Tag:Kansas Jayhawks
Posted on: January 24, 2012 6:18 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2012 12:36 am

The Eagle Returns to Make Sense(?) of the NCAA

I can't believe it's been almost 6 months from my last entry and massive MLS/USA soccer binge. This is what happens when work/school/life take over for several months. That and I think I blacked out after that USA-Mexico game for like a month or so...whatever, moving on.

Last week I read three stories that absolutely boggled my mind. And I just wanted to make sure that if I put my thoughts down on paper (or the internet) that I wasn’t crazy. So here it goes…let’s see if I remember how to write these things…

Okay, last week I read several articles based around NCAA student-athletes and their recruiting/transfer processes. Two of them are similar, yet different. Todd O’Brien, a reserve center for the St. Joe’s Hawks, graduated from St. Joseph’s and attempted to gain a waiver to play basketball as a graduate student at UAB. However, one of the conditions of this waiver is that St. Joseph’s must also sign off on the waiver, and for reasons that St. Joseph’s won’t go into for “privacy reasons,” they have denied O’Brien his waiver and it is doubtful that he will play for UAB. The NCAA also denied O’Brien a waiver to play this season which basically means that O’Brien is done as an NCAA student-athlete.

But if that wasn’t stupid enough, I can do better.

Brock Berglund is a former QB at Kansas, who was one of ten players dismissed from the team by new coach Charlie Weis. Berglund was told that he would be competing for a back-up spot behind incoming Notre Dame transfer Dayne Crist, who got a waiver from ND (the same one St. Joe’s wouldn’t give Todd O’Brien) to play immediately and Berglund asked Kansas for permission to talk to other schools about a possible transfer, something all students-athletes cannot do without their school’s permission. Kansas denied his request and also told him that he would not be released from his scholarship, even though Berglund only asked for permission to talk to schools, not actually transfer. Berglund was then booted off the team for apparently missing a mandatory team meeting. Since his dismissal, Berglund has not been granted his release from Kansas.

I have the perfect solution for the NCAA, not that they’d listen to me. Since neither player has been released from their scholarship, I think that both players should be counted towards the program’s student-athlete scholarship numbers, i.e. 85 for football and 13 for basketball. Without knowledge of the Kansas football or St. Joe’s basketball scholarship players on the roster, for the sake of this blog, I will assume they are full. Since we’re already midseason in basketball, if St. Joe’s technically has 14 players on their roster (counting O’Brien), they should be penalized one scholarship for next season. Since Kansas hasn’t finalized their roster for the 2012 NCAA Football season due to ongoing recruiting, if Berglund
hasn’t been released from his scholarship by the end of the academic semester (sometime in May), then he should count towards Weis’ roster for 2012. If Kansas is over their limit with Berglund, they should also lose a scholarship for their next season starting in 2013.

C’mon people, this is stupid. Hundreds of players transfer from schools every year and nearly all of them go off without a hitch. These are young men who are penalized one year of eligibility for these transfers when coaches are fired and change jobs without penalty on a regular basis. A school should not be able to deny a transfer to a player that has graduated or wishes to leave the program during a coaching change. Incoming
freshman de-commit from schools on a regular basis when there is a coaching change. They also can de-commit quite frankly for any reason they want to, which is why I love this next story.

Gunner Kiel, one of the best QB prospects in the country and one of the best names in QB history as well, recently committed and enrolled at Notre Dame for the spring semester. Normally, not that big of a story, but since he had verbal/soft commits to Indiana and LSU in the past
months, he’s been getting a lot of press. Dennis Dodd is sticking up for Kiel, and saying that anyone who questions his commitment due to his number of de-commits is crazy. Couldn’t agree more. And I’m not saying that because I don’t miss a chance to stick it to the NCAA, but because Kiel is free to pick whatever school he wants and should be allow to make that decision without backlash from schools and media. Why ESPN, CBS and other major media outlets waste time on recruiting stories is beyond me, but like the “Hot Stove” of MLB (something else I largely avoid), recruiting season gives college sports writers something to do between bowl season and spring practice besides college basketball.

Look, great for Gunner for picking a school and program that he wanted to go to and I hope he gets a chance to stick to LSU and every
and anyone else at some point during his playing career. As for St. Joe’s basketball team and Kansas’ football teams, I really hope that karma exists. Because these kids are making millions for your schools, the least you could do is put them ahead of your bottom line.

