We spend a lot of time picking on the NCAA these days, and after a while it gets old. Or even over-simplified. College sports are great for a lot of kids, and the fundamentally flawed system still works for the vast majority of those who participate in it. All of which is to say, we wouldn't keep lashing out at the NCAA if that stupid organization didn't keep giving us reasons to get upset. Today's reason:
Rick Pitino just said entire men's team wanted to go to the women's title game in New Orleans tomorrow night. NCAA says they can't per rules— Jody Demling (@jdemling) April 9, 2013
"No, wait," you might say. "The NCAA can't possibly deny Louisville players a $200 plane ticket from Atlanta to New Orleans to watch the school's women's team play in the National Championship game Tuesday. Right?"
Right, definitely. I see what you're saying. They didn't even cite the need to get back to class. This was nixed because it's an extra benefit.
Pitino said it's "ashamed" but NCAA denied request saying it was an extra benefit for the players.— Jody Demling (@jdemling) April 9, 2013
"That can't be possible," you continue. "Especially after Louisville's men's team just generated untold millions playing in the NCAA tournament. It just makes no sense."
Totally. It's just too petty and too bizarre. Which means it's perfect! Too petty and too bizarre to possibly be true is actually standard operating procedure with the NCAA, where logic is illlogical and rationale must be as irrational as possible.
"Wait why couldn't they just buy the plane tickets themselves?" you might wonder.
"Oh, right, because they're not paid and aren't allowed to have jobs," you remember.
A day after the best NCAA title game in years, we were all starting to get a little too openly positive about college sports, weren't we? Okay, good, back to normal!
UPDATE: After Pitino's comments last night, today the NCAA changed its mind.
This morning NCAA offered to give UL men expedited waiver to allow to go to women's game but UL already had travel plans done— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) April 9, 2013