By LARRY VAUGHT
I have never covered Missouri football, basketball, baseball or any other sport. However, I have watched the NCAA for years and still can’t figure out the logic that seems to always be missing from that group.
The NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions on Thursday banned Missouri’s football, baseball and softball teams from competing in the postseason play this year and Missouri on probation for three years for academic fraud. The three teams lose some scholarships and official visits along with a seven-week ban on recruiting communications and off-campus recruiting evaluation days. The NCAA also fined Missouri $5,000, plus 1 percent of each of its budgets in football, baseball and softball.
The NCAA ruled that former Missouri tutor Yolanda Kumar violated NCAA ethical conduct, academic misconduct and academic extra benefits rules by completing academic work for 12 student-athletes. The NCAA alleged Kumar completed a course for a Missouri football player and also assisted two football players in completing Missouri’s math placement exam.
Obviously all that is a no-no.
Yet Missouri athletics director Jim Sterk quickly said the school will file an appeal.
“The Committee on Infractions has abused its discretion in applying penalties in this case, and the University will immediately appeal this decision that has placed unfair penalties on our department and programs. It is hard to fathom that the University could be cited for exemplary cooperation throughout this case, and yet end up with these unprecedented penalties that could unfairly and adversely impact innocent current and future Mizzou student-athletes,” Sterk said in a release. “It is important to note that this was the action of one individual, who acted unilaterally and outside of the expectations that we have established for our staff members.”
But where the logic goes away is that when North Carolina had students taking deficient courses in the Department of African and Afro-American studies it got away with no punishment. The Committee on Infractions tried to distinguish the difference on Thursday.
“Among other differences, UNC stood by the courses and the grades it awarded student-athletes,” the NCAA report said. “In support of that position, UNC asserted that although courses were created and graded by an office secretary, student-athletes completed their own work. Here, by contrast, Missouri acknowledged that the tutor completed student-athletes’ work and, in most instances, this conduct violated its honor code.”
So the thought process was since student-athletes basically attended the fake classes and other students also had the option to take the fake class, North Carolina could not be punished no matter how many fake grades North Carolina athletes got.
If you understand that, then let me know.