UPDATE -- Jan. 24, 11:10PM -- Former Kansas QB Brock Berglund has hired an attorney in his quest to be released from his scholarship at Kansas. Berglund's appeals meeting with the Kansas Univ. student athlete appeals board on Friday.

Posted on: March 18, 2010 10:50 am

Tourney Mailbag - Pac-10, Duke and UK Gripe Back

Once again the great Community Gods at CBS have bless one of my blogs with the Featured tag. And once again, the users have come out in force to defend their teams honor and seeding in the NCAA Tournament. Some agreed with me, most disagreed, a few focused on CBS' March Madness on Demand, which does exist (I'm skipping those for the actual mailbag, just giving mention to them here) and one user caught a huge error by me that a professional would have caught.

Since I'm not a professional, it just makes me look dumb, which I am, but that's not the point. To the mailbag!

I completely agree with you about Temple. They finished at 12 in the country, with 29 wins and a top 15-20 RPI. How does that earn them a 5 playing another underseeded strong mid major? - user coasteryder

I tackled this issue in my last entry focusing on the mid-majors, and I think Temple did get a raw deal here. They had just as good a year as New Mexico in my opinion, and they won the A-10 regular season and tournament whereas NM got bounced by San Diego St. in the semis of the MWC. Personally, I think that the A-10 is just as good as the MWC in terms of mid-majors. Consistently have multiple tournament teams, good competitive leagues. This year, the MWC had better top teams than the A-10 in New Mexico and BYU (who also got underseed in my opinion) and Temple gets a lower seed.

I Duke was 32-0 many of you haters of clean basketball programs would still find something to complain about. Yes they probably would meet Louisville. The same team which I believe beat Syracuse 2 times. Not an easy road. Also, if they meet A&M there would go the neutral court. Do your research before complaining. Oh and by the way, how did they do last year against Villanova? - user MANU

I'm going to stay away from the "clean" comment. They will, play Louisville, which won't be an easy game, no, but will be the hardest in Duke's path to the Elite 8. I'm sorry, I'm not buying Texas A&M, assuming they even get to the Sweet 16 against Duke. A&M's best non-conference win is Clemson, not exactly thier best team in recent memory, they split with Baylor and are 0-3 against Kansas and Kansas State. So yes, I think that Duke has an easy road and are in more friendlier territory in Jacksonville and Houston than in say, Providence, Buffalo and Syracuse. Oh and by the way, Duke didn't have Mason Plumlee and Brian Zoubek (two bigs I've heard of on their roster) last year against Nova. That'll be the difference if they want to take Nova inside.

Oh how easy a bracket it'll be for Duke. You bunch of Big East haters! I look at it as an easy road for at least one of the three Big East teams in that bracket. 8 bids again this year too. Hmmmm. - user thecrump

You have only the ACC for the Big East getting 8 teams in to the NCAA tournament. After all you raided the Big East for football purposes (how's that working out for ya?) and enabled the Big East to make a basketball super conference. As for 3 Big East teams in the region, the most you can play is two and the NCAA had to abandon its normal practice of separating Big East teams because they're too many. Which means you have to again blame the ACC for creating the super conference, which means you have to one to blame but yourselves.

You gripe that K-State is in the same OKC pod as KU because you fear KU fans will gobble up tickets and root against K-State?  Man, you don't know much about basketball fans in the state of Kansas.  Our is mostly a friendly rivalry.  KU fans for the most part respect K-State's team, players and coach. I guarantee you that most KU fans will be cheering for K-State in OKC.  Now, if it was Mizzou in our pod, then you would have a legit gripe.  But I fully expect about 15,000 of the 19,000 fans in OKC to be cheering for both KU and K-State. - user ftljayhawk

This does suprise me slightly, unless the reason is so that Kansas can beat K-State again in the Final Four (fourth times the charm?), then it makes sense. I said that because the tournament committee also sent Georgetown and Villanova up to Providence (home of the Big East conf. HQ) and I wasn't really thrilled with that either. When possible, and with seeding I know it's improbable, but you should avoid seeding teams from the same conference not only in different brackets, but pods too. That's just my opinion and perhaps it doesn't apply to the Kansas-Kansas State rivalry.

