CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Miami finally received its notice of allegations from the NCAA, which accused the school of having a "lack of institutional control" for not monitoring the conduct of a booster who provided thousands of dollars in cash, gifts and other items to football and men's basketball players.The allegations arrived on Tuesday. The institutional-control charge is typically one of the most severe the NCAA can bring after an investigation of rules violations.
The NCAA declined comment Tuesday night, a day after revealing that it was erasing some elements of its case against Miami because the information was obtained in impermissible ways.
"We deeply regret any violations, but we have suffered enough," Miami President Donna Shalala said in a statement announcing the university had received notice from the NCAA.
A person familiar with the situation told the Associated Press about the lack of institutional control charge, and that several former members of Miami coaching staffs are named in the notice of allegations, including Missouri basketball coach Frank Haith, who was with the Hurricanes from 2004-11.
"I did get a notice of allegation," Haith said after Missouri beat Florida Tuesday night. "Contrary to what was reported (weeks ago), there was no unethical conduct in my notice of allegation. And it is just an allegation, so we get a chance to defend ourselves."
Next up: The sanctions phase, where Miami's penalties will be decided. The Hurricanes have already self-imposed several sanctions, including sitting out two bowl games and a conference football championship game. Shalala said Monday she believes those punishments should be enough.
This saga started in September 2010, when the university told the NCAA that convicted Ponzi scheme architect and former Miami booster Nevin Shapiro made allegations to the school against former players. Shapiro said he interacted mostly with football players and recruits, as well as a significantly smaller number of men's basketball players.
Shapiro is serving a 20-year prison term for masterminding a $930 million fraud scheme.
"Many of the charges brought forth are based on the word of a man who made a fortune by lying," Shalala wrote. "The NCAA enforcement staff acknowledged to the University that if Nevin Shapiro, a convicted con man, said something more than once, it considered the allegation `corroborated' - an argument which is both ludicrous and counter to legal practice"
Miami wants to get through the sanctions portion of the process as quickly as possible. But typically, it takes about three months for a hearing, and then can take several weeks -- if not months -- more for the penalties to be handed down. The sides coming to a settlement beforehand is another possibility.
Shalala said Miami will work diligently to prepare a response to the allegations within 90 days.
"We trust that the Committee on Infractions will provide the fairness and integrity missing during the investigative process," Shalala wrote.
Miami and the NCAA have gone back and forth on the wording of the notice of allegations for several weeks, and the long-awaited letter was nearly delivered last month. That's when the NCAA acknowledged that some mistakes were made by its own enforcement department. And that resulted in some allegations coming out of the letter.
It also led to yet another delay in the process, which many at Miami believe has dragged on for way too long.
"This cannot end quickly enough," Miami coach football Al Golden said earlier this month.
Virtually all the allegations revolve around football and men's basketball, though several other sports are mentioned for extremely minor reasons. Three former Miami assistant coaches are also alleged to have been in violation of what's commonly known as NCAA 10.1, which covers the "principles of ethical conduct."
Within about six months of Miami originally bringing the information it had on Shapiro forward, an NCAA investigation was quietly underway, and the story became widely known in August 2011 after Shapiro provided Yahoo Sports with details of what he claimed to have given dozens of athletes, recruits and coaches over an eight-year period.
Among the gifts Shapiro alleged to provide: Memorabilia, cash amounts both large and small, dinners, strip-club trips, prostitutes, and even an abortion.
Shalala, however, labeled most of those alleged benefits as "sensationalized media accounts."
"Despite their efforts over two and a half years, the NCAA enforcement staff could not find evidence of prostitution, expensive cars for players, expensive dinners paid for by boosters, player bounty payments, rampant alcohol and drug use, or the alleged hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and gifts given to student-athletes, as reported in the media," Shalala wrote. "The fabricated story played well -- the facts did not."
Several Miami football and men's basketball players have either served suspensions, paid restitution or both in the past two years after their involvement with Shapiro was discovered. Apparently upset with how people he thought were friends turned their back on him following his conviction for the Ponzi operation, Shapiro vowed that he would take down the program, and his attorney -- a Miami alum -- was willing to help the NCAA's cause.
Documents released Monday by the NCAA showed that Shapiro's attorney, Maria Elena Perez, offered to assist investigators working the Miami case by using subpoena power to depose witnesses under the guise of a bankruptcy case. NCAA enforcement officials accepted her offer, even feeding her questions to ask for at least one of the depositions, and records show they paid at least $19,000 for her work - though she billed them for three times that much.
"Had I realized I was dealing with, what is in my opinion ... such an incompetent regulatory institution, I would have never allowed Mr. Shapiro to have had any type of contact with the NCAA -- period," Perez wrote in a text message to AP.
Shawn Eichorst, the Nebraska athletic director who held the same role at Miami for some of the NCAA probe, declined comment. Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt, who was the AD at Miami for some of the time when Shapiro was a booster, did not respond to a request for comment.
Shalala also said former Miami athletic director Paul Dee, who held the job before Hocutt, also was not interviewed by the NCAA before his death in May 2012. Dee also was a member of the NCAA's committee on infractions, most notably when sanctions -- including a two-year bowl ban, scholarship reductions and vacating victories -- came down against Southern California in 2010, stemming from improper benefits given to then-Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush by sports marketers. Dee chaired the committee at the time, then saying "higher-profile players require higher-profile monitoring."
"The NCAA enforcement staff failed, even after repeated requests, to interview many essential witnesses of great integrity who could have provided firsthand testimony, including, unbelievably, Paul Dee, who has since passed away, but who served as Miami Athletic Director during many of the years that violations were alleged to have occurred," Shalala wrote. "How could a supposedly thorough and fair investigation not even include the Director of Athletics?"
