Nebraska and the NCAA allegations

Well, I am in work this morning and start seeing Twitter blowing up about the recent NCAA infractions that we are being accused of. There’s essentially two parts to this:

  1. “Improper use of analysts and consultants during practices and games. The school has significant video footage confirming the practice violations took place in the presence of Frost and other assistants.”
  2. Also last year, when the NCAA prohibited organized athletic activities because of the pandemic, Nebraska relocated its strengthh workouts to an undisclosed off campus location to avoid detection by non-football school officials. The unauthorized workouts were held at the direction of NU’s strength and conditioning staff.

So let’s take a look at these one by one. The first is one that is very interesting. Many of you have heard me mention my friend at USC going through something similar. I remember being at a practice around 2015 or so and seeing a football and running to get it and hearing “what the fuck are you doing man! Get out from between the whites!” by my friend. Essentially since USC was on all sorts of NCAA radars and dealing with probation every other year, there literally could be no one except players, full-time coaches, and student managers on the field. He followed it up with “sorry, we are probably the only team in America that follows that rule but we got binoculars on us all the time.”

This goes back to what I had been stating on the other site before I got kicked off. If you hire an analyst as the only person responsible for your special teams, he either can’t help you in practice and games, or you have to break NCAA rules to do so. So I get every team probably bends those rules, but we literally put in public that we had no one to coach special teams. Read that bold again… we put ourselves in this spot not having a full-time staffer with skin in the game.

With that said, that infraction probably holds zero weight. I don’t worry about that at all. We can just say we fired the culprit and Chief of Staff and have moved on. Until the next part where it says that Frost and other coaches were there and witnessing it going on. That’s where it gets sticky. If that is in fact true, and there’s video of our HC and other assistants watching our analyst who isn’t supposed to be doing something actually doing something, I could see a suspension coming. Probably one game, but our first game is Illinois. Hopefully the punishment isn’t levied until Fordham! It’s one thing to have the analyst working on the side with the kickers or holding off campus things, it’s quite another for you to be watching it happen and be ok with it. Further, does “significant video evidence” mean more than one practice where this happens? Again, if it’s an “oops” a time or two, who cares? If we started doing this every Tuesday and Wednesday it’s quite another.

When it comes to the second part about strength workouts off site. I had posted on the other site that we were doing things like having our guys run the hill at Holmes lake and other things of that nature. Let’s be real, during a pandemic where you saw tweets of guys getting creative to lift by squatting water jugs and such, that shouldn’t be looked at at all. That’s idiotic if that’s the issue. Now, what could cause us problems (like the above where Frost knew), is if our staff truly did take weights and other things to another location in an effort to hide what they were doing from administration and people who could let the NCAA know. That could lead to a suspension in my opinion as well. If you are knowingly going against NCAA rules and facilitating that to get a competitive advantage, that could mean suspension for some of our S/C staff.

I don’t believe any of the things are going to get anyone fired. So let’s try not to overreact too much with this. But what I take issue with, and especially for #2, is if all the other teams sent guys home (like Iowa and Northwestern publicly stated they did) and we were setting up strength circuits for our guys and doing training tables for them during the pandemic, yet still only winning 3 games and having our worst finish in the division since being a member of the conference…. that’s tough. Because we had our S/C and training table advantage, other places didn’t. Heck, you even heard Frost talk about them needing guys back because some didn’t even have a weight room to workout in. I know anyone who knows me is aware i’m not a fan of what we do in the weight room, but for how much I hear about how great our S/C program is, in a year where we took advantage of it and other teams had their guys working out at Anytime Fitness in a strip mall without a training table, and we ended up 3-5… Jesus. Can we just prove it for once instead of everyone telling me “well we look the part now!”

It will be interesting to see what us at Nebraska recommend to the NCAA as punishment. I’m hoping us firing Rutledge and Lambrecht, as well as possibly suspending a couple of assistant S/C guys for a few games will suffice. To summarize, using an analyst in practice or moving workouts to Holmes isn’t a big deal. Our staff watching the practices and trying to sneak the off-site stuff is the issue. No one knows what truthfully happened, so it will be interesting (frustrating?) to watch what unfolds.

Comment below!

