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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Nifong/Mangum Hoax — May 31, 2007

Updated — today's items:

Lorenzo Perez, News & Observer:
Duke lacrosse players get back their lost year -- The NCAA agreed Wednesday to give back to Duke lacrosse players what their own university took away last year.

The NCAA, known more for deliberations that take months rather than days, granted Duke a speedy OK on its request to award an extra year of eligibility to men's lacrosse players whose 2006 season was derailed by rape allegations.

According to the NCAA, it received the petition from Duke early last week. The "season-of-competition waiver" covers 33 players, including All-America Matt Danowski, who is the son of the coach, and 12 other seniors who assumed their collegiate playing careers ended in Monday's 12-11 loss to Johns Hopkins in the NCAA championship game. ...

Duke athletics director Joe Alleva called Wednesday's decision "a fair resolution to our situation."

The pendulum of popular opinion on Duke's lacrosse team has swung so dramatically that during Monday's broadcast of the NCAA championship game, ESPN announcers referred to Duke as "America's team." Yet Wednesday's move did not have everyone in the lacrosse community waving flags and cheering.


Brian Delaney,Ithaca Journal:
Cornell's Tambroni ‘shocked' at Duke ruling -- Cornell coach Jeff Tambroni was stunned to learn that the NCAA granted a season-of-competition waiver Wednesday afternoon to 33 student-athletes who were members of the 2006 Duke men's lacrosse team.

An NCAA release said the waiver was requested by Duke University for “all men's lacrosse student-athletes who were not seniors during the 2006 season.”

Tambroni, whose team lost to Duke, 12-11, on Saturday in the national semifinals, said his initial reaction was simply, “Wow.” The decision was unexpected considering the Blue Devils had already played eight games and forfeited a ninth before their season was canceled — by the university — due to rape allegations that were eventually proven false.

“I'm shocked, to be very honest with you, that they got it back, but that's based on little to no information about what information and criteria the NCAA based its decision on,” said Tambroni, who was in Washington Wednesday night for the Tewaaraton Trophy banquet. “It's not my place (to judge). But based on everything I've seen throughout my tenure as a coach, knowing the kind of decisions (the NCAA has) made in the past, the number of games Duke played and that their season was ended by the University and not the NCAA makes it more surprising.” ...
Pete Thamel, NY Times:
Duke Players Given Extra Eligibility -- The N.C.A.A. granted a waiver yesterday for an extra year of eligibility to 33 Duke men’s lacrosse players, a surprising decision that will reverberate in the sport for the next three seasons. ...

Virginia Coach Dom Starsia criticized the N.C.A.A. decision in a telephone interview, saying, “Are we rewarding them for what happened?” ...

A larger issue is that the Duke administration has never admitted that it erred. Starsia said that “most of the wounds were self-inflicted.”

“I know that the coaches and players wanted an explanation, or an apology maybe, before they wanted the extra year back,” he said. “In lieu of that, Duke stepped up and said, ‘Look what we’re doing for you.’ I don’t think anyone is being held accountable for what happened here.”

Pressler, now the coach at Bryant University in Rhode Island, said: “I can’t be more thrilled for those players. That’s great for the team. But what happens to the class of 2006? What happens to those young men who never got a chance to put on the uniform again?” ...

KC Johnson: Class & No Class -- Reaction from opposing coaches to the NCAA’s decision to grant an additional year of eligibility to the non-freshmen on this year’s Duke lacrosse team ranged from classy to the reverse...

Duke Basketball Report: NCAA Lacrosse Eligibility

Duke Reaction to NCAA Ruling Granting Extra Eligibility --

Joe Alleva, Director of Athletics
"We're gratified by this decision from the NCAA, and feel it is a fair resolution to our situation," said Joe Alleva, Duke's Director of Athletics. "This represents the NCAA's recognition of how extraordinary the circumstances surrounding our team were last spring."

John Danowski, Head Coach
"The opportunity for the young men in our program to continue their education is of great benefit," said Duke head coach John Danowski. "The guys will take an individual look at their options, and we'll certainly help them in that decision-making process."

Tony McDevitt, senior defenseman
"When we think back to our junior season and losing that year and not having the opportunity to go and compete for a national championship and not being able to play the sport that we love, that hurt just as much as us losing the national championship game this Monday. It is well deserved and we're happy that the NCAA made the right decision. Now, it's just about weighing our options and seeing what's out there...

LaxPower interview with Tony McDevitt, speaking shortly after the NCAA announcement was made.
Tony McDevittMike Keegan, Inside Lacrosse:
Reaction to the Duke eligibility ruling from defenseman Tony McDevitt -- (IL) Are you leaning one way or another?

TM: I’m right in the middle. The athlete in me can never give it up. It’s very tough to give it up. Also, on top of that, to get an advanced degree or some added educational value, that really, it goes without saying, is unbelievable. Those are two big factors. But, this is a good decision to have to make.

Jack Carey & Thomas O'Toole, USA Today:
Duke lacrosse players granted an extra year
-- NCAA spokeswoman Stacey Osburn said the reinstatement rule allows for "extenuating circumstances," and extra years are granted from time to time for various reasons. Osburn said some athletes in the Gulf Coast region were granted an extra year after Hurricane Katrina disrupted their seasons.
Duke Chronicle blog:
Men’s lacrosse championship: the view from section 139 -- What struck me most while I was walking around the concourse at M&T Bank Stadium was not so much the noticeable increase in people sporting Duke Lacrosse apparel as compared to the levels at the championship game in Philadelphia two years ago, but the sheer number of lacrosse enthusiasts that had made the pilgrimage to what has effectively become the Super Bowl for their sport.The team did not re-emerge until two minutes before the game’s 1:09 p.m. official start time, and when they did it was something to behold. With the stadium loudspeakers blaring U2’s “City of Blinding Lights”, the team marched slowly and deliberately down the field in a rather stoic fashion, the sort of thing you usually see in sports movies with the slow-motion shots like the one of the astronauts walking up to the launch platform in The Right Stuff; although the cynic in me felt it was a little too-Hollywood and geared for ESPN’s cameras, there definitely was electricity going through the building that made it quite a poignant and memorable moment...

That said, one could tell that the Hopkins players were ticked off and felt shown up by the whole thing, which probably gave them some extra motivation and may have lead to the quick opening goal.

After cheering on Hopkins’ first half onslaught, the building seemed to be willing to let Duke back into the game during the second half, with each Blue Devil goal raising the crowd volume considerably. By the time Duke tied the game at 11 and Hopkins quickly retook the lead, the entire stadium was in a frenzy, with many fans spending the rest of the game on their feet and living and dying as shot after shot went just wide or ricocheted off the post.

Even I found myself clutching the chair in front of me for support, a practice I usually reserve for Redskins and Yankees games. Overall, it was probably one of the most exciting sporting events I’ve seen all year, especially after Saturday’s last-second semifinal victory over Cornell.
KC Johnson:
Defending the Durham Status Quo -- Last November, Durham’s black voters gave Mike Nifong around 95 percent of their votes. In recent weeks, however, the actions of Mayor Bill Bell, in particular, have made clear that the district attorney now enjoys scant support from the city’s African-American community. Bell also has made clear that he wants to see the truth about the police investigation’s errors.

