There’s an old saying that goes along the lines that if you ignore history, it will repeat itself over and over again until you pay attention. Until Mitch Barnhart arrived, UK Athletics had been run by a good ol’ boy network made up mostly of basketball people, some of whom apparently had no problem with breaking the rules in order to win. The trouble is that the willingness to break the rules in football didn’t bring much winning, but did bring NCAA probation during the Curci years and again during the Mumme years.
There is a group amongst our fan base who believe cheating is okay and they don’t want Sandy Bell, Mitch Barnhart or anyone else to take steps to prevent it. I find the attitude disturbing and disgusting. It is an attitude by people who do not use their real names on the social media, particularly on the various forums where they post.
In a thread on one forum, I have read the following comments which are taken in order. The first half of the thread was a discussion about Saturday night’s Prime Time Camp. The discussion centered around how many people were there and how well it went. Here’s what suddenly popped up (Warning: This is extremely lengthy):
Poster #1: "I just hope Sandy Bell doesn't run off Coach Stoops, because I am hearing she is being difficult to work with"
Poster #2: She has to be nearing retirement. I would hope that MB wouldn't let our compliance officer become that big of a hindrance. If he does then that's the last straw for Mitch IMO.
Poster #1: it's a difinite problem, Stoops is use to being at FLa St, a winning program, Sandy Bell has never been around one, Ky not only has to win in the SEC, has to compete against its own compliance person.
Poster #3: The estimated attendance was 700 and I 'm guessing that was about right...A gorgeous night and a good time was had by all...Saw and talked to several explayers there and they are all excited about what was going on ...Stoops is trying to bring them all back into the fold like Cal has with the bb guys...One players comment on the exstaff..JP "fired" himself out of a job...STOOPS TROOPS!!!
Poster #4: Well Poster #3.... I didn't see you. Haha. Was a nice evening as others have mentioned. Some big ole boys there, that's for sure.
Poster #5: I saw the 700 number guess over on KSR. My number was just a guess, as was theirs. I did notice as I was leaving that a lot of people came over late from the activities inside Nutter, but they looked to be family of the recruits. That would have given a higher number than mine. I'm just a little skeptical of crowd estimates after the exaggeration we've seen the last two years.
Poster #6: FSU has been punished by the NCAA since Sandy Bell has been at Kentucky. She on the other hand has a spotless record
Poster #7: She was here during the Mumme years.
Poster #1: If you guys want her to run Stoops off( who really does have spotless record) then go right ahead., we can go get joker back and have another yes man. Personally I would like a football program.
Poster #8: So Sandy should just look the other way if this staff steps over the line with regards to NCAA rules? \ Bell has a job to do and that job is to try and make sure that UK stays out of NCAA hot water. Perhaps you aren't aware of UK's past NCAA problems?
Poster #1: when you inforce rules or interpret rules different from everbody else you play, it puts you at a disadvantage, Cal doesn't put up with hopefully Stoops won't either. Maybe UK wants Stoops to recurit like Joker did, it's alot easier. Stoops will not tolerate that kind of silliness.
Poster #8 in response to Poster #2: So I will ask you the same question... Bell is supposed to just look the other way?
Poster #3: We got there at six and needless to say we had to wait around awhile...But, we stayed until the lights went out..haha..Saw some media types there that you would NEVER think would be at a FB function like this...Won't mention any names..wink..wink...STOOPS TROOPS...
Poster #8 in response to Poster #1: Never been around a winning program at UK? Perhaps you aren't aware of UKs basketball success? NCAA rules are the same for both and Cal must jump through the same compliance hoops
Poster #3 in response to Poster #1: Sandy sure made herself visible all night..A couple of the guys I was with know her a little and teased her all night...Why do you think she will run MS off...It sure looked like everything went off without a problem...Even though we only knew a couple of the players and said hi to them and welcomed them to UK I thought things went well...There were several signs posted around about what you could not do with the players!!!...I thought it was great and MS and staff know this is the type of stuff you do to become a top notch program ...STOOPS TROOPS
Poster #1: when it's not a rule,yes I am telling you Stoops will not put up with it.
Poster #3: Example??...If it's not a rule what's the problem...This camp thing last night went off without a hitch and seemed to be a big hit...I know I heard that they had almost double the campers they had originally planned for...Stoops and Sandy will be fine just like she and Cal have been...Let's all enjoy the ride that this staff is going to take us on...STOOPS TROOPS!!!
Poster #9: If you don't operate in the gray area concerning NCAA rules, you'll never be successful in the SEC. If Auburn and Miami can have known MAJOR violations and nothing is done, you have to realize the NCAA punishes schools at random (most likely those who do not generate as much revenue) and play the game like everyone else.
