In an episode of laughable irony, former Vols basketball coach Bruce Pearl addressed the media Friday during a backyard barbeque at his house after the NCAA served him a three-year show-cause penalty.
Pearl had been under scrutiny by the NCAA for misleading investigators about recruiting violations he made while coach at Tennessee — violations that include making illegal contact with a recruit in Sept. 2008 at … wait for it: a backyard barbeque at his house.
Either Bruce Pearl has a really curious sense of humor or he just somehow overlooked this egregious coincidence.
Imagine if Nixon announced his resignation at the actual Watergate Complex. Or if the University of Miami addressed it’s current football scandal aboard a yacht.
The NCAA’s punishment, which was handed down Wednesday, essentially bars Pearl from coaching in college anytime soon. The coach cannot recruit players for three years, and any school that hires him would have to petition the NCAA to remove the penalty.
As for the poolside press conference, the 51-year-old said he will not appeal the punishment and took responsibility for his actions. From the Knoxville News-Sentinel:
Pearl, who coached at UT for six seasons, reiterated that he’s responsible for the unethical conduct charge and other violations that stemmed from the impermissible contact with then-recruit Aaron Craft that occurred at his home nearly three years ago.
“I was in control of that situation, and I didn’t handle things right at my house,’’ Pearl said. “Had I been more forthcoming in my interview (June 14, 2010) with the NCAA, we wouldn’t be here.’’
Pearl is currently considering a head coaching offer by the NBA D-League’s Texas Legends. The two sides met earlier this month, but I don’t know what’s taking so long for him to make a decision. Doesn’t he know Texas has good barbeque?