August 17, 2011

The Eternal Season - Wednesday August 17th

Good Afternoon TES Friends!  Past the midway point of Hump day, here we come weekend!

College football opens two weeks from tomorrow night, but as of the past 24 hours, news has broken that is going to dominate the airwaves from now until there are actual games.  I mentioned it in passing the other day, but as of yesterday, the Miami booster scandal has exploded into a litany of high level transgressions over an 8 year period - that only ended last year, when the booster who provided most of these benefits went to jail for 20 years for a nearly $1 billion dollar Ponzi scheme.

Yahoo! sports broke the story after an 11 month investigation - if you care at all about college sports, it's worth the read, in its entirety.


Yahoo! Sports Miami Investigation

Everything from cash for tvs, nights out in VIP clubs, to whole floors of hotels booked and stocked with strippers and prostitutes for the players.  The NCAA Death Penalty has only been handed down on a Div. 1 program once (twice in the lower levels) - the infamous case of SMU, in 1987.

In that case, there were also boosters funneling money to players, in some cases paying their rent, but what really did SMU in was a school-run 'slush fund', used to pay players and potential recruits.  What made things so bad for SMU was they were already under probation while they were doing this, so that prompted the NCAA to throw the book at them, which wiped out their 1987 and 88 football seasons.



For those too young, or who didn't pay much attention to Southwestern Conference Football in the 1980s, here is a good recap of what went down.

SMU Death Penalty Case

That was for the 'repeat offender' nature of the Mustang's actions, and Miami could be considered to be in the same case, but you'll have to go further back in time, when the NCAA normally would close the book on infractions.  But in this case, the fact the violations go back to 2002 could be enough - killing a season for the Miami football team might be too extreme in today's climate, but banning them from bowl games, title games, and tv for a season or two is not out of the question.

At this late date, don't expect anything to happen in regard to those kind of punishments this year, but of the 72 players who have been named, 12 of them are currently on the roster - including the starting QB.  In the next two weeks, I suppose it is possible the NCAA could strip their eligibility, while taking longer to discuss the fate of the program as a whole. We'll see.

Not what any of us who care about college football wanted as we zero in on the season kickoff.  Here at TES, we'll try to focus on the-season-is-in-15-days issues, and only come back to this as major events warrant.

Another day where we are only going to find baseball and soccer on the tv, there is tennis going on for the lead up to the US Open, but that coverage only kicks in on the weekends.  The Dodgers fell 2-1 to the Brewcrew last night, which should just about do it for the baseball part of The Eternal Season.  Many of the other races are close and will go down to the wire, once we get to the playoff point, we'll have more to say.

Look at that, 5:00 pm on the east coast - Wednesday, almost a memory, Thursday, the un-official kickoff to the summer weekend.  Have a good night, we'll be back tomorrow with what we hope are some stories about things other than violations!

Where To Find Live Sports On TV:
http://www.tvguide.com/sports/listings/

NFL Scores - Pre Season
http://www.nfl.com/scores

MLB Games - Regular Season:
http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/scoreboard

Soccer aka Football:
http://soccernet.espn.go.com/scores

Tennis:
http://www.tennis.com/livescores

Golf:
http://sports.espn.go.com/golf

The love of sports is shared across the generations, and there are few things as fun as debating the merits of certain players, strategies, and team histories with other, opposing sports nuts. If you are an all around sports fan, feel free to join the ride, and please comment/vent whenever you feel you need to.


Sedge


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