NCAA violations

Fred Hoiberg

NCAA investigation into Iowa State comes to an end

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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’.

Iowa must feel like it got Punk'd

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David K Purdy / Getty Images Contributor

Words I never thought I’d write: Dick Vitale is a voice of reason.

Iowa ran afoul of NCAA rules recently when recruits Josh Oglesby and Marcus Page met Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore at a Hawkeyes football game last month. The Des Moines Register reports school officials admit they allowed the meeting to happen, even though it’s against the rules to have contact with any individual/booster who can influence the recruiting process.

But I have to agree with college basketball’s ubiquitous announcer. It’s a lame rule.

And one that USC, UCLA or any other school with famous alums must constantly straddle. How could they not? Famous alums – particularly athletes – are a helluva recruiting tool. Don’t dismiss Kutcher and Moore as lesser stars, either. Paige didn’t.

“Seeing a Hollywood star that you’ve seen in all those movies was really cool,” Paige told earlier this month..

But, as Jeff Eisenberg points out, Iowa probably won’t get dinged too badly for it.

Whether it’s North Carolina recruits playing pick-up games with Michael Jordan or former Ohio State receiver Cris Carter encouraging Seantrel Henderson to become a Buckeye, encounters between recruits and celebrity alums happen all the time. The vast majority of these infractions either go unreported or become secondary violations, which provide only minimal recruiting or competitive advantage and typically carry only minor consequences. 

Make new Iowa coach Fran McCaffery sit through back-to-back showings of Kutcher’s next movie. That would be enough punishment.

Mike Miller’s also on Twitter @BeyndArcMMiller, usually talkin’ hoops. Click here for more.

Mayo associate sues NCAA for $25 million

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Rodney Guillory, the events promoter in the middle of the O.J. Mayo scandal and ensuing sanctions at USC, says the NCAA defamed him and mischaracterized his relationship with Mayo (even though he wasn’t named in the NCAA’s report). So he’s doing what most mad people do today.

He’s suing.

His $25 million suit against the NCAA claims defamation, false light invasion of privacy and negligent misrepresentation. Yes, Guillory gave Mayo guidance and monetary assistance, but it was years before the player arrived at USC, according to an L.A. Times story.

“The relationship that Rodney and O.J. had, it was akin to the relationship a student would have with an uncle or a close family friend,” Edward Y. Lee, Guillory’s attorney, told the paper.

“Rodney was providing a lot of things that [Mayo’s] own parents weren’t providing.”

Ummm … yeah. Wasn’t that the whole problem?

The NCAA said it hasn’t seen the lawsuit yet, but is confident it did not defame Guillory. I’m confident this is a mess that won’t be resolved anytime soon.

Mike Miller’s also on Twitter @BeyndArcMMiller, usually talkin’ hoops. Click here for more.