PROBLEMS AT RIVALS.COM

Official admits it can’t police its publishers

Rivals.com has been embroiled in controversy over how its publishers have behaved. The Auburn Rivals.com site edited a video it posted once complaints of recruiting violations surfaced; conveniently, the Auburn website removed the most damning portions of its video. In other words, the publisher of the Auburn website aided Auburn’s cheating.

Now the regional recruiting analyst for Rivals has admitted there is a problem.

According to the Birmingham News, Jamie Newberg, the Southeast recruiting analyst for Rivals admits, “his recruiting service could educate the owners and publishers of Web sites, but couldn’t police each and every one under its corporate banner. And he knows there are problems.”

However, nobody wants to fix the problem. The Birmingham News provides this enabling quote from a former Michigan recruiting coordinator, “This was a problem 10 years ago and it’s a problem now, only worse,” Mark Ouimet said. “But these are individual businesses. The NCAA can’t stop them any more than it can stop the gas station or pizza place down the street.”

That is naïve. This can be stopped through serious sanctions against ANY university who works with recruiting sites. Cease their access. Ban them from campus and remove scholarships from any school with a site contacting recruits as a booster. You will force fans to stop buying subscriptions to the sites guilty of recruiting violations. Why? Because fans want to win. Hurt the school and subscriptions will evaporate. It is as simple as that.

This is something that has the potential to destroy college football as we know it. It has already introduced million of dollars into the recruiting process, and it will only get worse as the beast grows. If money corrupts politics (think Richard Nixon) then how can we say these multimillion dollar businesses are not corrupting college football?

Other notes:
The Doug Segrest column linked above also includes other insight from Scout’s Andrew Bone. It is a must read on this important issue.

ESPN’s recruiting guru Tom Luginbill was on Tuesday’s Paul Finebaum Radio Network (audio here) where he admitted recruiting sites routinely work to recruit for the schools they support.

“It is a dangerous animal that is part of the recruiting landscape now,” Luginbill said. “It is something that I do not think is going away either.”

Luginbill first mentioned the potential for “influence with individualized team sites” on Finebaum’s show two signing days ago. In that conversation with Finebaum, Luginbill ridiculed industry leader Rivals.

There seems to be a trend here: Rivals.com. It doesn’t mean Scout and ESPN aren’t just as guilty; however, the Auburn site’s reckless and public editing of video illustrated in a powerful way just how corrupt this business is. The NCAA must act to preserve the sanctity of the game.

14 Comments

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  1. 1
    Pluto

    I would advise some caution here. I would prefer that the Net – for all it’s sleaze – continue to function as free as possible – for as long as possible – until the benevolent “Dear Leader” shuts it down. Those that take information – gossip – whatever the hell as the literal truth – nothing can be done for them.
    As far as the Bama Nation – the one endearing quality about this Family is that there are enough cynics around to try and keep it reasonably honest and foster arguments against the status quo. All of this is missing at most places – notably Auburn. Perhaps that explains why the tiny number of Aubie doubters wind up here.
    Can you imagine a “Tommers Report” ? No – hell no.

  2. 2
    finebammer

    maybe a toomers t p report, pluto.

    really cap, he has a point.

    plus you’re kicking a favored antbed of many, recruiting and their access to “information” about it.

  3. 3
    capstonereport

    I want the Internet to remain free of government interference.

    What I don’t want to see is the NCAA allow some “boosters” to corrupt the recruiting process while attacking other “boosters” for corrupting the recruiting process.

    A little attention, a few threats and increased attention is probably all that is necessary to restrain the greatest problems here.

  4. 4
    Pluto

    Sorry – it’s the damn place where they use the last roll of toliet paper in Lee County – Toomers Corner.

  5. 5
    finebammer

    “in order to make an apple pie, you must first create the universe.”

    carl sagan.

    kind of how i feel about getting the ncaa involved in anything.

    whoa!

  6. 6
    almightytmc1

    A “Toomer’s Report” would be welcomed. Because finally thier would be an Auburn journalist who actually told THE WHOLE TRUTH (good and BAD).
    That would be a novel idea.

  7. 7
    14 trooper

    Cap, covered up Auburns cheating? What, on a secondary violation? Stretching aren’t we?

    Do you think rivals hasn’t worked for Bama? I know your not that naive either. The owner is a bama fan thats under federal scrutiny. I think??

    Anyway, whatever makes you sleep better at night.

    Have a great 4th everybody on the cap site and be safe.

    WDE and RTR!!!!

  8. 8
    capstonereport

    Yes Trooper, they edited out what were secondary violations. Why did they do that? Were they asked to do it? Or did they do it on their own volition? Either case exposes a bias on the part of the publisher that would make the site a booster of Auburn.

    I think this is a problem with every team site. They pursue an agenda. Some sites are likely worse than others. A solid investigation would no doubt reveal how serious this problem is.

    As for Rivals, the company was sold to YAHOO and the founder is no longer with the company. (At least that is what I have heard.)

  9. 11
    almightytmc1

    During the 2nd World War, after an unfortunate series of events. A Nazi commander had a whole village lined up and executed. Every man woman and child.

    When he was tried for his war crimes his primary defense was that it was an act of war. And that the Soviets had done just as bad or worse.

    Think about it.

  10. 13
    bamafan36

    Wow, another article on Auburn… this should really be called the Capstone Report and Auburn Bashing site… Should this be monitored…

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