The African Union has been criticized for being hypocritical regarding the charges facing Sudan President Omar al-Bashir at the International Criminal Court. In a statement to the United Nations Security Council, ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said the AU recognized the court’s mandate to end bloodletting in Darfur in 2009 and it should therefore support efforts to bring those responsible to book. “The role of the ICC in efforts to end the atrocities committed in Darfur and to hold those most responsible accountable is crucial and has a well-known history. Indeed, it is a role equally well recognized by the African Union at the genesis of the exercise of the Court’s jurisdiction vis-à-vis Darfur, Sudan,” she said.
Heritage Hall, by most standards, is a decorated facility. Six Heisman trophies line the entrance, championship banners hang from the upper balcony, and if you venture outside the building, you’ll spot several hundred plaques on a patio floor commemorating members of USC’s athletic hall of fame. It’s a fitting display for a program with 92 national championships — 11 on the gridiron.Still, it goes without saying that, despite the pedigree, despite a remarkable run of success even in recent seasons, that USC, at least football-wise, is in a slump.Over the last 12 months, its football program was placed on four-years’ probation, sued by the Tennessee Titans, sued by Stafon Johnson, posted its worst overall record since 2001, its defense allowed more yards per game than any other USC defense in 45 years and then its appeal of the original sanctions was denied.Oh, and in case you missed it, the 2004 national championship-winning season never happened.But this shouldn’t be about what transpired. After all, USC Athletic Director Pat Haden recently said USC has “moved on.”But it’s hard.And the thing is, I know how I want to feel about this. I don’t want to talk about it. I want to talk about Matt Barkley as a Heisman Trophy candidate. I want to talk about Devon Kennard returning to defensive end. I want to talk about a 30-member incoming recruiting class.But I know how I should feel about this: The bad press isn’t over and that can’t be ignored. You’re going to keep reading about the NCAA. You’re going to keep hearing about the Committee on Infractions. You’re going to keep noticing lingering effects. The storm clouds looming over Heritage Hall are not going to part overnight.Thank the University of Tennessee and Todd McNair for that.Last Saturday, USC coach Lane Kiffin, who formerly served as the Tennessee headman for 14 months, met with the COI in Indianapolis after being served with a notice of allegations in late February concerning his stay, albeit a brief one, in Knoxville, Tenn.Accordingly, Kiffin was cited for a failure to promote an atmosphere for compliance, as well as a failure to monitor — both of which remain major violations according to the NCAA.The problem hinges on one thing: it could still impact USC even while the alleged infractions occurred on Eastern Standard Time. There’s precedent for that.Rick Neueheisel, while serving as the coach at Colorado from 1995-1998, was found guilty of multiple recruiting violations in 2002 and, subsequently, was barred from off-campus recruiting as Washington’s coach for seven months.Similarly, in 2006, the NCAA banned Indiana basketball coach Kelvin Sampson from calling recruits and making off-campus visits for a year after he and his staff violated NCAA rules by making 577 additional phone calls to various prospects while at Oklahoma.Such a circumstance would unquestionably hamper USC, which is already facing scholarship restrictions, on the recruiting trail, but even more damaging to the program’s reputation as a whole remains, yes, another lawsuit.Former running backs coach Todd McNair, who was presumed by the NCAA to know of former tailback Reggie Bush’s dealings with sports marketers Lloyd Lake and Michael Michaels during the 2004 and 2005 seasons, filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court earlier this month against the NCAA, alleging libel, slander and negligence.McNair’s suit isn’t particularly relevant in regard to USC on the field at least. He’s seeking monetary gains after the NCAA gave him a show-cause penalty last June, preventing him from recruiting and forcing schools to “show-cause” if they wish to hire him. Both make him essentially unemployable.But McNair’s lawsuit, provided it does go to trial, could impact USC by making things public. In case there isn’t a settlement, which still remains quite possible, the NCAA would have the power to subpoena witnesses in court. Pete Carroll could testify. Brennan Carroll could testify. Reggie Bush could testify.For a group that largely pleaded ignorance, denied any sort of knowledge of “extra benefits,” it might choose to paint a different story if speaking under oath.What did they know? When did they know it? What else did they know?It’s been speculated, for some time and for good reason, that there were infractions committed by other USC players and coaches that were not included in the NCAA’s report last June. Those could be revealed. Those could become public. Those could become very damaging, PR-wise for a university trying to cast an image of itself as the leader in 21st-century compliance.It could still drag on.Nobody wants to be called into court. Nobody wants to say anything. Nobody, McNair aside, wants to write another chapter to this never ending saga. Bush chose to settle with Lake and New Era Sports & Entertainment in 2007 for $300,000 as opposed to making a court-ordered deposition. Think he’s itching to testify?It’s been roughly seven years since Bush raced down the Coliseum sidelines, adorned in a cardinal-clad No. 5 jersey. That’s more than 80 months, more than 3,000 days.“If only we could just move on.” “The 19th Hole” runs every other Wednesday. To comment on this article, email Joey at [email protected] or visit dailytrojan.com.
