Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith Named to Newly Formed Commission on College Basketball

By James Grega on October 11, 2017 at 2:36 pm
Gene Smith

Gene Smith is already the Athletic Director and Senior Vice President of Ohio State, and now he is adding a new title to his already extensive résumé.

Smith was named to the newly formed Commission on College Basketball on Wednesday. The commission is set to be led by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. 

NCAA President Mark Emmert started the commission in an effort to remove a "culture of silence," referring to the major recruiting violations that have taken the college basketball community by storm over the last few weeks. 

According to a statement from Emmert, the commission will focus on the following areas:

1. The relationship of the NCAA national office, member institutions, student-athletes and coaches with outside entities, including:

  • Apparel companies and other commercial entities, to establish an environment where they can support programs in a transparent way, but not become an inappropriate or distorting influence on the game, recruits or their families.
  • Nonscholastic basketball, with a focus on the appropriate involvement of college coaches and others.
  • Agents or advisors, with an emphasis on how students and their families can get legitimate advice without being taken advantage of, defrauded or risk their NCAA eligibility.

2. The NCAA’s relationship with the NBA, and the challenging effect the NBA’s so-called “one and done” rule has had on college basketball, including how the NCAA can change its own eligibility rules to address that dynamic.

3. Creating the right relationship between the universities and colleges of the NCAA and its national office to promote transparency and accountability. The commission will be asked to evaluate whether the appropriate degree of authority is vested in the current enforcement and eligibility processes, and whether the collaborative model provides the investigative tools, cultural incentives and structures to ensure exploitation and corruption cannot hide in college sports.

This is not the only committee Smith is currently serving on in addition to his duties as Ohio State's athletic director. He is also currently in his first year on the College Football Playoff Selection Committee, and has previously served on the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee.

Other members of the Commission on College Basketball include Emmert, former basketball star David Robinson, former Georgetown basketball coach John Thompson III and more. 

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