Oklahoma State receives notice of allegations from NCAA due to FBI probe into recruiting corruption
Former Cowboys assistant Lamont Evans, who was found guilty of federal crimes, charged with unethical conduct by the NCAA
The NCAA on Friday served Oklahoma State's men's basketball program with a notice of allegations that is highlighted by a Level I unethical conduct charge against former Cowboys associate head coach Lamont Evans, a source told CBS Sports. Evans was one of four assistant coaches (and 10 men in total) arrested in 2017 in the federal government's undercover sting operation on bribery and fraud within college basketball recruiting. He was convicted in April and sentenced in June to three months in federal prison.
Oklahoma State's notice of allegations does not charge current Cowboys coach Mike Boynton or any other current member of the coaching staff with any violations, the university announced later Friday afternoon, confirming the CBS Sports report.
The allegations also does not mention or charge former Oklahoma State/current Illinois coach Brad Underwood, who hired Evans at OSU and was the Cowboys' head coach when Evans was caught on surreptitious video and federal wiretap discussing schemes to recruit players to former runner Christian Dawkins' then-nascent sports agency.
Oklahoma State released the notice of allegations in full, almost entirely without redactions, on Friday afternoon.
The NCAA accuses Evans of unethical conduct, claiming he effectively used and/or sought to use his position to take advantage of student-athletes and sway them toward earnings or partnerships after they left college. Evans' actions caused one Oklahoma State player, revealed in federal court as Jeffrey Carroll, to miss three games at the start of the 2017-18 season. Evans is also accused by the NCAA of accepting at least $18,150 and as much as $46,000 (only some of which was via undercover FBI agents) in an attempt to eventually steer players to sign with Dawkins' company -- which, unknowingly to Dawkins at the time, was funded almost entirely by the FBI.
"We have been open and transparent with our team, our recruits and the NCAA," Boynton said in a statement. "We're disappointed this occurred but are pleased that a thorough investigation has determined the most serious violation was reported in the news more than two years ago. We look forward to presenting our case on the level of violation to the NCAA."
The NCAA does not allege any recruiting violations against Boynton or Oklahoma State. The timeline under scrutiny dates from April 2016 through September 2017, when Evans was arrested. Oklahoma State officially terminated Evans' employment with the school in September of 2017.
Oklahoma State will contest the Level I designation but is not in dispute of the facts of the case. The school is aiming for a hearing with the NCAA within the next four months -- before the end of the season. If the Level I violation holds, Oklahoma State stands to potentially lose a scholarship or two, face a fine, be docked recruiting days and could face probation.
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