Tubby Tattles; Memphis Reports Pastner ViolationPosted by rtmsf on July 22nd, 2010
Today Josh Pastner probably feels a little like we do when our mother-in-law catches us glancing at another woman other than our wife. We know that nothing good will ever come of this, and yet, we also know that there’s about a 99.9999% chance that it will come up ‘accidentally’ in a later mother-daughter conversation with said wife. So what can you do? You stew for a while in the hopes that the 0.0001% comes in, only to overhear MiL-so-dear talking to her own mother on the phone about how inconsiderate and horrible of a person/husband you must be, so you decide to take matters into your own hands by telling your spouse before she can get to her. It doesn’t always work out well — a stern glare, a few harsh words, and another lost chip at the bargaining table — but you take your medicine and slink back to your nesting hole, tail tucked and defeated.
Last week Pastner was in Minneapolis on a recruiting trip when he became aware that Golden Gopher forward/headache Trevor Mbakwe was playing in a summer pro-am nearby. Memphis is recruiting Mbakwe after he was forced to sit out all of 2009-10 at Minnesota due to an assault charge he is facing from his freshman season at Miami-Dade CC, so Pastner went to the gym to watch him play. Since Mbakwe is still officially on scholarship at Minnesota (he is asking for a release) and the pro-am was an uncertified event, Pastner was in violation of NCAA rules in watching him perform. In a story from the Pioneer Press on Wednesday, Tubby Smith became aware of this violation, and, still hoping to get Mbakwe to play for him next year, threw young Pastner (who has a reputation for aggresive recruiting) under the bus.
“I think they probably misunderstood what the rules were,” Smith said Tuesday. “It might have been miscommunication or something. I don’t know.”
Memphis responded today that the athletic department has already contacted Conference USA and the NCAA about the violation, and that Pastner was completely guiltless in this matter. The Tiger storyline is that a compliance officer in the UM athletic department approved Pastner’s appearance at the event, and that she had misinterpreted the rules in this case. Nicole Green was named by Memphis as the party at fault, and color us skeptical, but if a person with several years of experience in compliance makes that kind of mistake, then she is either: a) incompetent, or b) the fall gal. Either way, Memphis and Josh Pastner probably should look into shoring up that compliance department because the Tigers cannot afford to lose out on talents like Mbakwe over silly violations like this.