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Irish TE tweets a possible violation, but NCAA has bigger focus


Brace yourself, folks. It looks like it’s that kind of day.

If nothing else, the “incident” involving Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert serves as a reminder that the NCAA rule book is so thick that mistakes are not just likely, they’re almost guaranteed.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Eifert posted a message on his Twitter account about Irish recruit, Jaylon Smith. Smith, a linebacker from Bishop Luers High School (Ind.), was scheduled to visit South Bend this weekend.

“Big recruiting day tomorrow here at ND,” Eifert said. “Looking forward to meeting and hangin with 5 star Fort Wayne native @JaeeSmiff9ENT”

That tweet has since been deleted as it violates NCAA rules of addressing a recruit directly before they sign a letter of intent. Notre Dame has also offered this statement:

“We’re aware of the tweet and it has been forwarded to our compliance office where they will process it appropriately. We take any potential violation of NCAA rules very seriously and we will never compromise on matters of NCAA compliance. Ultimately, this will serve as an excellent teaching moment for all of our teams and student-athletes.”

Not a big deal, and with social media being what it is, Eifert’s tweet is merely the backdrop for how the NCAA will be approaching primary and secondary violations. Last month, Oklahoma assistant coach Jay Norvell actually offered wide receiver recruit Rashaad Samples a scholarship via Twitter, also a direct violation of NCAA rules.

Last year, Wisconsin receiver Nick Toon inadvertently mentioned Russell Wilson before the quarterback signed with the Badgers. Same issue, different uniform.

Those NCAA no-no’s, considered secondary in nature, rarely, if every, result in any punishment now and that will continue to be the case going forward. In January, the NCAA laid out a working draft of a new penalty matrix that hopes to paint a clearer picture for what constitutes major violations and what sanctions would accompany them. There’s been a lot of teeth-gnashing and hair-pulling over the past year or so over the inconsistencies of the NCAA’s efforts — Rich Rodriguez called the Association “a little misguided” last year — but give credit where credit’s due.

The NCAA gets a lot of grief, much of it justified, but college athletic’s version of Big Brother is at least working toward a makeover. Included in that transformation is how it deals with social media blunders, which already are impossible to stop.

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9 Responses to “Irish TE tweets a possible violation, but NCAA has bigger focus”
  1. thekatman says: Mar 3, 2012 7:51 PM

    Sounds like the Compliance Department hasn’t been teaching the student athletes well enough. Let’s see, the last time we all heard that, was when Ohio State was penalized for the Buckeye 5 fiasco…. and btw: the penalties and sanctions were very weak at best.

  2. irishdodger says: Mar 3, 2012 11:52 PM

    You’re comparing this to what went down @ tOSU?

    That’s rich.

  3. thraiderskin says: Mar 4, 2012 1:53 AM

    Katman, you just have a thing for the buckeyes, what happened there was a big deal, but suspensions, abandonment of an entire season(+ BCS bowl victory) and scholorships was more than fair. The NCAA tacking on further scholarships, probation, suspensions and no post-season play this coming year, is what it is and we’ll deal.

    This poor kid probably pissed himself when he found out his mistake, good for the NCAA not overly thinking this one; just a doh! moment.

  4. polegojim says: Mar 4, 2012 9:46 AM

    Realizing much of the compliance crack-down has been necessary and good…

    ….this incident shows where ludicrous meets ridiculous.

  5. guinsrule says: Mar 4, 2012 3:36 PM

    What’s the point of secondary violations if nobody ever gets punished for them?

  6. thekatman says: Mar 4, 2012 7:19 PM

    All I said folks was that when OSU got hit with their Buckeye 5 issues, Tressel, Smith and Gee said that they needed to beef up their compliance department……. and provide better training classes for their students.

    For Notre Dame to not follow that example is ludicrous, considering the NCAA noncom[pliance issues in college football today and the fact that the NCAA is being forced to comply with their own rules and not to be descrtionary with their assessments against their “favored” schools.

  7. irishdodger says: Mar 4, 2012 8:41 PM

    So ND deserves to be presumed to be incurring major violations based on tOSU’s proven violations? Not saying ND isn’t infallible & I suspect they’ll slip up as no program is perfect. But tOSU couldve justifiably been hammered like SC & they didn’t. No way Meyer takes that job if he truly thought the violations would damage the program. I have nothing against the Buckeyes, but to compare their violations to this one is laughable. If any program is favored by the NCAA, it’s tOSU. They should’ve never let these 5 play n the Sugar Bowl but they knew it would hurt ratings.

  8. norcalirish says: Mar 5, 2012 5:54 AM

    Lol @ at a sc fan pointing the finger.

  9. jrcurtis45 says: Mar 6, 2012 9:28 AM

    Secondary violations are useful, because it serves as a baseline for behavior. When a school gets in to real trouble, they can usually show a pattern with numberous secondaries. Plus, if a school racks up excessive secondaries, they can be punished.

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