This week the Michael L. Buckner Law Firm continues its weekly summary of the biggest news stories in NCAA compliance and enforcement. Below are the top stories for this past week.
Takeaway: The NCAA has hired Bill Benjamin, former deputy chief of police at the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, as director of enforcement with a focus on football. Benjamin is a 28-year police force veteran, former college football student-athlete from San Jose State and professional football player with the Indianapolis Colts.
Takeaway: In cases where a student-athlete misses two seasons of intercollegiate competition because of reasons outside of his or her or the institutions control, the NCAA will allow a school to petition for the student-athlete to receive a sixth season of collegiate eligibility. Both of these cases involved the student-athletes losing an individual who they were very close to before they started their college careers. The deciding factor in the two cases were one individual who passed was a family member while the other was a close personal friend and mentor, but not a relative.
Takeaway: Prospective student-athletes and coaches are taking advantage of the benefits social media and other digital communication platforms have to offer in the recruiting process.
Takeaway: Limited immunity is an important yet selectively used tool for the enforcement staff to gather information that would not otherwise be available. In this case it allowed Boatright to avoid missing a significant number of games and repaying the impermissible benefits
Takeaway: Former Northern Arizona men’s basketball coach Mike Adras violated multiple NCAA and university regulations before he resigned this past December. The internal investigation revealed Adras was responsible for multiple violations regarding basketball practice, as players signed inaccurate time sheets to keep the permitted practice time within NCAA limits. The investigation also noted Adras had attempted to keep players and assistant coaches from cooperating with the investigation.
Takeaway: Russell Wilson’s success at Wisconsin has programs realizing the graduate-student transfer rule can help give them an immediate roster bonus.
Takeaway: The NCAA has granted a waiver for Texas A&M to host the 2012 Fox Sports Southwest 7-on-7 state football championships.
Takeaway: Georgia Tech handcuffed itself in its recruiting efforts with impermissible text messages to a prospective student-athlete and his father. The NCAA banned the institution’s coaching staff from initiating telephone or written communication with the prospect for four weeks.
Takeaway: Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany has encouraged conference members to offer four-year scholarships instead of renewable one-year scholarships.