The National Collegiate Athletic Association has upheld a vacation of records penalty against Florida State University for an “academic fraud” scandal involving 61 athletes in 10 sports. Chief among those affected by the penalty, Bobby Bowden, former head football coach, must vacate up to 14 wins from 2004 through 2007 in which players who received help cheating on some of their exams participated. The penalty, which was appealed by Florida State when the rules violations were announced last March, has irked many Seminole fans because it essentially will prevent Bowden from becoming the all-time winningest coach in college football. (Bowden retired after Florida State’s bowl game this season as the second-winningest coach with 389 wins; Joe Paterno, coach at Pennsylvania State University, is still active and has 394 wins.) In addition to the records vacations in 10 sports, the NCAA also upheld its penalty against Brenda Monk, the former learning specialist at Florida State who “knowingly arranged for fraudulent academic credit for numerous student-athletes and provided improper academic assistance.” Monk retains a “show-cause penalty,” meaning that any institution that hires her by 2013 must explain “why it should not be penalized if it does not restrict [her] from having any contact with student-athletes.” Randy Spetman, Florida State athletic director, told the Associated Press that the institution was upset with the NCAA’s decision. Spetman said, "We believed that our administration did everything it possibly could to ferret out any and all improprieties in this matter."
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