Can I say one more thing about the Eric Bledsoe story?
I'm not outraged by the decision.
Honest to God, I'm not.
As I wrote last week, I do not think it's right for the NCAA to punish a school for playing a player it initially cleared. So I was never publicly or privately hoping that Kentucky would vacate the season if Bledsoe's transcript was retroactively changed in a way that would give him a 2.3 grade point average in his high school core classes. I merely pointed out that the Derrick Rose case at Memphis seemed to set a precedent for strict liability, and that it would be difficult for the NCAA to explain why Memphis had to vacate that season if Kentucky didn't have to vacate this season provided Bledsoe's transcript was retroactively changed in a way that would've never made him eligible at Kentucky.
But the Birmingham Board of Education isn't going to change the transcript.
So it's all a moot point now.
Over and done, far as I'm concerned.
Either way, my post from Friday night wasn't about how wrong it is that Kentucky won't have to vacate the season; it was about how confusing it is that the Birmingham Board of Education can hire a firm to investigate the matter, then disregard the firm's conclusion. And, yes, I know all about the "makeup work" Bledsoe supposedly did, know that's the reason the teacher said he changed Bledsoe's grade from a C to an A. My point was that the independent and reputable firm hired to investigate the matter doesn't believe the teacher's reasons for changing the grade are credible, which, in my mind, suggests the grades were changed inappropriately.
Now let me ask a serious question.
(Just play along, please.)
Imagine there was a gradebook that showed Bledsoe initially had an A in the class, but his transcript showed a C, and there was an investigation into this grade change, because it made Bledsoe ineligible to play as a freshman when he, according to the initial grades, should've been eligible. So the Birmingham Board of Education hires a firm to investigate, and that firm then asks the teacher why he changed 10 of Bledsoe's 14 grades from the first term and seven of Bledsoe's 10 grades from the second term, and why he changed Bledsoe's grades more than he changed any other students' grades.
Now imagine the teacher has his reasons.
Imagine the teacher says it's because Bledsoe was tardy for 11 classes, that he caught him cheating on three tests, whatever. It doesn't matter what the reasons are, exactly, just imagine that the teacher has his reasons for changing the grade from an A to a C. Now imagine the firm hired to investigate listens to all the reasons, but ultimately concludes the teacher has "no credible reasons" for changing Bledsoe's grade from an A to a C.
(Got all that?)
Now here's my question: Would you still stand by the teacher?
If not, then what you're telling me is that you think it's crazy for a teacher to be allowed to change grades for what an independent and reputable firm called no credible reasons, which means you agree with me that what happened Friday in Birmingham is crazy because the only difference between what really happened with Bledsoe and my hypothetical situation with Bledsoe is that in one scenario the grade was changed from a C to an A to make him eligible, and in the other scenario the grade was changed from an A to a C to make him ineligible. Both changes were made, according to a firm hired to investigate, without credible reasons. And if a change made without credible reasons that hurts a student-athlete is wrong, then I think a change made without credible reasons that helps a student-athlete should be wrong, too.
So that's my position.
And I hope this clarifies things.
If not, man, I give up.
It's Saturday for crying out loud.