Or we can continue to follow every rule in the book and be 20+ point underdogs to the majority of the SEC.
Poster #1: Last night went great because of Stoops and his staff who are professional and motivated, I am just telling you there is a problem
Poster # 1: You guys want the truth then go find it for yourself. If you dig you will find out there was at least one blow up between Bell and CS that was witnessed . Now as far as Looking the other way ______ if you are in the know like you always say you are you know Cal doesn't allow Sandy to touch his program . Heck he told her to take a hike over asking to sit John Wall over some bull crap rumors before the NCAA tournament his first year. This staff knows how to recruit on a high level . UK doesn't in football and 70 years of ineptitude shows it on a grand scale . Why do you think we have cheated at recruiting in the past ? Coach take short cuts because they have been put at such a disadvantage by the UKAA in the past . Sandy Bell interputs rules differently from anyone else in the SEC that's a fact. We are not fools I see rivals doing interviews of kids in front of the stadium at UGA just "off campus" I see Ohio St hosting a rivals camp where the number one DT in the country came by and then spent some time just checking out the campus and talking to OSUs coaches . Give me a break with the holier than thou crap you had sandy trying to stop high school coaches from walking on the field last night making a nuisance of herself that's not gonna fly with the current staff.
Poster #10: Maybe somebody should just start a Sandy Bell thread and leave her out if this thread and talk about the recruits and activities in this one.
Poster #1: just telling you truth take information how u want to,my track record is pretty good on here
Poster #11: If Poster #1 is saying it, heed his words and appreciate any tidbits he provides.
Poster #8: Lol... Like your track record of knowing where the women's basketball team lives?
Poster #8: The more you say the more you demonstrate how little you know
Poster #1: ha ha , I know what I saw and hear. I will put my record against yours anyday, but then again you thought Mitch and Joker where doing a great job last year. I didn't know where the Woman's basketball team lived I admit, you know more about the women basketball team than I do, football not so much.
Poster # 2: WTH are you exactly? I've read _Poster #1’s posts for years and for the most part he has been spot on. He definitely has a ton of passion for our CATS and has contributed far more than you to this board. He definitely has a ton of passion for our CATS and has contributed far more than you to this board. Sandy Bell has her stick firmly planted in the mud and can be quite arrogant on occasions. Before you ask, yes I actually know her. Unfortunately I've had to sit on several Committees with her in the past.
Poster #1: I posted something that is a problem for Coach Stoops, believe what you want , I don't know about you but I enjoy getting commits from kids like Ware , if ________ wants to go back to the joker days that's fine, I personally don't
Poster #6 in response to Poster #7: I stand corrected you are right. I for some reason thought she was brought in to clean up the mess Mumme made.
Poster #12: Poster #1 pay no attention to Poster #8 (the welcher). He was one of those that tried to portray UK Football as a lost cause for too long. Now that we have a coach that can recruit and KNOWS how to build a program, Ole Fuzzy's schtick has been exposed. The fans that Poster #8 so often criticized for expecting too much from UK Football, have FINALLY started to see some results from an administration that realized we were saying enough is enough!! So, now he's trying to use compliance as another "excuse" as to why UK Football can't succeed. Just IGNORE HIM, he's not worth the time you'll spend arguing with him over how horribly wrong the UK Football fans are that want real success.
Poster #13: Well, this turned into a pretty interesting thread. FWIW, I really don't understand why the NCAA allows these "shells" of camp. A "meaningful" camp for just a single day? Or even just a few hours like last night? C'mon, these are tryouts. nothing more, nothing less...and the NCAA by-laws specifically forbid tryouts. Yet another enormously inconsistent position of the NCAA.
I don't get people here beating up on Sandy Bell. She is probably the 4th most recognized name in the athletic department. She has done a great job resolving some notable eligibility issues. She couldn't get Kantor eligible but a little perspective here, the guy signed a contract with a pro team. That sort of does sound like what the NCAA calls "an intent to professionalize".
There was a rumor circulating she was absolutely freaking out about the Eric Bledsoe recruitment but even that turned out OK when the Birmingham School Board found no wrong doing by the Birmingham School System. And don't get you panties in a wad over me bring that up. I know for a fact that some years ago a prominent Louisville area athlete had his grades changed by his HS principal so he would be eligible for college.
Poster #14: We can move on from this topic now. The wisdom of Poster #13 has been leant to the subject.
Poster #15: I see your point on the inconsistent position.... But if the NCAA allows the camps, then why not take advantage of the rule, as many other major programs do....This coaching staff is taking UK football into the 21st century as Coach Brooks stated that needed to be done, in regards to the UK football program!!!! That doesn't mean that rules are being broken however!!!
