Mike Hamilton ready to get NCAA meeting over

UT Basketball Head Coach Bruce Pearl, center, and UT Athletic Director Mike Hamilton, right, listen to UT Chancellor Jimmy Cheek give a statement on Pearl's eight SEC game suspension on Friday, Nov. 19 at Thompson-Boling Arena. The suspension is a result of Pearl's conduct and recruiting violations that are under investigation by the NCAA.

Photo by Lauren Spuhler

UT Basketball Head Coach Bruce Pearl, center, and UT Athletic Director Mike Hamilton, right, listen to UT Chancellor Jimmy Cheek give a statement on Pearl's eight SEC game suspension on Friday, Nov. 19 at Thompson-Boling Arena. The suspension is a result of Pearl's conduct and recruiting violations that are under investigation by the NCAA.

DESTIN, Fla. — Not many coaches and administrators can say they’re looking forward to their meeting with the NCAA Committee on Infractions, and Mike Hamilton admitted Wednesday that he certainly isn’t one of them.

But the Tennessee athletic director is clearly ready to get it out of the way.

“This is something that’s lingered on for a long time,” Hamilton said after Wednesday’s SEC spring meetings at the Sandestin Hilton beach resort.

“One of the things we’ve talked about with the NCAA folks is the lengths of these kinds of things. During the course of that, you take public hits and questions about things that maybe people speculate on, so we’re ready to get to a conclusion.”

UT brass, former men’s basketball coach Bruce Pearl, former football coach Lane Kiffin and all the other various parties involved in the 12 major violations levied in February’s Notice of Allegation are set to appear before the COI next weekend at the NCAA’s headquarters in Indianapolis. It’s by no means the final step to what’s now become a 24-month process, as the COI will not deliver its rulings for at least six weeks after the hearing.

It’s just one big step closer to a resolution.

“We’re ready to go,” Hamilton said. “Nobody looks forward to this by any stretch of the imagination but we’ll go to Indianapolis next week and try to present our case.”

As he did at April’s athletic board meeting, Hamilton stressed that 11 of the 12 major violations are pinned on Pearl, Kiffin and their respective staffs. The university faces a charge of failing to monitor the men’s basketball coaching staff’s improper phone calls.

It is Hamilton’s understanding that most of the COI’s questioning will be “directed toward the coaches’ actions.”

Those coaches’ replacements, Derek Dooley and Cuonzo Martin, will both be in attendance at the hearing, Hamilton said.

“I think it’s good for them to go,” Hamilton said. “While it’s two days out of their life, I think it’s helpful to understand what the process is and understand this is a place you don’t want to be.”

Andrew Gribble may be reached at 865-342-6327. Follow him at http://twitter.com/Andrew_Gribble and http://blogs.knoxnews.com/gribble

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Comments » 37

TheVolMan writes:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

brauhuff#295403 (Inactive) writes:

Hammy is toast when this is over

beartn#223846 writes:

<<As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on>>

I know many that thought it was time for Fulmer to go, and still want Hamilton gone. The biggest thing I hear about him is being a great fundraiser. I don't think that's very hard, given a passionate and large fanbase. The AD has to be accountable, and the two biggest men's sports are in trouble with the NCAA on his watch with coaches he hired. He botched Fulmer's and Kiffin's contract so badly, that the Athlletic Dept has to outsource the contracts, which is surprising if he's such a great businessman. Baseball certainly isn't big, but he fired a coach that got to the World Series now and then, and replaced him with someone that took us off the cliff. He also couldn't have handled the Pearl situation any worse.

I have no idea why he still has a job. Different topic, but I think the OSU AD will be toast before too long as well.

LJS1984 writes:

Mike Hamilton ready to get NCAA meeting over....Most Tennessee fans ready to get the Mike Hamilton era over.

agohn writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

I can almost predict everything you say when it comes to Mike Hamilton. What is your obsession with him? Is this your cousin, brother, or boyfriend? Let it go...we can have opinions about inept leaders in the University system.

VolzsFan writes:

Hammy inherited the greatest football coach and baseball coach in UT history. He decided to keep Buzz but was overruled by Haslem who asked Ernie to find a coach. In spite of having 50 associate ADs. they could not monitor and manage the two new basketball and football staffs to let them know what rules needed to be followed or done better so they did not get caught...the way Dickey did. He had the best era in the 3 main sports and he managed to screw it up. As the baseball team has went down the drain and football has followed thanks to Layne running off 40 players and they no longer have what is considered the best recruiting head coach in history and we still have idiots that think those guys should have been replaced. All that winning and all I guess.

