Thursday, November 13, 2008

Bar Battery, SMU Suspensions, and Faculty Oversight

Two West Virginia football players have been charged with battery:
Two West Virginia football players have been charged with battery stemming from an early morning incident at a Morgantown bar in late October.

Tight end Maxwell Anderson, 21, and 20-year-old Jeremy Kash, the starting holder on special teams, are scheduled to be arraigned on the misdemeanor charge on Dec. 3 in Morgantown Municipal Court.

Morgantown Police Sgt. Harold Sperringer said the incident took place on Oct. 25. There was a fight inside a bar, and people filed a complaint with police saying they had been attacked by the players.

WVU Coach Bill Stewart says he's looking into the situation, but hasn't made a decision yet.

Four SMU football players have been suspended for the season:

Four members of the SMU football team have been suspended for the rest of the season.

Aldrick Robinson, Emmanuel Sanders, Derius Bell and Justin Smart will not participate in practices and the final two games of the season according to a source within SMU football. Sanders is a junior while Robinson, Bell and Smart are sophomores.

The suspensions are for minor infractions such as, class problems and being late to meetings.

The players were informed on Monday.

This is part of the "three strikes" rule implemented by June Jones when he came to SMU. It was under that policy that Justin Willis was suspended from Spring Football.

Inside Higher Ed reports on potential conflicts of interest regarding faculty oversight of athletics:

At the University of Michigan, football is king. . . .

When the team made the 2007 Rose Bowl, it might have been hard for many fans to get tickets, but at least seven faculty members knew they would be guaranteed seats. The university’s athletics department not only ensured that members of its Committee on Academic Performance — a faculty body that makes recommendations in cases of athlete eligibility — received tickets, it also covered their travel expenses. Members of the university’s Advisory Board on Intercollegiate Athletics — a group of faculty, alumni, athletes and administrators that advise the athletic director — received the same incentive. . . .

The Committee on Academic Performance reviews cases of athletes who have fallen below the university’s standards. Previously, the faculty committee itself decided whether the students should remain eligible to compete. Under the change, the panel recommends a course of action for the provost to consider in deciding whether that athlete should be able to play, practice only or sit out entirely as a result.

Hanlon said presenting tickets to these individuals does not present a conflict because the faculty members only advise the provost. . . .
Carole Browne, biology professor at Wake Forest and co-chair of the Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics — an alliance of faculty senates that seek to reform college sports — said these incentive packages are commonplace. For example, because she serves on a similar athletics board at Wake Forest, Browne is offered season tickets to both men’s basketball and football home games. She said she does not accept the tickets, though, because she disapproves of the practice.

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