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Updated: NCAA says Miami ‘grasping at straws’ to get case dismissed, ‘offended’ by remarks


Earlier this month, a portion of the NCAA’s response to Miami’s motion to dismiss its infractions case was passed along via Now, more blurbs from that response to the Committee on Infractions have been revealed through CBSSports and the Associated Press.

The NCAA’s enforcement staff claims, among other things, that Miami is “grasping at straws” to discredit members of the enforcement team, and that it is “offended” (LULZ!!!1!1!!) by remarks in the motion.

(Updated: You can read the entire 42-page document HERE)

“In the enforcement staff’s view, the motions to dismiss are largely based on assumptions, false accusations, misleading statements and meritless claims about the enforcement staff and its investigation. For the reasons set forth below, the enforcement staff requests that the Committee on Infractions deny the motions,” Interim Vice President of Enforcement Jonathan Duncan wrote.

Specifically, the enforcement staff fires back at UM’s assertion that it was “wronged” by the fact that former athletic director Paul Dee, now deceased, was never interviewed.

“Though the enforcement staff did not interview Dee prior to his untimely passing, it was not due to oversight or inattention,” the response reads. “In this case, the enforcement staff planned to and did conduct interviews relating to institutional control issues in June 2012, approximately three weeks after Dee’s passing. Because Dee’s death was unexpected, the enforcement staff could not have predicted that he would not be available for an interview in June 2012. Had the institution or enforcement staff known of Dee’s condition or impending death, the enforcement staff would have exhausted all reasonable efforts to preserve Dee’s testimony.”

The response also comes to the defense of members of the enforcement team, including investigators Brynna Barnhart and Stephanie Hannah. 

“… Overall, the enforcement staff believes that the institution is again grasping at straws in an attempt to disqualify members of the enforcement team with the most knowledge about the case. Not only are these personal attacks based on no evidence that would support the removal of Barnhart and Hannah from the case, they are also not a basis for dismissal of the case in its entirety.”

However, the Miami Herald reported last month that, according to the law firm that conducted the NCAA’s external review of the investigation, Hannah didn’t know her work with Nevin Shapiro‘s attorney, started by her predecessor, Ameen Najjar, was previously given the no-go from the NCAA’s legal team.

“Ms. Hannah assumed there was nothing amiss about the arrangement [with Maria Elena Perez] and that it had been completely blessed prior to her involvement in the case,” Ken Wainstein of the Cadwalader law firm previously told the Herald in an email.

There’s more, but the point is clear: the NCAA made its apology and is now back on its moral high horse. And, in all likelihood, the case will move toward a June hearing with the COI.

But the only thing offensive about this case is the NCAA’s use of the word “offensive”, showing once again how little self-awareness college athletics’ governing body has.

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26 Responses to “Updated: NCAA says Miami ‘grasping at straws’ to get case dismissed, ‘offended’ by remarks”
  1. YouMadCauseImStylingOnYou says: Apr 14, 2013 10:58 PM

    ““In the enforcement staff’s view, the motions to dismiss are largely based on assumptions, false accusations, misleading statements and meritless claims about the enforcement staff and its investigation”

    The irony of this statement, in regards to this investigation is nothing short of hilarious.

  2. atxcane says: Apr 14, 2013 11:03 PM

    Usually when someone feigns outrage, they’re guilty as sin and trying to distract away from it.

    Oh, and regarding Paul Dee: Yeah, I mean take one look at the guy and you’d think he was gonna live another 30 years. Nevermind the open heart surgery in 2008, or the cancer that came back in 2010/2011. Other than that, guy was a paragon of health and his death shocked everyone. (/sarcasm, seriously google a pic of Paul Dee).

  3. eidolon21 says: Apr 14, 2013 11:03 PM

    The NCAA is the institution that is out of control and the problems are growing.

  4. goodfieldnohit says: Apr 14, 2013 11:06 PM

    I thought this website reported stores and wasn’t disposed to casting judgements on college football related stories.

    You have just crossed the line from reporter to blogger, Kercheval.

  5. Ben Kercheval says: Apr 14, 2013 11:09 PM

    I thought this website reported stores and wasn’t disposed to casting judgements on college football related stories.

    You have just crossed the line from reporter to blogger, Kercheval.


    Uh, BRO.

  6. noring4youstill says: Apr 14, 2013 11:33 PM

    Says the organization that’s entire case is built on the word of a convicted felon in prison. Nice. Real nice.

