Presidents Endorse New NCAA Enforcement Model

August 3, 2012

As expected, the college presidents who manage Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association on Thursday put off a vote on its proposed new enforcement model. But it did “endorse” the recommendations of the working group that produced them, and suggested that the changes will indeed take effect Aug. 1, 2013. “Our intention is to make this real in October,” at the next meeting of the Division I Board of Directors, Ed Ray, president of Oregon State University and chair of the working group, said in a statement.

The recommendations would give enforcement officials and the Committee on Infractions more flexibility in how they handle NCAA violations. They include:

  • Switching from a two-tiered to a four-tiered violation structure. The most egregious violations, including those that “seriously undermine or threaten the integrity of the NCAA enduring values” of athlete success, the collegiate model, amateurism and competitive equity, would be classified as Level I violations: Severe breach of conduct. The least serious violations -- minor infractions that are “inadvertent and isolated, technical in nature and result in a negligible, if any, competitive advantage,” will be considered Level IV: Incidental Issue.
  • Increasing the size of the Committee on Infractions from 10 to 24 to allow for more regular hearings and faster resolution of cases.
  • Expanding the make-up of the panel to include university presidents and other administrators, athletic department officials, former coaches, conference officials, faculty members and citizens with a legal background.
  • Creating new penalty guidelines regarding the NCAA’s code of conduct. These would give the committee “some discretion, although limited, in prescribing penalties while also assuring stronger and consistently applied penalties."
  • Creating a means for the committee to hold accountable and punish coaches, who “set the tone and culture for compliance within the program.”

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