USC waiting on decision on appeal

LOS ANGELES -- NCAA president Mark Emmert says he doesn't know when a decision on USC's appeal will be made four weeks after school officials spent more than four hours talking with the NCAA infractions appeals committee in hopes of reducing sanctions imposed against the school's football program.

"I'm not sure where it is," Emmert said of the appeal. "I hope it's coming to a conclusion fairly soon."

A decision was initially expected in four to eight weeks and Emmert hopes it will still be made within that timeframe.

Emmert said the NCAA is looking into becoming more transparent in their decision making processes and installing some standardization to rulings after being criticized for their handling of cases involving Cam Newton and five Ohio State football players, including Terrelle Pryor, last season.

"One of the things I want us to do is find a better way to inform [the public] about where we are in these complicated processes, whether it's an infractions case or a reinstatement or eligibility case or an appeal," Emmert said. "We're trying to strike a balance between giving you all as much information as we can. I'd like that to be more than we have in the past but also protecting confidentiality where we need it. In the past we really haven't been able to do that very well. We're trying to add some standardization to it, which we haven't done yet."

USC is appealing the NCAA to reduce its two-year bowl ban to one year and limit football scholarship reductions to five in each of the next three years instead of the scheduled 10.

The NCAA hit USC with these sanctions on June 10 after ruling Reggie Bush and O.J. Mayo received improper benefits while at USC. The university was also was cited for lack of institutional control.

Arash Markazi is a reporter and columnist for ESPNLosAngeles.com.