  7. thraiderskin says: Apr 14, 2013 11:35 PM

    Oh, they’re offended… I guess UM should just roll over. NCAA= jerk-offs.

  8. bigdinla says: Apr 15, 2013 12:18 AM

    Just another case of a guilty party( UM) trying to find a technicality to get away with their crime. NCAA is far from perfect, but that should not excuse what the Canes did for a decade or more.

  9. ajarkoski says: Apr 15, 2013 12:22 AM

    Miami apologists,

    Why has Miami punished themselves if they didn’t do anything wrong? So, they investigators sort of messed up, so we let the Canes slide since the investigation was tainted? This reaks of arrogance and will only warrant something much worse than the USC Trojan smackdown we saw. I think something on the scale 10 years of sanctions and bowl bans. This is so much worse than what happend at USC or Penn St. If not the death penalty, then severe punishment is due. Oh, if we could always just administer our own punishment, everyone would be happy.

  10. atxcane says: Apr 15, 2013 12:28 AM


    Wha…? What news have you been watching? Worse than Penn St.? Worse than USC?

    Maybe you haven’t read any of the articles since 2010, but the total value on illegal benefits that has come out (including testimony which is has been tossed) has been at least under 20k. The #s that I recall so far have been 4k over 7 players back in 2010, 2k for Kyle Wright, and 500$ for a used washer and dryer. Oh, and there was a coach who took a 5k interest-free loan and repaid it. What’s interest on 5k worth…maybe 500$ max?

  11. donovandancy says: Apr 15, 2013 12:51 AM

    “–and that it is “offended” (LULZ!!!1!1!!) by remarks in the motion.”

    “Specifically, the enforcement staff fires back at UM’s assertion that it was “wronged” by the fact that ”

    “But the only thing offensive about this case is the NCAA’s use of the word “offensive”, showing once again how little self-awareness college athletics’ governing body has.”

    Ben Kercheval,

    These three citations show your bias in writing this article. They separate you from any legitimate professional analysis of this case, and pretty much show a lack of journalistic perspective in this matter.
    Considering the first, you have no way of knowing if they were, or were not “offended”. Unless you have obtained the superhuman ability to critique personal statements of emotion or opinion from a omnipotence seldom found in humans, your bile at their offense regarding the attack from Miami is unjustifiable.
    Considering the second, using the bunny ears for wronged can only come from a biased view. You don’t believe them, we get it, you are biased. But you are also trying to report on this issue. They said the statement as a whole, and thus one word doesn’t require quotes. Either this awas a mistake on your part, or you were just showing disbelief. Not very professional.
    Lastly, there is no way to read the last statement other than that you personally are offended in this matter. Take a step back and learn how to approach a report like a grown up journalist who just reports what happened rather than turning an article into propaganda. You’re bias isn’t a story, what they actually said IS a story.
    Maybe it would be easier if you started another tab ranting, and let the CFB tab just be for actual relevant information.

  12. mgavin78 says: Apr 15, 2013 12:58 AM

    The NCAA has admitted wrong doing in the investigation. How can u take anything they say at that point to be justified. UM had admitted wrong doing, all Um is saying is at this point the self imposed penalties is enough. This should be over. The NCAA wants to be a credible organization they should stop while they all already way behind before it gets worse and everyone in their building is looking for a new job.

  13. mjasper24 says: Apr 15, 2013 1:12 AM

    donovandancy he’s. that. Guy.

  14. atxcane says: Apr 15, 2013 1:18 AM


    Donovandancy, peruse on through the linked CBSSports story. According to Bruce Feldman, who reportedly read the NCAA’s document, the NCAA themselves wrote they were “offended” and Miami likewise wrote they were “wronged”, hence the quotation marks to distinguish…a *quote*.

  15. thekatman says: Apr 15, 2013 1:25 AM

    The Miamia faithful ae acting lik 14 year old gilrs who got caught with their panties around thier ankles behind the bleachers. You’ve been busted,so twke e penalties and move on. paul Dee, rest his soul, was a douche bag, a hypocite, a liar and a complete boob.

    How can anyonewith any sort of cdence say to USC that they should run their program like Miami does and at the same time know thqt Miami was committing the worst NCAA offenses in history second to MSU?

    Get a grip folks, Miami was caught red handed and they’re doing anything they can to deflect the conversation, much like that idot in the White House. Tale reposnsibility for your actons, or inactins, deal with the consequesnces and move on. As the sayingoes…. FORWARD. Try it.

