Rose Did Not Cooperate and UM Kept the Lid On

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From March of 2008 until March of 2009, Derrick Rose or his attorney declined six requests to respond to questions about the SAT entrance exam that led to his ineligibility and the NCAA punishment this week against the University of Memphis.

For its part, the university knew of the cheating allegations against Rose as early as October of 2007 and was informed that Rose's test score was cancelled in May of 2008. The university got an official notice of an NCAA inquiry in September of 2008 and a notice of allegations in January of 2009. But university officials did not make any of this public until months later when the 2009 NCAA men's basketball tournament was over and John Calipari had announced his move to Kentucky.

The NCAA Infractions Committee report released yesterday contradicts Rose's recent claims that he cooperated with investigators. And while university officials did, as they said Thursday, "cooperate fully with the investigation," the report indicates that they also kept the Rose investigation secret for a year.

Rose took the ACT test three times in Chicago and the SAT test once in Detroit, in May of 2007. He was interviewed about his test by university officials and coaches in November of 2007. The Educational Testing Service sent two certified letters to his home in Chicago in March and April of 2008. Rose did not respond to either of them. He or his attorney declined to meet with NCAA investigators in June of 2008, August of 2008, January of 2009, and March of 2009.

Possibly undermining the university's pending appeal and attempt to win favor in the court of public opinion is the fact that the Committee on Infractions is not a collection of faceless bureaucrats. It is a peer committee of attorneys and current and former athletic department officials from around the country. U of M Athletic Director R. C. Johnson's statement Thursday that "I can assure you that I have the utmost respect forthe NCAA and place a great deal of importance on the organization's rules, regulations, and guidelines for college athletics" is not likely to impress them.

From the NCAA website: "The members of the Committee on Infractions who reviewed this case include Paul Dee, lecturer of law and education at Miami (Florida) and formerly the institution’s athletics director and general counsel. He is the chair of the Committee on Infractions. Other members are John S. Black, attorney; Melissa Conboy, deputy director of athletics at Notre Dame; Eileen Jennings, general counsel at Central Michigan; Dennis Thomas, the commissioner of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and formerly director of athletics at Hampton; and Andrea Meyers, athletics director emeritus at Indiana State."

To see the NCAA report, click this link. 20090820_Memphis_Public_Inf_Rpt.pdf

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