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December 15, 2009, 01:44 PM ET
A transparent Memphis: unbeatable

by John Gasaway

Regular readers know that I think 99 percent of your garden variety anti-NCAA invective is mere antinomian braying, but the one percent that I co-sign wholeheartedly is the need for greater transparency, not only from the officials in Indianapolis but also from member institutions. So every week or so I climb back up on my soap box and yell for more transparency and the world continues spinning serenely and opaquely just as it had before.

Until today! When an alert reader put the case for transparency better than I ever have.

Unfiltered-back!
Don’t just mutter ineffectually; email me!

If you receive a Notice of Allegations, just say so!
John,

As a Memphis fan it pains me to type this, but think about it. If the Memphis administration had released the NCAA Notice of Allegations when it was received in January as they should have, Calipari almost certainly stays where he is. In that case there is a 99 percent likelihood that this would have been the Tigers’ starting lineup this season:

John Wall
Xavier Henry
Elliot Williams
DeMarcus Cousins
Will Coleman

Bench: Kemp, Mack, Sallie, Witherspoon, Niles, Dennis, and probably Bledsoe.

Oi.

Geoffrey G.

Excellent point, Geoffrey! Oh, sure, we can never know with certainty how it would have played out: “99 percent” may be a little high. Maybe Wall or Henry would have been spooked away by the air of impending NCAA sanctions. (Though Connecticut’s being investigated and they don’t seem to suffer from a lack of incoming talent.)  And I have to believe that bench you list would have thinned out considerably due to transfers had that starting five actually materialized.

Still, the central point here is 100 percent correct. A couple months ago Michigan received a Notice of Inquiry from the NCAA related to this whole Rich Rodriguez practice-time football kerfuffle. Keep in mind an NOI is preliminary to and far less weighty than an actual Notice of Allegations. Know what Michigan did? They immediately told the world they had just received a Notice of Inquiry from the NCAA. What a concept! 

Memphis on the other hand acted like every 14-year-old ever and tried to sweep this matter under the bed for as long as they could–which, of course, was not for long. I am on the record as thinking the NCAA should simply cut to the chase and release NOAs themselves as public documents, bullet-pointed and redacted as the need may arise. But until that day dawns there is no earthly reason for schools not to acknowledge the truth in their mailbox. Well done, Michigan. Better luck next time, Memphis.    

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