NEW YORK -- NCAA president Mark Emmert praised Penn States success in football this season and said the universitys response to historic NCAA sanctions five years ago expedited the programs recovery.Speaking Wednesday at the Learfield Sports Intercollegiate Athletics Forum, Emmert called Penn States season spectacular and said the teams run to a Big Ten championship is great for those young men and that fan base.Penn State went 11-2 and won its first conference title since 1994. The Nittany Lions finished No. 5 in the final selection committee rankings and will play USC in the Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual.In July 2011, Emmert imposed unprecedented penalties on Penn State after the schools child sex abuse scandal involving former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky. Penn State received a four-year bowl ban, massive scholarship losses, five years probation and a $60 million fine, in addition to the loss of bowl revenue. The NCAA later reduced the postseason and scholarship penalties after Penn State complied with reforms outlined by an independent athletics integrity monitor.Because the campus addressed all of their issues so aggressively, that allowed the [NCAA] board of governors to back down from the scholarship sanctions and the postseason sanctions, Emmert said. They, as a university, had their annual reviews come in. The board looked at it and said, Wow, thats great progress. Thats way ahead of schedule. So that was terrific.It was very, very helpful in allowing the team to get back on track, and thats great.Some considered the NCAAs penalties on Penn State to be worse than the so-called death penalty, and initial forecasts pegged Penn State to experience a prolonged decline on the football field.People occasionally will say, Well, those sanctions were meant to cripple the university, Emmert said. Thats not true at all. Never was. Ive always said and always believed Penn State is, first and foremost, a great university, because it is. Secondly, its got wonderful sports traditions. How can you not be pleased theyre playing very good football?Penn State trustee Anthony Lubrano, a staunch supporter of former coach Joe Paterno, wasnt happy with Emmerts comments, calling the NCAA president a joke.Mark Emmert is a sanctimonious hypocrite, Lubrano said. Joe Paterno had more integrity in his little finger than Emmert has in his entire body. The NCAA got what they wanted from Louie Freeh. We shouldnt be surprised that Freeh sighted institutional control issues in his fact-free report. The NCAA sent [former enforcement director] Julie Roe and others to train Freehs investigators with respect to institutional control violations.Emmert addressed a variety of topics Wednesday:? Emmert called the College Football Playoff fabulously successful but said his preference is to increase the field to eight teams so every Power 5 conference champion can participate.Im kind of old-school about that, I guess, he said. It would be really fun to have a model where those five champions all got a crack at moving forward. I dont know what that looks like.Asked of this years selections, Emmert, the former president at the University of Washington, joked: Well, they got one right.??Emmert didnt address current NCAA investigations like the ones at Ole Miss and North Carolina, but he did recognize the drawn-out process of such probes.Everybody gets frustrated when they go on so long, he said. At the same time, you have to recognize the system is designed to provide lots of opportunities for the universities and any individuals involved to prepare information and conduct investigations collaboratively. We go in and sit down with the university and say, Lets together explore this and determine what the facts are. The investigatory process isnt what a lot of people think, that my staff showing up saying, OK, now were going to sneak around and get you. Its quite the opposite.??As the NCAAs Division I Council plans major recruiting forms to college football, Emmert said he wants high school athletes to have increased information about schools before making their college decisions. He doesnt have a preference on changing the recruiting calendar but advocates any changes [that] can reduce the intensity of that process, which is really extreme sometimes for the high school students and for the coaches and their families.??Emmert praised the Big 12 decision not to expand its membership. Its a good thing for college sports, he said. The last round [of realignment] was very disruptive, and it had a negative impact on so many schools and lots of personal relationships. It was hard, and Im glad we didnt have to go through that again.??Emmert said Mondays ruling by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that college athletes are not employees of their colleges or the NCAA provides greater clarity on