ESPN Continues to bash Tennessee.

A few weeks ago I threw up a link to Jemele Hill's article that called for an immediate suspension of Bruce Pearl from coaching -- before, it should be noted, the full investigation of the UT violations was made. The thought that the ruling body of anything should give a punishment before they're finished with an investigation is absurd -- imagine if that logic was applied to the United State's Justice system, where people would go to jail before they are proven innocent.

In that, at the least, the conclusion was a fair one in wanting Pearl to be suspended from coaching for lying to the NCAA. You think that? Alright, use the facts of him lying to the NCAA, which don't need much spin on them, to back up your opinion: using bad logic jumps such as the one mentioned above, as well as not mentioning things to subtract from your argument -- that Bruce Pearl turned himself in for lying -- or by attempting to delude the numbers by comparing them without statistical evidence makes your argument carry far less validity.

But the most recent article out of ESPN is even worse. Dana O'Niel bashes not Pearl for his actions, but the University of Tennessee for doing something about it. It starts off humorous:

But the fact an athletic director penned a rather eye-popping Notice of Termination of Employment Agreement that isn't in fact terminal, may have raised the bar for bewildering behavior by a university athletic department.

Is Dana O'Niel aware of this thing called "Contracts"? Tennessee wasn't firing Bruce Pearl when they sent him that, they were terminating the contract they had with him based on his actions that went against that contract. In most cases, yes, this equates to firing but the University Administration felt like Pearl should still be allowed to coach here, though with many fewer benefits and leniency. Terminating a contract is necessary to sign a new one before that one runs out. A 9th grader who thinks that business "is kinda sorta cool, yo" understands this but in her attacks against Tennessee Dana O'Neil doesn't seem to.

I can imagine O'Niel, by her tone in the article, upon hearing the news that Pearl's contract had been terminated -- something that most anybody would have seen coming when the paycut was announced -- grabbed her hair in her hands, her mouth contorted into fury, and spat out, "OH MAH GAWD THEY FIRED HIM BUT THEY DIDNT FIRE HIM HOW CAN YOU YOU CANT DO THAT RAGE HATE!!!!"

Again, this is a position when you don't need to make un-based and silly attacks in order to put what happened in a negative light, but to think that Tennessee should fire Bruce Pearl over these matters is a bit goofy. He lied to the NCAA, that's bad, definitely, but he also went back and corrected his lie as best he could after-the-fact, something that is once again omitted from an article calling for heads to roll. He hosted players who had already committed to him at his house. It's a violation, definitely, and both he and Tennessee should be punished for it, but it wasn't like he was doing this in order to bring the players to the university.

And then comes the Kelvin Sampson reference:

He's taken Sampson's excessive calls -- the Tennessee staff has been accused of making 96 extra calls, including 34 by Pearl himself -- and raised them two years' worth of deceit.

No matter the little detail that Kelvin Sampson had over five hundred and fifty impermissible calls: saying that Bruce Pearl did something less than one-fifth as bad as the example you use makes your call for Tennessee to stick with their "decision" that you're trying to act like they made to fire him look somewhat silly, doesn't it? Not to mention that Indiana kept Sampson around for three more weeks after the violations were announced: five major ones -- though most agree the reason for this was that Indiana couldn't just straight-out fire Sampson for what he did. Something tells me if Pearl screws up again, he won't face this problem.

If you want to attack Tennessee over this, do us all a favor: get your facts straight. Present your facts -- you have plenty to choose from -- in an honest manner. Concede the things that Tennessee and Pearl have done to tackle the situation.

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