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beef up, significantly, the rights and protect the interests of those involved.
Of course, this is precisely the kind of thing that we are searching for. We do not desire, at least I as the chairman do not desire to take 2. sides or to be punitive. My only objective is to improve the situation *: brought to my attention by more than 70 of my colleagues because of their growing concern.
It might be of interest that since these hearings started I have had Members of the House come to me and express their concern over conditions in their own State, and tell me that their people, who represent the highest institutions of learning in their State, were afraid to come to this committee and testify.
Now that tends to be supportive of some of the allegations made against NCAA. When people are willing to go to their representative I in Congress and express their interest in what is being done here, but
tell them that we are afraid to come in because of retaliation that might be directed against our school, something is wrong. And it should not continue to be wrong, and neither we in the Congress, nor the public, should tolerate a situation such as that.
So we will continue to push to try to get the best opinion possible from those who have had experience with the system and those who feel they might be able to add something to the overall record of this committee, and then from that we can make appropriate recommendations to the Congress as a result of these hearings.
Are there further questions?
The coach makes the determination. But once the coach has made that determination, if it were property right it would be challengeable in the courts.
Mr. NEINAS. We would have a lot of chaos, I would say.
Mr. WUNDER. That is the point I am getting at with the property right. Mr. NEINAS. I understand your point. I think I concur with it.
Mr. WUNDER. Second, you mentioned in response to one of Mr. McLain's questions that there had developed a lack of trust. Why has that developed? Why has this lack of trust developed, trust between the member institutions and the NCAA staff and the committee on infractions.
Mr. NEINAS. Why it has developed, I don't think I can give you an adequate explanation other than to point out that I think there is a feeling by the NCAA staff that institutions and conferences are not eager to find out the facts involved in a potential infraction case.
There is a mistrust of the NCAA by the accused institution which somewhat stems from procedures which are now in effect.
In other words, in talking with the individuals who have been involved in such cases they feel that they are at a great disadvantage when the committee on infractions hears about a violation and the witness, the key witness in the violation, is unable to appear.
So, it becomes the enforcement staff's word against the word of the accused institution. That creates a situation where it is not healthy between the member of a voluntary service organization designed to regulate intercollegiate athletics.
Mr. WUNDER. You touched on my next question, the question of the witnesses at the committee on infractions hearing. I want to ask about the managability of that.
Let's take a big case, the University of Minnesota, for instance, with a lot of players involved and with respect to each player there might be a key witness. So, there would be multiple key witnesses.
The committee on infractions members are academicians. They serve without pay and they come to various locations as frequently as is necessary to hear these cases.
If you had a system where you had a high number of witnesses, you would be winding up with something comparable to a trial that might take a month.
Mr. NEINAS. I don't think so, sir.
Mr. NEInAs. First of all, I think there are certain key witnesses in major violations. The institution frequently goes before the committee on infractions and admits its guilt in certain violations.
I am talking about major points of conflict. Those could be identified early and the opportunity to hear a witness on those major points of conflict.
Another idea I would just cast off which I have not given a great deal of thought to, but if this committee that I suggested is formed would be that the committee on infractions be expanded and that you then would have a panel so that the same individuals would not hear every case.
I recognize it is time consuming, especially when they serve without remuneration. Maybe you would have, for example, a nine-man panel and you would select three from the panel to hear this case similar to appellate court procedure. That would curtail some of the responsibilities of the committee on infractions members.
You know, you must recognize that the institution can be convinced in its testimony as much as the NCAA enforcement staff is in its.
It would seem to me that the whole situation would be clarified if you could bring in the person to be questioned before the panel which is hearing the case and determine which side has the better information.
Mr. WUNDER. Thank you very much.
Mr. Moss. If there are no further questions, we are most grateful to you for your appearance here today.
Mr. Neinas. Thank you, sir.
Mr. Moss. Our next witness will be a panel from the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, Dr. Donald Baepler, Mr. Jerry Tarkanian, and K. Michael Leavitt, Esq., of Las Vegas.
Would you gentlemen stand and be sworn!
Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are abont to give this subcommittee will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?
Mr. LEAVITT. I do.
TESTIMONY OF DONALD H. BAEPLER, PH. D., CHANCELLOR, UNI
VERSITY OF NEVADA SYSTEM; JERRY TARKANIAN, HEAD BASKETBALL COACH, UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA, LAS VEGAS; AND K. MICHAEL LEAVITT, COUNSEL, UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA SYSTEM
Mr. BAEPLER. My name is Donald Baepler.
Mr. Moss. Before we proceed to hear your statements, gentlemen, I would like to recognize a neighbor from the State of Nevada and your Congressman, Jim Santini.
Mr. SANTINI. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I am pleased to welcome the witnesses to muggy Washington, D.C. Our witnesses are here, as the committee is well aware, to testify about the NCAA case against the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, which has an outstanding basketball team, which has brought us national publicity and some problems, too.
Along with this particular case, and also the case of the University of Nevada at Reno, it prompted me to ask for this investigation.
After the months of testimony and the numerous witnesses, Mr. Chairman, I am absolutely persuaded that this case goes much beyond the boundaries of the State of Nevada. This is a national problem. It is a problem of serious proportion.
I am grateful that the University of Nevada system has been able to make a contribution in terms of the evidence-gathering process for this committee. It is tough when a school has been slapped with a tough penalty by the NCAA. The loss of revenue and reputation hurts.
