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UT’s Chism Removes Videos; Secondary Violation Possible

A few days ago I linked you to 27 videos posted by senior Tennessee basketball player Wayne Chism.

The content itself seemed pretty standard for a college-age kid… a few curse words, some silliness, but nothing terribly offensive.

However, as I noted at the time, a few curse words to me might not mean very much.  A few curse words to a booster might mean a lot more.

I tabbed this story for fans of all schools because — as I wrote in the original piece — this is an issue that all schools will have to worry about more and more in the future.

It used to be that athletes were made available to the press only when the school wanted, in the setting the school wanted.  It was a means of protecting both the student-athletes (who probably still aren’t experienced enough to fully understand the power of their words) and the schools.

The schools?  Yes, it protected the schools.  As Tennessee has found out.

The university has now asked Chism to remove the videos due to some called-in complaints from Vol fans.  But also, in some of the videos, Chism talked about the business at which he holds a summer job.

That could be considered a secondary violation by the NCAA.

Unlike the days when a school could help to control a player’s message, now a school has to constantly worry what one of their players might say or post on MySpace, Facebook, Twitter or even YouTube… away from the university’s sports information handlers.

Not only can these things turn off some fans, but as UT is finding out, they can lead to possible infractions.

And this is made more confusing by the fact that the NCAA rulebook can barely keep up with the current technology boom.  The more new means of communications are launched, the more issues they’ll have to deal with.

Does a YouTube video constitute an ad?  (Not sure yet.) 

Can someone Tweet a recruit’s name?  (No.)

What about this scenario: A coach cannot say a recruit’s name to a media member.  But what if a coach says a recruit’s name to a friend… who then posts the coach’s quote on his own blog or Facebook page?  Is that a violation?

For now, as we predicted back on Tuesday, Chism’s videos are down.  But this certainly won’t be the last time an issue like this pops up in the SEC.

As for Chism, he’s not pleased that his vids were taken down which shows that “lack of experience” thing that I mentioned earlier. 

When I was in college I did a lot of stupid things.  Only back then I didn’t know how stupid they were.

“I didn’t every think anyone would go snitch on me like that,” Chism said in his final video.  “I need to stop making videos because I didn’t think anybody would call the University of Tennessee basketball office and talk about, ‘He is cussing a lot on YouTube.’”

Now, I’m sure Chism’s learned that he might also have been guilty of a small NCAA violation.



  1. [...] thanks to a player’s tweet.  Sticking with UT for a moment, a former hoops player at UT once brought his own eligibility into question by mentioning a business in a YouTube clip.) has Hoke’s reaction to the [...]

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