Archive - August 2013

  1. Column: Congress Attempts to Regulate NCAAAugust 26, 2013

    Several members of the House of Representatives recently introduced a bill designed to regulate the NCAA in a number of respects. Representatives Charles Dent (R-Pennsylvania) and Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio) are the primary sponsors of the NCAA Accountability Act, designed to protect student-athletes from the heavy handed actions of the NCAA. Among other things, the bill would require the NCAA to establish annual baseline concussion tests for athletes; mandate irrevocable four-year scholarships for athletes participating in contact/collision sports regardless of their skill or injury; prevent an institution from implementing a policy that prohibits paying stipends to college athletes; and guarantee that athletes have the opportunity for a formal administrative hearing along with other due process rights prior to being punished for violating NCAA rules.

  2. Column: MLB Must Protect CatchersAugust 19, 2013

    Major League Baseball recently announced the league will expand replay next year to include everything but balls and strikes. MLB’s goal to get all calls right, laudable as it may be, is nonetheless controversial. Purists believe baseball is eliminating the “human element” by imitating the NFL. But that may not be such a bad thing, given that football is the most popular sport and the NFL is the highest grossing professional league in the country. Erroneous calls by umpires are an infrequent – albeit much publicized – occurrence and have little overall impact on the outcome of games. The biggest influence on the outcome of a game is not whether a ball is caught or trapped, fair or foul, but the home plate umpire. Every umpire has a different strike zone and until baseball is prepared to use robots to call balls and strikes the home plate umpire will continue to have more to do with which team wins and which one loses than anything else that takes place on a baseball diamond.

  3. Column: A-ROD Not Held AccountableAugust 12, 2013

    For those who think Alex Rodriguez is finally being held accountable for his PED use, the reality is far different. By now you know that A-Rod received the longest PED-related suspension in MLB history, 211 games covering the remainder of this season and all of 2014. The previous high was the 100- game suspension that journeyman pitcher Guillermo Mota received as a second offender under the Joint Drug Agreement administered by MLB and the players’ union. A-Rod’s suspension puts the entire $100 million remaining on his contract – and indeed his career – in jeopardy. With so much at stake, it’s not surprising that A-Rod filed an appeal.

  4. Column: A-ROD SuspendedAugust 5, 2013

    In the end, Bud Selig blinked…sort of. The MLB Commissioner wanted to ban Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez from baseball for life and it wasn’t just for A-Rod’s multiple – perhaps continuous - violations of the Joint Drug Agreement (JDA) between the owners and the players. Baseball had evidence that A-Rod recruited other players to the now defunct Biogenesis clinic in Miami that parceled out PEDs like they were tootsie rolls at an automobile convention. And after he realized that baseball’s investigators were hot on his trail, A-Rod obstructed the investigation by urging witnesses to change their story and purchasing documents that would have confirmed his guilt.