The NCAA cannot admit a mistake. They won't admit that the penalties or non-calls against Ohio State and Cam Newton are flawed, and they won't admit that they punished USC based on non-existent evidence.
It seems that everyone who follows college football, with the exception of the NCAA Infractions Committee, realizes that the main argument in the USC-Reggie Bush affair is based on evidence that is factually incorrect.
I'm speaking of the two minute phone conversation, of which no one actually has a recording, that supposedly took place between Ricky Lake (or whatever his name is) and Todd McNair. During the hearing, the NCAA investigator repeatedly asked Mr. McNair about this conversation that took place in 2005. McNair claimed no knowledge of such conversation. This is because the conversation actually took place one year later, in 2006.
Based on this, the NCAA determined that a USC assistant coach knew, or should have known, of improprieties related to Reggie Bush. Huh? We have no idea what was the content of the call, but it's even worse than that!
The call did not occur in 2005, but in 2006, after Reggie Bush had completed his career at USC. No matter the purpose of the call, no matter if McNair had been told that Reggie took money or benefits, Reggie's collegiate career was already over.
The NCAA used this call (2005) as the basis for handing down penalties so strict against USC that many cannot fathom.
The fact of the matter is that the call occured one year later, but the NCAA, in spite of tremendous contrary evidence, refuses to reverse their position on the matter.
I so wish that USC would seek an injunction against the sanctions and pursue this matter in Superior Court.
The NCAA penalties are nothing more than a beleagured attempt to destroy what is the finest program in NCAA College Football. The fact that the NCAA would stoop so low as to misinterpret evidence and direct testomony belies any sense of fairness.
My biggest complaint right now is that USC will not sue the NCAA in open court for Restraint of Trade, Monopolistic Practices, Defamation, and various other torts that are available. One would think that with so many graduates of the Law School who have gone on to great heights, USC should be able to find a former Trojan to take the helm in this kind of action.
Actually, Pat Haden's #2 has a law degree, so maybe he should lead the charge.
Am I surprised by the NCAA's ruling? No.
Am I surprised that USC is willing to drop the matter at this point? Unfortunately, Yes.
USC needs to stand up to the NCAA, not only for its own reputation, but for the reputation of the next school targeted for the NCAA's wrath.