NCAA: LSU Football Committed Recruiting Violations

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The LSU football program violated recruiting rules when a former assistant coach and former assistant director of recruiting met separately with a prospect during the COVID-19 recruiting dead period and provided the prospect with impermissible recruiting inducements, according to a decision released by a Division I Committee on Infractions panel. 

In March 2020, the NCAA Division I Council adopted emergency rules establishing a temporary recruiting dead period intended to protect the health and safety of prospects, student-athletes and university staff amid the COVID-19 pandemic. While the dead period prevented in-person recruiting contacts, including official and unofficial visits, it did not prevent prospects and their families from arranging informal visits to campus. 

In September 2020, the mother of a football prospect arranged an informal visit to LSU's campus for 14 prospects. Football coaching staff were aware that a large group of prospects planned to visit campus, and the day before the prospects arrived, school compliance staff met with football staff — including the former assistant coach and former assistant director of recruiting — to review NCAA recruiting rules, emphasizing that staff could not have any in-person contact with recruits. The mother of one prospect planned to relocate to Baton Rouge if her son attended LSU and requested recommendations for potential neighborhoods to visit. The former assistant coach recommended several neighborhoods including his own, provided directions to his neighborhood, and arranged to greet the prospect and his family as they drove through the neighborhood, thus violating dead period rules. During that encounter with the prospect and his family, the assistant coach also provided the prospect with a bag of used LSU gear he had gathered from his house before he left, which violated NCAA rules prohibiting recruiting inducements.

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