It’s worth remembering, however, that the disgraced Durham district attorney is not still in office because of the black vote alone. Nifong also received robust backing from Durham’s far left—politically through the People’s Alliance, journalistically through Indy. And while neither the People’s Alliance nor Indy are any longer defending their onetime hero, they—quite unlike Durham’s key African-American leaders—still seem to see little wrong with the case that so tarnished their city...
Josh Herwitt, CSTV.com:
Some of the best players and moments in college lacrosse this season -- With Johns Hopkins claiming its ninth national championship on Memorial Day earlier this week, the college lacrosse season officially came to an end as the Blue Jays claimed an astonishing 12-11 win over top-seeded Duke in a thrilling title game that saw two teams fight and scrap to the finish.

So with another year in the books, there's still some time to reflect on the 2007 season before next spring brings back more of the spectacular goals, acrobatic saves and compelling moments that college lacrosse fans witnessed for the last three months.

These were some of the best players and moments over the season.

Attackman of the Year - Matt Danowski, Duke

While the senior out of Farmingdale, N.Y., couldn't complete his dream of hoisting up a national championship trophy, Danowski sure was one highlight reel after another this season...
Craig Johnson, InsideLacrosse.com:
Danowski, Kjellman capture 2007 Tewaaraton honors (IL) -- College lacrosse’s most prestigious individual honor, the Tewaaraton Trophy, which recognizes the nation’s most outstanding men’s and women’s player for the 2007 season, was awarded Wednesday night to Duke senior attackman Matt Danowski and Northwestern senior midfielder Kristen Kjellman at the University Club of Washington, D.C. It was the second time in as many years that Kjellman has taken home the honor.

For Danowski, the Blue Devils’ all-time career points leader with 256 following an `07 season in which he compiled 96 points (44g, 52a) – a Duke and ACC single-season record – it was his first time earning the accolade. Remarkably, he achieved that career-points mark despite appearing in just eight games in `06 after Duke’s season was cut short amid legal controversy shortly after a March 21 loss to Cornell.

Few players in college lacrosse have brought the type of versatility – he’s the only player in NCAA history to record a 50-goal, 40-assist season and a 40-goal, 50-assist season – and production on the offensive end that Danowski did, not only in his record-setting senior season at Duke, which earned him first-team All-American honors for the second time in his career (he also earned that distinction in 2005), but throughout his four years in Durham.

A starter in every game since arriving on campus, Danowski is one of just three players in ACC history to earn both Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year honors...
Steve Marcus, Newsday:
Danowski and Duke the perfect fit -- Despite its loss to iconic Johns Hopkins for the national title, Duke coach John Danowski still tops the college lacrosse world in a vindication that saw Duke's program move from reviled to relevant to this short of revered.

A year ago, Danowski, then Hofstra's coach, had pain from afar, even though he seemed close enough to the mess at Duke to be scalded. Danowski had a son on the team and everyone wanted coach Danowski's take on what was transpiring. Larry King invited him to speak on CNN, but not for his views on the sport, so King's viewer phone call of `Missoula, Montana for John Danowski'' never occurred...

Duke lacrosse not only survived, it came within a whisker of the national championship. A program that had taken a malicious hit and perhaps came close to extinction had fortified the university.

Danowski can bask in it all. He came into a precarious situation and made it win-win all the way around. He'll get his national championship before he's finished.

Duke lacrosse is healed. Danowski play a big role.
Indicators of False Accusations (Updated) -- Originally published November 28, 2006, this post has been updated to reflect subsequently released information and Durham Chief of Police Steve Chalmers' attempt to pretend that Crystal Mangum outsmarted his investigators with her transparently false accusations.

The National Center for Women and Policing, a division of the Feminist Majority Foundation, provides training, and training materials, to law enforcement agencies with the intention of improving the ability of these agencies to response effectively to sexual assault crimes. Among their many informative and instructive publications, is a training manual entitled, “Unfounded Cases and False Accusations.” Examination of this training manual casts further aspersions on both the validity of the Duke Hoax accuser’s claims, the failure of investigators under the direction of Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong to critically inspect those frail accusations, and recent statements made by Durham Chief of Police Steve Chalmers suggesting that Crystal Mangum offered consistent and credible accusations that outsmarted his investigators....

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Nifong/Mangum Hoax — May 30, 2007

Updated — today's items:

Matt Danowski Earns Tewaaraton TrophyGoDuke.com:
Danowski Earns Tewaaraton Trophy As Nation's Top Player -- Duke attackman Matt Danowski has been named the recipient of the 2007 Tewaaraton Trophy, an honor presented annually to the top men's lacrosse player in the nation. Danowski received the award Wednesday night at a banquet at the National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C.

"Winning an award as prestigious as the Tewaaraton Trophy is certainly very humbling," Danowski said. "This honor could not have been possible without the hard work and dedication put forth by the entire Duke lacrosse team. I'm indebted to my coaches and teammates for their efforts and support."

Danowski was chosen from a group of five finalists that included Paul Rabil of Johns Hopkins, Frank Resetarits of Albany, Ben Rubeor of Virginia and Max Seibald of Cornell. Danowski also was a finalist for the award in 2005.

In 2007, Danowski registered an ACC single-season record 96 total points on 44 goals and 52 assists...

LS forum: Danowski Wins Tewaaraton Trophy
NCAA to allow Duke players to reclaim lost season -- The NCAA has granted Duke's request for an extra year of eligibility for its men's lacrosse players following rape allegations that led to the cancellation of much of last season.

The decision affects 33 players who were not seniors during the 2006 season, and it grants them a fifth year of eligibility regardless of whether they play at Duke or another school. The announcement Wednesday came just two days after the Blue Devils lost to Johns Hopkins by a goal in the NCAA championship game.

"These individuals were involved in an unusual circumstance that we believe warrants providing them the opportunity to complete their four years of competition," said Jennifer Strawley, NCAA director of student-athlete reinstatement and membership services.

Duke played just eight games last year before the university canceled what was left of the season as police investigated allegations a woman was sexually assaulted at a team party. Three players were later indicted, but the accusations were eventually debunked by North Carolina's top prosecutor, who called the trio "innocent" victims of a "tragic rush to accuse." ...
LS forum: Extra Year of Eligibility Granted, NCAA Approves Extra Year
TalkLeft: NCAA Grants Duke Players an Extra Year of Eligibility
KC Johnson: NCAA Grants Waiver -- it’s encouraging to see the NCAA do the right thing in this instance.

N&O: NCAA grants Duke lacrosse players another year
Duke alum Bob Pascal's black-and-white lacrosse adNews & Observer:
Duke alum: Give lacrosse an ovation -- A Duke alumnus purchased a full-page ad in today's USA Today to support the Duke men's lacrosse team.

Bob Pascal's black-and-white ad reads "For a team very few people stood by, how about a standing ovation?" It then lists the lacrosse team's accomplishments in the wake of a rape allegation against three players that caused Duke to cancel the last eight games of the 2006 season.

The charges against the three lacrosse players were dropped in April. All three players and former head coach Mike Pressler attended Monday's national championship game, which the Blue Devils lost 12-11 to Johns Hopkins.

Pascal was an All-America halfback in 1955 for the Blue Devils' football team, which won the Orange Bowl 34-7 over Nebraska. Pascal graduated in 1957...
LS forum: USA Today Ad Supports Duke Lacrosse
KC Johnson: Lacrosse ad
John Cole's Ballon Juice: Duke lacrosse
Ray Gronberg, Herald-Sun:
Notes show lacrosse case trial was expected -- Detectives conducted the key photo session with the accuser in the Duke lacrosse case with an eye firmly on how it would play in court, according to one description, despite recent assertions by city officials that they weren't expecting her to identify suspects.

