Well here we go again. The latest scoop now is that Southern Cal is going to hold a news conference tomorrow to respond to the long drawn out NCAA investigations. Yeah, I know we have all heard that before. We have heart it from Dan Wetzel. Then we heard from Dana O'Neil on tWWL. Now it's Joe Schad's turn ... also from tWWL. This time its for real. Yeah, ok.
Anyway, I know the underlying news about a news conference tomorrow now been fanposted (multiple times) and fanshotted here already (kudos to everyone though for combing all over ... keep it coming). Still there are three details though that are worth flagging.It looks like for the first time, the media is now talking about Southern Cal being a "repeat offender," there are talks of multiple year bowl ban (which should be a minimum), and Trogans are already issuing threats of all out war against the NCAA. All of this after the jump.
First up in the latest tWWL report there is the mention of Southern Cal possibly being a "repeat offender" (emphasis added throughout):
If USC is found guilty of major violations, the NCAA also could rule that the Trojans are "repeat violators." Per NCAA rules, "An institution shall be considered a 'repeat' violator if the Committee on Infractions finds that a major violation has occurred within five years of the starting date of a major penalty."
The athletic program was last sanctioned in August of 2001.
That is the first time I have seen that reference in traditional media. Of course we brought this up months ago when Patroclus laid out why Southern Cal could fall in the category of a "repeat offender" in January. For some reason the tradmed reporters are just realizing it NOW. LOL Hey, don't wait on the Trojan Times to find this out. Duffster and his Trogan chronies are busy rewriting a complete rundown on our handicap scandal from 1998. But I digress.
Second, Joe Schad is now talking about multiple year bowl bans. Here is what Schad had to say in today's College Football Live show (don't have a link for this):
"They are anticipating a loss of scholarships, probation, a vacating of up to 2 years of wins, which would potentially lead to the loss of the 2004 BCS national championship. USC coaches are fearing a multi-year bowl ban. I'm told that they believe they could withstand a 1 year bowl ban on the strength of its recruiting. Still of course the possibility of Reggie Bush's Heisman could be stripped, although the Heisman trustees do not want to have to do that. The thing the NCAA has tried to find out in this whole process is what did USC know, what should they have known, and was there in fact a lack of institutional control." - Joe Schad
Note the highlighted part. That is the key. 1 year bowl ban is going to be a wrist slap and kind of a joke. We will see what happens.
Lastly, it already looks the Trojans might be preparing for an all out war against the NCAA. Garry Paskwietz, the publisher of WeAreSC.com ("an ESPN affliate") wrote late last week in their open forum:
One of the themes running through the endless reports on the NCAA investigation right now is the fact that the NCAA needs to come down hard on USC in order to send a message that they are doing their job. To me, this is a huge wild card in the case. I think we all understand that the NCAA is going to impose some kind of penalty and I don't get the sense that people in the athletic department are being naive about this either. Those penalties may even be a little uncomfortable and we may have to swallow hard and accept them but I also get the sense that USC isn't going to simply accept penalties which are considered beyond reason.
When it comes to this case, we hear a lot of people saying "where there is smoke there's fire so USC must be guilty of something". Well, I still don't know what USC is GUILTY of doing, there may been some instances where the NCAA says we should have been more vigilant but is that really an offense worthy of serious punishment? I guess we will find out soon enough. The NCAA needs to be careful though when it comes to listening to the howls of protest from those who are calling for a witch hunt in this case. The facts are what they are, nothing more. Punish us in a fair way and this thing gets put behind us so we can all move forward. But if the NCAA decides that this is a time to show their teeth, to show that they can stand up to big bad USC, then they are going to find out what a fight is all about. We're not going to let you make an example out of us just to fit your agenda.
He is one of the most informed observers on the other side. He will not throw around words like that so casually. He has tight and impressive connections (I am sure) with the folks at Heritage Hall. So yeah, a reasonable observer could construe that kind of saber rattling as a direct threat to the NCAA from Troy that they would unleash whatever legal recourse they might have under existing provisions. Here is what they can do under the current rules (per USCFootball.com):
Following the release of the report, USC has 15 days to submit a written notice that it is appealing any findings or rulings of the Committee on Infractions. Appeals are based solely on the school's belief that the committee's findings are contrary to the evidence presented, or that the facts did not constitute a violation of NCAA rules or that there was a procedural error in the process.
It will be very interesting to see how the NCAA responds to the kind of rhetoric coming out of Troy. As they say at some website: DEVELOPING.
UPDATE II (N): This is interesting. Southern Cal will not issue a preemptive statement or hold a press conference before the NCAA annoucement? That is according to the Trogan
cut and paster beat-reporter Gary Klein from the Trojan Times:
The NCAA has reported its final findings to USC and could make an announcement regarding sanctions against the school’s athletic program as early as Thursday, multiple sources close to the situation said Wednesday.
The NCAA, the governing body for collegiate sports, investigated USC’s athletic program for four years regarding allegations centered on former football player Reggie Bush and former basketball player O.J. Mayo.
USC spokesmen declined to comment , saying the university would address the situation when the NCAA makes its report public.
That doesn't sound like a very confident PR move from the always uber arrogant Trogans. GO BRUINS.
UPDATE III (P): ESPN and the Trojan Times are reporting that USC has received the NCAA's findings, and that the sanctions to be imposed on the football program include forfeiting "at least the 2004 season", a reduction of more than 20 scholarships, and a 2-year Bowl ban.