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NCAA could tweak new incentives

By wire services
Published July 31, 2005

The NCAA's Division I academic performance committee this week will recommend an adjustment that won't penalize teams for losing players in good academic standing who leave early to turn pro.

The committee will also propose penalties for schools with teams that habitually fail to reach the new cutoff for graduation success. And it will recommend financial rewards for exemplary performance.

The proposals will be made Thursday in Indianapolis to the division's board of directors, chaired by Kansas chancellor Robert Hemenway. The academic committee chair, University of Hartford president Walt Harrison, said Friday he's confident the board will accept the recommendations.

A new formula penalized programs whose athletes turn pro before graduation, even if they're on course to graduate. Harrison said that was the major criticism that the committee heard from coaches in men's and women's basketball, football and baseball.

Spurrier answers coaches

South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier explained his reasons for revoking scholarships in a letter to state high school football head coaches after the South Carolina Football Coaches Association's Board of Directors called Spurrier's move "unethical."

Spurrier said Saturday he wrote the letter because he wanted the state's high school coaches to understand his actions.

He's gotten several calls of support from prep coaches since the board's letter came out Wednesday. As far as the 90 or so coaches who signed it, Spurrier said, "I'll tell you something I learned a long time ago, everybody doesn't like me and everybody doesn't like South Carolina. If they can find something to blast us and talk negatively about us, they'll do it.

"So my message to the Carolina fan is don't listen to the enemy talk about us."

LSU: Fullback Shawn Jordan, suspended since May 19, has returned to the team, coach Les Miles said. Jordan was suspended two days after he was arrested in El Passo, Texas, on charges of possession of a controlled substances.

[Last modified July 31, 2005, 01:32:21]


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