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Posted on Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 11:58 a.m.

Michigan's hearing with the NCAA Committee on Infractions under way

By Michael Rothstein

SEATTLE - The University of Michigan's hearing with the NCAA Committee on Infractions regarding five major violations is under way at the downtown Westin in Seattle.

The meeting opened at 8:30 a.m., with all of the Michigan’s contingent in the room well beforehand. Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon, who greeted the media with a brief “Good morning, gang,” wearing a dark suit and a gold Michigan pin, entering the room at 8:04 a.m. along with Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman, who wore a pale green suit.

Three minutes later, Michigan football coach Rich Rodriguez came up the escalator. Earlier in the morning, around 7 a.m., Rodriguez and Coleman spoke outside a room set up for breakfast before taking food from a buffet of eggs, bacon, potatoes, fruit and juices.

In the room, Michigan will face these charges:

• Quality-control staff members regularly monitored voluntary off-season workouts and regularly assisted with on- and off-field coaching duties.

• Players were required to participate in more than the maximum allowed practice hours.

• Graduate assistant coach Alex Herron provided “false and misleading information” to NCAA enforcement staff.

• The athletic department “failed to adequately monitor its football program to assure” NCAA compliance.

• Rodriguez “failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance within the football program and failed to adequately monitor the duties and activities” of his quality-control staff.

The school admitted to all but the final charge.

Among the Michigan contingent spotted entering the room were Brandon, Coleman, Rodriguez, faculty representative Percy Bates, Michigan strength and conditioning coach Mike Barwis, aide Scott Draper and Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany.

Also in attendance was Alex Herron, the former graduate assistant accused of lying to NCAA investigators.

The NCAA Committee on Infractions meeting room, in the Grand I ballroom on the fourth floor of the Westin, was adjacent to a meeting about diabetes. The breakfast room on the third floor, in the Whidbey room, was next to an oncology conference.

Inside the room, four sides were set up, each with white tablecloths, black microphones and small placards with each person’s name written in large, black lettering.

At least 12 boxes, including some marked ‘UM exhibits’ and one with a Lowe’s logo, were brought into the room.

Members of the NCAA Committee on Infractions will not speak after the meeting. It is up to Michigan whether or not representatives from the school will speak.

Michael Rothstein covers University of Michigan basketball for He can be reached at (734) 623-2558, by e-mail at or follow along on Twitter @mikerothstein



Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 5:35 p.m.

Michael,what are we going to learn from today?


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 5:14 p.m.

really mike?


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 5:02 p.m.

@A2D2 Nicely done.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 3:06 p.m.

So, the 13th box was from Lowe's.....Was it the Lowe's on Jackson, or the one over in Ypsi? What did it contain? Why a Lowe's box? Why not a Home Depot box? At least the Lowe's box was probably blue, and not orange like a Home Depot box.......unless they bought those clear ones. But wait, they never would have done that - you could see through them! And we all know that nothing that has anything to do with the NCAA can be clear, now can it?


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 2:11 p.m.

The reporting of MSC in pale green suit is good stuff. I am certain that it has nothing to do with MSU or Jud Heathcoat's old sports jacket. It is much more likely to be something very PC -- such as we support the "green movement" in Ann Arbor.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 1:38 p.m.

I for one found it interesting to note what they were wearing. MSC in a pale green suit? Has she heard of navy with maize scarf? She is, after all, representing Michigan in a sports related hearing. Freep reports that UM has spent more than 500,000 on this so far. To date, with the buyout that UM was forced to spend at WVU for RR (who conveniently forgot that he signed a binding contract with WVU, his alma mater), with the lawsuit over that buyout, with his salary, and with this NCAA mess, I would estimate that RR has cost UM more than 5 million dollars so far. For 8 wins and a heap of unprecedented embarrassment (notwithstanding App State under LC), I would say that is a very bad return on investment.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 1:25 p.m.

I fail to understand what importance the clothing the participants were wearing had on the meeting. Report when something substantive is available. Good luck guys. Hope this thing is over with soom. Two years in succession just before the season is a bit much. Coincidence? Maybe not.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 1:25 p.m.

I just wish this thing was over with and the punishment would be announced today so we could put this behind us. My main concern is the U of M is going to be under a microscope for the next several years. Hopefully the U of M will have a Compliance Staff member monitoring RR and the football program on a daily basis. If RR doesn't follow the rules it could be devistating to the U of M.

Lorain Steelmen

Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 1:19 p.m.

Just got back from Seattle a week ago, myself. I hope the meeting goes well for the UM group, (and Jim Delany), and that we can get closure to this chapter. We need to get on with the preparations for the season ahead. Go Blue!


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 1:19 p.m.

Barwis will be serving the NCAA officials chocolate milk at snack time.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 12:41 p.m.

Everbody is so hung up on this old news, all us Michigan fans care about is getting back to winning Big Ten Titles, which by the way will be soon enough folks! Alot of people seem to forget that if we fire Rich Rod, then we will have atleast 3 to 4 more losing seasons before the next coach gets the players to fit his system. And the same people complaining now would still be complaining in the years to come.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 12:21 p.m.

Interesting details about the private chat between Coleman and Rodriguez, but do not need to know the breakfast menu. Also, why do we need to know that the diabetes and oncology meetings are occurring in nearby rooms?


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 12:06 p.m.

I can't help but laugh at people who continually deride the articles on this site but who at the same time continue to read them.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 11:34 a.m.

Actually, I would submit that this is one of the best pieces of reporting to be posted on this site since this whole mess started. Not the usual All In spin. Especially interesting was not only the fact that our illustrious President would be wearing green, but that she met privately with her embattled savior beforehand. Were they making sure they had their stories straight? Excellent reporting.


Sat, Aug 14, 2010 : 11:25 a.m.

The detailed description of the "scene" makes it sound like this is a murder trial. Why no description of what RR was wearing?...was he naked?...and what about Alex Herron? Is he not important enough for you to describe his clothing? What shoddy reporting, I am desperate for more detail! not