Hammy brought us the end of those 3 sports, meet your seats and NCAA sanctions to come. Yes, go ahead and defend him. Many UT fans just cannot stand prosperity.

Hey Hammy, as soon as these meetings are over I am sure you are history. Don't wish for something because its will come.

DannyVol writes:

Without getting personal, simply look at the program since Hamilton was hired in 2003. Look at winning percentages and lack of championships. Look at violations and other incidents. There is no need for bias or emotion to come to see that the program isn't what it was prior to his arrival. And you can toss out all the excuses when football, baseball, and basketball have all failed in one way or another during his tenure. Sure, football was already trending downward, but that does not explain baseball or the hiring of two absolute snakes in Kiffin and Pearl. Even if he had no idea that they were snakes, that doesn't change the fact that he hired both of them. The one upswing during his tenure, basketball, essentially has an asterisk by it now. Even if you could prove to me that it's not his fault, his dismissal is simply a logical conclusion to the fact that he is the captain of the ship. When you are in a position like Hamilton's, you have to be prepared to take the blame for things even if you don't think it's your fault. That's why such a position pays so well.

DannyVol writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

Please explain what Hamilton has done that can be considered positive. At this point, Fulmer is not even in the equation...tough guy.

Classof72 writes:

Nobody's laughing. Maybe the athletic department needs a new head clown. Mr. Hamilton is not very funny, but he has our support. Of course, we can't say if he should continue to be athletics director next year, considering he's on the eve of his big meeting with the NCAA. That's the Mike Hamilton way of showing suppot.

shipperman#280095 writes:

in response to VolzsFan:

Hammy inherited the greatest football coach and baseball coach in UT history. He decided to keep Buzz but was overruled by Haslem who asked Ernie to find a coach. In spite of having 50 associate ADs. they could not monitor and manage the two new basketball and football staffs to let them know what rules needed to be followed or done better so they did not get caught...the way Dickey did. He had the best era in the 3 main sports and he managed to screw it up. As the baseball team has went down the drain and football has followed thanks to Layne running off 40 players and they no longer have what is considered the best recruiting head coach in history and we still have idiots that think those guys should have been replaced. All that winning and all I guess.

Hammy brought us the end of those 3 sports, meet your seats and NCAA sanctions to come. Yes, go ahead and defend him. Many UT fans just cannot stand prosperity.

Hey Hammy, as soon as these meetings are over I am sure you are history. Don't wish for something because its will come.

I didn't know that Hamilton inherited General Neyland. Fulmer was in NO way the greatest football coach at UT ever. If he was that great, why has he been offered no major jobs?

orangecountyvols writes:

in response to VolzsFan:

Hammy inherited the greatest football coach and baseball coach in UT history. He decided to keep Buzz but was overruled by Haslem who asked Ernie to find a coach. In spite of having 50 associate ADs. they could not monitor and manage the two new basketball and football staffs to let them know what rules needed to be followed or done better so they did not get caught...the way Dickey did. He had the best era in the 3 main sports and he managed to screw it up. As the baseball team has went down the drain and football has followed thanks to Layne running off 40 players and they no longer have what is considered the best recruiting head coach in history and we still have idiots that think those guys should have been replaced. All that winning and all I guess.

Hammy brought us the end of those 3 sports, meet your seats and NCAA sanctions to come. Yes, go ahead and defend him. Many UT fans just cannot stand prosperity.

Hey Hammy, as soon as these meetings are over I am sure you are history. Don't wish for something because its will come.

M H inherited General Neyland?

I didn't know he had been A D that long.........

SummittsCourt writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

Based on the responses to your stupid post there are many, many hammy haters out here and count me as a big hater of hammy.

You are delusional if you think the hate comes from just his mishandling of Phil Fulmer. It has to do with his consistent mishandling of all sports. He has no clue how to run an athletic department and if you weren't so deep up his you know what you could see that.

Hammy has to go after this hearing. To keep him as the AD means the Tennessee brass also has no clue. None of his hires have done anything good for this University. Kiffen, Pearl and Raleigh brought incredible shame to Tennessee in their own way. Dooley and Martin are in wait and see mode but both come from mid-major schools so there are many who believe he under achieved with these hires too.

