I hope Johnny “Football” Manziel has learned a lesson from the NCAA. He was thoroughly investigated and questioned for about 8 hours by the NCAA last Sunday, and rest assured, he has learned a lesson with his half-game suspension against almighty powerhouse Rice in week one. Johnny is going to have to think long and hard about his actions during his 30-minute suspension. He has to drink a lot of water and wonder why the team is only up 35-0 at half; it’s going to be brutal. Now, before any die-hard A&M fans attack me, I have no ill will towards the school or football team. I would react the same way if it were Alabama, Texas, USC, you name it (although Manziel hasn’t exactly won my heart over with his off-season resume of fun).
My issue is with how the NCAA has handled its recent run of troubles.
I think we can all agree that the NCAA, particularly Division I FBS football, has had its share of negative publicity in the past few years. Whether it be the Penn State/Jerry Sandusky scandal, or the Ohio State “rings for tattoos” issue, or the Cam Newton pay-for-play disaster of an investigation, and now the slap on the wrist of Johnny Manziel, the NCAA isn’t exactly batting 1.000. I mean, why even bother with the 30-minute suspension? The NCAA should have just let Johnny play if that’s all it was going to do.
You want to tell me that the supposed governing board over all college athletics is still in full control? I think not. I think we have just witnessed the NCAA being bullied by Manziel’s attorneys, coincidentally the same ones that Cam Newton used to avoid his troubles. Hmmm, how strange.
Ever since the NCAA mishandled the whole Miami and Nevin Shapiro incident, they have been all over the map. One year, Dez Byrant gets a yearlong suspension for lying about having dinner with Deion Sanders, and a few years later, Oregon gets two years of probation and loses three scholarships with no bowl ban for admitting to “major violations” of NCAA rules in regards to recruiting. I think it’s safe to say the NCAA is struggling a little bit.
I realize that I and many others reading this are probably not 100% aware of what goes into the investigation of violations by the NCAA, and I will not pretend to have all the answers, but clearly whatever is currently in place is failing to bring proper punishment for violations.
Perhaps the NCAA can outsource its investigation process, hire outside firms across the United States to come in and assist with investigations and possibly even determine the punishments for guilty violators. If the NCAA would devote a small portion of its revenue (which I think they certainly have enough of) to fixing this, we wouldn’t have to deal with these embarrassing investigation failures anymore.
Sam Roberts is a senior majoring in business.