The case's supervising investigator, Durham Police Department Sgt. Mark Gottlieb, reported that he and other authorities staged and videotaped the April 4, 2006, session in a way that, in his words, would allow "potential jurors, defense attorneys, prosecutors and other judicial officials" to see for themselves how it unfolded.

City Manager Patrick Baker said Tuesday he didn't know why Gottlieb's report alluded to recording the session for potential jurors and court officials.

In the Police Department's eyes, "that was not a lineup," Police Chief Steve Chalmers said previously, echoing the explanation he and Baker adopted in a May 11 report on how authorities handled the investigation.

Baker said Tuesday that after he learned of the April 4 session, he asked for a second meeting with the detectives, the police attorney, Chalmers and Deputy Police Chief Ron Hodge. This time District Attorney Mike Nifong also attended.

"I asked the question point-blank as to what we were doing, what were we trying to accomplish and why wasn't it done pursuant to [department policy]," Baker said. "And the response that I got from the district attorney was the response that we have put out, that it wasn't a lineup, that it was not looking for suspects."

The mere fact that Gottlieb had it videotaped made it different from the two failed and unrecorded ID sessions another officer, Investigator Richard Clayton, had conducted with the accuser previously, Brad Bannon, one of the lawyers who represented Evans, said Tuesday...
LS forum: Notes show lacrosse case trial was expected, The gang that couldn't lie straight
LS forum: Interesting Thoughts, Look at what the DPD isnt saying

KC Johnson: A Blow to Hodge -- There is one other important item in today’s story: at a meeting demanded by Baker sometime last spring, Deputy Police Chief Ron Hodge—one of the three finalists to replace Chalmers—joined Chalmers and Mike Nifong in justifying the decision to bypass Police Department procedures in the lineup...

John in Carolina: DPD & Duke Contacts: Questions -- What’s my strongest reaction to today’s H-S story? It helps build the case for a thorough investigation by the federal government.
Durham Deputy Police Chief Ron Hodge is a finalist in the search for Durham police chiefMatt Dees, News & Observer:
Police finalist faced charge -- City manager: No cause for concern -- Deputy Police Chief Ron Hodge, one of three finalists for Durham police chief, faced a misdemeanor charge of child abuse 10 years ago that was dismissed in court but threatened to cost him his job.

City Manager Patrick Baker, who will make the final call in hiring a new police chief, said he's satisfied that Hodge and his family dealt with the problems that drew sheriff's deputies to his home May 4, 1997.

Hodge was accused of spanking his son, then 13, with a police-issued nightstick because he got into trouble at school, according to court documents and news reports from the time.

Hodge's daughter called 911, and sheriff's deputies arrived to find Hodge had locked himself in a room, according to news reports.

He was allowed to stay at the home that evening and was charged five days later with misdemeanor child abuse. The boy was not seriously injured...
Ray Gronberg, The Herald-Sun:
Councilman calls for audit of city police -- City Councilman Howard Clement on Tuesday called for a performance audit of the Durham Police Department, a move he said would allow the department's next chief to start work with "a clean analysis of what's going on."

Clement made the proposal during the first of a series of work sessions the council has scheduled to review City Manager Patrick Baker's 2007-08 budget request. He said a review of the department's operations is overdue and should have been done before the present chief, Steve Chalmers, took office about four years ago.

"An operation as important as our police department is, and with the many challenges it faces, we need to be better informed," Clement said, adding that regular reviews might have helped the department avoid what he termed some "embarrassing situations."

Clement's comment was an apparent allusion to the Duke lacrosse case, which produced the indictments of three men on since-discredited charges of rape. Clement has supported Mayor Bill Bell's push for an outside review of the department's handling of that case, a proposal officials have approved in principle and are scheduled to discuss in more detail on Friday.

Baker, however, was cool to Clement's suggestion of a separate performance audit. He said he'd prefer to wait until Chalmers' successor joins the payroll later this summer.

"I would want that individual to play a role in [deciding] the areas he'd like to look at, as opposed to doing something before that individual is on board," Baker said...
William L. Anderson:
Duke Lacrosse: The Players Already Were Vindicated -- A year after their athletic lives were held in limbo, the Duke University lacrosse players put together a memorable season and in the NCAA Division I championship game on Memorial Day, the Duke Blue Devils lost a hard-fought and very close game to Johns Hopkins, 12–11. I have read more than one article that claims that this season was a season of "vindication and redemption" for the team; I respectfully disagree.

The idea of "vindication and redemption" stems from the fact that a year ago, this team was vilified, accused of gang-raping a black stripper, and three members of the team were indicted for rape, kidnapping, and sexual assault. The entire set of charges was a lie, but nonetheless, the team was attacked in the press and called all sorts of things that border on indecent...

As for the Duke lacrosse season, I do not call it "redemption" or "vindication." Instead, I call it an athletic triumph. These young men had their season cut short and the university did not even decide to field a team again until June, which cost the team key recruits. Furthermore, lacrosse is both a physical and a skill sport, and these young men went almost a year without being involved in meaningful competition, and it is a wonder that these young men were able to put together a season that came up one goal short of a national championship...
Erik Boland, Newsday (NY):
An experience unlike any other for Danowskis -- As Max Quinzani's last-gasp shot to tie it went wide, Duke senior Matt Danowski dropped to his knees 10 yards from the cage.

One of the first players to offer consolation wasn't from Duke.

"I love him to death. He's my best friend," said Johns Hopkins senior Brendan Skakandi, like Danowski a Farmingdale graduate. "You want to celebrate with your team, but when you see your best friend with his head down, you hate to see him like that." ...
St. Petersburg Times:
Editorial: Duke team takes field, moves on -- Duke lacrosse players have been called a lot of things during the past 14 months: "elite," "privileged," "rapists," "hooligans" and finally "innocent." On Monday they were called runners-up as they fell to Johns Hopkins in the national title game.

Just competing in a national championship was a remarkable accomplishment for a team forced to endure the firing of its veteran coach, the cancellation of a promising season and the school suspension and character assassination of three of its players at the hands of an overzealous and unethical district attorney...

It's time for everyone, except for Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong who must be held accountable at a state ethics trial next month, to move on. As for the accused players, Reade Seligmann announced Tuesday that he will enroll at Brown University where he'll play lacrosse. David Evans earned his Duke degree last year. Collin Finnerty has been invited back to Duke but he is undecided.

With the team's tournament performance, Duke lacrosse players should be remembered for something they actually did do.
KC Johnson:
The Deutsch Files -- My Cliopatria colleague Ralph Luker recently attended an academic conference at Duke, where he encountered Group of 88 member Sally Deutsch . Luker recalled that Deutschseemed to think that I should know better than to be found blogging with KC Johnson. She bristled noticeably when I said that, after all, he’d turned out to be correct about the lacrosse case. “You mean about the charges being dropped?,” she asked....

That a figure such as Deutsch still seems unwilling to admit that no rape occurred is not surprising. That, however, she could—months after the fact—continue to justify her decision to use class time to effectively present Nifong’s preferred foundation of the case against the players is depressing. It’s no wonder that the Duke administration never investigated allegations last spring of improper behavior by professors toward lacrosse players.
William Jockusch, Green Eggs & Bacon blog:
Hitting Duke where it hurts -- The disgraceful actions of many Duke faculty, and even of the Dean of Social Sciences at Duke, have been documented all over the place. Even when it was obvious to any sensible observer that the players were innocent, the guilty faculty typically refused to apologize. This behavior continues even today, after the North Carolina Attorney General said in no uncertain terms that the players were innocent. Yet Duke has failed to take any public action against the guilty faculty. I believe that the actions of these faculty demonstrate such a deep lack of fundamental fairness that the proper solution is to fire them, tenure or no tenure.

