Lost in all the talk of the modern day death penalty handed down in the NCAA's report, is that there is no mention of Tim Floyd's alleged $1000 pay off to Rodney Guillory.
You know, the pay off where Yahoo! sports writers Charles Robinson and Jason Cole claimed to have seen and absolutely believed the evidence that Louis Johnson put forth in his allegation that he saw the money that Floyd allegedly handed Rodney Guillory in a coffee shop in Beverly Hills.
I read the NCAA's report and I can find no mention of it happening let alone any proof put forth by Johnson that it did happen.
This kind of matters because the NCAA was so quick to believe and use the story of a witness (Lloyd Lake) that the NCAA themselves thought had credibility issues yet they didn't believe Louis Johnson?
When I wrote this last year the amount of flack that I took from both Cole (in direct emails) and Robinson (in emails to the higher ups at SBNation) was incredible.
Both Cole and Robinson refused to discuss their findings or answer my questions because they were not happy with the stories that I wrote about their reporting of the Reggie Bush mess but also because they thought that USC fans had lost their objectivity toward their reporting.
Talk about thin skinned...
Cole himself said on the radio that he believed Johnson...obviously, because Johnson was his scoop on this particular allegation he had to rehabilitate him as a credible witness who was making some pretty outrageous claims with NO corroboration what so ever.
So what about it? Where is the evidence of this in the NCAA's report and if it was so credible why didn't the NCAA site Floyd for wrong doing? I gave Cole and Robinson their due in my piece last year because of their solid credentials as NFL beat writers before they jumped to Yahoo! and I will admit that much of their reporting did bear fruit in the NCAA's report WRT Bush.
But what about the allegation against Floyd?
Zip, zero, nada!
As I also wrote last year...
Kleph's emphasis on the "IF's" and "COULD BE's" is where chasm widens. For example other than Johnson's attorney, via Yahoo!, is it being reported anywhere that Johnson really did talk to the feds? There simply isn't any independent source that backs that claim up. It's just recycled in all the major news papers without any corroboration.I mean anyone can jump to conclusions based on a few snippets of reporting. As Kleph also notes that NO ONE has even been given a no comment form the federal agencies involved should raise a red flag.
Yet, Robinson claims they have talked to dozens of sources with pristine records...
We’ve got dozens of sources who have contributed to our reports and who have pristine records. So to say that everyone behind these reports is a felon is simply not true. That said, absolutely, some of the sources of these allegations do have records. But these are also people who spent years of their lives – years – in friendships or financial relationships with Reggie Bush and O.J. Mayo.
OK, so who are they. Yahoo's reporting hinges on the story of an unsavory character yet hey claim to have spoken to many sources who are "pristine". We would like to know who they are to see if they stand up to scrutiny. At this point Robinson's comments just seem incomplete.
All those "pristine" sources and none of their credible information about Tim Floyd made it into the NCAA's report?
Cole and Robinson's credibility takes a hit on this allegation even if they got much of the story right with Bush.
Because they were the point men in reporting it without ANY corroboration other than Louis Johnson. That is not even close to journalistic standards and they should not get a pass.
Robinson's credibility takes a another big hit with his tweets on the pending release of the NCAA report. They show him to be lacking objectivity, unprofessional and self-gloating. That sort of conduct from a supposed credible and respected reporter is an embarrassment to the profession.
So these allegations against Floyd would appear to be baseless based on the NCAA not even discussing it in their report and that is telling given the NCAA's apparent low evidentiary threshold that we have all seen them use in their report.
Many of us said that Floyd should sue to redeem his name if the allegations were not true, but it is clear that he wants to move on. He is back coaching in the college ranks...something that is clearly his first love.
The sad thing in all of this is that these unproven allegations soiled the reputation of a coach who gave it his all at USC. He was treated shabbily by Mike Garrett which directly led to Floyd's departure...that is unforgivable, no one should be put through that when there is not a single shred of evidence corroborating Louis Johnson's story.
To be sure, Tim Floyd had his flaws and he is not blameless WRT Mayo but he certainly isn't what Johnson, Cole and Robinson portrayed him to be...