The University of Alabama reported 31 secondary violations in various sports in a report released annually to the NCAA. The violation include one that has captured the attention of the sports world, involving a staff member who was involved in scandal while at Miami University.
The violation, which does not name the staff member, matches the events involving Miami Director of Football Operations Joe Pannunzio, who was named in the 2011 report that accused Miami of numerous NCAA violations. The report reads that the staff member:
provided impermissible benefits to a prospect and his family and introduced prospect to a booster while at another institution.
The report also noted the self-imposed penalties for the staffer:
Salary frozen and contract not extended for one year, required to attend an NCAA regional rules seminar, prohibited from any permissible recruiting communications for 90 days.
Several of the violations involve the use of social media or text messaging, an area in which coaching staff and student-athletes alike are having to learn the nuances and gray areas.
One violation involved several basketball players congratulating a friend via Twitter when he committed verbally to Alabama. The violation occurred because the player had not yet signed a scholarship agreement.
While the football violations – of which Alabama reported seven – will naturally garner all the media attention, perhaps the strangest one occurred with the Crimson Tide women’s rowing team:
A women’s rowing coach returned a phone call to a woman who left 2 prior messages merely identifying herself by her first name and repeatedly asking the coach to return the call. The woman turned out to be a 2014 prospect’s mother who intentionally left vague messages for fear the coach would not return them if the coach knew the caller was the mother of a recruit who was not old enough for the coach to permissibly call.