2021 Quarter 2 Case Summaries and Key Takeaways
- Review coaches’ education on the transfer process to ensure it presents roles and responsibilities of coaches and staff in using the Transfer Portal.
- Consider establishing a system or process for double-checking that athletes are in the Portal before coaches make their initial outreach.
Youngstown State University
April 20, 2021
Level: Level II-Standard for the Institution and Level II-Mitigated for the Assistant Coach
Facts: The football program engaged in recruiting violations and the institution failed to monitor its football program during 2019-20. Specifically, a Division II prospect informed an assistant coach that he was in the Transfer Portal; however, although the prospect asked the compliance staff to add him to the Portal, he did not understand that Division II rules in place at the time differed from those in Division I. Moreover, the assistant coach was not fully educated on the Portal and did not confirm the prospect’s status before actively recruiting him. As a result, the assistant coach had numerous impermissible communications and contacts with the prospect and engaged in additional impermissible contacts when the prospect visited campus before the institution obtained written permission from the prospect’s school. In addition, the former head football coach and two assistant coaches engaged in contacts with and conducted evaluations of prospects before taking the 2019-20 recruiting test. The parties agreed the institution failed to monitor its football program in light of the institution’s lack of sufficient systems to ensure coaches were certified before engaging in off-campus recruiting and to ensure contacts with the Division II prospect were permissible.
The enforcement staff, institution, and assistant coach agreed to violations in the following areas:
- NCAA Division I Manual Bylaw 22.214.171.124 (2019-20) (Level II)
- NCAA Division I Manual Bylaws 11.5.1 and 126.96.36.199.1 (2019-20) (Level II)
- NCAA Division I Manual Constitution 2.8.1 (2019-20) (Level II)
Core penalties for Institution:
- 2 years of probation;
- $5000 fine;
- Recruiting restrictions including: 1) a reduction of three official visits in 2021-22, 2) a two-week ban on unofficial visits in 2021-22, 3) a two-week ban on all recruiting communication in 2021-22 and 4) a reduction of three football evaluation days during 2021-22.
Additional penalties for Assistant Coach
- Suspension from all coaching duties during three preseason dates;
- Ban from all recruiting activities for two weeks in February 2021.
- Any financial adjustments to athlete accounts may implicate financial aid rules, and Bylaw 15 violations can accumulate quickly.
- Review NIL processes to consider whether any money athletes make might impact their financial aid awards or otherwise implicate NCAA financial aid rules.
University of Idaho
June 18, 2021
Level: Level II- Standard
Facts: The institution committed multiple financial aid violations over the course of five years and failed to monitor its financial aid processes. Specifically, from 2016 through 2019 athletes were charged fees for dropping courses subsequent to the drop/add deadline which had the effect of reducing their scholarships. Violations occurred when athletes were not notified in writing of these changes or given an opportunity for a hearing. In addition, from the 2016-17 through 2020-21 academic years, the institution awarded athletics scholarships before institutional aid was finalized. Violations occurred when athletics aid was later reduced based on these final calculations and the athletes were not notified in writing or provided an opportunity for a hearing. The school further violated financial aid rules when it failed to follow its policies and procedures on calculating the cost of attendance for housing and meals in equivalency scholarships. Lastly, one football athlete received a housing and meals stipend after he graduated in the fall of 2020 and before he enrolled in the spring of 2021. The parties agreed the institution failed to monitor its financial aid processes in light of these violations.
- NCAA Division I Manual Bylaws 15.2.2, 188.8.131.52, 184.108.40.206.1 and 220.127.116.11-(b) (2016-17 through 2019-20) and 18.104.22.168, 22.214.171.124.1 and 126.96.36.199.2 (2016-17 through 2020-21) (Level II)
- NCAA Division I Manual Constitution 2.8.1 (2016-17 through 2019-20) (Level II)
- NCAA Division I Manual Bylaw 15.01.5 (2020-21) (Level III)
- 2 years of probation (consecutive to the school’s current probationary period);
- $5000 fine.
- Regional Rules Seminar participation for the financial aid liaison.
University of Texas, El Paso (April 20, 2021) Negotiated Resolution: Personnel improperly provided skill instruction in the football and softball programs over the span of four years. The head coaches for both programs also agreed their actions violated head coach responsibility legislation. Penalties included one year of probation, a $5000 fine, countable activity reductions, countable coaching reductions, and show cause coaching restrictions for the head coaches.
University of Southern California (April 15, 2021) Committee on Infractions Decision: In the first of three decisions issued by the COI this quarter related to the federal basketball probe, the COI found a former associate head men’s basketball coach engaged in unethical conduct when he accepted $4100 to steer athletes to a business management company. Penalties included two years of probation and a fine of $5000 plus 1% of the men’s basketball budget in addition to self-imposed penalties of scholarship, official visit, and recruiting day reductions for the institution and a three-year general show cause order for the former associate head coach.
University of Dayton (April 22, 2021) Negotiated Resolution: The institution committed recruiting violations when women’s volleyball coaches sent impermissible emails and questionnaires to prospects prior to September 1 of their junior year in high school and held impermissible tryouts at camps during the 2018-19 academic year. Penalties included one year of probation, a $5000 fine, visit restrictions, recruiting communication restrictions, contact and evaluation reductions, and camp restrictions.
University of California, Santa Barbara (May 12, 2021) Infractions Appeals Committee Decision: The IAC overturned the COI’s finding that the UCSB head men’s water polo violated head coach responsibility legislation related to an athlete receiving impermissible pre-enrollment benefits. Specifically, the IAC determined there was insufficient information to demonstrate the coach was involved in arranging housing for the athlete and remanded the case back to the COI to reassess the level of violations and whether the show-case order against the coach should be revised.
Johns Hopkins University (May 28, 2021) Negotiated Resolution: The institution committed a series of financial aid violations in its lacrosse programs related to failing to notify student-athletes of the renewal, reduction, or cancellation of scholarships by July 1; failing to provide student-athletes with written notification about their scholarship reductions or information about a hearing opportunity; failing to have an established hearing process for student-athletes when scholarships were reduced or canceled; and incorrectly applying cost-of-attendance figures to textbooks that resulted in the programs exceeding team scholarship limits. The parties also agreed the institution failed to monitor its lacrosse programs. Institutional penalties included one year probation, a $5000 fine, and scholarship reductions in both the men’s and women’s programs.
Creighton University (June 22, 2021) Committee on Infractions Decision: In the second of three decisions issued by the COI this quarter related to the federal basketball probe, the COI found a former men’s basketball assistant coach engaged in unethical conduct when he accepted $6000 to steer student-athletes to a business management company and for providing false or misleading information about his actions. In addition, the athletics director failed to meet his obligation to report a potential NCAA violation when he learned the former assistant coach had attended a meeting in Las Vegas and received the money but did not report the information until after the federal government issued a superseding indictment. Penalties included two years of probation and a fine of $5000 plus 1% of the men’s basketball budget in addition to self-imposed scholarship, visit, recruiting day, and complimentary admission restrictions for the institution and a two-year general show cause order for the former assistant coach.
Texas Christian University (June 29, 2021) Committee on Infractions Decision: In the third of three decisions issued by the COI this quarter related to the federal basketball probe, the COI found a former assistant men’s basketball coach engaged in unethical conduct when he accepted $6000 to steer student-athletes to a business management company, for providing false or misleading information about his actions, and for failing to cooperate with the school’s investigation. Penalties included three years of probation and a self-imposed fine of $5000 plus 1% of the men’s basketball budget for the institution, while a five-year general show cause was assessed against the former assistant coach.