CHARLOTTE — ACC commissioner John Swofford made it clear at the ACC Operation Basketball event on Wednesday that he is very concerned with the FBI investigation.
Q. Over the course of the trial, some coaches, including some in the ACC, have said they were dumbfounded or surprised at some of the comments and that’s not the world they’re familiar with. Other coaches, on the other hand, have said they’re very familiar with it and it’s a problem that needs to be cleaned up. Where do you stand in that?
COMMISSIONER SWOFFORD: “I think anytime you have the letters ‘FBI’ associated with NCAA…It’s not their world. But there’s obviously — and maybe someone described it as — a conversation I was having, Paul Brazeau in our office and I were talking, and we kind of felt like in a sense that if there’s a silver lining in this, it fully exposes a subculture that diminishes college basketball and raises the awareness of it, heightens the sensitivity to it and the need to dig deeper into it, find out what it is and correct it as best as we can correct it.
“And you can change systems, change processes all you want. And you need to. And obviously we are collectively in college basketball doing that maybe in a way that it’s never been done before coming out of the Rice Commission. And I think that’s really appropriate.
“But what I don’t think we’re all talking enough about is individual integrity and accountability. You can have the best rules everything and the best system and the best process. And if people still don’t understand you play by the rules, then it seems to me that’s where you have to attack it because ultimately it gets down to individuals making deceivious decisions, bad decisions, inappropriate decisions, that undermine those that are in the game that do it well and do it the right way and do it with within the rules.
“It’s an affront to those people. It’s an affront to the system. It’s an affront to college basketball. And I think we need to talk about that more. I think we need to attack it more from that perspective.”