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The Nevada Senate has voted unanimously to tell the NCAA to play fair with the top-ranked UNLV Rebels or any other college team embroiled in athletic disputes.

SB202, introduced by Senate Majority Leader John Vergiels, D-Las Vegas, requires the sports governing board to hold recorded hearings, rule quickly and not block teams from competing without just cause.The bill moved Monday to the state Assembly, which is considering a similar due process measure. Both are backed by supporters of UNLV basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, who has been involved in a long-running hassle with the NCAA.

"This is not to protect anybody," Vergiels said. "I'm doing it because I think it's a fair way to protect member institutions of the NCAA."

"The NCAA is not above extortion. They do it every day to their members," he added in commenting on the organization's practices.

Locally . . .