Memo to Georgia Tech: LSU shows how to handle the NCAA

Tech could have spared itself the harsh lighting by being nicer. (AJC photo by Johnny Crawford)

Georgia Tech could have spared itself by being nicer. (AJC photo by Johnny Crawford)

Here’s a quote that should be posted on the wall of the Edge Center, which is the official name of the building that houses Georgia Tech’s athletic association. It comes from LSU chancellor Michael Martin in the wake of his school’s NCAA sanctions, which were announced Tuesday:

“A situation that could have been much worse was made better by the dedicated work of the LSU athletics compliance staff and I am pleased that the NCAA recognized LSU’s effort to cooperate and be proactive. The compliance staff … made an exemplary showing of how a university should react when mistakes are made.”

To recap: LSU was found guilty of major violations involving former assistant coach D.J. McCarthy, who’d been recruiting JUCO transfer Akiem Hicks. For this, the NCAA placed the Tigers on one year’s probation.

Point of comparison: Georgia Tech took what should have been a secondary violation and turned it into four years’ probation, a $100,000 fine and a forfeited conference championship.

The difference: LSU made a concerted attempt to find out what was what. Indeed, committee on infractions chairman Dennis Thomas pointed to Miriam Segar, the school’s associate AD, and her efforts to dig into a messy situation. Said Thomas: “That was critical. If that had not been done, the institution could have really been under more severe and serious penalties as well.”

LSU, to borrow from Sir Paul McCartney, took a sad song and made it better. Georgia Tech took what the NCAA described as an “obstructionist” stance and got slapped down. Two case studies, I’d call these.

Oh, and where did Dan Radakovich work before being hired as Tech’s athletic director in 2006? At LSU.

By Mark Bradley

290 comments Add your comment

not rawdawg

July 19th, 2011
7:37 pm

Mark Bradley

July 19th, 2011
7:39 pm

Kudos, not rawdawg.

gtdrake

July 19th, 2011
7:40 pm

this article is trash. what disgrace mr. bradley

MagnaCarterGT

July 19th, 2011
7:41 pm

Bend over for the NCAA and you’ll get punished less for a more serious crime. Yep.

coloradobulldog

July 19th, 2011
7:41 pm

Meanwhile, Schultz writes that Paul Johnson slams NCAA for Georgia Tech’s probation. #techstillarrogantlydoesn’tgetit

Jerious Norwood

July 19th, 2011
7:43 pm

Anybody wanna offer me a contract? I’m walking with almost no limp.

Innocent Bystander

July 19th, 2011
7:46 pm

In other words, the point that the NCAA made in all this is that you can pretty much get away with whatever with little to no punishment, so long as you’re up front about it during the investigation. Just don’t tick them off.

Better yet, they’re showing you can get away with whatever, so long as you are one of their cash cows. First Auburn, now LSU. I can’t wait to see them give tOSU five years probation and nothing else after committing what really should be a death penalty offense.

rduck

July 19th, 2011
7:49 pm

MarkI have been saying all along since the sanctions came down on Tech that it was a case of the NCAA making an example of a school that is not one of their cash-cow programs. This announcement today just goes to further prove my point. The NCAA is on a powertrip and has been for some time. Sure LSU gets by with a slap on the wrist.What did you expect? Did Tech mishandle the situation? Yes they did. But are you to tell me it warranted 4 years of probation? Bend over and grab the ankles for the NCAA Bradley! You could be next!

docsbro

July 19th, 2011
7:50 pm

I see the point you are trying to make Mark, but I think this points to the bigger NCAA issue and that it is COMPLETELY arbitrary in it’s decisions. All that should be learned from this is if the “bully” comes looking for your lunch money then kiss their A$$. There is NO rhyme or reason to how they levy the decisions just if you say “yes master” what do you want. So Tech took a minor infraction and made it major and LSU took a major infraction and made minor. Logically THAT makes NO sense. The infractions should stand alone from the reaction, not based on how you “take care” of the NCAA.

They are losing their grip and are trying to grasp at straws. Next time, just get down and take care of the big bad NCAA even if there is no reason for them to be there.

