The National Collegiate Athletic Association's executive committee on Friday expressed confidence in President Mark Emmert, even as some critics have called for his resignation in the face of the association's brutally embarrassing acknowledgment that its officials botched an investigation of rules violations at the University of Miami. Emmert was forced to concede last week that NCAA administrators had known about the association's improper hiring of a lawyer who manipulated bankruptcy proceedings to help the NCAA build a case, in contravention of the NCAA's procedures. Several top NCAA officials resigned, but two top aides to Emmert did not even though they acknowledged knowing about the improper conduct. When asked during a news conference last week whether he should take personal responsibility for the controversy, Emmert said it would be up to the executive committee to decide.
In its statement Friday, the panel, which is made up of college presidents, said that the association had significant work to do to ensure the credibility of its regulatory and enforcement processes. "Mark Emmert was hired to lead a major transformation of the NCAA. Much has been accomplished without fanfare, such as academic reforms, enhanced fiscal accountability and organizational transparency," the panel said. "The Executive Committee and President Emmert recognize there is much yet to do and that the road to transformational change is often bumpy and occasionally controversial. Therefore, on Friday the Executive Committee unanimously affirmed its confidence in Mark’s leadership as president and its support for his ongoing efforts to implement these essential and historic reforms.”