Baltimore Kansas University Chancellor Robert Hemenway's was the lone voice - carefully crafted and, perhaps, humorously prophetic.
Eight hours and six minutes after KU's hearing with the NCAA Committee on Infractions began Sunday, the university's army of participants filed out of the Ionic Room in the Tremont Plaza Hotel. Hemenway unfolded a piece of paper and read the statement that would stand for every member of the Kansas party. Nobody else was allowed to comment.
The statement started with this: "I want to thank the committee for giving us a fair and thorough hearing. The committee was cordial, inquisitive and very businesslike."
¢ July, 2005: KU self-reports minor violations in basketball, more serious violations in football. ¢ April 2006: NCAA alleges KU demonstrated a lack of institutional control within its athletic department from 1997 to 2003. ¢ Sunday: Kansas responds to allegations in front of NCAA Committee on Infractions in Baltimore. ¢ Approx. early October: NCAA rules if KU's self-imposed sanctions are sufficient.
The interesting part? The statement was typed and printed. Considering the meeting wasn't held in a computer lab, it apparently was written before the hearing began - and before the committee had an opportunity to be cordial, inquisitive and very businesslike toward Kansas.
Hemenway said the NCAA's formal response - which might include more penalties - would be available in five to seven weeks.
Beyond that, not much was said, and the KU camp successfully put duct tape over everyone's mouths; Bill Self, Mark Mangino, Bonnie Henrickson, Lew Perkins and Rick Evrard all refused to comment when approached by reporters. Same with Gene Marsh, chair of the Committee on Infractions.
Evrard said he might go on the record today, but until then, a prepared, hollow statement - with questionable credibility considering the likelihood it was scripted - will have to do.
Kansas and the committee discussed in great detail 11 violations committed within the athletic department Sunday, taking only occasional five-minute breaks along with an hour off for lunch. Evrard - the university's legal counsel - did most of the talking behind the closed doors, though generally the committee does ask specific questions to specific coaches, the reason Self, Mangino and Henrickson were asked to attend.
Also attending for KU were associate athletic directors Jim Marchiony, Paul Buskirk and Theresa Becker, and faculty representative Don Green. Former football graduate assistant John Papuchis, who's accused of being heavily involved in multiple violations, attended but was excused after his accusations were discussed early on.
Papuchis, under Mangino's watch, apparently was the unnamed G.A. listed in the report as allegedly committing academic fraud. The football coaching staff also was charged with impermissible assistance for helping junior-college recruits become eligible before they were officially KU students.
When asked if he and Papuchis were on the same page as far as their recollection of the violations, Mangino said, "I can't say anything. The committee told us not to talk publicly."
Of the 11 violations, five were for football, three for men's basketball and one for women's basketball. The 10th was the bundling of 26 secondary violations, and No. 11 was a blanket violation alleging lack of institutional control.
Kansas self-imposed penalties for the violations it found - pretty much the same ones the NCAA found in its subsequent investigation - with hopes that those will be considered enough in the eyes of the committee.
But it's now out of KU's hands. According to NCAA bylaws, the committee now will prepare its report, and in September or October will send its summary to Hemenway. It will be released to the media soon after.
Before the KU party slipped into a different meeting room at the Tremont after the hearing, Hemenway carefully finished his statement, with Perkins, Evrard and Marchiony standing behind him. It was the only peep KU officials had to offer - after a year of vowing to be transparent.
"The focus now is that this chapter is over," Hemenway read. "We can now move forward, confident that the changes we have made in the areas of compliance will help prevent us from going through this again."
Kansas University Chancellor Robert Hemenway, athletics director Lew Perkins and other KU officials met Sunday in Baltimore with the NCAA Committee on Infractions. The following is Chancellor Hemenway's statement following the hearing: "I want to thank the committee for giving us a fair, thorough hearing. "The committee was cordial, inquisitive and very business-like. It was clear they had prepared well. "We reaffirmed to the committee our absolute commitment to NCAA rules compliance. We felt the committee asked good questions, took their time, listened well and allowed us to fully explain our answers. "I don't think it would be productive to speculate on how the committee reacted to our presentation. The focus now is that this chapter is over. We can now move forward, confident that the changes we have made in the area of compliance will help prevent us from going through this again."