Tarkanian rips NCAA at luncheon

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Jerry Tarkanian still pulls no punches when talking about the NCAA.

The former UNLV coach said Monday he thinks the college sports governing body is "the crookedest organization in our society," drawing several laughs during a luncheon at the Downtown Tip-Off Club in North Little Rock, Ark.

NCAA spokesman Erik Christianson said in an e-mail that Tarkanian's comments were "off-base and ridiculous."

Tarkanian was dogged by NCAA investigations through his career and he sued the organization in 1992. The two settled for $2.5 million in 1998.

The former coach also shared more-pleasant memories, including his UNLV team's 1991 visit to Arkansas. Unbeaten UNLV was ranked No. 1 at the time, and the Razorbacks were No. 2. In front of a raucous crowd at Barnhill Arena, UNLV won 112-105.