Although many would still consider me a young man, with a wife of almost a decade and a pure, innocent little boy we are doing our best to raise, I can safely the say the last few months of observing the NCAA has to be the most bizarre period of its history in my lifetime.
Don't you long for the good ole days when the NCAA at least pretended to care about morals. Or perhaps ethics. Or I don't know, common sense? When a $100 handshake or selling your child on the open market was clearly wrong?
You all know the story of Perry Jones and Baylor, and his supposedly egregious errors forever taking him away from the game of college basketball. Plenty of writers and commentators all over the nation have taken the NCAA to task in the last 24 hours for its illogical finding, and rightly so.
On Thursday, the NCAA issued what appears to be a fairly unprecedented statement countering Baylor University's press release on the issue. It seemed as if it was written by the type of person that just knows they are wrong, but that does not really care because they have the power. And keep in mind this release was issued when the NCAA is supposedly objectively hearing Baylor's appeal on the matter.
"Baylor University's criticism of the NCAA for its reinstatement decision regarding men's basketball student-athlete Perry Jones is off base" was the opening line of the NCAA's 4th rate blog entry on Thursday afternoon.
Well what's your logic NCAA?
"The student-athlete and his family actually received benefits, including a trip, with the total benefit amount of more than $4,100. This sets the case apart from the Newton case, where there was no sufficient evidence of benefits being provided or direct involvement by the student-athlete."
It is so absurd, it is almost laughable. If it didn't ruin the likely end of the college career of a truly fantastic individual in Perry Jones, I really could laugh. But instead, I can just shake my head.
First NCAA, you failed to inform the public of how much of that $4,100 "benefit" was repaid in your vapid reply. We already know a portion of it was a loan from a family friend (and yes, he is Perry's AAU coach) so Perry's family would not end up out on the streets without a home. A loan that was repaid in full.
And the other "benefit"? Oh yes, a 1 day trip to see a preseason football game. You are right NCAA, Perry Jones is a truly terrible person, an obvious pro, who should not be allowed to compete in amateur sports.
So what was that you related it to that was completely innocent? Oh, just a father of an athlete openly partnering with an agent to sell his son to the highest bidding school. And dont forget, opening bids started at the bargain price of $180,000.
It is too bad NCAA that the vast majority of us were raised in some capacity by human beings. You see, we all learned a thing or two about basic common sense.
And here, common sense suggests that Perry Jones is a good kid. A kid who truly had no involvement or knowledge about any small loans between his mom and his coach. A kid who tagged along to a single football game. A kid who does not deserve the treatment you have given him.
But we know you needed to save face NCAA. That whole "unique opportunity" thing with the Ohio State kids - yeah, people didn't buy it like you hoped.
Forgive me NCAA if I do not adopt your logic when teaching my son about life. I think I will try to introduce him to Perry some day - and tell him "if you can develop character like him, you will be okay. Just don't ever make decisions in life using NCAA logic." Thanks for the teaching point NCAA. We all owe you one.