Calkins: Is Memphis finally paying the piper for hiring Calipari?

Go Tigers? Really?

That's what the University of Memphis has to say about Saturday's date with the NCAA in Indianapolis?

"To all Tiger fans, please know that we will represent you well on June 6," wrote the university's lawyer, Sheri Lipman, in a letter to the Board of Visitors and the Board of Trustees. "And go Tigers!"

So strike up the band, Memphis fans. Anyone for a rousing pep rally?

Head down to Wilson Air and send them off in triumph.

The university is going to represent you well in a proceeding during which the NCAA enforcement staff will press the case that your golf and basketball programs combined for six major rules violations.

Remember the Alamodome! Or at least remember to use all your available objections/timeouts!

Memphis fans are counting on you to come back with, OK, an acquittal is too much to ask.

But -- according to the university's official response to the NCAA's notice of allegations -- the university is certainly resisting the notion that it should be punished in connection with the charge that Derrick Rose didn't take his own SAT. It's the one allegation Memphis vigorously disputes.

Yes, the women's golf coach bought her players all kinds of wacky stuff. Yes, Derrick Rose's brother, Reggie, wasn't charged for every hotel and flight.

But Memphis can't be held responsible if Rose cheated on his SAT.

"The University was in no position to know of a problem with the scores at the time of (Rose's) participation," the Memphis response states. "He had been certified on behalf of the NCAA as having met the initial-eligibility requirements and was a regularly admitted full-time student at Memphis."

Which makes a lot of sense, at some level. Memphis didn't get formal notice that Rose's SAT had been canceled until May 13, after the season ended. The school only played Rose after the NCAA Eligibility Center certified him as ready to go.

The NCAA didn't clear Angel Garcia, so Memphis didn't play Angel Garcia. The NCAA cleared Rose, so Memphis played Rose.

It would be unfair to punish Memphis under these circumstances!

Or -- at some macro level -- would it?

Memphis knew what it was getting when it hired John Calipari as head coach. For nine years, the guy had the run of the place.

Is it surprising that he recruited a player who might have faked an SAT? Really? If you're being completely honest with yourself?

On the same day the university released its response to the Rose allegations, CBSSports.com reported that Georgia did not accept Robert Dozier because of a "fishy" SAT.

Georgia officials apparently got a tip that Dozier's score might not be valid. When Dozier took the test again, he got a suspiciously lower score.

So is Memphis just the innocent victim of a duplicitous point guard who passed himself off as something he's not? Or did the Memphis program under Calipari invite investigations like the present one?

One thing's for sure: The university did a better job explaining the Rose allegations than it did explaining why it took so long to tell anyone about the scandal.

Lipman's letter was a sorry defense of the administration. But, to be fair, what exactly was she going to say?

"Once we received the notice, we had approximately 90 days to respond," she wrote. "The response must include a written answer to each allegation and to numerous related questions and a mass assembly of documents."

So Memphis officials were too busy to tell their alumni and supporters the truth? Too busy to tell the new basketball coach, too?

Even then, the response was finished and filed with the NCAA on April 24. What's been holding them up for the last month?

It's nonsense, of course, an attempt to defend the indefensible. University officials decided to sit on the charges because they decided to sit on the charges. Now they want you to know that they will "represent you well on June 6."

So have a party, break out the Calipari masks, light up the First Tennessee building in blue.

The University of Memphis is headed to Indianapolis.

Go Tigers Go.

To reach Geoff Calkins, call 529-2364 or e-mail calkins@commercialappeal.com.

© 2009 govolsxtra.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 33

kiffownsfla writes:

What did you exspect lol whatever.

ctownvol writes:

Memphis. You got some 'splaining to do.

NobodyCares (Inactive) writes:

Calipari is the "gift" that just keeps on giving. Ask the folks in Amherst, MA!

He has proven that he can take a nothing program and put it on the big stage. But, this is the 1st time he has taken over a major, big time program. It should be interesting to see how he does in Lexington.

ctownvol writes:

in response to TCHDWN10C:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

He's dead?

txvolsfan writes:

Does anyone really care?

Memphis and UK deserve what they get for hiring this
guy, It's not a story in Knoxville because it's not about the Big Orange

Glad we got BRUCE!!!!

