SOUTH BEND, IN - AUGUST 30: Head coach Brian Kelly of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish yells at players on the sidelines after a score by the Rice Owls at Notre Dame Stadium on August 30, 2014 in South Bend, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

ESPN analyst slams NCAA "overstep" in penalties handed down to Notre Dame football


ESPN's Jay Bilas is once again at odds with the NCAA.

The topic for Bilas's scorn this time is in the form of sanctions handed down against the Notre Dame football program. On Tuesday, Notre Dame had an appeal denied and the school was officially stripped of 21 wins from the 2012 and 2013 football seasons.

NCAA totally oversteps its bounds again. Penn State overreach means nobody will investigate themselves again. This was a student issue to which Notre Dame applied its Honor Code. Now, NOBODY will apply an honor code again. Just crazy.

Bilas seems to have an issue with Notre Dame self-reporting procedures seemingly working heavily against the school in this case. Bilas even asks the question that many schools are likely asking themselves in the wake of the penalties: if self-reporting still got Notre Dame the hammer, then why not try and cover up the issue?

Notre Dame president John Jenkins has similar thoughts in his own statement on the penalties.


"The NCAA has not chosen to ignore academic autonomy; it has instead perverted it by divorcing it from its logical and necessary connection to the underlying educational purpose. As noted above, Notre Dame's exercise of academic autonomy in the form of the rigorous application of the University's Honor Code was the source of the underlying violation on which the vacation of wins penalty is based. Although all parties acknowledged that Notre Dame did everything right in response to the academic misconduct, the University is now told that it must live with severe sanctions for its actions."

Here is part of the statement from the NCAA on the penalties:

Notre Dame must vacate all records in which football student-athletes participated while ineligible during the 2012-13 and 2013-14 football seasons, according to a decision issued by the NCAA Division I Infractions Appeals Committee.

In the NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions' decision, the panel found a former Notre Dame athletic training student violated NCAA ethical conduct rules when she committed academic misconduct for two football student-athletes and provided six other football student-athletes with impermissible academic extra benefits. The panel prescribed the vacation of records, along with a probation period and a show-cause order for the former athletic training student.

The Fighting Irish went 12-0 during the 2012 campaign before losing to Alabama in the BCS National Championship game. They went 9-4 the next season and won the Pinstripe Bowl. The original punishments that were handed out were a $5,000 fine and one year of probation.