Any allegations that came from those depositions were taken out of the Miami case, the NCAA said on Monday when it unveiled the scope of its alliance with Perez and acknowledged that missteps were made. The NCAA's vice president of enforcement, who oversaw the Miami probe, has been ousted, and some investigators who worked the case are also no longer with the association.
That prompted Miami to lash out strongly at the NCAA on Monday, with Shalala saying "the lengthy and already flawed investigation has demonstrated a disappointing pattern of unprofessional and unethical behavior."
The NCAA declined comment Tuesday about Shalala's remarks, which included a demand that Miami not face any additional sanctions.
Maybe if they dumped their clown princess Donna Sheleleigh. The University started suffering the day she took over as president. I hear there are a couple of used-car salesman jobs available in the Miami area. She should be able to get a job there.
The NCAA's controversial investigation into the University of Miami is finally over. According to an [Associated Press] report, a source close to the investigation indicated that the NCAA provided Miami with its notice of allegations on Tuesday:
The letter was delivered to Miami on Tuesday, said the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because neither the NCAA nor the Hurricanes had authorized any public comment.
UPDATE: Tuesday, Feb. 19, at 10:53 p.m. ET by Tyler Conway
Miami president Donna Shalala has released a statement after being given notice of the NCAA 's allegations. She states that the university "deeply regrets and takes full responsibility " for the violations, but once again makes it clear her school has already been punished enough.
Here is part of the statement, courtesy of the <ins class="diffins"></ins>[Miami Herald]:
Let me be clear again: for any rule violation—substantiated and proven with facts—that the University, its employees, or student -athletes committed, we have been and should be held accountable. We have worked hard to improve our compliance oversight, and we have already self -imposed harsh sanctions.
We deeply regret any violations, but we have suffered enough.
The University and counsel will work diligently to prepare our official response to the Notice of Allegations and submit it to the Committee on Infractions within the required 90 -day time period.
You can read the full statement on the <ins class="diffins"></ins>Miami Herald's <ins class="diffins"></ins>website.
---End of update---
UPDATE: Tuesday, Feb. 19, at 10:25 p.m. ET by Tim Keeney
[Ralph D. Russo of the ][Associated Press] updates us on what exactly is included in the NCAA's allegations:<iframe id="twitter-widget-2" class="twitter-tweet twitter-tweet-rendered" style="border-bottom: #bbb 1px solid; min-width: 220px; border-left: #ddd 1px solid; margin: 7px auto; display: block; max-width: 99%; float: none; border-top: #eee 1px solid; border-right: #ddd 1px solid; borderradius: 10px; boxshadow: 0 1px 3px rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.15);" title="Embedded Tweet" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" width="427" height="211"></iframe>
---End of update---
Though the investigation's conclusion may spark an end to the drama for some, it actually raises more questions than it answers. The situation will now go into the punishment phases in which the NCAA will decide whether Miami deserves more discipline than it has already bestowed upon itself.
Following revelations that former Miami booster Nevin Shapiro [helped create a culture of rampant disregard] for NCAA bylaws over the better part of a decade, Miami acted swiftly to self-impose penalties. The Hurricanes [have self-imposed bowl bans] in each of the past two seasons, eliminated scholarships and suspended players who were involved with Shapiro.
All seemed well and good until reports surfaced documenting the NCAA's own malfeasance in its follow-up investigation. The NCAA [admitted to paying Shapiro's bankruptcy lawyer], Maria Elena Perez, to depose witnesses who were unwilling to cooperate with their investigation into the Miami program.
Because those witnesses were under oath, they had to tell the truth or be faced with a perjury charge. The NCAA does not have subpoena power, nor does it possess any legal recourse against those unwilling to participate in their investigations.
Though NCAA president Mark Emmert has said none of the illegally obtained information will be used in the notice of allegations, his organization's wrongdoing has come under fire. Miami president Donna Shalala released a statement on Monday that stated the school had been "wronged" and that no further action should be taken.
''This process must come to a swift resolution, which includes no additional punitive measures beyond those already self-imposed,'' Shalala wrote, per [Yahoo! Sports] and the Associated Press.
If there is more punitive action taken, Shalala made it very clear Miami would not take it lightly. While Tuesday's notice of allegations may have signaled the end of the NCAA's investigation, the drama surrounding this case is far from over.
Well, to let you in on my "main" reason for posting this article and asking the question. My ol brain has been ticking again. I read all of these articles pertaining to expansion and etc, but afterwards we are "still" lefting standing around wondering is it or is it not going to happen. We get little tid-bits of information thrown at us (i.e. Oliver Luck seemingly excited about the subject), to leaving thoughts that a deal is most likely going to come to add Florida State (based on rumors mostly), etc, etc. I mentioned before that I felt that Notre Dame was the key in another thread and I still believe so and still think we (Big 12) will get the Irish. Now to let you in on what the brain has been tossing around is I "DO NOT" see Florida State joining the Big 12. However, as we know Miami would like nothing better and has let it be known (according to things we have read) that if they were invited they would join. I and others on here have read comments pertaining to this in the past (right now I cant remember where, but would have to search the info back up), which I wont worry about doing right now. But, back to what I am thinking, my throughts are we might see Miami and Louisville joining for the 12 Teams (that would seem to me is what might have gotten Oliver Luck excited) and then we wait to see what Notre Dame does once more pressure is put on by the Big 10 and etc. I then see the Irish joining us and that might loosen Florida State up or we take Clemson to go to 14. But any rate, Im leaning toward Miami and Louisville more so as teams 11 and 12 now than toward Florida State. I know that they did not vote for the 50 mil buy out, but I think they drag their feet on committing where Miami and Louisville would not. That has been my thoughts of late.
Have a great day today and a better one tomorrow everyone, stay healthy.
Lets Goooooo Mountaineers!!!!!