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June 05, 2009


Jason Evans

Robert Dozier got a 1260 on the SAT the first time he allegedly took the test. That score would have put him in the mid-80s in terms of percentile.

When that score was questioned and Robert took the test again, he got a 720. That score puts him in the bottom 10% of test-takers.

So, he went from top 15% to bottom 10%. That is almost impossible for the same person to do. Standardized tests simply do not produce results like that. The only explanation is that someone other than Dozier took the first test.

Georgia saw this and said, "thanks, but no you won't be coming to our school." Memphis saw this and said, "come on down!"

For Memphis to claim they had no idea about the different scores would be a joke. When you apply to a college, ALL YOUR SCORES, are sent to the University. Memphis and Coach Cal knew they were getting a player who cheated and they did not care.

College hoops may be rotten to the core, but it would be a little less rotten if Calipari was not in it and we had more coaches who actually care about following the rules, promoting academics, and were interested in something more than winning at all costs.

Marc, it is time you called Cal out for being the cheater that he is. He leaves every program he coaches with massive fires to put out while he cashes checks from somewhere else. That cannot be good for the kids he left behind.


Clarence Gaines

I will borrow the classic Shakesperian line that "something is rotten in the state of Denmark" to state that something is rotten in the city of Memphis. Many University of Memphis players were sent to Laurinburg Prep to become eligible to play at UM. The NCAA will no longer accept course work from this historic institution. SAT test scores being rigged so kids can play. Administrators and coaches at UM pleading ignorance or using the Sgt. Schultz defense of "I know nothing! Nothing!" Schools will sell their souls to compete at the level that UM has achieved over the past few years. Nothing surprises me when it comes to what people will do to acquire athletic talent. It boils down to the almighty color of green.

I do want to attack the fact that colleges use the SAT and ACT to define the academic potential of a student athlete. Why do we use this artificial measure of intelligence? I'm not a big fan of standardized tests. Why not let academic institutions accept anybody they think will add value to their University. Once accepted to the institution, they would have to meet the NCAA standards to maintain eligibility. The academic support structure at major schools is incredible. These student athletes have access to resources that many of them have never had in their elementary, middle school or high school years. Some athletes cannot be impacted, but some can make amazing strides when given the opportunity to succeed academically.

My father, Clarence "Big House" Gaines related a story in his book "They Call Me Big House" about his first superstar player, Cleo Hill:
"Getting Cleo enrolled in school posed a bit of a problem.....Cleo did not have the best of grades. But after talking to him, I sensed much more to him than what the report card showed. I believed if I could get him enrolled in school and push him through some remedial courses to bring up his reading ability, we could make him a college student. The first thing I did for Cleo was to enroll him in remedial English to bring him up to college level. He did very well in the class, and the learning ability I suspected was locked in his head broke free. As a freshman, Cleo needed those remedial classes. By the time he was a senior, he was tutoring English to other athletes in the dorm. What we found out at WSTC (now WSSU) was that Cleo was much smarter than his high-school teachers and administrators had ever imagined. He had just never been pushed by anyone to use his brain. We pushed him."

Cleo went on to become a successful educator and college college coach in New Jersey. That's my contribution to this issue. What do you think of my idea? What are your thoughts on the controversy surrounding Memphis? Marc called me out on Twitter on this issue because he knows that I think the one and done rule does not lead to increased cheating. At least my proposal takes one element that leads to cheating out of the system.

Marc Isenberg

First Clarence, your father was a legend and an important contributor to basketball and society.

I love and appreciate the story about Cleo Hill. Very inspirational. I have mentored young men from similar backgrounds who thrived with improved teaching and more academic motivation.

I will think about what you wrote and respond when I have more time to thoroughly consider the issues you bring up.

I do agree the SAT has long been misused by the NCAA -- many years ago the head of the SAT sent a letter to the NCAA to express these concerns to no avail.

Jason: There is no value in calling out Calipari. He may be guilty as you have charged. He may be guilty as you have charged -- and he may be completely exonerated (Right now, the NCAA is saying he is not at risk). I just hope that all the light that is shined on college basketball at present will lead to positive change. Not a bunch of outrage, press releases and task forces that lead to nothing.


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