SBC Magazine Issue 8: International expansion and picking up the sporting slack April 7, 2020 Soccerbet to Highlight virtual sports set on Coolbet April 23, 2020 Submit StumbleUpon Related Articles Share Share SBC Digital Summit: ‘Cashless’ environments to take centre stage when retail returns – Samuel Barrett April 30, 2020 Trustly is celebrating a huge company milestone after Pay N Play, the company’s innovative player registration and verification product, reached 100 live gaming brands.Introduced in 2015, Pay N Play allows customers to register and get verified to start playing on a gaming site simply by making a deposit. The KYC data for the customer is collected by Trustly during this same significantly shortened and fully compliant process.We took a trip down memory lane with Vasilije Lekovic, Director of Gaming at Trustly, to discuss the history of Pay N Play, why it has been so disruptive, which brand helped surpass the milestone and what the future holds for the product.SBC: What was the first live brand for Pay N Play back in 2015?VL: No Account Casino, an online site owned by Mandalorian Technologies Ltd and licensed in both Malta and Sweden, was the first to integrate Pay N Play technology from Trustly. However, the adoption quickly spiralled from there, particularly in Sweden where we enjoyed notable early success with Ninja Casino. Due to demand from both operators and players, our product saw fast success in Sweden and Finland, with operators like ComeOn, Hero Gaming, LeoVegas, Bethard, GiG, Mr Green and William Hill. SBC: Why has it been so popular for players and gaming operators?VL: By bundling the registration and deposit stages, the journey to starting play is significantly shortened. It’s popular among players because they don’t need to fill out lengthy registration forms or send passport copies/utility bills to prove their identity.The other crucial element is that a good payment service is combined with the smooth registration flow. While you don’t want to lose a player at the first hurdle through a bad or slow sign up experience, it’s equally important to give a player a good user experience when making deposits and withdrawing winnings.By combining these key components, you can see why it has become popular from a player preference standpoint, which has driven operators to rethink the wider approach towards player registration and verification. It was perhaps obvious that operators, assuming the right level of compliance, would be happy with the quicker and more frictionless onboarding of players, but there were initially concerns that instant withdrawals would bring about a reduction in revenues.However, our recent ‘Power of Fast Payments’ study dispelled such concerns, instead finding that players are also prioritising speed of payments when choosing which brand to be loyal towards. In fact, out of the 1,700 players interviewed across nine countries, 94% craved instant payments.SBC: What was the 100th live brand to bring up this milestone?VL: We recently surpassed 100 Pay N Play brands with Coolbet, an online sportsbook and casino live in Sweden, Finland and Estonia. It’s a huge company milestone, and shows how quickly confidence in the product has grown over just a four-year period.Yes, we’ve been heavily active in Sweden, our home market, but we have also seen fantastic growth in Finland and Estonia throughout 2019, alongside similarly rapid adoption in Germany and the Netherlands. SBC: And finally, what does the future hold for Pay N Play?VL: We’ve recently taken the Pay N Play concept a step further by rolling out In-Banner Pay N Play, a feature that revolutionises player conversion on affiliate websites.It uses the same core technology as Pay N Play, but delivers it on an affiliate site. So the player clicks on a banner on an affiliate website and can make a Trustly deposit directly from the banner, with their player account being registered and verified in the background. It’s an incredible boost for acquisition for the gaming companies because it completely removes the possibility of player abandonment for an affiliate at the referral stage. This feature can be implemented in various gaming verticals, for example, by bundling the registration and deposit with placing a sports bet, lottery ticket or simply playing a slot game. Going forward, we will continue to develop new features and functionalities for Pay N Play as well as roll out in new markets. Stay tuned for an exciting year to come!_____________