Duke, however, has taken no action against even one of the guilty faculty. This is even true in cases where the faculty in question appear to also be guilty of other conduct which ought to be sufficient grounds for dismissal.

Duke needs a wake up call. And the way to give them one is to get nasty. For this reason, I am going to start a letter-writing campaign to Duke's donors. I will ask them to stop giving money to Duke...
Joe Neff - News & Observer reporterJohn in Carolina:
N&O’s Neff Misspeaks (Post 2) -- what follows in italics is a very accurate rendering of what you [Joe Neff] said:
One of the things that I think really helped our paper throughout this story is we have a really strict policy against the use of anonymous sources and we did not use a single anonymous source or unnamed source in our – uh – I think as of now we’ve written 541 articles by – with at least 19 different bylines on it and what that (Neff pauses)

It was really frustrating in the initial couple of weeks when it was so competitive and no other newspaper and no other radio or TV station felt compelled to – they were going with 'sources close to the prosecution' or 'we have learned' or 'Nightline has found out' and they would just put stuff out there.

Now some of it we knew because we were told off the record, but we won’t use it, but some of it was absolute nonsense –ah – ah – so it allowed us to get beat on some very small things, but in general by not using anonymous sources, we were really saved – ah – from putting some –ah- some bad stuff in the paper.” (Moderator moves to another matter)
Joe, if you find what you think are errors in what I’ve told JinC readers you said, please call them to my attention so I can review them, and make whatever corrections are necessary...
cousin Jakki aka Clyde Youngcomment: It looks like the definition of "anonymous sources" will be what Mr. Neff will quibble over. Cousin "Jakki" a/k/a Clyde Yancey aka Clyde Young is not an anonymous source? Please explain that one Mr. Neff. Cousin "Jakki" does not even share the same last name as Crystal Mangum. Even Ruth Sheehan had a chuckle over this bizzare spokesperson for Ms. Mangum.

Nikole Hannah-Jones, News & Observer:
Accuser and her family value support (April 21, 2006) -- The mother of the accuser in the Duke lacrosse case said Thursday that it has been a rough few days for the family since defense lawyers began publicly contesting the allegations. But she said an outpouring of support from people far and near has helped.

The News & Observer is not naming the accuser or her family members because it is the paper's policy not to identify people listed as victims of sexual assault on police reports...

The accuser's cousin said the accuser has moved from her home and is staying at a different location every night.

She [male who uses the names Jakki O'Knight & Clyde Yancey] said her cousin considered not pursuing the case. "She was at the point where she felt like she just wanted to make it go away," she said. "But she just realized, once she had a minute to get herself together, that she has to do this. She doesn't want to be a victim any longer."

Paul, PowerLine blog:
Lacrosse's glass ceiling -- As the [Washington] Post also notes, however, the game is not expanding at the college level. Despite high school talent that is probably at least twice as deep as it was 10 or 20 years ago, the number of college men's lacrosse program has remained basically the same.

The Post doesn't explore the reasons for this, but Title IX must be the main culprit. That's the law which, as interpreted, basically requires colleges to enroll as many women in intercollegiate athletics as men regardless of comparative interest. It causes colleges to eliminate programs in which many students would like to participate, for example men's wrestling and tennis, in favor women's programs (say, a bowling team) for which interest is minimal and must be ginned up.

In this environment, it's no wonder that colleges aren't starting men's lacrosse programs, which require (as I understand it) at least three dozen players. Doing so seems like a sure-fire way to encounter Title IX compliance issues...
News & Observer:
Freedom after 27 years in prison -- Raymond Lee Parker, who went behind bars 27 years ago for robbing a woman of $173 at a Sunbeam bakery, is a free man.

Parker, his family and a former Durham prosecutor today celebrated a long-awaited freedom.

Parker was sentenced under an old system, and his punishment is harsher than some convicts now receive for killing somebody.

[Mike] Nifong, who prosecuted the case, argued against release, saying putting aside the sentence would open the door for others to argue for changes, too...
comment: Don't forget that Mike Nifong said his hero is Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mocking Bird. Atticus would be proud.
LieStoppers blog:
The Credible Accuser Hoax Within A Hoax -- Culminating with North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper’s Declaration of Innocence on April 11, 2007, the illusions that instigated and propelled the Nifong/Mangum Hoax were gradually exposed and debunked over the course of thirteen months. We have referred to many of these enabling illusions as Hoaxes within the Hoax. Among the Hoaxes within the Hoax that fueled the endurance of the larger lie, LieStoppers previously described the 911 Hoax, the Wall of Silence Hoax, the Fake Name Hoax, and similar fallacies created and promoted in concert by the Durham County District Attorney's Office and the Durham Police Department. In a futile effort to rationalize his department's questionable performance throughout the Hoax saga, and his investigators' misleading grand jury testimony in particular, Steve Chalmers, Durham's suddenly visible Chief of Police, now seems strangely intent on resurrecting the most ridiculous, and transparently false, Hoax within a Hoax to date: the Credible Accuser Hoax...
Sportz Assassin, AOLsportsblog:
John Feinstein Unloads On Duke AD -- Duke alum and best selling author John Feinstein took another stab at Joe Alleva, the current AD at Duke. Over the years, Feinstein has had no problem ripping into Alleva ... and has really had a platform to voice his displeasure during this whole lacrosse fiasco...
John Feinstein, Washington Post:
All Is Not Well And Good With Duke Athletics (5/28) -- So the Duke lacrosse team's saga will not be a Disney movie after all.

You know the story: Unfairly accused group of athletes finds redemption by coming back from a season cancelled to win a national championship. Sadly for the movie-makers, Duke came up short in Monday's national championship game, losing to Johns Hopkins in the final for the second time in three years...

It is almost pointless to argue with the Duke loyalists who have bought into the notion that the lacrosse players were guilty of nothing more than, "boys being boys," (and it should be noted here that I am the holder of a Duke degree)...

Enough apologizing and enough martyrdom. It was a known fact on the Duke campus for years that the lacrosse team overdid it when it came to partying. There was a written report in 2004 that said just that and Tallman Trask, the university vice president allegedly overseeing the athletic department, and Joe Alleva, allegedly the athletic director, did absolutely nothing about it. Alleva fired Mike Pressler, the lacrosse coach, because a scapegoat was needed in the immediate aftermath of the incident and Pressler took the hit.

LS forum: Feinstein's Same Old Song
John Swartz, Sun-Journal (NC):
Duke's scandal gave our state a new sport -- About 14 months ago, lightning struck on the campus of Duke University. And when that happened, many of us learned a new word — lacrosse.

Most people already knew about lacrosse. I mean, they knew it existed … that’s about it.

Now, before you go all “I’m from North Carolina, and I’ve been following lacrosse for years” on me, sure, I realize there are many people who were very familiar with the sport prior to Duke’s story being plastered all over news networks. ..
Ethical Durham:
Ethical Durham fund raiser (5/28) -- Congratulations to the winner of the Ethical Durham Raffle! The winning raffle number is 0305.

The winner has been contacted.

