As our kids grew up, my wife and I tried to be consistent in the disciplining of our children.
Not only did we try to make the “punishment” commensurate with the “crime” but we also tried to be fair between the two of them. If our son errored in some way when he was 10 years old and then, three years later, our daughter disobeyed or whatever in a similar way, one was not disciplined harsher than the other. For example, we didn’t ground our son for a week and then — for approximately the same offense — ground our daughter for 12 weeks.
Suffice it to say the powers that be at the NCAA would make lousy parents. Heck, they are lousy at being the powers that be at the NCAA.
I can’t wrap my head around their disciplining of programs and players in the world of college football.
Take University of Tennessee senior defensive tackle Maurice Couch for instance. The NCAA ruled him permanently ineligible on Friday, the school announced. Now Couch did break some NCAA rules —Yahoo! Sports reported that Couch allegedly received four payments from former Alabama defensive lineman Luther Davis, who has reportedly been serving as a middle man between NFL-bound SEC stars and the agents/financial advisers looking for new clients. Records indicate that four transfers totaling $1,350 were made to Couch.
Couch was the only active football player named in a Yahoo! Sports report on improper benefits provided to SEC players. Former Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray, former Mississippi State defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, former Mississippi State wide receiver Chad Bumphis and former Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker were also named in the report.
Here’s what I don’t understand …. UT already suspended Couch as they awaiting the NCAA’s ruling. He had already missed six games.
Meanwhile, recent precedent suggests that could suffice if the NCAA only alleges the $1,350 in improper benefits. By comparison, former Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green was suspended four games for profiting $1,000 off the sale of his game-worn bowl jersey in 2010.
But the NCAA has never been consistent nor even logical in their discipline.
Johnny Manziel — or Johnny “Hancock” as I like to call him — can allegedly make thousands signing autographs out of the goodness of his heart and the NCAA makes him sit out the first half of a game. Wow — that’s like letting him belly up to the buffet bar but not allowing him to have a second slice of pie for dessert.
Yet, former Oklahoma State wide receiver Dez Bryant had lunch with Deion Sanders and was ruled ineligible for the season.
And Ohio State players sold their own belongings in exchange for tattoos and were suspended five games.
Check this out: one of the OSU players had to sit out an extra 5 games due to a second violation of being paid 71 cents more than the NCAA viewed was permissible at his job.
Those players were ripped apart in the media. But when all the allegations regarding Johnny “Writer’s cramp” came to light, the media began a new song and dance that it was time that players were able to get paid.
And programs are not punished according to their misdeeds, either. Miami gets three scholarships taken away for what was reported to be hundreds of thousands of dollars provided to recruits via cash, strip clubs, yacht excursions, etc. Why?
Well maybe because they didn’t get tattoos, I don’t know. Most say it is because they had self-imposed two years of bowl bans already. But they were mediocre at best those seasons and so what great sacrifice did they make?
Needless to say, the NCAA has lost its teeth. They no longer have any credibility — if they ever did.
A complete shake-up is needed and definitive rule book classifying what violations merit what punishment — across the board — is long overdue.