Buried in a blog post, there is an interesting tidbit in the Miami Hearld this morning.
An official close to the NCAA’s investigation said several former UM players have refused to speak to the NCAA, as expected, and the NCAA probably won’t be able to corroborate most of what Nevin Shapiro claimed against more than 50 former Hurricanes players. Canes coaches "told me there might a little penalty but not as bad as some people think," said Columbus High’s Deon Bush, the nation’s No. 4 safety prospect who is considering UM.
Fact is, no one at UM knows for sure what to expect, but there’s optimism the penalty won’t be crushing. One UM official said the irony is beyond all the harm that Shapiro has done, UM ended up losing money on him, because it had to return his donations and because he never paid the $50,000-plus for his Sun Life Stadium suite in 2009.
You can look at this a couple of different ways...
1) That the "official" at UM didn't pay attention to what happened at USC with regards to former players not cooperating, uncorroborated stories etc. The NCAA doesn't need corroboration or facts to make their case stick. In fact, depending on their mood, the NCAA can stitch any story together to make their case.
2) The NCAA will once again pick an choose how to enforce and interpret its rules. From a lack of monitoring, should have known and from length of time in which the infractions took place, etc. As we have seen in the recent past, money, back room deals and cronyism tend to set the tone for how a the NCAA handles their enforcement procedures.
I am going with #2...just because we have seen how the NCAA has operated in the past. The NCAA isn't going to let Paul Dee be embarrassed by publicly calling out his athletic department when these infractions went on during his watch. The NCAA also won't embarrass Donna Shalala, she has a long history with Mark Emmert. So any formal rebuke of Shalala won't be forthcoming because it's a direct line right back to Emmert, who has publicly given high praise to Shalala in the past.
I mean the similarities between the two cases is pretty clear....Right?
Rogue "agent" throwing money, gifts and/or entertainment at football players....Check!
Rogue "agent" is a convicted felon who has an axe to grind...and is being rebuked as having credibility issues....Check!
Rogue "agent" given access to campus, sidelines at games etc....Check!
Former players who were alleged to have been involved, not cooperating with NCAA investigators....Check!
Former School AD (who also sat in judgment on COI in the USC case) said the school couldn't have known...Check!
What did I miss?
This would be laughable if it wasn't so concerning!
The bigger question to all of us is just how will Pat Haden and Max Nikias react? I realize that there is nothing that can't or won't be done by the higher ups...Pat and Max sent that ship down the river a long time ago, but the reactions of feigned concern or faux anger are now becoming comedy in their own right.
Larry Scott is culpable as well. He sat on the sidelines with nary any public statements on USC's situation. He only raised his "Eire" when the Ohio State mess exploded.
I realize there is a long way to go on Miami but you can see things lining up to let them get off light.