the amateurism debate. The ruling came in response to a lawsuit filed by two University of Pennsylvania track athletes against the school and the NCAA, arguing that student-athletes are employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act and are entitled to minimum wage.??Emmert didnt comment about the sex-assault scandal involving Baylor, but said of the universitys decisions to separate with football coach Art Briles, athletic director Ian McCaw and president Ken Starr was a demonstration that the board obviously took this matter very seriously.Vapormax Shoes On Sale . Capitals head coach Adam Oates said Ovechkin was injured in the first period against the Vancouver Canucks on Monday and clarified it was not a head injury. Nike Vapormax Cheap Australia . 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The parade and rally were held to celebrate the Saskatchewan Roughriders 45-23 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Sunday in the CFLs championship game.SEATTLE -- Despite playing only three snaps of Thursdays 27-17 preseason loss to the Seattle Seahawks, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo came away encouraged that his surgically repaired back is stronger than ever.Romo immediately reached for his lower back after getting sacked from behind by defensive end Cliff Avril, who jammed Romos back into the turf in the first quarter.Whenever you take a hit, that was a perfect timed situation, Romo said. I was going into a slide. But in a weird way, I feel good about the fact that was probably as tough of a hit Ive taken on the back as Ive had in the last five years. From that regard, I feel very lucky that it can hold up and I can keep going.Romo was held out of the rest of the game by coach Jason Garrett after lobbying to return. Romo did not have any X-rays, but he spent the second half of the game in the locker room.?The Cowboys were expected to determine Friday whether Romos back injury would require an MRI or other testing, a source told ESPNs Ed Werder, but there was no word late Friday night.Initially I think he was in a little bit of shock, Garrett said. He didnt feel real good. But once a little time went by, I think he was feeling better, better and better. We dont think there is anything serious.Owner and general manager Jerry Jones joked that he was spending the night in a Seattle hospital to have his heart tested after seeing his quarterback go down. Romo had his back operated on twice in 2013, and he missed one game in 2014 with two transverse process fractures. Last season, he missed 12 games with a twice-broken left collarbone that required offseason surgery.The Cowboys are 15-4 with Romo as the starter the past two seasons and 1-12 without him.Jones said the back soreness would not limit Romos ability to be ready for the Sept. 11 season opener against the New York Giants.I just think, we, everyone had a scare, Jones said. He was not hurt, and he said he wasnt hurt. He wanted to go back in. He could have gone bacck in and played.ddddddddddddut I praise Jason. It was his decision. After that, you couldnt afford for him to get hurt. You wouldve lost everybody had he walked back out there and gotten hurt, whether it was as a result of the first one or not. That was the smart thing to do for the team, for everybody involved here, is to call it a night for him. Certainly nothing at stake there.Romo has played only 16 snaps in the preseason. The Cowboys close the preseason Sept. 1 against the Houston Texans, but Romo has not played in a preseason finale since 2006. In two preseason games this summer, Romo has completed 5 of 6 passes for 60 yards.At the moment when you go down, you crunch so your back gets squished, I guess you could say, Romo said in describing the feeling of the hit. You almost feel a sensation as if someone gave you a stinger in your shoulder. It just feels hot for a second. That dissipates after a minute and youre OK. All of those things you felt before with back injuries, those are all fine. Then your strength comes back and youre like OK. It just takes a little bit.Garrett would not say whether Romo would play against the Texans. Jones said he has liked what Romo has done in the limited work.Hes looked really good, and of course the real way to evaluate how he looks is out at practice and how hes moving around, Jones said.Since 2013, Romos preseason snaps have diminished each year. He played 69 snaps in three games in 2013, 50 in two games in 2014 and 24 in two games in 2015.I felt great for camp. I felt great going into the game last week, same this week, Romo said. I feel very comfortable whether Im done playing or whatever. Its Coachs call. I just know my job is to get ready to play in the game, and I feel very good about our football team and our offense going forward. I think you guys can see that we have a chance to be a good unit. ' ' '