Wouldn't wipe my a** with NCAA TP

July 19th, 2011
7:50 pm

What a joke of an article.This is garbage bradley imo! The factory schools of course get off easy. GT is not considered a FACTORY SCHOOL! Any idiot knows what is really going on here. LSU is a moneymaker and the NCAA took it easy on them. Case closed

"What you' da got Lorne"

July 19th, 2011
7:52 pm

Say it ain’t so Coach….

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 19th, 2011
7:52 pm

Sorry if we come across as arrogant, coloradobulldog. It’s the natural result of having a discussion with someone that has an IQ 40 points lower.

Tech self-reported five years ago, Mark. We saw how well that worked.

Buzzzed

July 19th, 2011
8:01 pm

Tech is the NCAA’s whipping boy.

Worm

July 19th, 2011
8:02 pm

But, the Techsters are “holier than thou” and “total people”..How could the NCAA not realize that?

Duckafawg

July 19th, 2011
8:03 pm

and MB…you failed to mention LSU lost scholarships….I would much rather Tech have to remove a banner from the facade or move a trophy to a closet (how stupid is that?)…that give up the lifeblood of college football….scholarships/athletes

Georgia's Bayou Bengal

July 19th, 2011
8:03 pm

Geaux Tigers. Exemplary article, Mr. Bradley.

Worm

July 19th, 2011
8:03 pm

@DwayneBowe-IQ’s are impressive, but I’d take common sense over those extra 40 points!

Lanier

July 19th, 2011
8:05 pm

Something lost in the Tech situation is that the NCAA makes it out to be that Tech was colluding against it. They told the head football coach that two players would be interviewed. PJ had to know, in case he needed to hold them out of the UGA game. That simple. It’s nothing compared to Jim Tressell lying about knowing his players were getting free/cheap cars or knowing that they were selling their B10 rings for cash and tats. Tech wasn’t trying to screw the NCAA. Also, Baybay got clothes from his friend and former teammate, not a random runner trying to get him to go to a certain agent.

crusher dawg

July 19th, 2011
8:06 pm

Maybe the Techsters will realize that being snobby gets you nowhere.

Keeper

July 19th, 2011
8:06 pm

LSU is a more experienced cheater and therefore knew how better to handle it. (And was better at sucking up.) Ergo, they get punished less. Sad.

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 19th, 2011
8:08 pm

Funny, Worm. You lack both.

It’s simply foolish on NCAA’s part to even think the two players could be interviewed without Johnson’s knowledge, to say nothing of the fact that he needed the information to do his own job competently.

Lanier

July 19th, 2011
8:08 pm

Mark and the rest of the AJC, I honestly can’t believe that y’all hate on Tech so bad about this. Especially since you all seemingly should know Tech’s AD and Coaches well enough to know they definitely would not deliberately try to thwart the NCAA. Tech is an engineering school that isn’t very fun, has a small fanbase, no good girls, isn’t in a college town, etc. It’s not like the athletes coming here are getting the sweet hookup to come, the ones that come are following the rules and definitely aren’t getting extra benefits a la SEC/OSU with cars, cash, etc.

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 19th, 2011
8:09 pm

We’re all sorry crusher dawg’s feelings have been hurt by a “Techster.”

I’ll never understand why the NCAA doesn’t expect this process to be adversarial, Keeper. It’s probably nothing more than a reflection of their ivory tower mentality.

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 19th, 2011
8:11 pm

The thing is, Lanier, we SHOULD want to thwart them. If the gestapo is cruising around, even if you’ve done nothing wrong, you won’t be candid with them. This is not surprising information.

DAWG

July 19th, 2011
8:16 pm

NCAA has lost its edge in the enforcement branch, just look at Auburn. They can parade around and get away with murder. Who in the NCAA is getting paid big bucks to have a blind eye?

Allen Waters

July 19th, 2011
8:16 pm

OSU was allowed to play the suspended players after they agreed to come back for this season. Yeah right! Where is TPryor now? It is so absurd to see what the NCAA does to UGA with 4 games and let the Alabama player off with 2 games for attending a party in Miami. Anyway, at least the season will start soon. We will all be watching and hoping to enjoy a better season than the past 2! UGA fan from Savannah in India.
Captain Allen Waters

BG

July 19th, 2011
8:16 pm

No one has ever accused Georgia Tech of being smart. LOL

GT GRAD

July 19th, 2011
8:21 pm

READ FAST BECAUSE THIS POST WILL BE DELETED BY THE AJC STAFF IN LESS THAN 2 MINUTES!

