NCAA Director of Enforcement Wrote Recommendation Letter To Help Keep Nevin Shapiro Out of Prison

The NCAA tried to help keep Nevin Shapiro out of prison, or at least reduce his sentence. Former director of enforcement Ameen Najjar sent a recommendation letter to a judge on Shapiro’s behalf. The letter, on NCAA letterhead, stressed Shapiro’s “unique depth of knowledge and experience” and his value as a “speaker” and “consultant.” The NCAA, as per usual, offered no comment.

“Throughout the course of our interactions, it is my belief that Mr. Shapiro possesses a unique depth of knowledge and experience concerning representatives athletics interest (‘Boosters’), agents and the provision of extra-benefits to student-athletes,” Najjar wrote in the letter, a copy of which was obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press.

Let’s take stock for a second. The NCAA tried to keep a man who shamelessly stole hundreds of millions of peoples’ savings out of prison. They did this because of his help (and potential future help) catching student-athletes, many from poor upbringings, accepting free dinners. Honestly. What sort of corrupt, depraved set of values would lead to that moral assessment?

The NCAA is not fighting a war. They are not safeguarding virtue. They enforce a set of rules designed to protect the tax-free status of a now billion-dollar basketball tournament. Persistence in the belief they are doing a former will continue degrading their ability to execute the latter.

[USA Today Sports]

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