CoverOrange writes:

Admit it Calkins. You got nothin'. This article is worse than anything JA has ever written.

beachvol1 writes:

Cats, be careful what you wish for?????

chad_t31 writes:

Something else fishy...supposedly UGA wouldn't sign Robert dozier because there were rumors that he didn't take his own SAT's either yet Pope Cal takes him with open arms. If u get titles stripped from u, what's it really worth??

Titan writes:

Did Cal get to take his two left over timeouts from the NC game with him to Kentucky? Was that in his UK contract? I know he has to be saving them for something really important.

stevefrommemphis writes:

I said on the day of the National Championship game that if Memphis won, the title would be "Vacated" within two years. Some Memphis fans got mad at me. I stand by my original statement.

easleychuck writes:

The obvious thing about the Rose test score issue is that Calapari would be more aware than anybody about the ins and outs of what was going on with Rose's academics.

He would have been acutely aware that Rose was having trouble getting a passing score just based on his low high school GPA. He didn't care to know how Rose finally passed the test.

He would also have been completely aware that Marcus Camby was sporting lots of expensive bling and an above average vehicle as a poor college student while at UMass. The college coach knows just about everything that is going on in his own program.

That is why Smith and Crews were asked to leave the UT program. Coach Pearl was monitoring the situation.

Calapari is a snake oil salesman and nothing more. John Wall from the last report I had seen does not have a passing test score.....how can the NCAA clear him this late in the game if he comes up with one, conveniently prior to this fall.

gmoneyvol writes:

in response to easleychuck:

The obvious thing about the Rose test score issue is that Calapari would be more aware than anybody about the ins and outs of what was going on with Rose's academics.

He would have been acutely aware that Rose was having trouble getting a passing score just based on his low high school GPA. He didn't care to know how Rose finally passed the test.

He would also have been completely aware that Marcus Camby was sporting lots of expensive bling and an above average vehicle as a poor college student while at UMass. The college coach knows just about everything that is going on in his own program.

That is why Smith and Crews were asked to leave the UT program. Coach Pearl was monitoring the situation.

Calapari is a snake oil salesman and nothing more. John Wall from the last report I had seen does not have a passing test score.....how can the NCAA clear him this late in the game if he comes up with one, conveniently prior to this fall.

Maybe the same guy that took Rose's SAT can take Walls' SAT too?
Where are you, loud-mouth Tiger fans? <crickets> Yeah, that's what I thought. Up until this, you people were woofing about what an 'elite' program you had. Now you have Peter Brady and probation. Enjoy.

gmoneyvol writes:

Who the heck cheats at GOLF??? LOL. Only at Tiger High...

pdhuff#552644 writes:

Cal is akin to a roadrunner.

The dust settles way behind him.

DarthVol writes:

in response to ctownvol:

He's dead?

No. I just changed my name.

RockyTop1 writes:

Calapari just keep on giving and giving....sorta like an some "social" diseases! Pass the hand sanitizer PLEASE!!

pdhuff#552644 writes:

in response to TCHDWN10C:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Never demean the porcelain god.

Slystone writes:

in response to ctownvol:

He's dead?

Yes, he passed away on the commode.

Slystone writes:

in response to chad_t31:

Something else fishy...supposedly UGA wouldn't sign Robert dozier because there were rumors that he didn't take his own SAT's either yet Pope Cal takes him with open arms. If u get titles stripped from u, what's it really worth??

Chad - you're misinformed on the Dozier situation. True his grades weren't good to make it into UGA, but what Calkins left out was he went to Prep school for one whole year before even going to Memphis. And also, he graduated from Memphis this school year. Please folk know that the Media will put out half truths.

vol88 writes:

Back in the day, I used to pull for Memphis just because they were a school in Tennessee, just like Vandy or MTSU or Belmont, etc. (Only when UT wasn't involved, of course!) But after a couple of years of arrogant Tiger High fans on boards like this, I don't have any love loss for them. good luck with the NCAA, Tigers, you're gonna need it.

TrouserCough writes:

You dont need to take the ACT or SAT to get into high school.