This comparison is so unfair, very biased and ridiculous.

One of the LSU coaches actually broke the NCAA rules in an attempt to benefit LSU (MAJOR VIOLATION) and they get off essentially scott free because the NCAA employees felt like they cooperated.

The GT coaches (and athletic department employees) did NOT break any NCAA rules because they were not involved in the stupid “clothes issue” AND they were advised by the professional/legal/lawyer compliance officer that the issue was minor and does not justify keeping Demaryous Thomas out of any games!! This instance DEFINITELY does not qualify as an example of the coaches breaking any NCAA rules in an attempt to unfairly give GT an advantage. They were honest and pretty much said: Interview any player, coach, GT employee and so on that you want to interview……….we have nothing to hide because we did nothing wrong. The ignorant power hungry (not-qualified -for-his-job) NCAA employee in control felt like GT should be more scared and should cower when he speaks. GT simply acted innocent (because they were and they felt strongly that they were completely innocent); but NCAA dude decided to show GT he has POWER and that he should be RESPECTED and FEARED; thus, he proved to GT that he can punish them and I mean BIG.

I would MUCH MUCH MUCH rather support a team that does not try to cheat in the first place and then is honest about the fact that you can look all you want because we did not do anything wrong!

I think your example that LSU knowingly cheated and then cooperated fully in an attempt to get away with minor punishment is a sad example of how the NCAA operates. This should not be an example of how to handle the NCAA……not attempting to cheat in the first place SHOULD be the best example (as GT does each and every year BTW).

I am really surprised that Bradley posted a blog in the AJC that attempted to hurt GT……..NOT!

GermanJacket

July 19th, 2011
8:22 pm

Really? Mark, Are you trying to stir the pot (good job), or do you actually believe what you wrote? If so, you are dumber than dirt. You have my sympathies. Good luck to you with any future Paul Johnson interviews.

BigTimeTECHFan

July 19th, 2011
8:23 pm

So it was found and admitted that LSU coach lies about having 2nd phone and they cooperated??

I still can’t find where Tech did not cooperate, they worked with NCAA, no lies told

BigTimeTECHFan

July 19th, 2011
8:26 pm

Also Mark can you point to the NCAA rule where a AD can’t tell the head coach that his players are being investigated?

headley lamar

July 19th, 2011
8:27 pm

Bottom line Tech cheated then tried to cover it up.

Better work with them next time. Its bad enough cheating but the cover up made it that much worse.

GTFAN

July 19th, 2011
8:27 pm

Well “kudos” to LSU. Leave it to an SEcheat school to know how to cheat the right way. “Kudos” again.

Steve

July 19th, 2011
8:27 pm

I am still confused, Tech still has a football team??? Wasn’t sure since that stadium is always empty and there is never a “buzz” about the team. I mean even the local channels in Atlanta have weekly shows focused on UGA athletics. Nothing for Tech? Says a lot.

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 19th, 2011
8:29 pm

Well, if no one has ever accused us of being smart, we must not be.

BigTimeTECHFan

July 19th, 2011
8:30 pm

LSU makes illegal phone calls to recruit, admits to it – punished 2 years
UGA Richt makes illegal phone calls to recruit, admits to it – what did they get?

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 19th, 2011
8:30 pm

Bottom line, headley lamar has an IQ in the 70’s if he thinks we cheated.

Ask him to point to where and expect to hear crickets.

It says UGA has a lot of Wal-Mart fans, Steve.

Buford T. Pusser

July 19th, 2011
8:32 pm

Nice hypocritical article Mr. Bradley; don’t defend yourself, kow-tow to the NCAA and all will be well in the long run. Must be based on the Ohio State model. What trash, and you claim to be a responsible journalist, you sir, represent the height of irresponsibility.

The Sheriff has spoken.

