Perhaps you’re wondering about the state of the NCAA’s investigation into Cam Newton’s short time at Auburn. Apparently the Auburn coach is, or at least was. According to Pete Thamel of the New York Times, Gene Chizik has been given cause to wonder no longer.
Julie Roe Lach, the NCAA’s vice president for enforcement, made a presentation to the group [of SEC coaches at their convocation at Destin, Fla.], which included every men’s basketball coach, football coach and athletic director in the conference. When she opened up the room for discussion, Auburn’s football coach, Gene Chizik, raised his hand first.
He peppered Roe Lach with a flurry of questions about the NCAA’s investigation into Cam Newton and why the NCAA had not publicly announced that the investigation was over. Chizik complained that the inquiry’s open-ended nature had hurt Auburn’s recruiting and he followed up at least three times, leading to a testy exchange.
“You’ll know when we’re finished,” Roe Lach told Chizik, according to several coaches who were at the meeting. “And we’re not finished.”
I believe this is official NCAA-speak for: “Siddown and shut up!”
You’ll want to read the rest of Thamel’s report to get the reaction of several SEC basketball coaches — Vanderbilt’s Kevin Stallings and LSU’s Trent Johnson among them — to Chizik’s Q-and-abbreviated-A of Roe Lach, but it’s safe to assume this will become the most-buzzed-about SEC conclave since Johnny Majors and Steve Spurrier got into a little discussion back in 1991.
What happened then? Well, according to a man who was in the room, Spurrier and Majors were playing some sort of game — ping-pong, I believe it was — when Spurrier, then coming off his first season at Florida, told Majors he couldn’t believe Tennessee claimed the 1990 SEC championship when Florida (then on NCAA probation, of all things, and therefore ineligible for the title) had finished with a better record.
Legend holds that Majors, no shrinking violet, replied: “Yeah? Well, we beat your backsides.” (Or words to that effect. And indeed the Vols had, edging the mighty Gators 45-3 in 1990.)
Legend also holds that a subsequent good time was had by all. And maybe you wonder why conferences and coaches have such summer get-togethers. Why, for the fellowship, of course!
By Mark Bradley