Last Friday on 1070 The Fan in Indianapolis, Urban Meyer waylaid the Indy-based NCAA during an interview with host Dan Dakich.
Meyer ripped the NCAA from every possible angle, intimating that outlaw coaches have taken over the profession while the coaches who run clean programs are forced to be “politically correct” as they suffer a “competitive disadvantage” in silence.
Meyer also noted that he himself assembled recommendations for NCAA rules enforcement last year and sent out his plan to various college athletics administrators. Recommendations that apparently fell on deaf ears - at least from the NCAA rule enforcement perspective.
Along with the audio from 1070 The Fan below, I’ve transcribed the follow excerpted comments from Meyer’s interview with Dakich below:
“What I’ve seen the last five years is a complete turn in the integrity of the college coaching profession. It’s completely turned the other way. Right now, it’s not good because the risk-reward is ‘have at it, do what you’ve got to do get the great player, go win games and at the end of the day we’ll find out what happens down the road …
“You tell me how a young man who is a wide receiver (Dez Bryant of Oklahoma State) and he lied to the NCAA and they took away his eligibility and he was never allowed to play again. And then there’s violations in other areas of the country and that doesn’t happen.”
1070 the Fan host Dan Dakich:
“Coach of Tennessee basketball (Bruce Pearl) did the same thing (lied to the NCAA). Sat out eight games lost a little money and he’s back coaching right now.”
“And Dez Bryant is out of the profession, I mean college football. …
“I actually put one together last year, a recommendation (NCAA rules enforcement suggestions) and sent it to a good chunk of athletic directors and presidents and commissioners. You can have group committees, group hugs, group discussions, you can have whatever you want, at the end of the day if you enforce the law people will have an opportunity to break that rule less.
“If there’s a law and it’s an unforceable law, and deep down they don’t want to enforce it, you are officially in the wild, wild west and anything goes. We need to revamp this thing.”
“I’m probably going to get criticized for saying a few things but I’m good. I’m no longer a football coach and that had a part to do with why I stepped away.
“I’m not the lone wolf here there are some great football coaches that are still coaching. They have to be very careful, politically correct, say all the right things and do all the right things and deep down their hearts getting ripped out because they’re at a competitive disadvantage and that’s just not right.
“But at the end of the day the people that pay the worst price is the 19-year-old young man knows that it’s wrong but still deals with agents when he’s not supposed to, taking things from agents and getting recruited illegally. At the end of the day that’s going to affect that young man for the rest of his life because a precedent has been set in his mind that taking a shortcut is okay.
“The ultimate mission of college athletics is to develop people for after athletics. The job is not to make money for the university. That’s not the number one objective and I’m anxious to help and give my opinion.”
Considering he left Florida after a mediocre season, many will write Meyer’s comments off to sour grapes. In actuality, I think Meyer’s remarks are the most alarming thing I’ve heard since the latest outbreak of NCAA rules violations.
You also can’t help but think that Meyer is alluding to Auburn’s recruitment of ex-Florida Gator Cam Newton in his comments, and that a lot of “politically correct” coaches around the country know a lot more about that situation than they’re letting on.