DESTIN, Fla. | We’re going to be writing a Sunday story about the image of college football, but I wanted to give you guys a sneak peek of some of the strongest stuff today.
And it comes straight from the boss’ mouth. NCAA president Mark Emmert is here this week to talk with the SEC powerbrokers, and I asked him if college football has an image problem.
I’ve asked several of the league’s coaches and athletic directors the same thing and most have danced around the question. Emmert did not.
“Of course it does,” he said. “I don’t think there is any question about it. We can’t pretend otherwise. We have had a number of very high-profile cases that are very disturbing coming out, and they put us in a position where for many people we have lost the benefit of the doubt. We have to address those issues, the real ones and the perceived ones and make sure that we restore people’s confidence intercollegiate athletics.”
Emmert wants to create “a constructive fear” among his membership, he said.
“Coaches and athletes and administrators, boosters, everybody around the game needs to understand that if they violate rules and policies then the outcome will cause them to not be able to sit and do a cost benefit analysis of, ‘Well, I’m going to cheat and if I get caught, it’s still worth it,’” he said. “We can’t have people making that calculus. They’ve got to decide, ‘If I do this, there is a reasonable probability I get caught, and if I do get caught, it’s going to be a bad outcome for my university and for me.’”
Check The State and GoGamecocks.com on Sunday for more on this topic.