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UNLV football makes brief appearance in NCAA trial

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Steve Marcus

Fireworks explode before UNLV’s home opener against the University of Arizona at Sam Boyd Stadium Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013.

The ongoing trial pitting a group of plaintiffs led by Henderson resident Ed O’Bannon against the NCAA is primarily about college athletes not being able to profit from use of their likeness. However, with a long list of witnesses the topics at least mentioned during the case run the gamut of the college sports world. Including, it seems, UNLV football.

The trial started two weeks ago and notable witnesses have included people like O’Bannon himself and NCAA President Mark Emmert. It’s currently the defense’s turn to call witnesses and on Tuesday that included Diane Dickman, the managing director for academic and membership affairs at the NCAA.

Dickman’s main responsibility is collecting data on graduation success rates and Academic Progress Rate scores. Her testimony primarily discussed athlete-academic integration, or how the NCAA enforces academic standards on its athletes. As an example of enforcement she pointed to UConn basketball’s 2013 postseason ban for a low APR score.

On cross-examination from plaintiff attorney Bill Isaacson, Dickman switched sports and mentioned UNLV as a “high-level” FBS program that has been handed a postseason ban as a result of its APR score. Isaacson’s response, according to Sports Illustrated reporter Stewart Mandel?

“We’ll leave it to others to determine whether that’s high-level football.”

Burn.

Honestly, most UNLV fans would probably agree with Isaacson’s assessment. Still, it falls into the category of “I can say that I’m fat, but when you do it’s offensive.”

So while he might have a point, Isaacson could have trouble finding a welcome tailgate at Sam Boyd Stadium this fall.

Taylor Bern can be reached at 948-7844 or [email protected]. Follow Taylor on Twitter at twitter.com/taylorbern.

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