Steve

July 19th, 2011
8:34 pm

Wow, good one “Somewhere!” So origional! Most UGA folks I know are doing just fine.

atlTIGER

July 19th, 2011
8:35 pm

Looks like you tech nerds are still sore from the embarassing whoopin you took in the Georgia Dome a couple years ago. Show some class, your school handled it poorly and we did it right. I thought you guys were suppose to be so smart?

PerimeterCenterJacket

July 19th, 2011
8:36 pm

So…do WHATEVER they say and cheating of the sort which might lead to actual competitive advantage can become tantamount to a secondary violation, BUT believe yourself innocent enough to relax on secondary violations – and in so doing fail to follow every detail of what the NCAA asks – and your secondary violation (which the NCAA admits was not even proven and would not have led to any sort of immediate competitive advantage) will blow up into a major violation and your name will be publicly drug through the mud while 1/3rd of your operating profit will be garnished by the NCAA.

Sounds like…well, nothing else. Why? Because we don’t let that kind of thing live in a free market. This is a governing body on a rampage. I think we say it when AJ Green’s situation got out of hand, and it’s just not stopping. Funny, I’m not sure OSU and UNC are “cooperating” all that well…perhaps their major-to-begin-with penalties deserve that old-timey SMU-style punishment?! USC seems to pale in comparison to OSU on this new scale of “don’t make us come over there.”

Spike 80DF

July 19th, 2011
8:38 pm

I thought Georgia State was the college football team in Atlanta, who’s this Tech everyone is talking about?

tar and feathers party

July 19th, 2011
8:39 pm

So LSU kissed ncaa butt and got off almost scott free? It was either the butt kissing, or the hookers, I am not sure which one swayed the ncaa goons, imho.

Dunwoody Mom

July 19th, 2011
8:39 pm

Dear Mark Bradley, please educate yourself on LSU and the connection with a certain Mr. Lyles.

bamaguy

July 19th, 2011
8:40 pm

Whether we like it or not, the NCAA is the “high Sheriff” and it is your own best interest to kiss their backside unless your institution plans on pulling out of the Association some time in the near future.

PerimeterCenterJacket

July 19th, 2011
8:42 pm

Spike 80DF: This Tech everyone’s talking about will play and beat whoever the heck you root for. I’m assuming you’re from Alabama toting tree poison as your handle. I seem to remember a certain series an angry little man named Saban backed out on right after we had a decent season in 2009. Wouldn’t want that to go the wrong way for anyone…best to just reschedule it….and reschedule it….and reschedule it…..

Bobby Hebert

July 19th, 2011
8:42 pm

The thing that needs to be stressed here is Akiem Hicks was a JUCO recruit who received improper benefits in the form of a free hotel stay and some meals when visiting LSU’s campus prior to the 2009 season. Despite eventually signing with LSU, HE NEVER EVEN PLAYED A DOWN FOR LSU THAT SEASON. He was held out of practice in mid-August and never played a single snap for LSU, ever.

So, before you fools start lumping this violation in with what has recently occurred at Auburn and tOSU – think again. It’s rotted, festering apples (AU/tOSU) to oranges (LSU).

Bottom line, LSU was proactive and did it the right way. The NCAA recognized this and ruled accordingly.

JB

July 19th, 2011
8:42 pm

Johnson impressed some Tech faithful today….But did not help Tech. Nothing is worse than trying to convince authority , in any path of life, that you know better than authority and don’t say, Yes, we’ll do it your way. Right or Wrong, none of us really know, but Tech sent the wrong signals back to the NCAA. And like it or not, are fresh off some serious trouble with them for the 2005-6 use of 17 ineligible athletes,11 in football. If I were the President of Tech, I would tell that Hillbilly coach to keep his mouth shut.

Reservoir Dawg

July 19th, 2011
8:42 pm

Dunwoody Mom is here!

I love her posts!

atlTIGER

July 19th, 2011
8:44 pm

Hey DUMBwoody Mom, you should educate yourself. We already sat down with the NCAA about Lyles and we’re getting off scott free there too…why?? Because we paid him for legal services and everything we bought (just like tech does) was legit….unlike Oregon who could not prove what they paid for. Every school pays for scouting services and videos, etc. Ge your facts straight before you open your mouth.