College sports come under strict scrutiny

Monday, March 1, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 7:03 a.m. CDT, Saturday, July 12, 2008

From Florida to Colorado, college sports in the last year have endured a wave of scandals, including allegations of rape, drug abuse and violence.

The scandals are prompting the NCAA to form a task force to develop stricter rules. The association’s president, Myles Brand, announced last month that the new task force will look for ways to prevent recruiting scandals.

Here’s a recap of NCAA reported infractions that grabbed headlines during the last 14 months:

  • The NCAA’s investigation into the St. Bonaventure University’s men’s basketball team lasted nearly nine months, according to the NCAA’s Feb. 19 report. The team was placed on three years’ probation and banned from postseason play. The school also imposed its own penalties, including cutting scholarships and recruiting visits.

  • The entire University of Arkansas athletics program was put on three years’ probation after the NCAA found that a booster overpaid players for work done at his trucking company. It took about 16 months from the start of the investigation to the day the NCAA released its final report in April 2003.

  • In September 2003, Fresno State University was placed on four years of probation for violations of academic fraud after an academic adviser did homework for two basketball players and a prospective student. The NCAA’s investigation began in December 1999.

  • In May 2003, the NCAA banned the University of Michigan’s basketball team from post-season play after a joint investigation with the university beginning in March 1996 revealed that a now-deceased booster paid four players more than $600,000.

  • In July 2003, the NCAA gave the University of Utah’s athletic program three years’ probation for giving its men’s basketball players extra money for meals and for academic fraud on its football team. The school’s own investigation began in July 2001. The NCAA’s probe began the following month.

  • In July 2003, an 11-month investigation ended with two years’ probation for the University of Washington’s men’s basketball team after the NCAA found that an assistant coach made improper telephone calls to recruits.

  • In June 2003 the NCAA accepted at least 40 self-imposed violations from Rutgers University after an April 2002 internal review resulted in two years of probation. NCAA infractions included a reduction in scholarships on the school’s basketball, lacrosse, soccer and baseball teams.

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