A day after ACC commissioner John Swofford said the integrity of college athletics were “at a crossroads,” and just hours after North Carolina Coach Butch Davis made his first public comments since the Tar Heels football program received a notice of allegations from the NCAA, Virginia Tech Coach Frank Beamer used some of his session with reporters Monday to comment on the state of compliance in the game.
“I think what needs to be looked at is how quickly schools that are in question are investigated and if the punishment is due, then to get the punishment out there,” Beamer said. “I think when things happen and it takes a year and a year and a half and it takes two years, I don’t think it’s good for anyone. If it means hiring more people at the NCAA level, then that’s what I think they should do. I certainly want a level playing field.”
Alleged NCAA violations dominated the second day of the ACC’s football kickoff in Pinehurst, N.C. Davis faced a crowd of more than 30 reporters after the NCAA accused former assistant John Blake of giving improper benefits to players.
Beamer specifically referenced the situation at Ohio State, where former Coach Jim Tressel knew about players’ infractions but still allowed them to play in last year’s Sugar Bowl. Tressel was forced to resign in May as a result of the cover-up.
“The kids can play in a bowl [but] can’t play the first few games -- I’m not sure that’s the right message to be sending,” Beamer said. “It seems like if you did wrong you should be punished and the quicker you can get that, the more chances you have of not doing something wrong again.”
As for his own team, Beamer didn’t skip a beat when told a poll of ACC reporters picked the Hokies to repeat as Coastal Division champion, but lose to Florida in the conference’s championship game.
Since Virginia Tech is breaking in a new quarterback, must answer some questions on defense and has no clear-cut starter at kicker and punter following spring practice, “I’d pick them, too,” Beamer said with a smile.