  16. manchestermiracle says: Apr 15, 2013 7:24 AM

    kat: Was the irony intentional in suddenly swerving into politics in order to bash on the president while using his campaign slogan? Either way I laughed.

  17. Ben Kercheval says: Apr 15, 2013 8:31 AM

    “These three citations show your bias in writing this article.”


    Uh, yes. Honestly, how is this surprising to people?

  18. bonerchamp says: Apr 15, 2013 10:05 AM

    Grasping at straws? Then why fire the lead investigator and other high ranking personnel, admit to seriously screwing up (Emmerit’s words) and throwing out even more “evidence” just a few days ago?

    Sounds like Miami is grasping at a bit of fairness.

    Again for the pitchforkers, Miami did screw up there is no doubt about it. The only thing that we contest is the “facts” that the NCAA is presenting that have ONLY BEEN CORROBORATED BY SHAPIRO AND SHAPIRO ALONE! If there is evidence that has been corroborated by others, we have admitted to wrong doing. But to only take the words of a pathological liar who is in jail for swindling people out of a billion dollars adn admitting to wanting to take Miami down simply is not going to happen. It’s funny how no one mentions the allegations that were proven to be false which were outlined by Donna in her original letter. Any university would fight and rightly so. Put down the pitchforks and try some objectivity.

  19. atxcane says: Apr 15, 2013 10:19 AM

    I like the NCAA’s revisionist history regarding Perez as well. They pretend it was a single employee acting without anyone’s knowledge. The reality is the *entire* investigative arm knew about it all the way to the top.

    Then they pretend they immediately ended the agreement and struck all information from the record when they learned of it. That is a BALD FACED LIE. They knew about it all along, they put it in their report, and when Miami raised objections, they explicitly claimed that their actions were completely acceptable and would be included in the final report. It wasn’t until outside counsel overwhelmingly said “uh NCAA, you can’t do that; in fact what you did may have even broken *federal* law” that the NCAA decided they’d remove the information.

    In fair circumstances, I’d say Miami should take the penalties for their actions. As the NCAA is proving however, they have no intention of penalizing Miami in accordance with their infractions. For the proven infractions, both on the record and stricken, Miami has already penalized themselves enough.

  20. melkipershero says: Apr 15, 2013 10:44 AM

    Worse than Penn State? Noles fan are we?

  21. jaydm84 says: Apr 15, 2013 10:56 AM

    Good, the NCAA should not back down from Miami. They committed major infractions and 2 bowl bans and some scholarships don’t amount to much for keeping their hands in Shapiro’s pockets for a decade. This type of crap bothers me, like the guy who commits a crime but the police officer documents something incorrectly and gets off on a technicality.

  22. raiderufan says: Apr 15, 2013 11:22 AM

    I dont think anyone is getting off easy in any of this….I don’t see how Miami missing out on not only 2 bowls BUT a chance to play in the ACC Championship, suspending any player involved that was still on the team for time frames approved by the NCAA and reduced the amount of Schollys they handed out for 2 years isn’t enough of a punishment for a crime that has had quite possibly the single worst investigation in the history of the NCAA?

    I’m a huge Miami fan and have been for many a year. I hate what they’ve done and I acknowledge that they are very much in the wrong with regard to infractions commited….that said, how can the commitee give an honest eval of the infractions and give more of a penalty then has already been established? Another 2 years? Might as well be the death penalty.

    And let’s not forget that from the very very beginning Miami has been as compliant as possible in helping with the investgation.

  23. mogogo1 says: Apr 15, 2013 2:34 PM

    Crazy how every day the NCAA manages to dig their hole a little deeper. Dee had cancer and the NCAA was expecting to interview him at some future date? They’re offended? Wow…

  24. chachooga says: Apr 15, 2013 4:22 PM


    that is hysterical…I wasn’t the only one about to copy and paste that line.

    Glad to see the irony is annoying to others and not just myself.

    What a joke.

  25. chachooga says: Apr 15, 2013 8:50 PM


    In defense of Benny K. I hav long ragged him for the opposite perspective of reporting….he hasn’t always railed sarcastically in UM’s favor….just sayin

  26. latchbeam says: Apr 16, 2013 10:46 AM

    Its not tattoos, people… Come on!! Its ONLY drugs, money laundering, felony crimes, prostitution and a few other things… Not a big deal at all compared to tattoos!? Its Miami!

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