16 thoughts on “Nebraska and the NCAA allegations

  1. Thanks for breaking it down..if true, it is pretty bad that we bent/broke the rules and were still that bad on the field. It seems like we cant get out of our own way…we are afraid or too inept to take small victories (getting bigger, stronger, etc) and move the program along to bigger and better things

    1. I think that’s the thing. If we are “dangerous in 2019” or even getting 7/8 wins a year, whatever. But the optics are that we can’t get it done, and now we are cheating and can’t get it done. Even though every other team probably does something like this, it’s just more mocking material. Really hope we come blow the doors off in 2021 to shut some people up.

  2. I believe that this is much ado about nothing. My main interest is how did this come to the attention of the NCAA? Seems like it would have had to be a disgruntled player or coach or other assistant, as they said the NCAA had video evidence. I also didn’t quite agree with the author sticking in the whole Oklahoma fiasco in an article about NCAA investigation of improper analyst involvement. I did hear Frost say today that the training issue was not part of the investigation.

    1. Ya, i’m hoping it’s nothing. If it was overseen by our staff, then it’s a bigger issue IMO. The author is an Oklahoma grad or fan (McMurphy) so there’s where that comes from. But I think he was more referencing his source, because it has to be inside stuff to know who was calling about potential games. And that was in March, after Rutledge was gone.

      1. Would this provide “cause” for the university to not pay out SF’s final years? I was excited as anyone when we hired him, but this clearly has not worked out.

      2. I mean, I think firing from just these two allegations isn’t even in the idea pool right now. With that said, if the investigation take a few months, and we go 4-8, it might be something they would take a look at. But that would take a catastrophic season (which I don’t think is coming) AND the NCAA to drag this out and find more than what was alredy shared. Quite honestly the only thing that worries me is the analyst deal unless there’s more to the off site workouts. Shoot we were posting twitter videos of guys working out off-site.

  3. Spot on SSO. The “intent” is the key factor here.

    As I stated in another forum, “attention to detail” and “discipline” are things that are needed (by everyone) to improve outcomes, and eliminate these self-inflicted wounds.

    1. Ya, we seem to be lacking that in some areas unfortunately. But all of this stuff is why when Frost was asked he would state they only needed a couple weeks to be ready for a game when other coaches like Iowa said “at least a month”.

      If Frost and them were watching Rutledge knowingly commit a violation of NCAA rules, multiple times, it’s an issue. Not fireable, but an issue. If they knowingly moved stuff for workouts to hide it from administration and NCAA, that’s an issue because they knew it was wrong.

  4. So I’m curious SSO, I believe Frost stated that there were around 30 or so players that stuck around Lincoln during the shutdown. He was also on record stating that the training staff provided the players with a workout program to follow. Since the local players were shut out of the on campus facilities, is it not unreasonable to assume Frost made off campus arrangements for his guys to work out in a controlled environment? He comes across as very passionate about his players and their safety, so logic tells me this would fall in line with that thought process?

    1. To go a step further, I think they pretty much had everyone back on campus except for a few people even in May or so. Like maybe 100 of them? We had brought it up, but it was illegal to workout in the team facilities, but they were obviously here working out somewhere.

      I’m wondering if they set things up like you mentioned, but then overstepped by having the staff there? Again, I don’t think the S/C stuff is that egregious. I mean, supervision of kids in off campus stuff doesn’t seem that bad. But it looks awful to the NCAA because they were telling people not to. Does the NCAA take issue that we went against their word, or are they pissed that during a pandemic we refused their guidance for health/safety?

      So much to speculate, but really tough for me to be mad about the workouts off campus. I’m more mad that we didn’t capitalize on them than anything.

  5. Please name someone. These allegations seem real stupid and the media is making a bigger deal out of it then its worth. So who is leaking this info and who whats Scott Frost gone. Is gotta be someone trying to get him fired. NCAA should just slap Nebraska on the wrist and move on.

    1. Ya, I just tweeted I don’t think it’s Rutledge, because McMurphy got a tip in March about us shopping the Oklahoma game and JR was fired in January. I’m worried the person is still there.

      1. Who has been there since Pelini? Could be someone outside of athletics but it seems this stuff keeps happens. Someone is not on the same page as everyone else. Just win and everything is fixed tho.

  6. I believe that it is someone within the Husker organization. I also believe that they better get this figured out soon. It does no good having someone within your organization that is working against the Head Coach and team. While I find it hard to believe that someone would actually do this, an insider is the only reasonable explanation for this. Plus who would have information about the Oklahoma fiasco except for someone in the organization.

    1. Ya I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around all of it. I mean, we’ve wiped the slate clean how many times? Eichorst did. Then Riley. Now Frost, and it appears to be leakier than ever.

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