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SBD/April 3, 2013/Colleges
Rutgers AD Tim Pernetti Reverses Course, Fires Basketball Coach After Fallout From Video
Published April 3, 2013
SEEING SCARLET: On Newark, Brendan Prunty writes in a front-page piece that the video showing Rice being abusive to players “sent shockwaves through college basketball” yesterday after a 40-minute tape aired on ESPN's "Outside The Lines." Rutgers until yesterday “kept the details vague” about why Rice was previously suspended. The school previously said that Rice had “abused players and had thrown basketballs.” But the tape “showed aggressiveness and foul language not seen publicly before.” Pernetti before the airing of the video invited a “small group of media members to view the tape yesterday afternoon in his office.” He said that he had “dealt with Rice’s conduct and called his behavior a first offense.” He said that university President Robert Barchi also was “made aware of the tape’s contents and was in line with the discipline handed down to Rice” (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 4/3). ON THE HOT SEAT: CNBC’s Brian Shactman said Pernetti “has been a great” AD for Rutgers. But the school is “under tremendous pressure right now.” We will “see if they stand by” Pernetti and Barchi (“Squawk on the Street,” CNBC, 4/3). SI.com’s Andy Staples wrote the “rub” is Pernetti could have fired Rice “earlier, and he would have looked like a champion for the welfare of his athletes.” Now, he “looks like a wishy-washy administrator who didn't have the sense to make the smart and/or right choice the first time around” (SI.com, 4/2). ESPN N.Y.’s Ian O’Connor wrote this is “no longer about Mike Rice;” this is about the “senior administrators at Rutgers University, the people who failed to protect their students from a common abuser and homophobe.” Rice is “no legend, except, apparently, in his own mind, but this case summons some of the same troubling questions raised at Joe Paterno's Penn State, where the program and the coach were protected at all costs, leading to a scandal that shocked the world” (ESPNNY.com, 4/2). FOXSPORTS.com’s Jason Whitlock writes there is “an immoral and dangerous power imbalance at the root of all the NCAA corruption.” The athletes, the “revenue-generators, the young people deemed too precious to be burdened by the dollars they produce, have absolutely no power and no watchdog institutions looking out for their welfare.” That is why Rutgers “thought it could get away with slapping ... Rice on the wrist” (FOXSPORTS.com, 4/3).