There were 663 tickets sold. Thanks to everyone for participating.
Friends of Duke University: Fundraiser - 10 days left to win a Chevy Tahoe -- The raffle is intended to help raise much needed funds for the lacrosse case defense fund. If you did not purchase a ticket yet, please consider doing so soon. The odds of winning a Chevy Tahoe has never been so good -- 1 in 1000! The drawing will take place on Monday, May 28 at 4pm, at the Men's Lacrosse Championship in Baltimore, Maryland. You do not have to be there to win...

LS forum: Fundraiser for legal expenses, Tahoe to be raffled
Dantzler Smith, The Stormy Present:
International Philosophy, Hockey, and Duke Lacrosse -- Well where are Jackson and Sharpton to come out and apologize to the kids they accused of rape? ...

Those kids are clearly not model citizens and if I were President of Duke I'd do everything in my power to kept that team's activities under my thumb. Moreover, the division between the privileged and the forsaken in this country is real and needs to be addressed. However, these situations can not be approached with hypocrisy. So until Jackson and Sharpton apologize to the Duke kids, and until they rebuke Nifong, I will not take them seriously on issues of importance because I cannot believe that they are truly dedicated to solutions instead of appearances and political maneuvering.
Bill Bickel, AllInfoAboutCrime blog:
Prosecuting the Prosecutors (5/28) -- This is all no less serious than the alleged misdeeds of Durham (North Carolina) District Attorney Mike Nifong, the man whose self-destructive obsession with prosecuting three former Duke University lacrosse players for rape could lead to his own disbarment (charges have been dropped against the defendants, but Nifong faces a hearing before the North Carolina Bar next month).

Both of these cases fall into the What the hell was he thinking? category.

In the Duke case, here's what you have to wonder about:

Putting aside for a moment the concepts of right and wrong, fairness, and justice...

There was never any evidence that the defendants raped Crystal Mangum, and Nifong knew this. The case hinged on the testimony of Mangum who was semi-coherent at best when she made her claim and who changed her story several times; Nifong knew this as well. He probably knew that her identification of the three defendants by photo lineup was tainted as well.

So how could he rationally have believed there was a possibility of a conviction (rather than the whole case collapsing around him, which it did)? ...

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

May 29, 2007 — Duke Lacrosse Season Ends Short of Title

Updated — today's items:

Reade Seligmann will attend Brown UniversityEric Tucker, AP/News & Observer:
Cleared Duke lacrosse player will attend Brown -- Reade Seligmann, one of the three former Duke lacrosse players cleared of rape charges, will attend Brown University in the fall and play lacrosse for the Bears.

"I hope to make them proud of accepting me as a student," Seligmann said Tuesday in a statement provided to The Associated Press by his attorney, Jim Cooney. "I am looking forward to just being a student again."

Seligmann's announcement came a day after the Blue Devils lost to Johns Hopkins 12-11 in the NCAA championship game in Baltimore.

"I appreciate the support and loyalty of my teammates and coaches at Duke," Seligmann said. "I will miss them. I know that they will understand why I cannot return to Duke. I have been proud to be a part of their team and I am grateful for the support they have given to me over the past year." ...
LS forum: Reade picks new school
FreeRepublic: Duke lacrosse player headed to Brown
TalkLeft: Reade Seligman Headed to Brown

Friends of Duke Univ: Thank you!
KC Johnson: Seligmann to Brown
John in Carolina: Duke Loses to Brown
Evans(#33) and Schartzmann stop shot by Duke's Ned CrottyLorenzo Perez, News & Observer:
Duke denied at finish -- Jays edge Devils in NCAA lacrosse final for 2nd time in 3 seasons -- Matt Danowski walked off the field with his Duke lacrosse helmet still on his head, his fingers tightly gripping his mask as if the Blue Devils senior captain wanted to make sure no one could wrench the helmet off his head.

The quest to cap this comeback season with a championship fell one goal short against the same foe that held off Duke in its last trip to the NCAA final. Wanting no part of the redemptive storyline that was meant to end with Danowski and his teammates celebrating a title, third-seeded Johns Hopkins instead held on for a 12-11 victory Monday and its ninth NCAA lacrosse championship.

The Blue Jays (13-4) limited Duke's high-scoring duo of Danowski and junior attackman Zack Greer to a combined three points and led by six goals at the start of the second half before the Devils (17-3) mounted a furious rally that tied the score at 11 with 4:37 left. Only 1:12 after

Duke freshman Max Quinzani tied it with a deflection of a Nick O'Hara shot, however, the Devils failed to clear the ball out of their defensive zone, and Hopkins All-America midfielder Paul Rabil scooped it up and fed Kevin Huntley for the winning score.
LS forum: Duke vs. JHU - National Championship
TalkLeft: John Hopkins Beats Duke

News & Observer: Photo Gallery, May 28, 2006, Johns Hopkins 12, Duke 11
Peter Lamada (#5) and other Duke players salute fans after gameKevin Armstrong, Sports Illustrated:
Statement game -- Blue Devils hold heads high despite unhappy ending -- The 41 members of the Duke men's lacrosse team walked off the field in anonymous fashion Monday afternoon.

Fourteen months after "Wanted" posters carrying their headshots appeared on light posts and trees throughout their Durham, N.C., campus, the national championship runners up exited the national stage with their facemasks and shoulder pads still on. Identifiable only by the numbers on the front and backs of their jerseys, they walked into the stadium tunnel in two single-file lines, leaving their mark on the field with a comeback that fell three inches wide of the goal's left post...
Erik Boland, Newsday:
Duke comeback falls short -- Rebound from canceled season, 10-4 deficit falls just short against Hopkins -- From the time he took over the toughest job in college lacrosse last summer, John Danowski's eloquence and forthrightness helped in slowly healing the wounds from a lost season.

Yesterday, he found the precise words in summarizing what the majority of fans at M&T Bank Stadium had hoped to see.

"This isn't Hollywood. There's no storybook endings for these kids," the former Hofstra and current Duke coach said. "And for that, I'm sad." ...
Mike Wise, Washington Post:
Introducing the Program That Needs No Introduction -- This is where we are in our backward-logic, little world of sport: Johns Hopkins winning the national championship in men's lacrosse was thought of as a spoiler story, the one angle that could ruin the pixie-dust run at redemption by Duke.

That's right, the most successful program in the history of the college game was cast as the Evil Empire on Monday -- the Yankees with sticks and masks. Dave Pietramala, Hopkins's slightly gruff taskmaster of a coach, wore a Darth Vader-black polo pullover to prove it...

KC Johnson:
Wiser still -- “Duke,” [Mike] Wise complained, “received more attention for what was wrong with lacrosse in the past year than all the things that have been right with the sport at a place like Hopkins since 1883.”

Mike Wise is a sportswriter at the Washington Post, just down the road from Johns Hopkins’ campus in Baltimore. According to a Lexis/Nexis search, Wise wrote zero articles about Johns Hopkins lacrosse in 2004. ... zero articles about Johns Hopkins lacrosse in 2005.

zero articles about Johns Hopkins lacrosse in 2006.

Until last Friday, he had written zero articles about Johns Hopkins lacrosse in 2007...
Duke goalie Dan Loftus, top, stands as Johns Hopkins’ George Castle celebratesDavid Ginsburg, AP/FortWayne.com:
Embattled Duke falls in lacrosse final -- There were hugs, handshakes and plenty of tears. The Duke lacrosse team had run through a myriad of emotions over the past 14 months, and now it was over.

The Blue Devils had an almost unfathomable comeback fall short in a 12-11 loss to Johns Hopkins in the NCAA championship game Monday, and afterward the locker room was eerily silent...

