The NCAA doesn't play fair when it investigates college athletic programs, the state House of Representatives says, and it's time for some new rules.
A measure that would set those rules passed the House 101-3 on Tuesday. The National Collegiate Athletic Association would be required to follow common legal rules, like barring the use of illegally obtained evidence, allowing cross-examination of witnesses and holding hearings quickly.Representatives approved the measure almost without debate. Now it's up to the Senate to consider the matter.
Rep. John Dunn, D-Decatur, called the bill a poor piece of legislation. During earlier hearings on the proposal, he argued that it was a matter the federal government should handle.
NCAA officials have urged lawmakers to let the association handle its problems from within. They said reform is coming and states will just confuse the situation by adopting various sets of rules.
They have rejected the idea that NCAA investigations should be conducted by the rules of criminal law. They say the investigations aren't criminal matters, just questions of whether a university has broken rules it agreed to follow.
But the bill's supporters say the NCAA is allowed to do anything it wants, no matter how unfair, during investigations.