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NCAA to Form Commission in Response to Bribery Scheme

/ Source: Associated Press
Image: NCAA President Mark Emmert speaks with the media during a press conference
NCAA President Mark Emmert speaks with the media during a press conference for the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four at University of Phoenix Stadium on March 30, 2017 in Glendale, Arizona.Tim Bradbury / Getty Images file

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The NCAA says it will form a commission to study the inner workings of college basketball in response a federal investigation into bribery and fraud that rocked the sport and implicated several assistant coaches.

The NCAA announced the commission Wednesday and said former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will lead the committee.

"We need to do right by student-athletes," NCAA president Mark Emmert said in a statement. "I believe we can — and we must — find a way to protect the integrity of college sports by addressing both sides of the coin: fairness and opportunity for college athletes, coupled with the enforcement capability to hold accountable those who undermine the standards of our community."

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Emmert said the NCAA needs to quickly make "substantive changes" in the way it operates. He said the changes will focus on the relationships between the NCAA, schools, athletes and coaches with outside entities like shoe companies, agents and financial managers. He said the committee will also examine the effects of the "one and done rule," and college basketball's relationship with the NBA.

Related: Rick Pitino Suspended in Wake of NCAA Bribe Scandal

The commission will begin its work in November and deliver its recommendations on legislative, policy and structural changes by April.

Image: NCAA President Mark Emmert speaks with the media during a press conference
NCAA President Mark Emmert speaks with the media during a press conference for the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four at University of Phoenix Stadium on March 30, 2017 in Glendale, Arizona.Tim Bradbury / Getty Images file

Federal complaints revealed in New York accused coaches, financial managers and an Adidas executive of trying to influence players on choosing schools and financial advisers.

"Individuals who break the trust on which college sports is based have no place here," Emmert said. "While I believe the vast majority of coaches follow the rules, the culture of silence in college basketball enables bad actors, and we need them out of the game. We must take decisive action. This is not a time for half-measures or incremental change."

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