At game’s end, Pressler hung his head. But he visited with his former players after it was over.

John Danowski expressed pride in being able to coach this team, which accomplished everything it set out to do until coming up a goal short in its final test.

“As you can imagine, it was emotional afterward,” John Danowski said...

Sports Illustrated entitled this AP article Duke's fairy tale over

Larry Brown Sports blog:
She’s a Hooker and a Stripper, Not a Dancer -- This is really something I’ve stewed over for the past year or so, dating back to the time when the Duke lacrosse story was being reported on a regular basis. And to this day, when reference is made to the Duke lacrosse team, most notably on Monday when they lost in the national championship game to Johns Hopkins, their rape case is synonymously noted. But one thing about every mention bothers me. Sports anchors and sports writers insist on referring to the woman in question, who clearly made up most of her allegations, as an “exotic dancer.” Bullshit...Let’s just call her what she really is — a hooker...

Katie, The Ramblings of a Female Sports Fan blog:
Bandwagons, JHU, Lacrosse, and Why I Hate most Networks -- The past week has really strengthened why I generally cannot stand most sports networks. I am sure we are all well-versed in the 2006 Duke Lacrosse Scandal. Did those guys pull some shady business? Sure. Is Crystal Gail Mangum a lying sack of you-know-what and deserves punishment? Of course. Are we all really that surprised that she won't ever get it? I know that I'm not. With all this being said, I find it completely ridiculous that networks made out this Duke team to be some kind of bunch of heros...

I am very happy that the Duke team was able to place so well, but not because of what happened to them, because they played a great season, regardless of anything else.

titivil blog:
duke sucks -- Funny, when I think of the Duke lacrosse team, I think of a bunch of rich kids playing under the inspirational slogan "WE DIDN'T ACTUALLY RAPE THE STRIPPER"...

comment: “Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it” — Adolf Hitler

Paul McMullen, Baltimore Sun:
Zerrlaut, Evans reduce Duke's Big 2 to 3 points -- Johns Hopkins pair limits Greer, Danowski to one goal, two assists -- Zack Greer had six goals and Matt Danowski collected four assists April 7, when Duke beat Johns Hopkins, 11-9, at Homewood Field.

They were half of the All-America attack, and both made the NCAA all-tournament team, but not because of anything they did in Round 2 against the Blue Jays yesterday.

The Hopkins heroes in the NCAA title game included Eric Zerrlaut, a fourth-year junior out of St. Mary's who limited Greer to an assist, and Michael Evans, a sophomore out of South River High who restricted Danowski to an assist and a goal, which came on a one-on-one in transition...
Kevin Van Valkenburg, Baltimore-Sun:
Jays thwart Duke dream -- Record 9th lacrosse title came down to Hopkins' play, not rival's troubles --Johns Hopkins lacrosse coach Dave Pietramala - a bear of a man with a consummate 5 o'clock shadow, a neck thicker than an oak tree and a stare that could freeze a mugger in his tracks - sat down in a plastic folding chair yesterday and grinned.

All around him, on the turf field of M&T Bank Stadium, his players were celebrating the Blue Jays' emotional, exhausting and unexpected victory in the NCAA championship, a 12-11 triumph over Duke University. They snapped pictures, they ran laps around the stadium and they flipped their gloves and sticks into the stands, into the arms of grateful grade-schoolers...
Duke Chronicle:
Johns Hopkins defeats Duke in title game -- Top-seeded Duke fell to third-seeded Johns Hopkins, 12-11, in the NCAA Championship Monday afternoon at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Md.

In front of a NCAA-record crowd of 48,443 fans, Johns Hopkins' Kevin Huntley scored the final goal with 3:25 remaining to seal the Blue Jays' record ninth NCAA lacrosse title. After Huntley's goal, the Blue Devils had several scoring chances, but misfired their shots in the game's final minutes, ending the team's hopes of earning its first national championship.

Duke ended its season with a 17-3 record and placed four Blue Devils -- Ned Crotty, Matt Danowski, Zack Greer and Nick O'Hara -- on the NCAA All-Tournament Team.
Aaron Beard, AP/News & Observer:
BEARD ON LACROSSE: Duke's season of redemption comes to end -- It ended in an absolutely eerie come-full-circle moment: For the second time in three seasons, Duke's lacrosse team had lost by a single goal to Johns Hopkins in the NCAA championship game.

It was a crushing loss for a team determined to make amends for their near-miss in 2005. But considering where the Blue Devils spent the year in-between, it's a loss that will start to look pretty good once the sting starts to subside....

Rick Maese, Baltimore Sun:
Despite final chapter, book isn't closed on Duke saga -- When it was all over, despite desperate pleas and collective exhaustion, you couldn't help but notice that it wasn't really all over.

The clock showed a string of zeros and the seats at the stadium emptied. While players in another locker room took turns holding their NCAA championship trophy, down the cement corridor beneath M&T Bank Stadium, in another room, members of the Duke lacrosse team sullenly packed their gym bags.

The game was over -- they had lost the championship, 12-11, to Johns Hopkins -- but the saga that has come to define the Blue Devils program isn't fortunate enough to get packed away with the sticks and pads, tossed in a truck and thrown into storage.

As midfielder Brad Ross says: "There's no closure to something that will be with you your whole life." ...
Gary Lambrecht, Baltimore Sun:
Save banks 9th title -- Jays turn back Blue Devils on Schwartzman's final stop at :07 -- With a national title on the line and time running out on a Duke team that was the undisputed darling of a huge crowd at M&T Bank Stadium, Johns Hopkins senior goalie Jesse Schwartzman admitted he didn't get a good look at the shot.

But Schwartzman was there again yesterday when the Blue Jays needed him most. And after his kick save stopped a 7-yard shot from the right side of the crease by Duke midfielder Brad Ross with seven seconds left, and a desperation 17-yarder by attackman Max Quinzani went wide right as time expired, Hopkins had topped off its grinding journey with another crown.
Mike Lopresti, Gannett News Service/USA Today:
Duke's against-the-odds run ends in 'emptiness' -- Their near-miss Monday was as agonizing as any team could dread, with a dream lost by the barest margin. And when they hurt in the locker room afterward, the men who play lacrosse for Duke did not look much like villains. They looked like college kids who just had their hearts ripped out.

"It was the last goal we had for ourselves, to win a national championship," Matt Danowski would say with red eyes. "It was almost like failure.

"It's just an extreme feeling of emptiness."

They are the team some put on wanted posters last spring. The athletes who had protestors outside their apartments, beating on pots and pans and carrying signs that called for their heads.

They lived a hot-button national soap opera — lest anyone has forgotten — that included a team party with exotic dancers, rape charges against three players, a rush to judgment, marches in the street, coast-to-coast scrutiny and seething criticism, a season cancelled and a coach fired.
LS forum: Duke's against-the-odds run ends in 'emptiness', USA Today's retard-in-chief sez
Dan WetzilDan Wetzel, Yahoo Sports:
A team of their own -- The resurrection of Duke lacrosse following 15 months of accusations and allegations, sins and sensationalism, indictments and ethics charges, a canceled season and finally a run to the final, furious seconds of the title game, never was about a school some players may attend but don't trust.

This always was about the 41 names on the backs of their 41 jerseys.

This was a team, in many ways, without a school because it was a school, in many ways, that didn't want a team. Some faculty members still don't want it, no matter the dropped charges, the exposed lies and the track record of model behavior since.

