If there's one thing the NCAA is not known for, it's consistency. Just this month, they put Georgia Tech on four years probation and stripped tim of a conference championship over $312 in illicit benefits while letting LSU off with only one year despite five major violations. I can accept that. But I figured there was some rhyme or reason to the organization. I took it as given that Ohio State, whose coach covered up violations and lied to investigators to keep players eligible for a bowl game, would be hit hardest of any school currently being looked into, UNC included. It looks like I was wrong.
Word comes out of Columbus today that OSU will not be accused of Lack of Institutional Control. They won't even be hit with UNC's Failure to Monitor charge. Apparently the NCAA's logic was that Jim Tressel did adequately monitor his championship ring-hawking players, but did not inform the athletic department as he was supposed to. The Buckeye compliance staff and higher-ups are thus blameless, mere victims of a rogue... head coach?
What exactly does the NCAA see in Ohio State? Their previous December ruling to suspend six players but only after their bowl game, and because they promised to return next season to serve said suspensions was bizarre. This is obscene. The head coach is a college football program. This one had already been reprimanded for not reporting potential violations in a timely manner. And yet it looks like Ohio State will serve less of a punishment than Georgia Tech, who again, had one player accept $312 in improper benefits.
If the NCAA was trying to implement a strategy to destroy any credibility they may have, this would be the kind of thing they'd do. Hell, I wouldn't trust them to implement that kind of plan this well; the NCAA would probably accidentally administer fair and impartial rulings if they tried it. The outcry over this should be huge, and the NCAA will probably respond by hammering someone else, anyone else.
Like say, UNC. I'm suddenly very pessimistic about Carolina's hearing. After all, the Tar Heels athletic department kept in touch with its coach.