Pac-12 looking into injury report rules

BY foxsports • September 22, 2012

LOS ANGELES -- Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott says he talked to about three coaches this week and few more conference athletic directors in regards to the reporting of injuries. Scott addressed reporters at halftime of the game between Cal and No. 13 USC.

One of the coaches he spoke with was USC head coach Lane Kiffin. He called Scott to give his point of view on the reporting of injuries after finding out about the comments Scott made in regards to injuries.

"He read my comments," Scott said of Kiffin. "He knew I was concerned about what I was seeing and hearing and there was some tension (and) frustration between the press and some of our coaches and he called to make sure I was aware."

Scott plans to talk to all of the Pac-12 head coaches leading up to a meeting with conference athletic directors in early October to tackle the subject of injuries.

The Pac-12 doesn't have a policy in place, leaving each school to have their own policy. USC, Washington, Washington State, Stanford and Oregon are among the Pac-12 schools that don't discuss injuries.

"There's a divergent opinion on this," Scott said.  

Washington State head coach Mike Leach has gone on record to say he's not going to release injury information even if a conference-wide policy is put in place.

"I would still refuse," Leach told reporters this week. "I would still be elusive to it."  

For Scott the topic of injuries is new territory. It hasn't come up in his three years as commissioner. With so much attention given to it over the last few weeks, he feels it's time to meet with all of the athletic directors and address the situation.

He's also had talks with commissioners from other conferences as well, noting the ACC does have a policy similar to the NFL, the SEC does not have a policy, and the Big East had a policy for a year before doing away with it.

Scott has plenty of homework to do between now and the October meeting.

"(I'm) still doing the due diligence myself," he said.

Scott says he's also looking into what legal issues may be involved if the conference decides to go with a policy. If a policy is put in place it is unlikely it will happen this season.

"In theory something could be enacted as soon as we meet but it is a complex issue," Scott said. "It'd be very unusual in the middle of the football season to do a course correction on a policy that heretofore has been dealt with on each campus."

Kiffin and USC made news over the past two week in regards to injuries. The school invoked a two-week ban on a reporter for reporting kicker Andre Heidari underwent surgery and would miss three weeks. The ban was lifted after a day.

Kiffin made national news once again this week after holding a 28-second presser and subsequent walkoff after being asked a question about an injured player's return to practice.