By Matthew Johnson, Sports Editor
The athletic program at UNC-Greensboro was placed on a two-year probation by the NCAA’s Division I Committee on Infractions panel Thursday afternoon.
UNCG, after determining violations within their own athletic program, had reported to the NCAA of their own infractions and offered self-imposed penalties, which the NCAA accepted. The NCAA– the governing body of Division I, II, and III collegiate sports– penalized the school for improperly authorizing 57 athletes in 13 sports over a period of six years.
UNCG will have to pay a $5,000 fine and vacate all wins in which the ineligible players participated. The probation period will end on June 24, 2017, as the NCAA added a second year for UNCG. The sanctions will not include a scholarship reduction, recruitment restrictions or postseason ban.
These violations reportedly began in the 2007 season and lasted until 2013. From 2007-2013, athletes received travel expenses and athletic-related aid when the university had not authorized their eligibility. From 2007-2011, the athletic director and head coaches were not required by the university to sign squad list or keep them on file.
Most of these self-reported violations stem from unintentional actions, according to school officials. These offenses include: athletes failing to register with the NCAA Eligibility Center, not submitting transcripts or test scores to the NCAA Eligibility Center, and/or not requesting final amateurism certification.
The university is suppose to monitor their athletic program for these rules, and UNCG did not. The athletic program will also face punishment for maintaining athletes who failed to complete the required amateurism certification questionnaire and not requesting confirmation for the specific sport the student athlete was playing.
The school, in its self-analysis, had recommended vacating wins, a fine and a year of probation. The NCAA, however, added a second year for the program.
The violations would be categorized as secondary in nature from the infractions. Secondary or Level III violations are not as severe as a major violation, as they are usually the result of the NCAA not leveling disciplinary action on a school and are handled by the university’s compliance office.
However, due to the number of athletes and years involved, the NCAA believed the classification of the school’s violations would be bumped to Level II.
UNCG will have 45 days to report to the NCAA the specific games and records that will be vacated due to fielding ineligible players in their contest.
Within the time during which the violations occurred, one of the school’s biggest programs, Men’s Basketball, which sources believe did not affect Wes Miller’s tenure who was hired in the middle of the 2011-12 season, had 61 victories during the span of the violations.
The sports which were affected by these violations include: Men’s Basketball, baseball, softball, volleyball, the now defunct wrestling team, and both golf, soccer, cross country/track and tennis teams.
The final penalties in total are listed below:
– Two years probation from June 25, 2015 through June 24, 2017 (one year self-imposed by the school, a second year added by the NCAA)
– A $5,000 fine (self-imposed by the school)
– A comprehensive compliance review by an independent agency with athletics compliance expertise (self-imposed by the school)
– Vacation of individual and team records from events in which the ineligible athletes participated (self-imposed by the school)
– Public reprimand and censure (NCAA imposed)