NCAA President Mark Emmert's comments on issues
NCAA President Mark Emmert sat down for 20 minutes with The Associated Press on Monday. Some of the topics he addressed:
On college athletes making money off autographs: Emmert acknowledged he's open to a rules change but until then the NCAA will continue enforcing the rule currently on the books. ''People can agree and disagree with that rule, but nobody can disagree with the fact that it's a rule and it's in place and therefore we have an expectation that students follow the rules,'' he said. ''You know, I get frustrated here in Indianapolis because (the speed limit on) part of the freeway is 55 mph and I think it ought to be 65 mph. But I know that if I drive 65 mph and I get a ticket, I can't say `Yeah, but the speed limit's stupid.' I'm still going to get a ticket. So there's following the rule and then there's wanting the rule to be changed.''
On domestic violence: Emmert said the NCAA is working with experts in the field and has embraced a program at the University of Arizona called ''Step Up'' to assist campus leaders with promoting better education and more prevention. The NCAA also has joined a White House ad campaign called ''It's On Us.'' But Emmert continues to believe the best solutions will come at the campus level: ''I think as a former university president, I think it's one of the most troubling issues on campus and we're going to do everything we can to be helpful to find solutions.''
On whether he has any regrets over the handling of the Penn State case: In a word, no. Emmert said an aggressive plan to implement better university policies has made the school an ''exemplary program'' for dealing with these sorts of issues. In fact, Emmert said, he believes it has ''worked out pretty nicely.''
The Ed O'Bannon case, where U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken opened the door to college athletes receiving some money from sales of their likenesses and images: Emmert said he expects to win the appeal because ''we believe we're right on the law.''
The Martin Jenkins case, in which a former Clemson football player wants to eliminate financial restrictions on scholarships: Emmert contends Jenkins' legal team is essentially arguing college athletes should be paid and permitted to negotiate ''any and all circumstances.'' Emmert added: ''I think that everyone sees this is completely in opposition to any model of college sports as we've ever known.''