Tuesday, February 4, 2014

NCAA Puts Clark Atlanta Mens Basketball and Womens Tennis Team on 3-Year Probation; Investigators Find Institution Failed to Monitor Athletics and Strips Scholarships and Women's 2011 SIAC Tennis Title

The NCAA has put the Clark Atlanta University basketball and tennis programs on three years probation and has stripped the tennis program of their 2011 Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference title.

An NCAA investigation found that CAU failed to monitor the athletics department as an assistant basketball coach and a volunteer coach provided cash, travel and other impermissible benefits to players during the during the 2011-12 basketball season. According to the NCAA, investigators found that the former volunteer coach provided impermissible benefits to student-athletes on several occasions between August 2011 and March 2012. He used personal funds to provide the men’s basketball team impermissible meals worth approximately $200. In addition, he arranged for a student-athlete to obtain a roundtrip airline ticket for a discount of approximately $750 to $1,250. He also arranged for four student-athletes to receive cash benefits totaling approximately $4,600 to $4,800, with each receiving $1,000 or more.

The assistant coach obtained a student-athlete’s personal identification number from the school’s registrar, which enabled the student-athlete to register for courses in a manner outside the established registration procedure, thus enabling the student-athlete to remain eligible for practice and competition, according to the investigative findings.

The CAU mens basketball program, which went 15-13 overall in 2011-12 but was 15-9 in the SIAC, has to vacate wins in which the affected players played.  The basketball program will also be limited to nine scholarships next year. 

The assistant coach and former head coach Dale Brown, who had just been hired June 2011, are now subject to a one year show-cause order in which any school that wants to hire them has to ask the NCAA's permission for a reason to hire them.  That order ends in Jan. 2015.  The volunteer coach is subject to a two-year show cause order. 
NCAA investigators also found that during the 2010-11 womens' tennis season, an athlete played while she was ineligible after transferring from another school. She also competed after in the 2011-12 season even though she had exhausted her four years of eligibility, according to NCAA investigators.  

Along with being stripped of their 2011 SIAC tennis title, the Lady Panthers will be stripped of wins in which the ineligible player participated.  They will be limited to four scholarships next season.

The school has also been fined $5,000.