has produced, and the cash involved, I would believe the threshold to gather more evidence has been reached. Like uh, I think the IRS would be rather interested in the fact that I had never paid taxes on a couple hundred grand in earnings.

And with that deeper investigation, you might uncover something interesting.

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 2:16 PM ^

Everything he said about Sanchez was correct. He shouldn't have aired it publicly, but he was correct.

So, you are going to use the opinion that you've formed about him, using a dearth of actual evidence as a reason to claim he's guilty, without there currently being any indication of that. I'm clear on how seriously I should take this now.

therealtruth

April 20th, 2009 at 2:30 PM ^

Fine. That has nothing to do with his culpability on Bush.

You have two topics that you're conflating:

1. Your personal opinion of Pete Carroll
2. His potential culpability in the Bush accusation

Unfortunately, any facts you can marshal to support #1 are completely unrelated to #2. Not everyone you dislike is breaking the law.

It would be like me claiming that you're a murderer because I dislike the way you act on MGoBlog.

restive neb

April 20th, 2009 at 10:48 PM ^

FWIW, here is some evidence for Carroll's lack of a moral compass.

http://www.bruinsnation.com/2008/5/15/508939/pete-carroll-tim-floyd-usc

Sure the author is writing on Bruins Nation and has an obvious axe to grind against USC, but he detailed a long sordid list of reported incidents over Carroll's tenure. Some of the items are quite entertaining, including the following:

"On November 2, 2005, USC linebacker Rey Maualuga was arrested for investigation of misdemeanor battery after punching a man at an off-campus Halloween party (twice, without provocation). A witness at the scene reportedly quoted Maualuga as stating 'I own the police.'..."