Bruce Pearl says he won't appeal penalty from NCAA
"I believe I should have been given more credit for coming forward and telling the truth," Pearl said.
KNOXVILLE (WATE/AP) - Although he feels his three-year NCAA show-cause penalty is too long, former Tennessee men's head basketball coach Bruce Pearl says he won't appeal the decision.
"I believe I should have been given more credit for coming forward and telling the truth," Pearl said in a Thursday news conference he held on his front lawn.
The show-cause penalty announced Wednesday makes it harder for Pearl to get another college job because he's prohibited from recruiting during the next three years.
Any school wanting to hire him would have to talk to the NCAA about removing that penalty.
Pearl says he's been in coaching for 33 years, "so it's really difficult to get my arms around the fact for the next three years I won't be talking to freshmen at orientation. I won't be in the lunchrooms any longer. I won't be called upon in the same capacity I was called upon to serve the community. I won't be preparing for practice."
The former coach says "it's a relief to me that the university has received no further sanctions, that the men's basketball program does not lose the opportunity to go post season, does not lose scholarships. It means they're going to be able to move forward."
The university should not have been punished for what he and his assistants did, Pearl said, and he takes full responsibility for his mistakes.
Pearl says he knows he is serving as the NCAA's example to other coaches of what not to do when facing an investigation.
He added that he thinks the NCAA rule book is too thick and "I hope to be able to even assist the NCAA in trying to make the process better."
When asked about keeping his home in Knoxville, Pearl said he and his family have roots here and his kids like being in school here.
He explained his choice to keep wearing orange and supporting the Vols, saying, "I love Tennessee."
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