South Florida Failed to Monitor Football, Women's Basketball Programs | Athletic Business

South Florida Failed to Monitor Football, Women's Basketball Programs

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The South Florida football and women's basketball programs exceeded the number of allowed countable coaches and the women's basketball program required student-athletes to exceed weekly limits for countable athletically related activity, according to an agreement released by the Division I Committee on Infractions. As a result of the violations, the former football coach and the women's basketball coach violated head coach responsibility rules, and South Florida failed to monitor its football and women's basketball programs.

The university and enforcement staff agreed that over the course of three academic years, seven then-noncoaching football staff members participated in on- and off-field instruction during practices, resulting in the program exceeding the number of permissible countable coaches. In one case, a then-noncoaching football staff member provided skills instruction to student-athletes and led film assessments and instruction.

When the South Florida compliance department learned of the football violations, it provided additional rules education to the football staff, including the former football head coach. Following that rules education, the football program continued to allow seven  noncoaching staff members to participate in skills instruction. Furthermore, according to the agreement, equipment managers used headsets to alert noncoaching staff members when compliance staff were attending football practices, so the additional violations of countable coaches rules were not discovered.

The university, former head football coach and enforcement staff agreed that as a result of the alert system to avoid detection by compliance, plus the coach's presence when the violation occurred and failure to monitor the football staff, the former coach violated head coach responsibility rules.

The school and enforcement staff also agreed that over the course of three academic years, three women's basketball noncoaching staff members and a student manager participated in on-court activities, resulting in the program exceeding the number of allowed countable coaches.

The school and enforcement staff also agreed that over the course of two academic years, the women's basketball program required student-athletes to participate in countable athletically related activities that exceeded the number of hours allowed per week on 23 occasions. Specifically, women's basketball student-athletes were required to shoot 50 daily free throws in addition to scheduled and recorded practice times. The coaching staff also required student-athletes to complete weekly cardio workouts outside of scheduled and recorded practice times. On one occasion, the program also exceeded required athletically related activities limits when the women's basketball team was required to practice until 11:30 p.m. in violation of NCAA rules that prohibit such activity during a continuous eight-hour period between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.

The school, the women's basketball head coach and enforcement staff also agreed the coach did not promote an atmosphere for compliance when the coach did not monitor the basketball staff's involvement in violations and because the coach was present when some of the violations occurred. As a result, the coach was found to have violated head coach responsibility rules.

As a result of the scope and nature of the violations in both sports, the school and the enforcement staff agreed that South Florida failed to monitor its football and women's basketball programs.

The school and enforcement staff agreed that over the course of several months, an additional violation of rules related to countable coaches occurred in the women's volleyball program, when the director of player development engaged in decision making in on-court practice activities.

Finally, the school and the enforcement staff agreed that over the course of two academic years, the school failed to report known Level III NCAA violations involving multiple programs.

This case was processed through the negotiated resolution process. The process was used instead of a formal hearing or summary disposition because the university, the involved coaches and the enforcement staff agreed on the violations and the penalties. The Division I Committee on Infractions reviewed the case to determine whether the resolution was in the best interests of the Association and whether the agreed-upon penalties were reasonable. Negotiated resolutions may not be appealed and do not set case precedent for other infractions cases.

The university and the enforcement staff used ranges identified by the Division I membership-approved infractions penalty guidelines to agree upon Level II-standard penalties for the university, the former football head coach and the women's basketball head coach. The report contains the full list of penalties as approved by the Committee on Infractions, including:

  • Three years of probation.
  • A $10,000 fine plus 0.5% of each of the football and women's basketball budgets.
  • A reduction in initial football scholarships by two during the 2022-23 academic year.
  • A suspension for the former football head coach, in which any member school that employs the coach in an athletically related position must suspend the coach from all activities for one football regular season contest in the coach's first season.
  • A one-year show-cause for the women's basketball head coach, including a 15-hour suspension from practices during the regular season.

Members of the Committee on Infractions are drawn from the NCAA membership and members of the public. The members of the panel who reviewed this case are Carol Cartwright, president emeritus at Kent State and Bowling Green; Thomas Hill, chief hearing officer for the panel and senior vice president emeritus at Iowa State; and Mary Schutten, executive vice president and provost at Central Michigan.

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