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NCAA Board Gives Emmert Vote of Confidence

Jason Scott

Despite coming under fire for disparities between the men’s and women’s NCAA basketball tournaments, the chair of the association’s board of governors expressed confidence in NCAA president Mark Emmert.

The Associated Press reports that the NCAA board of governors met on Friday, along with Emmert and the Division I board of governors to discuss the media firestorm. Afterwards, Georgetown University president and chairman of the board of governors Jack DeGioia told the AP that Emmert responded appropriately to the criticism, and was taking the issue of gender inequities seriously.

“I think there’s a clear understanding that the NCAA fell short in San Antonio, but a recognition that the response has been commensurate with the challenge,” DeGioia told the AP. “And now we’ve got important work in front of us that we will need to engage.

“I think it would be fair to say that Mark took this very, very seriously and all of my conversations with him — we have had several over the last 10 days — at no point did I ever have the sense that he wasn’t engaging this with the greatest seriousness possible,” he continued. “And I think the evidence of that was his move to bring in the Kaplan firm.”

The NCAA announced on Thursday that it would retain the law firm Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP to review its practices and procedures and make recommendations for how to improve gender equity. 

While Emmert has come under fire, DeGioia succinctly the board of governors’ view of the NCAA president, who is in his 11th year heading up the association.

“We have confidence in Mark’s continuing leadership of the NCAA,” DeGioia said.

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