We have seen some pretty disturbing cases of how investigative machinery run wild can damage careers of student athletes, of coaches, and their families.
That is, more than anything I guess, Mr. Chairman, what has particularly bothered me about the facts that we revealed on the methods that are sometimes employed by the NCAA in their investigative process.
All I am seeking in the course of these hearings is to find out a way to establish a fair, equitable, and responsible system of information gathering and factfinding.
I think we are a long way down that road. I believe that the evidence that will be contributed by UNLV and the University of Nevada at Reno are going to help establish the need for some substantial internal changes.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Moss. Now, Dr. Baepler, we are very pleased to have you here today. We will be happy to hear your statement.
TESTIMONY OF DONALD H. BAEPLER, PH. D.
Dr. BAEPLER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, I am very pleased to relate to this subcommittee the series of events relating to the in
vestigation of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas by the NCAA and to address myself to some of the ramifications that this investigation has had for the university. Although I am now the chancellor of the University of Nevada system, I was president of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas from February 1974 until March 1978, and prior to that time had been Unversity of Nevada, Las Vegas' acting president and vice president for academic affairs.
Let me at the outset indicate that intercollegiate athletics is very much in need of a regulatory agency, and that the university would prefer to see policy changes and attitudinal changes in the NCAA in an attempt to make a cooperative and voluntary association work.
At the present time, it appears as though the cooperative relationship between the NCAA and its member institutions can be severely questioned and that the voluntary aspect of membership in the NCAA is, at best, a facade, since institutions wishing to engage in significant intercollegiate athletic endeavors have little or no option other than to belong to the NCAA.
After many months of rumors, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, finally received word from the NCAA in the fall of 1972 that the athletic program of the university was under preliminary investigation by the NCAA. No specifics concerning any complaints or allegations against the university were presented to the institution by the NCAA; rather the university was simply put on notice that complaints had been received and that the NCAA would conduct a preliminary inquiry, present its findings to the Committee on Infractions and then, if substance were found indicating significant wrong. doing, the university would be informed by means of a letter of official inquiry.
In the years that followed the receipt of this letter, the administration of the university as well as the chancellor of the university system, attempted to discover the status of the university with the NCAA, but to no avail.
Finally, on February 25, 1976, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, received notice that more than 70 allegations against the university basketball program were considered by the NCAA to have sufficient substance to warrant an official inquiry, and the university was asked to investigate each of the 70-odd charges.
After years of rumors of impending disaster, it was almost with a feeling of relief that the university was finally in a position to know specifically what it was that it was being charged with. Needless to say, during such a preliminary investigation and, in particular, when such a preliminary investigation covers such an inordinately long period of time, the university's entire athletic program is placed in jeopardy. Recruiting of top quality athletes becomes difficult, and scheduling also becomes more difficult during a period of time when other institutions feel that there is a distinct possibility that your own institution will somehow be placed on probation.
After a series of hearings before the infractions committee of the NCAA, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, finally concluded its presentation to the NCAA on August 22, 1977, when we presented a final appeal to the NCAA Council. Thus, for 5 years, the university lived under a cloud and even today there still is litigation pending relating to our difficulties with the NCAA.
The doctrines of educational leadership and integrity are clearly stated on the initial page of the NCAA constitution. Since receipt of the letter of preliminary inquiry in 1972, the university has attempted to vigorously apply these doctrines to its athletic program.
After receipt of the letter of preliminary inquiry, the university replaced its basketball coach and, by coincidence, the athletic director retired from that position and the president of the university resigned, thus making it possible to bring in a new basketball coach, Jerry Tarkanian, who knew that the university was under preliminary invtstigation; to bring in a new athletic director, who also was aware of the investigation; and to bring in a new president, who was pledged to administer a program free of possible difficulties that had occurred previously. Everyone in the program was keenly aware of the fact that the athletic program in Las Vegas must be able to stand scrutiny.
When the university received the letter of official inquiry in 1976 covering more than 70 allegations which theoretically occurred during the tenure of two different coaches and which involved individuals now scattered all over the country, it became apparent that the university personnel alone could not conduct a thorough and complete investigation of each allegation. For that reason, the university enlisted the support of the attorney general's office of the State of Nevada to conduct an investigation to determine if and how the violations occurred.
The attorney general's office and the university found it necessary to enlist private counsel as well in an effort to determine the validity of the various charges. It was particularly frustrating to the university investigators that the NCAA would furnish no information whatever to the institution in an effort to aid the investigative procedures; that is, no evidence was given to the university in support of any of the charges, sources of information used by the NCAA were not revealed, and the university was forced to devise its own procedures and to proceed without benefit of NCAA staff's experience in these matters.
Perhaps the most frustrating aspect, indicating the lack of cooperation extended to the university by the NCAA, involves the university's numerous requests for a copy of the committee's policies, procedures, and guidelines concerning such investigations.
Mr. Lyle Rivera, the chief deputy of the attorney general's office, initiated requests for such information shortly after the university received the official inquiry. During subsequent meetings and correspondence with the NCAA staff university personnel were told:
One, such information was available in the NCAA manual. This information apparently presents a sequence of actions but no procedural guidelines.
Two, no such information was available.
Three, the committee policies and procedures were in written form and transmitted to an institution when the institution asks.
Four, the information we requested was being compiled.
Five, the information was being codified and would be presented to the NCAA Council and, therefore, was not available to us.
Six, the institution was finally told that all questions had been answered and any additional specific questions could be forwarded to NCAA staff.