Secondary NCAA violations could carry suspensions for coaches
The move is part of an effort to implement enhanced penalties for recruiting violations. It was proposed by the American Football Coaches Association and approved in mid-September by the NCAA Division I and II Committees on Infractions. The membership was informed but no public announcement made. The penalties apply to both Division I subdivisions and Division II.
A package of enhanced penalties for basketball, including a similar suspension element, was passed in October.
Grant Teaff, executive director of the AFCA, said his group is making an effort to police its own when it comes to recruitingannually one of the most competitive and contentious periods among schools and fans.
“This is our request: Anything that has to do with recruiting, if there’s a proven violation, we want the ability for the NCAA to say this will cost you a week or a maximum of two weeks,” Teaff said.”We as an association asked for that, and they granted that.
“We think that’s a major step forward.”
Punishment could depend on the circumstances, and suspension is not automatic, said Stacey Osburn, an NCAA spokeswoman. She said NCAA staff would examine each situation.
Osburn also said that to her knowledge this penalty has not yet been applied.
Secondary violations, which schools often self-report, normally bring lesser penalties such as reprimands. They include:
• Commenting on a recruit before he has signed a letter-of-intent, something Lane Kiffin did while at Tennessee on his page (the school said another employee actually typed the message); Kiffin also commented on an unsigned recruit while on a radio show.
• Posting comments on other public social media, which Virginia coach Mike London did last spring on a recruit’s public Facebook page. It was deemed a secondary violation.
• Having a game-simulation for a recruit, for example, having recruits run into a stadium with their name on the scoreboard and music playing and a PA announcer making them feel as if they were on the team already. The University of Washington had a similar infraction in 2009 that included renting a fog machine.
• Phone calls to a recruit that exceed the NCAA limit.
• Text messaging a recruit, which is not allowed at all.
• Talking with a recruit during a non-contact period.
Major violations, such as paying money to a recruit, are handled by a tougher set of rules and often result in the school removing the offending coach.