Bloodrunzorange writes:

No body was saying anything about the talent Cal was bringing in... until now. Fans in Memphis were putting For Sale signs in his yard before Dejuan Wagner came to Memphis. In case you forgot, he was the Star Befor Rose. And Rose was the star befor Evans. Even then they were a one and done team. They didn't do Jack! until the 2004-2005 season. Cal is a politician and a master of the media. Why are the fans that were kissing his rear then selling him out now? I guess that's what Cal gets for giving Memphis fans what they wanted...a little taste of glory! My Take and Go Vols!

bluetiger writes:

Oh yeah, I read the Knoxville paper because the business I work for is based in Memphis but does a lot of work in Knoxville, so it's just business smarts to keep up with what's going on here. I lived in Knoxville for five years and was recently able to talk my employer into a Memphis-based position and have been back home and loving it for six months.

bluetiger writes:

in response to BIPOLAR_BEAR:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think the loser would be the person who insults someone for making intelligent comments under a sports column.

If you'll look over my posts, I think you'll see that nothing I wrote here was derogatory. I simply wrote my opinion, which obviously differs from yours.

ETNTigerFan writes:

Wow! Memphis just landed another 5 star in Will Barton. #1 SG in 2010 class. If he gets the commitment from Joe Jackson that will be 3 5 stars before Pastner even coaches a game! To all the people who thought Memphis was done as a power after Cal left...sorry.

gmoneyvol writes:

in response to ETNTigerFan:

Wow! Memphis just landed another 5 star in Will Barton. #1 SG in 2010 class. If he gets the commitment from Joe Jackson that will be 3 5 stars before Pastner even coaches a game! To all the people who thought Memphis was done as a power after Cal left...sorry.

Is anyone going to take their SATs for them too? Enjoy probation and forfeiting that almost-NC season. Peter Brady.

gmoneyvol writes:

in response to bluetiger:

Oh yeah, I read the Knoxville paper because the business I work for is based in Memphis but does a lot of work in Knoxville, so it's just business smarts to keep up with what's going on here. I lived in Knoxville for five years and was recently able to talk my employer into a Memphis-based position and have been back home and loving it for six months.

lol... "business smarts".
Hope your car theft insurance premiums are paid up... you will need it in the Shelby Cesspool.

ETNTigerFan writes:

in response to gmoneyvol:

Is anyone going to take their SATs for them too? Enjoy probation and forfeiting that almost-NC season. Peter Brady.

Because we all know that those Vols are the epitome of academic achievement. Enjoy another 1 and done with old orange skin Pearl Necklace. I heard he won a Rocky Top League game. Why don't you give him a raise! Ha! Pastner is outrecruiting Pearl and he hasn't even coached a game yet!!

gmoneyvol writes:

in response to ETNTigerFan:

Because we all know that those Vols are the epitome of academic achievement. Enjoy another 1 and done with old orange skin Pearl Necklace. I heard he won a Rocky Top League game. Why don't you give him a raise! Ha! Pastner is outrecruiting Pearl and he hasn't even coached a game yet!!

Peter Brady was your 'choice' after 5 or 6 guys (including Pearl) turned you down. Bruce will school Peter in FedEx.

gmoneyvol writes:

in response to bluetiger:

I think the loser would be the person who insults someone for making intelligent comments under a sports column.

If you'll look over my posts, I think you'll see that nothing I wrote here was derogatory. I simply wrote my opinion, which obviously differs from yours.

"Intelligent comments"... lol.

gmoneyvol writes:

in response to biggestutfan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

They will get a nice beat-down in Neyland, biggest. The 50 or so Tiger fans that show up will be talking about "wait until basketball" as they exit the stadium.

Colliervol writes:

Been off for a few days and it looks like the Tiger fans are still beating that old dead horse. Sorry guys. I've told you repeatedly that Tiger news is only interesting the week we play you in football and for a day or two around when we play you in basketball. And it's even less interesting now that you are an afterthought with Cal gone. Nobody cares who you recruit. Coach Jonas still has to coach them and he hasn't proven a thing yet. When you get in the SEC, let me know and I'll pay more attention.

The only other comment I have about the Memphis program and good ole Coach Cal: God, I hate it when I'm right. (That and "I told you so".) End of discussion. In less than 90 days, It's Football Time in Tennessee.

Colliervol writes:

in response to biggestutfan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Biggest, the only time the Liberty Bowl gets fans in the seats is when:

A) UT shows up.
B) Ole Miss shows up.
C) When Kroger puts up the $5.00 tickets. And even then, it's a tough sell.

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