VOLS_SEC_RULES writes:

Can't wait for Hamilton to go away!

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

"Mike Hamilton ready to get NCAA meetings over."

RichRollin is ready for the Mike Hamilton era to be over.

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

HUH, WHAT, I CAN'T HEAR YOU.

pj_ladyvolnMI writes:

Andrew...do you know what time their meetings begin/end at the NCAA office next weekend? Some of us alum here in Indy may want to don our orange and show support out front as they go in or something.

orangepeel writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

Hamilton needs to be fired for his pathetic job performance. Firing Fulmer is the only reason people like you support Hamilton. All 3 major sports programs at UT were/are under investigation by the NCAA. All happened on MIke Hamilton's watch. He has tried to blame former coaches for his own neglect of the rules. Mike Hamilton needs to be fired the sooner the better.

bigorangebolt writes:

I am not a huge Coach Fulmer fan. I thought we needed to remove Fulmer from coaching duties at UT. Although, the hiring of immature Kiffin was a disaster! Mike Hamilton is a walking disaster.
If we don't fire Mike Hamiltion, I know a lot of disgruntled Vol fans that will rise up! Fire Hamiltion after the NCAA meeting!

V_O_L_S_GO_VOLS_GO writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

Not sure how you're pulling together the Fulmerites with what's going on since his firing... Summer's Eve Hamilton has allowed too much to go on under his watch with no repurcussions until it's too late. Firing Fulmer has nothing to do with it. In fact, I was one who was ready for a change when CPF was fired, and I still support my feeling on that. But, I also feel like it's time for MH to go, too. Interesting how I don't fit into your little paradigm there.... dummy.

V_O_L_S_GO_VOLS_GO writes:

in response to MerlOT_GoVols:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think Mike Hamilton may have racy photos of TheVolMan; thus, his quick defensiveness on the subject. :)

DocKJM writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

I am NOT A HATER! But come on look at what has happen over the past eight years while Mike has been the leader! This is a lot bigger than what happen with Fulmer! Where are the CHAMPIONSHIPS? Where are the top recruits? Where are the top ten recruiting classes? Where is the leadership at the top. Not just improvement in facilities, we are simply improving the facilities for the mid-major recruits that we will be attracting. The top recruits will continue to go elsewhere. Top recruits and their parents see, read and hear from the other top school recruiters, who also recruit the top recruits for the past five years, is the overall total lack of stability in UT Mens Athletics. This plays a role in getting the top 5 star recruits. YES we will get good mid-major recruits, no problem there, but to compete in the SEC year in and year out the program MUST attract the best. Kids want to come play where there is stability, where they can play early and where they can compete for championships. The lack of leadership at the top and that is MIKE HAMILTON is one reason why the program is in such turmoil. THIS DOES IMPACT RECRUITING which is the life blood to championships!

FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE FIRE MIKE

kevin151 writes:

Fire this dope already

tomkats3242 writes:

The one person who is responsible for hiring nothings, cheaters and others is the one that should have been fired. It is all about MONEY and mike is making too much and should have to repay the university for all the settlement money he has paid. FIRE MIKE or watch the crowds get smaller this year.

VolunteerLifer writes:

“I think it’s good for them to go,” Hamilton said. “While it’s two days out of their life, I think it’s helpful to understand what the process is and understand this is a place you don’t want to be.”

Hamilton was talking about our new coaches. He should have been talking about himself.

VOLliven2it writes:

The question is; when the meeting is over will it all be over for Hamilton? We shall soon find out.

knoxchatter writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

Boy, you're a real 'rocket scientist' aren't ya? Firing Fulmer and Pearl were actions that needed to be taken, unfortunate as they were. Hamilton got those right! The point is TheVolMan, all of the troubles and problems leading up to these actions, et.al., have occurred on Hamilton's watch. The avalanche always begins at the top of the mountain! Hate him or love him, Hamilton needs to go!

easleychuck writes:

Vulture time in Tenn-a-sEEEEEEEEEE

arkyvol writes:

so, hammy's eager to get the meeting over?

same way i feel about his tenure as a.d.

FarmerVol writes:

Hammy should be ready. Once the donkey BBQ is over with the sports police, the real chewing begins. Have to wonder what his required accomplishments were after his last evaluation by Cheek? Have to say, if any included winning anything, he grades out at F for failure. Reason enough to can him in my book. Failure to accomplish any required goals usually brings on the ax. The only reason I can see he hasn't been fired, is this: Who would Cheek offer up to take the flogging? Pearl? Kiffy? Not here anymore. Time to flush Hammy.