Sure there's no favoritism towards Duke.  They've only played 33 tournament games inside of North Carolina.  They won 29 of them.  I wonder how many games a team like Kentucky has ever got to play in their home state?  North Carolina also gets to play in their home state a LOT too.  They're 26-1 inside their state.  They play in Charlotte, they play in Greensboro, they play in Raleigh, they play in Winston-Salem. - KingGhidora

This is the best part of King's two rant comments. But the NCAA won't say that this is favoritism per say, but it's more just sound business practice. Duke and UNC are good programs, usually top seeds in the NCAA tournament and a first weekend pod or regional final would appeal to a lot of fans there, probably even if the local teams weren't involved. But it's a good point for the conspiracy theorists (I'm not one of them) but the NCAA will also say that they make the brackets for competitiveness only and not to make money, and, well, the NCAA is full of it and we all know it.

--Butler plays UTEP in the first round, not Utah St. Utah St. plays Texas A&M, I believe. - Sabermetrics

You're right, bad job my me here. I apologize for not catching that, but the point still stands. Ranked/high-seed mid-majors shouldn't play good mid-majors in the first round. I want to see these teams against power conferences. Just like how I wanted to see a game other than TCU-Boise St. in the BCS, and we know how I feel about the BCS. And kudos to a Hofstra fan for pointing that out, something you selfish Duke fans would never have done. Mid-Majors watch each other's backs and I must have been in UConn mode and not sticking to my Rider roots when I wrote that. My bad. The lesson, as always, I am an idiot. Never forget this.

Do you even know that Kentucky is in the tournament?  Getting Texas as a potential second round match-up and red-hot West Virginia as your #2...who could have more to gripe about?? - UJ40

Look, maybe if Texas or Wake Forest weren't colder than ice entering the NCAAs, I'd agree with you. But since niether of those teams should scare you, get over it. Now, if you want to make an arguement for your Sweet 16 matchup between Temple, Wisconson or the spunky Ivy Leaguers, Cornell. Then maybe I'll listen to you. Yes, as the "2nd" No. 1 seed that means you should be paired up with the "3rd" No. 2 seed. So you want Nova or K-State? Or you could be Kansas, the best No. 1 playing the best No. 2. Pipe down.

I may be a little biased towards Duke because I am a fan and grew up a fan, but I think Duke deserved its placement and has a very hard road to the final four.  Duke got a number one seed ahead of Syracuse because Syracuse lost it's final three games and did not win the Big East tournament.  Duke won the ACC tournament, so they deserved the placement they got.  Duke also has to play some dangerous teams such as Louisville, Villanova, and Texas Tech.  All of these teams have the talent for big upsets. - dukefan9

jhawk11131 correctly pointed out that Texas Tech is in the NIT. But, I never questioned Duke's No. 1 seed. Maybe they should have been behind Syracuse, but obviously they struggled late and lost to a nationally ranked team in the Big East quarters. I agree that L'Ville could pull off the upset, but the bottom half of Duke's bracket for the Sweet 16 doesn't really scare me. I mean Siena (representing the Metro Atlantic, M-A-A-C BABY!!!) has a legitimate shot at the Sweet 16. Sure there are dangerous teams, but I really expect Duke to make it to the Elite 8. I'm still picking against them (only time I'll root for Pitino and the Cards), but that's more of a personal bias rather then educated decision.

No mention at all of the snub of The PAC-10. 2  teams in and both being low seeds, I believe Cal is 8 and Washington is #11. Arizona State had 23 wins in a major conference and got snubbed. When was teh PAV-10 sent to the mid-majors? - Benjimo313

Look, the Pac-10 sucked this year. No team has been able to keep their best players from going pro and the whole conference has been crippled this year because of it. Arizona St.'s best non-conf win is San Diego St. It split with Washington and got bounced in the Pac-10 quarters by Stanford. That's why ASU and VA Tech were left out. No good wins, weak non-conf schedules and 20 wins isn't good enough anymore. You have to have a complete resume now, and they didn't. And I won't even mention ASU getting bounced in the NIT by 8th seeded Jacksonville. Whoops, too late.

Thanks for the comments guys. We are a little less than two hours away from the NCAA Tournament kicking off. Hope you enjoyed the mailbag. Thanks again for the CBS Community Gods for featuring my previous post, which I think is still up on the main homepage.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com