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Report: Pac-12 fighting Grand Canyon U., for-profit schools

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The Pac-12 conference CEOs have begun questioning whether or not adding a for-profit school to Division I athletics is a good idea, according to a report from Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com.

They sent a letter to Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott, and it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the target of that letter is Grand Canyon University. The school joined Division I on June 1st, becoming a member of the WAC, and will be eligible for the NCAA tournament in 2017-2018.

Grand Canyon has 6,500 students on their Pheonix campus and another 45,000 taking classes online. IT was founded in 1949, but was taken over in 2004 when the school was broke and turned into a publicly-traded company.

From Dodd’s story:

“It’s gotten on the radar of our schools and are trying to raise it as a policy issue as to whether for-profit schools ought to be playing Division I athletics, or not, before there are any,” Scott said. “It’s always hard to put the genie back in the bottle.”

The school was been assured by an NCAA official that “he didn’t feel like [non-profit status] would have any tangible affect on our membership,” according to Grand Canyon AD Keith Baker.

[…]

Scott said the concern among the league’s presidents and chancellors arises from such a school being “responsible to financial partners and shareholders. That’s the bottom line of accountability.”

The Pac-12 action originated with Arizona State, according to several sources.

“It’s not about Grand Canyon,” Scott said. “It’s about institutions whether they should be granted membership to Division I. This issue has been flagged by our presidents as something as they think the NCAA board and the membership more broadly ought to really think about just before letting it happen.”

This will be something to keep an eye on, but for now, the Antelopes are nothing more than a program with a couple of notable names. “Thunder” Dan Majerle is their head coach, which Demetrius Walker transferred into the program.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

No. 13 Iowa State suspends Jameel McKay indefinitely

Iowa State forward Georges Niang, forward Jameel McKay, forward Abdel Nader and guard Deonte Burton celebrate after center Stuart Nezlek scored late in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Coppin State, Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015, in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State won 104-84 (AP Photo/Justin Hayworth)
AP Photo/Justin Hayworth
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Already lacking depth, No. 13 Iowa State will be short a key contributor Saturday when they take on Oklahoma State in Stillwater.

Friday night it was announced that senior forward Jameel McKay has been suspended indefinitely by head coach Steve Prohm and did not make the trip with the team. McKay, who’s been dealing with knee issues recently, is averaging 12.4 points and a team-high 9.0 rebounds per game on the season.

Over the last six games he’s averaging 7.7 points and 8.7 rebounds per contest, shooting 60.6 percent from the field.

McKay has been asked to man the middle for a team lacking in both size and depth, with Georges Niang shifting over to the five when McKay needs a break for either rest or foul trouble reasons. Without McKay even more responsibility falls upon the shoulders of Niang, Abdel Nader and Deonte Burton in the front court.

The Cyclones are looking to end a two-game losing streak, and even with Oklahoma State’s struggles accomplishing that gets tougher with McKay out of the lineup.

News of McKay’s suspension was first reported by the Ames Tribune.

UNLV dismisses guard Daquan Cook from team

Illinois v UNLV
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LAS VEGAS (AP) UNLV junior guard Daquan Cook has been dismissed from the team.

Interim coach Todd Simon made the announcement on Friday, though no reason was given.

Cook was suspended for 13 games by previous coach Dave Rice in November after being arrested and charged with DUI.

Cook appeared in two games this season after being reinstated, scoring three points in four minutes. He missed the 2014-15 season after tearing his right ACL and played 28 games as a sophomore.