UTHayes24 writes:

in response to TheVolMan:

As usual, the Hamilton Haters will continue their agenda. They are still bitter that Fulmer was removed and remain in denial that he had to go. It was a tough decision no doubt.

Hammering Mike may make you sound tough but you're not. Bury the bitterness and move on.

GBO

This has nothing to do with Fulmer. VolMan, what has Hamilton done besides raise money that anyone in a business suit could do for this school? Defend your boy.

Chartervol writes:

in response to pj_ladyvolnMI:

Andrew...do you know what time their meetings begin/end at the NCAA office next weekend? Some of us alum here in Indy may want to don our orange and show support out front as they go in or something.

Oh, that'll help a lot. Instead of a Vol Walk you can stage a Perp Walk.

jjack61 writes:

I have followed Vol sports for 50 years and Hamilton has done more damage to the university and the program than anyone. So, I will ask once again, why is he making 400 K per year to destroy our beloved UT ?

AncientVol writes:

We had some good happenings and bad happenings under Hamilton. In spite of the criticism, while warranted, we still had five (in my opinion) very positive happenings under Hamilton:
1) termination of Fulmer
2) termination of Kiffin
3) termination of Pearl
4) hiring Derek Dooley
5) hiring Cuonzo Martin

GBOEngineer writes:

in response to bartlett79:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

only thing mid-major about UT athletics is fans like you.

mhsvol writes:

MH is an easy target of derision for a lot of reasons. Regrettably, most of them have become personal, rather than factual. You can carp about his coaching hires after the fact, but the majority of posters on this board roundly supported Pearl, Kiffin, and Raleigh. Once these guys tanked, all he## broke loose, and MH was blamed.

I for one, find it difficult to condemn the guy for his hires. Who could have predicted what would happen with Kiffin, Pearl and Raleigh. Dooley is still an unknown, but once again, the majority of folks on this board support him as they do Martin.

No one should blame MH for the Fulmer or Peterson fires, but in the rearview mirror, they do.

The real problems with MH though are more complicated. First, he is a PR nightmare. Secondly, he is a businessman without a businessman's intelligence. The contracts he has constructed for his coaches are a nightmare for the university. Third, he has been an apologist-in-waiting for both Kiffin and Pearl, instead of a steady controlling influence. In that regard, the tail has been wagging the dog. Fourth, he has not been a leader of his department's compliance group, for which there is no excuse.

Perhaps the job of athletic director has gotten too large for one individual. MH seems to be at home raising funds and even hiring coaches, but not so comfortable managing his coaches and his compliance group.

Somebody at the senior level needs to evaluate all this and create a model for the athletic department that utilizes and holds accountable all the resources UT has to bear on the athletic landscape.

CCLC writes:

"You can carp about his coaching hires after the fact, but the majority of posters on this board roundly supported Pearl, Kiffin, and Raleigh. Once these guys tanked, all he## broke loose, and MH was blamed."

Ah, remember those halcyon days in Knoxville when they bragged about having a plan?

CCLC writes:

in response to Rich_Is_Re-born:

"Mike Hamilton ready to get NCAA meetings over."

RichRollin is ready for the Mike Hamilton era to be over.

I don’t think Hamilton survives this, there is a significant percentage of the fan base that wanted him gone long before this. UT will let him represent them at this dirty laundry meeting, then sacrifice MH. It has been a rocky road every since he arrived, don’t know how they could do worse.

Hamilton deserves the punishment for what he allowed Junior to do alone. He knew damned well Kiffin was undermining their traditions (his worst offense-and that statement "I support the yellow and white.LK" unbelievable; and allowed dozens of embarrassing actions by Kiffin during his tenure. The idiot was a disaster from day one. This is not to let the fans off because I saw many of them defend the childish public antics for the 15 months he was there. Similar to what AubieCames did last season, except the Vols weren’t winning. (I should add, some UGA fans sound this way when they blame the police for daring arrest any of our players.) Perhaps the lack of outcry from fans misled Hamilton to think it was OK to look the other way when he saw wrongdoing, but corruption and a lack of ethics/character will eventually topple any leader, or society. And yet,Hamilton raises a ton of money for the school. Don’t underestimate the power of that.
just sayin'

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