U of L fans react to 'harsh' NCAA sanctions against basketball p - WDRB 41 Louisville News

U of L fans react to 'harsh' NCAA sanctions against basketball program

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Many University of Louisville fans voiced their displeasure Thursday with the NCAA’s sanctions issued against the men’s basketball program.

“It’s pretty serious, everything that went on, but I think it’s a little harsh,” Malachi Mabson said.

U of L students like Elizabeth Schaaf said the decision has been very difficult for everyone on campus.

“It’s hard to bear in mind that the students now and the players and the coaches, if they didn’t have anything to do with what happened, that they have to be punished,” Schaaf said

Fans who have been rooting for the team for decades are wondering what the future will bring for the program.

“Immediately, it could definitely do some damage,” Angelo Mitchell said, “Years to come, I think that with the talent base that we have we’ll overcome some of the schedule discrepancies or the lack of scholarships that we may have too. We’ll overcome that.”

Cards fans are also concerned the national championship from 2013 will be taken away if the university doesn't win its appeal.

“We want Rick (Pitino) to be able to say he won that 2013 national championship and all the other players as well,” Mitchell said.  

Some are supportive of the university's decision to appeal, but others want U of L to accept the results.

“You can’t really fight with it at this point," Mabson said. "They’ve already done so much. They can do whatever they want at this point."

“Appealing is great,” Mitchell said. “Hopefully we don’t have any accountability issues, but I’m excited that they’re gonna fight for it, because they’re standing up for what they believe in.”

The sanctions are considered some of the toughest penalties for a Division I men's basketball program.

But these Cards fans are pledging to not walk away from their team.

“I think the Cards fans will always support the team no matter what happened, but as far as getting back on their own feet ... I think they’re already a strong team," said Adney Rakotoniaina, a U of L students. "They’ll persevere through whatever they need to."

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