Look, I’ve long ago concluded that the entire NCAA regulatory and enforcement arm operates more like a petty Ladies Auxiliary Book Club than a real live adjudicatory system. The entire system is not just dysfunctional; it’s a Potemkin village, meant to lull the unsuspecting and unwitting public into believing that the NCAA minds and penalizes its’ own. And it’s staffed by mostly ex-jocks with eyeshades on, kids raised to think that the Red Army NCAA which required their strict allegiance when they were minors must be worshipped and obeyed. In fact, self-reporting, self-enforcement, and NCAA due process are all fictions.
And Emmert — that Ken Doll, marionette-mouth, blow-dried ersatz “academic” – is as loony as they come. His $60 million penalty assessed on Penn State, based as it was on the notion that “We can put up with and look the other way when our members bury and hide violations of NCAA bylaws, but when they bury pedophila, well — we gotta do something! – ANYTHING“, showed that he has little or no concept as to how due process ought to work.
And he still doesn’t understand due process, today again completely “jumping the gun” by declaring –long before the results of the independent review by an outside law firm that he retained today have issued — that there were “shocking” actions taken by NCAA staffers. I have zero confidence in this dramatic, entirely premature statement by Emmert.
Moreover, I don’t agree with all these commentators who suggest, for example, that the mere fact that NCAA investigators relied, apparently, on some sworn Deposition transcript from Mr. Allen of UMiami necessarily means that the NCAA has violated any of its’ bylaws. For example, the NCAA’s absence of subpoena power does not, by itself, mean that the NCAA can never utilize sworn testimony which is gotten through use of a subpoena.
In addition, much is made of the fact that Mr. Shapiro’s attorney was possibly hired by the NCAA. First of all, some accounts merely suggest that the attorney just sent a bill to the NCAA. Attorneys send bills to alot of people who have no obligation to pay them, and who had no attorney-client relation with them. Attorneys like to send out bills.
Even if the attorney was hired by the NCAA, this is not necessarily a violation of NCAA bylaws. The NCAA and its’ member schools hire third-party contractors all the time. And the attorney hired may have even had some partial, or appearance of, conflict of interest of his own, because he represented both Mr. Shapiro and the NCAA simultaneously. That, however, does not necessarily mean that the NCAA violated its’ own bylaws, or any other law, by hiring the attorney.
I’ll even entertain a working hypothesis at this point that UMiami lawyered-up hard against Emmert, threatening lawsuits, and his fluffy cranium flooded with unjustified fear and trembling.
Finally, let me remind you: the fact that Mr. Emmert says it’s”shocking” might be your best indication that it is, in fact, entirely appropriate and legal.