The NCAA’s investigation into ‘major’ violations at Iowa State is finally over, and the effect on the Cyclone program going forward will be largely negligible.
There will be no additional penalties for the men’s hoops program, as Fred Hoiberg’s team has already worked their way through a handful of self-imposed recruiting restrictions, but the school will be on probation for two years.
The case was deemed major by the NCAA, largely due to the fact that almost 1,500 impermissible calls and texts were dug up between 2008 and 2011. While much of that was traced back to clerical errors, some of the violations that were committed aren’t even illegal anymore.
Iowa State began investigating itself back in April of 2011 when Hoiberg saw then-graduate assistant Lefty Moore at a game that Hoiberg’s son was playing in. Hoiberg soon learned that Moore was in contact with players that ISU was recruiting, and that’s what launched the audit. The initial report was filed later that year, with the summary disposition getting released five months ago the infractions committee reviewing the documents three months ago.
That’s a long time to wait just to hear the NCAA say ‘don’t worry’.
The 6-foot-3 guard averaged 10.3 points per game, while shooting 42 percent from three, as a freshman. He, along with Malcolm Hill and Michael Thorne Jr., is one of three returning players who averaged double figures last season.
This could prove to be a make-or-break year for John Groce, who enters his fifth season at the helm. He guided the Illini to an NCAA Tournament in his first season, but hasn’t been back since.
The key for the Illini is health. Abrams gives them experience and leadership, but it won’t be a surprise if there’s some rust in his game after spending the past two seasons on the sideline. Having a healthy Coleman-Lands will help stabilize the backcourt, while Hill, an all-conference caliber forward, and Thorne anchor the frontcourt.
Like Alkins, Jones was a sought-after scorer. The 6-foot-4 two-guard was rated No. 69 overall in the Class of 2016 by Rivals. He picked Indiana over offers from Cal, Cincinnati, Georgetown and more than a dozen other high-major programs.
Jeter, the 6-foot-10, played in a reserve role as a freshman, averaging 1.9 points and 1.9 rebounds per game last season. He will be part of a loaded frontline that includes heralded freshmen Harry Giles and Marques Bolden, as well as redshirt senior Amile Jefferson, who returns to the lineup following a foot injury.
The greatest player in Auburn program history will honored with a statue outside of the team’s home arena.
The university announced that Charles Barkley, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer, will be the fourth athlete to be given a statue, joining Heisman Trophy winners Bo Jackson, Pat Sullivan and Cam Newton.
“It just means a great deal to me,” Barkley said in a statement. “Being a kid from Alabama, going to Auburn. I think everybody knows what Auburn means to me. It’s going to be pretty cool.”
Barkley, currently working as an analyst for TNT, was the SEC Player of the Year in 1984, as well as a second team All-American. He averaged 14.1 points and 9.6 rebounds per game in 84 appearances for the Tigers.