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March 30, 2011

Auburn's Issues Sound Familiar

As you no doubt know by now, HBO Real Sports with Bryant Gumble will air a report tonight that puts at least 4 Auburn players on record as having received payment from Auburn and other schools. SportsByBrooks has transcripts from the TV show, and an updated article with more color about Auburn's potential next steps.

Clearly there is blood in the water.

Before you watch tonight's broadcast, I highly recommend watching this 60 Minutes Special from 1991 regarding Eric Ramsey's tapes. Those tapes lead to Auburn being banned from TV and Bowls in 1993 as they proved Ramsey was paid to play football at Auburn. The entire pay for performance program described in this video sounds fairly similar to the upcoming HBO story.

Remember -- none of this has anything to do with Cam Newton. Except that a lot of people who hate Auburn are looking for a reason to kick the hell out of the Tigers. If they can't bust them for CamGate, they'll bust them for something else.

Here is what I believe to be true:
    1. Auburn was alleged to have paid kids up to $1,000 per month during the 1989 season and prior. They were also put on probation for violations of that exact nature. Many of the same boosters referenced in that 60 Minutes video are still around the AU program.

    2. $1k/month is obviously $12k a year. If you would give a kid $12k a year for up to 4 years in '89, then giving a kid $50k up front in 2010 isn't tough to put your head around. It's actually a good deal by comparison.

    3. It's not the easiest thing in the world to give someone $50k in cash. To move that sort of money was alleged by Mississippi State in regards to Newton ...takes a proven infrastructure. People don't just that kind of cash to kids without knowing for damn sure that it'll land in the right spot AND that their risk of being implicated (barring a confession) is minimal.

    4. You can't logically expect that an alumni group powerful and successful enough to invest $150k or more in a single player wouldn't protect that investment with additional investments of $25k-50k in ultra high quality players to surround him.

    5. If Newton's dad thought he could get $180k from AU, there's no way he stopped asking after the first bidder said no.

    6. If Newton's dad had asked for only $50k, Mississippi State would've been the 2010 SEC Champs and Gene Chizik's tenure in Auburn would be on life support.
Auburn may never get pinched for the Cam Newton debacle. Fine.

But it's becoming more and more clear that the money movement infrastructure that Auburn created and leveraged to turn around their program in the late 80s is back in business today as alleged by the 4 former players and the HBO special. And it's even more clear that certain other members of the SEC have passed the tipping point in their tolerance for Auburn's shenanigans.

So the question is simple. Will the NCAA finally attempt to cripple that infrastructure? Because it's not about Cam Newton now. It's way past that.



Anonymous said...

Nobody has given a clear answer to this question, so I'd love to hear your thoughts on it:

If these allegations are true, what is likely to happen to Auburn's football program?

It would seem to me as though it is dead in the water and staring down MAJOR MAJOR sanctions. But the big airwaves aren't acting like that's the case.

Anonymous said...

Those shorts should be a violation of NCAA rules

Anonymous said...

You ask "So the question is simple. Will the NCAA finally attempt to cripple that infrastructure?" No they won't. They are enablers of this culture of cheating, and they will dodge the issue, spin doctor, and delay acting rather than acting decisively.

Anonymous said...

That was a liberal hack job last night on HBO. More of the ‘it’s not fair’ and let’s suspend the rules of supply and demand liberal BS. Did and does Auburn cheat and pay players – 100% already guilty in the court of public opinion. Dirty program run by a dirty man, Lowder. The NCAA should make Auburn disassociate themselves with him along with whatever else they do. Auburn was back at it, this year, the story of the of Stanley McClover last night is very similar to what happened with the two Louisiana players that suddenly changed their lifelong love for LSU football and former LSU commits to Auburn, after Auburn had never even been mentioned by either previously. Auburn still thinks it is the 1980′s. Most football programs, by and large, has cleaned up their act. If for no other reason, than the internet and how it’s an era of no more secrets because anyone can post a rumor now and it spreads like wildfire. Auburn and Lowder just don’t care. There will always be stupid alumni that give the money handshakes and put their programs at risk but Auburn/Lowder oversaw a systematic endorsement of paying players or what the NCAA calls lack of institutional control. Does anyone really believe that Auburn isn’t fully complicit in this and continues to do it. Past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior.

Back to the original point. The HBO piece was all about ‘these overpaid football coaches’ that make $5M/yr when the physics professor only makes $75K. It’s called supply and demand. There’s a reason Cliff Lee makes the money he makes, because he is one of only a few guys that can throw a ball that way but there is an almost unlimited number of people that can become school teachers. If there is someone else behind you that says, “I’ll do it for that pay”, then that sets the market. Kinda one of the uglier examples of capitalism but a true one, nonetheless. Someone should have asked Bryant Gumble why he gets paid what he does.

As soon as they started a system to pay the football and basketball players, these same liberals would sue so the women’s volleyball player gets a cut as well. Whoever the black guy was that was saying the system is broke and it needs to be destroyed, he is free to go set up a farm league that takes players right out of high school and pays them. Nothing is stopping him – have at it, big boy.

Sam, Dawg Fan said...

Does anyone here think this does not happen at UGA?

Dubbayoo said...

Sam - no but when they get caught I'm sure we'll talk about it.

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