MySpace v. NCAA
The NCAA's response to all this: "There are currently no references in the NCAA bylaws that directly talk about personal Web pages such as MySpace. That said, it is up to each individual college and university to self-report a violation if they feel that a fan is considered under this definition [as a representative of an institution's athletic interests]."
Kentucky was the first school to "self-report," and others may follow, but the problem lies within the NCAA’s archaic rules. Today, we want to know how the NCAA should handle these violations. There are 94 million users of MySpace, and the site makes up 4.46 percent of all Web visits. In other words, it's impossible for the NCAA to keep up with every recruit's page (not to mention the inevitable kid who sabotages a rival school by posting a message urging them to attend, thus putting that rival school in violation). Should the NCAA look the other way and ignore MySpace altogether? Should it be up to the school to self-report? Should recruits be banned from having a MySpace page? What's your solution?
Doesn't the NCAA have more important things to worry about such as the astonishingly low graduation rates of D-1 basketball teams? If the NCAA tries to regulate this then fans are inevitably going to find another way to tell recruits to come to their school.
What's the difference between a MySpace message and hanging out with a friend who says that you should go to USC? Opinions are NCAA violations?
i find a great irony in this whole debacle: That, like kretmania pointed out, the NCAA should think about more importants things, like the graduation rate of D1 mens basketball players. The irony is that O.J Mayo is being recruited hotly by Bob Huggins, the new head coach of Kansas State University, who, at his previous head coaching gig at Cincinatti, his players had a graduation rate of about 1.2! is that ironic or what? Myles Brand should loosen up a bit. There are much more important matters to be taken care of, and the MySpace page of a kid who will only spend a year in school, if that, assuming the recent Sonny Vacarro/GED/european invasion lollapalooza is correct. Dry up, Mr. Brand!
i think that the ncaa should not regulate myspace. theres no way a recruit is going to listen to people he's never met before in his life over family, friends, and coaches. If coaches can text message recruits then whats the big deal anyways?
It's one thing to regulate scouts/recruiters who do this, but there is absolutely no way to regulate what fans do. While it may not be a great thing to have happen, there's nothing that can be done about it, so the NCAA has no choice but to ignore it.
I can't believe this problem with MySpace is a basketball problem. I am sure football will also get into the mix. With that being said there is nothing the NCAA can do about it. Once an athlete has opened a MySpace account he has decided to open up recruiting to the whole country.
There's no practical way to regulate what people who are not officially affiliated with a school can say to a recruit. Especially when you're dealing with anonymous electronic communication over the Internet. I don't see how this is any different than a random stranger on the street offering an unsolicited opinion to a recruit.
Trying to get involved in something like that would be a logistical nightmare, not to mention the First Amendment issues... are they also going to sanction sports writers or broadcasters (or random Internet pundits) who speculate on where they think a recruit should go? Does it matter if the message is specifically directed at the recruit? It's way too messy for the NCAA to try to get involved. Fix the blatant recruiting violations and hideous academic performance of some of the big teams first.
From a legal perspective, MySpace probably enjoys First Amendment protection and users/schools/athletes are, therefore, immune to NCAA oversight or action.
The reality is that the NCAA is painfully out-of-touch with the current state of athletics in this country. A D-1 prospect, male or female, is groomed and courted from their early teens. The NCAA is little more than an annoying speed bump in their quest for big time fame and, eventually, fortune. D-1 schools would do well to dump the NCAA and get on with the business of managing these high profile assets. It would be better for both the school and the athlete. Schools that really care (some 1-AA, D-3) will continue to self-police using a quaint old standard...common sense.
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