"We weren't winning for Duke itself. We weren't winning for the faculty. We weren't winning for the students," Danowski said. "We were winning for ourselves. It sounds cliché, but at one point all we had was 41 guys and our family. We didn't have student support. We didn't have faculty support. It was really just about us." ...

And some of the worst offenders were their own faculty and the administrators who caved to the tidal wave of groupthink that, to this day, continues to unapologetically condemn them all...
KC Johnson: Standing Out
Craig Henry, Lead & Gold blog:
Outstanding column on Duke lacrosse -- A couple of items he mentions add credibility to the idea that Duke needs to address the Gang of 88's excesses because they were "university-sanctioned" actions...
KC Johnson:
More Sports Reporters -- In a thrilling championship game yesterday, the Duke men’s lacrosse team fell just short of a national title, losing to Johns Hopkins, 12-11. The performance in the NCAA tournament brought the team back into the national spotlight, although this time for its athletic accomplishments, and so it tended to be covered exclusively by sports reporters.

Some of this coverage was first-rate... But the last few days featured embarrassingly poor pieces by sports columnists in major newspapers: the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, and the San Jose Mercury News....
Duke Coach John Danowski, center, praised his players’ hard work after the game.Pete Thamel, NY Times:
Duke’s Comeback Season Ends Short of the Title -- His eyes red from crying and the eye black on his cheeks smudged from sweat and tears, the Duke senior Matt Danowski did his best to maintain his composure.

He had just trudged off the field after the Blue Devils’ 12-11 loss to Johns Hopkins in the N.C.A.A. men’s lacrosse title game Monday, and Danowski’s emotions were a mixture of sorrow and pride.

“Right now there’s a sense of emptiness,” he said. “No one wants to walk away with a second-place trophy. But I’m extremely proud of these guys and the way we handled ourselves since last spring.”

Danowski’s mixed emotions underscored the prevailing feeling in the Duke locker room after the team endured 14 tumultuous months...
Jason Whitock, KansasCity.com:
Duke lacrosse inspiring -- A sloppy first-half performance in Monday’s national-title game denied the Duke lacrosse team the storybook finish many of us wanted. The Blue Devils rallied from six down before falling to Johns Hopkins, 12-11.

The loss does not diminish the lesson to be learned from the Blue Devils and their handling of the false rape allegations that made us take interest in them in the first place.

The Blue Devils are to be congratulated for surviving the past year and advancing all the way to the NCAA title game. The Duke lacrosse program and its players were demonized by overzealous media representatives, academics who hate jocks and racial opportunists. Typical, irresponsible college behavior (underage drinking) was used as an excuse to paint the Duke players as potential skinheads...
Bob Sikes, GettingPaidtoWatch blog:
Jason Whitlock touches all the bases -- …..with this morning column about the inspiration of the Duke Lacrosse Team. Whitlock’s message for Black American’s is phrased in a manner that everyone should read...
John in Carolina:
1st Lt. Lynch & Sgt. Regan Remembered -- In the Duke community all who knew them remember with affection and respect 1st Lt. Matthew D. (Matt) Lynch, ’01 and Sgt. James J. (Jimmy) Regan,’02. ...
KC Johnson:
Unsung Heroes -- This afternoon, at 1pm, Duke’s men’s lacrosse team will take the field to battle Johns Hopkins for the national championship. Today’s post looks at four of the unsung heroes of this year’s squad, not for what they’ve done on the field, but for how they’ve handled themselves over the past 15 months...

Junior Bo Carrington (#31) is an ACC Academic Honor Roll Selection..,

Yesterday, senior Tony McDevitt (#44) was named a third-team All-American defenseman; he also was a finalist for the Lowe’s Senior Class Award, given to a senior lacrosse student-athlete “who excels both on and off the playing field.” ...

Sophomore Michael Catalino (#29) joined Carrington as an ACC Academic Honor Roll selection. ...

Junior Rob Wellington (#48) is, like Carrington and Catalino, an ACC Academic Honor Roll selection. ....
comment by LaxParent -- Thanks for your recent post. I know all 4 boys will be slightly embarrassed by your generous praise. They like so many did only what they could. The whole lacrosse community was presented at different times with different opportunities to help and all came through. It was a wonderful flower to watch bloom in the wasteland surrounding the case. There were so many who did what was right, and it is an interesting comment on society today that doing what is right stands out so profoundly...
KC Johnson:
Unfortunate ESPN Comment -- This evening on ESPN's Sports Center, anchor Neil Everett introduced a story by mentioning the scandal and then stating "the allegations were never proven."

Never proven? I believe the word that AG Cooper used was "innocent" --an all-but-unprecedented declaration--as part of a general statement that no evidence existed to substantiate the charges.

This is the network broadcasting tomorrow's final. Is it unreasonable to expect an accurate portrayal of the case?
Aaron Beard, AP/News & Observer:
Danowski showing right touch in leading Duke out of dark period -- - John Danowski knew he was inheriting a Duke lacrosse roster that had the talent and the hunger to win a national championship.

But it was also an angry team - bitter from the false allegations of rape that took three teammates away and a stole a season. It was a team that remained fiercely loyal to its previous coach, a man the players felt unfairly lost his job as a result of the since-discredited allegations.

Yet the easygoing Danowski has become nothing but a success - he's on the verge of leading Duke to its first national championship in his first year as coach - by spending as much time nurturing and counseling wounded players as planning game strategies.

"It's part of the job," Danowski said Sunday. "You would do that anyway if you thought it was necessary to help your team improve. That's one of the neat things about this profession. The Xs and Os or setting a pick, that's fun. And this is fun too, that you are part of their lives." ...
KC Johnson: Beard on Danowski

LS forum: Coach D - The Coach You Always Wish Your Kid Had
Lorenzo Perez, News & Observer:
Family ties help bind Duke -- John Danowski had a three-time prep All-America lacrosse player living under his own roof, and yet the longtime Hofstra coach did not spend much time recruiting his son Matt.

Matt Danowski left Long Island, N.Y. with his father's blessing for Duke four years ago; it was the son's turn to welcome his father in July when John Danowski arrived in Durham to guide a team in need of both a coach and a counselor. ...
Bryan Strickland, Herald-Sun:
Danowski's approach yields results for Devils -- When the Duke Blue Devils advanced to today's NCAA men's lacrosse championship game with a last-second victory Saturday, first-year Duke coach John Danowski stood back from the raucous celebration, letting the players enjoy the moment.

Danowski's perceived hands-off approach now has the Blue Devils one victory away from getting their hands on the NCAA championship trophy for the first time in school history.

"He just kind of steps back," junior midfielder Brad Ross said. "It really is our game. He doesn't tell us what we're going to run. He asks us, 'OK, what do you think is working?' He gives us a lot of leeway...
Pete Thamel, NY Times
Year After Scandal, a Sport Thrives -- Jim Jennings, the commissioner of the National Lacrosse League, remembers sitting in a meeting with a potential advertiser about a year ago.

Jennings, in his seventh year as the head of the professional indoor league, spent most of the 90-minute meeting discussing the Duke lacrosse case. He left without a deal.

“People didn’t want to associate their brand with lacrosse,” Jennings said.

The Duke case centered on a woman’s accusation that three Blue Devils players had raped her at a team party in March 2006, after she had been hired to perform as a stripper.

One year later, the charges against the players were dropped and the North Carolina attorney general called the district attorney, Michael B. Nifong, a “rogue prosecutor” in a “tragic rush to accuse.”

As the case swung over the course of a year, so did the perception of its impact on the sport, which many thought would be harmed.

