Friday, September 10, 2010

Tennessee self-imposes sacntions on itself and Bruce Pearl

Even with a probable loss to Oregon on the horizon for Saturday, this should be a rockin' time on Rocky Top. With a head football coach with a combination impeccable character, pedigree, and hair ready to lead the football program out of the doldrums of the Kiffin era, things should be all smiles in Knoxville. But thanks to a new recrutitng scandal involving Bruce Pearl and the basketball program, it looks like Rocky Top is going to get rocked by the NCAA.
Tennessee has announced that it is self imposing sanctions on its own basketball program after being informed of a probe by the NCAA. It seems Pearl and his assistants were accused by the NCAA of "making excessive recruiting calls." On top of all of this Pearl reportedly denied the allegations to NCAA investigators. That's never a good idea.
Tennessee athletic director Mike Hampton announced that Pearl and the bulk of  his coaching staff will be barred from on-the-road recruiting duties. On top of that, Pearl and the staff have been hit with a loss of $1.5 million dollars in compensation. Three assistants will be getting 25% pay cuts.
Whether that will be good enough for the NCAA, who have been hammering athletic programs a little harder than usual lately is unclear. Also unclear is whether AD Mike Hampton's job can survive another serious hit to his department.
Whatever happens, a fanbase that should be looking ahead to a bright future is hit again with the realization that its athletic department hasn't had the proper "shower discipline" when it comes to running a clean product. 

(via Go Vols XTra, Rocky Top Talk,

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