August 30, 2013

The NCAA Goes From Stallion to Gelding

By - Keith Smith

Have you ever seen a wild stallion after he's been "tamed" by a vet? He goes from this big, majestic creature to a passive, almost timid animal. And who can blame him? I would never trust my owner again!

That's kind of what the NCAA has become; a neutered shell of its former self.

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Remember, it was just over eleven years ago when the NCAA stared down the vaunted University of Alabama, arguably the best college football program in history, and said the Tide was lucky they didn't receive the death penalty. The NCAA was defiant, and seen as one of the staunchest enforcement agencies in all of sports. They imposed their will back then like a young Mike Tyson, knocking universities around however they pleased.

Cut to the present. In the past few years, we've seen things like the University of Miami debacle, tons of alleged incidents at major universities (from Auburn to Oregon to USC), and now the almost comical "punishment" for Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M, making him serve a whopping 1/2 game suspension, the first half against the juggernaut that is Rice.

They may as well have made it the second half, since he was probably going to sit that out anyway once A&M hung 35 or more points on the Owls in the first 30 minutes of play. It would have had about the same impact.

The NCAA Enforcement Division sprinkled this little bit of fairy dust on top of the gigantic powder puff they have become after Manziel allegedly accepted money for his autograph. This was the kind of thing that, a few years ago, would've cost the Heisman winner a minimum of four games, probably six, and he would've had to pay back the money on top of it.

The committee says they do not have evidence that Manziel accepted cash, and that may very well be true. It's only been a few weeks since the accusations first broke. But have they really exhausted all their investigative sources in that minimum period of time? I mean, it took them four years to get all they needed to force Reggie Bush to return his Heisman Trophy, yet they are already running up the white flag on this Manziel stuff? I've seen more in-depth investigations done on an hour-long episode of "Monk."

College football is about to turn into the Wild West, because there is no sheriff in town. With Roger Goodell at the controls, the NFL has become more of an enforcer than the NCAA, and those guys are professionals and of legal age to do what they want.

I liked the old NCAA. I believe in discipline, and rules, and doing the right thing. I don't like to see people get by with breaking, or at a minimum, bending (into the shape of a pretzel), what should be guidelines for how to conduct yourself. I don't like when people, or football programs, thumb their noses at the powers that be.

But get ready, because with the big beast of the NCAA now "tamed," I expect there will be a lot of schools lining up to take a ride.


  1. It disgusted me when I heard the half game suspension. Why insult us with that? Just don't bother handing out the suspension. Simple.

  2. Absolutely gutless the way they handled the Manziel situation. Like Brad said, they shouldn't have bothered doing anything at all.

  3. The best part is when they put these schools on probation and ban them from bowl play for things coaches or players did that are no longer even there anymore!