“It’s not the way we wanted to grow the game, certainly,” said Duke Coach John Danowski, whose team plays Johns Hopkins for the N.C.A.A. title Monday at M&T Bank Stadium. “But listen, we weren’t the first to say that there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Someone said that long ago...
Kevin Armstrong, Sports Illustrated:
Band of brothers -- Jimmy Regan, the former Duke lacrosse player from Rockville Center, N.Y., will not be in attendance at M&T Bank Stadium on Memorial Day to see his alma mater challenge Johns Hopkins for the NCAA Division I lacrosse national title.

The alumnus from the class of 2003 will not be paying $20 to park in the lots surrounding the stadium for the pre-game tailgating. He won't join with fellow former Blue Devils in raising a Duke-blue Solo cup to the accomplishments of this year's team.

Regan, an Army sergeant from the 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, was killed Feb. 9 at age 26 when his vehicle was hit by an explosive in Northern Iraq. Having earned a Purple Heart, Bronze Medal and several other medals in his four tours of duty split between Iraq and Afghanistan, Regan was buried with full military honors on a wintry February day in Virginia.

"With what Memorial Day means for honoring the military, let alone that the lacrosse community has its championship on this day every year, [Jimmy's father] told me that Jimmy would be smiling down on us," said Duke assistant coach Kevin Cassese...

Duke's lacrosse success nothing to cheer about -- The idea that the Duke lacrosse team's success is a feel-good story makes me ill.

There is no allegory of redemption in having Duke play Johns Hopkins Monday for the NCAA men's title, and there is nothing to the notion that it is a just reward for an injustice perpetrated on the team last year...
LS forum: Phillip Hersch, Duke lacrosse makes him ill
Lake Ozark Expo
Editorial: Duke lacrosse destined for greatness today on ESPN -- The Duke Blue Devils face off against Johns Hopkins for the NCAA Division I Lacrosse Championship at noon today on ESPN2.

We wish the Blue Devils what they were wrongfully denied in 2006 - Victory.

Too often the public convicts the souls of the accused before the truth of the fact is uncovered. Last year, an accuser called three players rapists behind a North Carolina prosecutor bent on taking down a bunch of Ivy League jocks. The University, once the tower of knowledge and the banner under which these athletes battled, suspended the accused from school and was instrumental in shutting down a championship-calibur team.

Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and David Evans were innocent...
KC Johnson:
Trustees, Dartmouth, and the AP -- The Duke case has provided a good example of how Boards of Trustees, by taking an excessively passive approach to their oversight role, can cause significant harm to an institution...
John in Carolina:
N&O’s Neff Misspeaks at Press Club -- I purchased an audio tape of the panel session from the Press Club...I’ve listened to the tape. La Shawn had it right. Joe Neff said what she reported. In fact, Neff went into detail about what he said was the N&O’s refusal to use anonymous sources when reporting the “Duke lacrosse case.”

That from the man many people say is the one N&O reporter “you can trust.”

Neither Taylor nor Reider questioned Neff’s bogus claim when he made it, or at any time that’s recorded on the tape.

I'm sending Neff the email below inviting him to correct the record. I’m going to send Taylor and Reider links to this post, and invite their comments.

I’ll let you know what I hear back...
Joan Foster, LieStoppers:
"If You're Not Lyin', You're Not Tryin" --
So many lies and obfuscations
In Queen Crystal's "back up Band!"
Remember "blunt force trauma"?
Remember Meehan on the stand?

The "inaccuracies" in coverage
In the local Durham Press!
The NC-NAACP case Narrative!
Hometown fibbers sure impressed!

In Durham they appreciate
Lying as "creative art."
They expect everyone to do it.
It's savvy and it's smart.
KC Johnson:
Sunday Review -- Mike Nifong’s chief investigator Linwood Wilson was much in the news last week, after a court hearing in an unrelated case revealed that his penchant for intimidating witnesses extended beyond the lacrosse case.

Several weeks ago, Joe Neff broke the news that Wilson received a 66% raise and a promotion (from coordinator of the DA office’s worthless checks program to the office’s investigator) in the middle of the lacrosse case. It remains unclear what Wilson did to merit this promotion.

A reader also reminded me of the Herald-Sun article announcing Wilson’s hiring, dated January 2, 2006. The article opened with the distinctive prose of John Stevenson: When it comes to collecting worthless checks, the Durham District Attorney's Office has just been reinforced by a bass voice of CD quality, over 6 feet of height and more than 200 pounds of weight.” ...
Mark Purdy, San Jose Mercury News:
Purdy: Recent events throw jock culture under a light -- Most of the time, I will defend jocks. Sometimes, I will even defend the jock culture. I have met too many decent people who also happen to be athletes, the kind of young men and women who go the extra mile to help others.

And then there are the other jocks, the ones who make life miserable for the first group...

the exonerated Duke lacrosse players (supported by many of their fellow athletes at the school) said much the same thing - that they felt aggrieved and targeted when they hadn't done anything to deserve scorn...

Do either of those scenarios [De Anza - Duke] sound as if they were perpetrated by "victims" or "innocent" students? In both cases, I also tend to agree with my colleague, author John Feinstein, a Duke alum and one of our country's estimable journalists. After the charges were dropped against the Duke lacrosse players, someone asked Feinstein his opinion. He expressed his disgust that the players were portraying themselves as martyrs and said, "I think they're guilty of everything but rape." ...
John in Carolina:
N&O Lax Cover-up - 5/27/07 -- The Raleigh News & Observer continues to work hard to cover-up its role in launching and sustaining the public witch hunt and framing of the white Duke students on the school’s 2006 Men’s lacrosse team....
LS forum: The News & Observer's Role in Igniting the Hoax

Jon Ham, Right Angles blog:
Airbrushing Duke lacrosse coverage -- Blogger John in Carolina notices more efforts by The N&O to downplay its early irresponsible role in the Duke lacrosse hoax case, in this case a story by Ben Niolet in Sunday’s paper...

He points out that Durham DA Mike Nifong didn’t start spouting off to the media until March 27, after the race-class-gender template had been solidified by The N&O’s take on the story...

John’s view parallels mine.
Benjamin Niolet, News & Observer:
Lacrosse case leaving mark in courts -- The judicial system has a hangover. Call it the Mike Nifong effect.

In North Carolina and across the country, prosecutors with upright reputations are having to make assurances that they don't break the rules. Judges and lawyers have taken to using Nifong's name and the outcome of the sexual assault case against Duke University lacrosse case players as a shorthand for all manner of prosecutorial outrages. The case has made it harder for prosecutors nationwide to get funding or laws changed.

It has been just over a month since the state Attorney General exonerated the accused and called them the victims of a "rush to accuse." The specter of the case lingers.

"You get the feeling everybody's thinking about the unsaid elephant in the room," said Nick Saparilas, a Wake County criminal defense lawyer. "It's not fair to 99.9 percent of all the prosecutors that have to deal with that."

In some cases, the case is mentioned outright...
Nifong's rape hoax won election for himdiscussion:
North Carolina Republican Roundtable:
Doing a Nifong -- In today's News & Observer, an article highlights the use of the new Nifong term meaning 'all types of prosecutorial misconduct.' Some folks are annoyed with the invention of the phrase, saying it is not justified.

Unlike 'Pulling a Lewinsky', the new saying 'Doing a Nifong' is well deserved. Feel free to use it liberally...

Lacrosse case leaving mark in courts -- Poor baby. The presumption of innocence is now the "elephant in the room"?