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May 12, 2004 - Knight Commission to Meet May 24 in Washington, D.C Continuing Efforts to Reform College Sports

Commission will hear from Notre Dame Football Coach Tyrone Willingham

WASHINGTON, D.C . – In the three months since its last meeting, the Knight Commission has continued to monitor the intense commercial and professional pressures affecting college sports, serving as a reminder of the higher education role sports plays in college life.

The Knight Commission will hear testimony from a panel of current and former football coaches on academic, recruiting and financial issues. Joining Tyrone Willingham and Bill Curry on the panel will be Ken Hatfield, head coach at Rice University and R.C. Slocum, former head coach at Texas A & M University . The commission will also hear a report on football postseason issues.

An anti-trust panel will discuss whether the NCAA should seek an exemption to anti-trust laws to control finances and the commercialization of college sports. Finally, the commission will hear from NCAA Committee members on the new academic measures recently adopted that require teams to meet specific academic standards, or become subject to penalties that range from scholarship reductions to a prohibition on postseason participation.

The press conference is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. in the Holmes Room.

About the Knight Foundation Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics

The Knight Foundation Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics was formed by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation in October 1989 in response to more than a decade of highly visible scandals in college sports. The goal of the commission was to study and report on reform efforts that recognize and emphasize academic values in an arena where commercialization of college sports often overshadowed the underlying goals of higher education. The commission, which presented recommendations in a series of reports in the early 1990s and in the subsequent A Call to Action in 2001, will continue to monitor and report on progress in increasing presidential control, academic integrity, financial integrity and independent certification of athletics programs. The Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, president emeritus of the University of Notre Dame, served as co-chair of the commission with William Friday, president emeritus of the University of North Carolina, until 2003 when he stepped down.

 

Who: William Friday, President Emeritus of the University of North Carolina and Chair of the Knight Foundation Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics Hodding Carter III, President and CEO, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Other members of the Knight Commission

What: Knight Commission Meeting with Notre Dame Football Coach Tyrone Willingham; ESPN Football Analyst and former coach Bill Curry; anti-trust experts; and others followed by a press conference.

When: Monday, May 24, 2004, 7:30am – 3:00pm

Where: The Willard InterContinental Washington, 1401 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Holmes Room, Washington, D.C.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation promotes excellence in journalism worldwide and invests in the vitality of 26 U.S. communities.