Obviously, some that have never seen and been there before may be apprehensive, but instead of UK fans even hinting at such, they should sit back and enjoy the ride of how major football operations work in the world of college football!!!!
Poster #16: Poster #1, it sounds as if CMS efforts last night won out. Can you shed some light on if he will continue to run into this type of obstacle? CMS and staff obviously come from winning backgrounds and know what it takes to get the players needed. I can't imagine them running the same program functions here at UK the same as they ran at FSU at TTU to name 2, and not know what compliance boundaries to respect. I for one, am glad to see the football coach at UK be competent, compliant (the same as his SEC peers) and fearless when trying to build his program. Thanks for the information.
Poster #8: you seem to have an issue with your ability to recall...or perhaps it's just a problem comprehending what you read. Never have I written, said or implied that UK football was a "lost cause". I challenge you to find anything of the kind. I also have never written anything about fans expecting "too much". I repeatedly told you and others who were blaming Mitch for everything that you were barking up the wrong tree. That the roadblocks to increased financial support resided in the BoT and state legislature.
As for Sandy Bell and compliance...to start with you've got zero knowledge of the subject matter of any supposed conflict between Bell and Stoops. And with zero knowledge it is impossible for you or for anyone in your position to have an informed opinion on this particular matter. It is quite clear that factual information isn't important to you or others. Further, nowhere in this (or any other thread) have I taken a position on this particular matter. I just think that it is foolish for anyone to take positions on matters based solely on emotion. Blind loyalty is for fools and will eventually lead to a path of self distruction. The fact that people would automatically take a side and place blame for a situation about which they know nothing is rather sad yet unfortunatly common.
Where did I write anything about UK football having any excuses for not succeeding?
Lastly, I obviously have more faith in UK football to succeed than do you as you are implying that NCAA compliance is purely optional. You must not realize that if the NCAA were ever to find violations with the fb program that the staff that committed those violations would be fired. I prefer that Stoops succeeds and be around for a long time.
Poster # 1: Once again made up rules by UK compliance office does not help Coach Stoops, UK has been so successful doing it Barnhart / Bell way, But go ahead run off Stoops and his assistants I am sure you can get Joker back.
Poster #8: Poster #1, you too have absolutely no clue as to any questions about any specific compliance question. So continue to humor yourself. We are all waiting for you to report just exactly this so-called spat was about. I find it strangely funny that you can suggest that something was "made up" yet you don't have any idea what it was that was fabricated.
BTW, the "Barnhart/Bell way" has lead to the most successful decade in UK athletics history.
Glenn has a copy of the thread and can verify the order and context of what was said. I sent it to him and a couple of other people I know who actually are close to our football program. The consensus of opinion is that Saturday night's Prime Time Camp went off without a hitch. There were no compliance issues and that Mark Stoops and Sandy Bell get along great. By the way, she just got a promotion. Congrats to her!
First off, I don’t believe Stoops and Company wants or needs to cheat. If they do, then they’ve lost my support. I believe a bunch of" know-it-alls" and phony "insiders" want others to believe they have knowledge of the goings on within our athletic department and our programs when, in fact, they are only trying to impress others with false witness. Every program has them, so it isn’t restricted to the University of Kentucky. My sources tell me that, at best, these posters are "uninformed" and they think Poster 1 & 2 are nothing more than pathological liars who actually may believe what they think they know. But, they don't know squat.
I should add that the operator of the forum has taken the thread down. I hope he warned these know-it-alls to cut the crap. How do you guys feel about these kinds of people? Is it okay to cheat? Does everybody do it?
[Additional commentary by Glenn] What we see here is typical of a program's fan's that think they are going to be led out of the long dark, and Kentucky football fans, notwithstanding a few moments of light, have been, and still are, in said long dark. At some point, fans get so tired of being a footstool that they are willing to put up with anything, including NCAA gray-area operation and outright violations, to get back to a competitive level. The will use the "Others do it so we have to as well if we want to win" rationalization to support their unethical commentary.
UK's commitment to compliance after the nightmares of the 1980's shows no signs of abatement; to the contrary, the recent hiring of Rachel Newman Baker away from the NCAA enforcement division to assist Sandy Bell in compliance issues shows that Kentucky is more committed than ever to avoiding a repeat of past failures.
So when you read this sort of nonsense, and it is nonsense, realize that UK compliance can veto anything these coaches do. Forget the rumors, forget the "I know stuff" you may read in other places when it comes to compliance. UK's compliance record over the last 20 years is all you need to know when it comes to who gets the final say.