to ScottMalamute, 30 January 2009
self-reporting two secondary recruiting violations that occurred when
Washington coaches Steve Sarkisian and Nick Holt met with Elijah Asante,
who is the head football coach at Jordan high school in Los Angeles. A
Los Angeles Times reporter sat in on the visit, which is a violation of
NCAA Bylaw 13.10.1 that states "A member institution shall not permit a
media entity to be present during any recruiting contact made by an
institution's coaching staff." The meeting also violated NCAA Bylaw
which says coaches cannot have off-campus contact with high school
underclassmen before July 1 prior to their senior season.
Coach Sarkisian and coach
Holt were not aware that the reporter and underclassman would be present
at the meeting.
Hereís a link to the
story in the Los Angeles Times, "The buddy system
helps in recruiting," which first brought the violations to light.
This is the statement
from Washington Athletic Director Scott Woodward.
"We, as a department, are
committed to compliance with the rules. Coach Sarkisian and Coach Holt
found themselves in an awkward situation that was not of their doing.
They regret that the incident occurred, and I'm confident that they will
handle similar circumstances differently in the future."
letter to Scott
But, hey, Scott -- Jordan,
Crenshaw, Manual Arts, and Jefferson are all inner-city high schools
located in Los Angeles.
Your high school football team
ever played an LA inner-city school and won? There isnít
a high school in the Bayou or Seattle that can beat one of them on a
given day. You can take that to your bank, if itís still in existence.
You hire a coach who is a
tenacious recruiter, and one of the inner city coaches arranges for a
meeting with one of his gifted athletes and his buddy, both of whom your coach
is chasing. Furthermore, the inner city coach apparently puts out a
feeler about a job at Washington
as one of your coachís assistants, and heís there for a quasi-interview,
ready to pick up the tab for the meal.
And you expect Sark and Nick to
stiff the coach next time out and walk out of the meeting?
Not going to happen. Sark and
Nick would be crazy to walk out of such a meeting. You donít know LA
inner-city football -- obviously, Scott.
Youíd better rehire Tyrone Willingham
if you expect your coach to handle the situation differently.
The only thing Scott and Nick
did wrong was not telling the reporter to get the hell out of there.
Willingham would have. He never liked reporters, and thought they were
You know, he was right.
See you in March, in the desert.
Your pal, Mal
Nick and Sark never talked to
the underclassman or the reporter, according to the media.
inner-city kid or underclassman was present as an observer. Telling him
to leave would have been like a kick in the gut, since he was probably
looking forward to the encounter and getting a free meal in the company
of a couple of Pac-10 coaches. Sometimes you have to break the rules,
with extenuating circumstances in mind. Life is not all black and white.
Translation: Sarkisian has a heart.
a link to columnist Art Thiel's take on the
Thielís shtick is to apply a black-and-white code of conduct, with no
shades of gray in between, towards people he dislikes --
big-time-college-megabuck-making coaches being an example. No human
being, prone to making errors and being confronted with awkward
situations requiring snap decisions, can play by Thielís rules, a rigged
Therein lies the
glory of being a Monday morning quarterback.