top of page

The NCAA Committee on Infractions Has Spoken: Brigham Young University

The NCAA Committee on Infractions (“Committee” or “Panel”) recently issued its findings and found that Brigham Young University (“BYU” or “Institution”) committed violations of NCAA legislation. This case involved boosters providing a BYU men's basketball student-athlete with extra benefits over a two-year period. The benefits ranged from free rounds of golf to international vacations. One of the student-athlete's family members also enjoyed some of those benefits. COI considered this case through the cooperative summary disposition process in which all parties agreed to the primary facts and violations, as fully set forth in the summary disposition report (“SDR”). The Panel accepted the self-imposed penalties for BYU, but proposed additional penalties. BYU contested the Panel's proposed vacation of records at an expedited penalty hearing. After the expedited hearing, the Panel maintained the penalty, because the vacation of records addresses the advantage gained by BYU when it permitted a student-athlete to participate while ineligible over the course of two (2) basketball seasons. BYU has the opportunity to appeal only the vacation of records penalty.


The Committee concluded that BYU committed the following violations:


Violations of NCAA Division I Manual Bylaws 12.11.1 and 16.8.1 (2015-16 and 2016-17); 16.11.2.1 (2015-16 through 2017-18); 16.11.2.2-(c) (2016-17 and 2017-18); and 16.11.2.2-(d) (2016-17) (Level II)


The Institution and NCAA enforcement staff agreed that from approximately August 2015 to August 2017, four representatives of the institution's athletics interests provided impermissible benefits in the form of all-expense paid trips, use of an automobile, automobile insurance, golf fees, meals, cash and hotel lodging to the student-athlete. The approximate value of the impermissible extra benefits was at least $12,222. As a result of the impermissible benefits, the student-athlete competed in at most 70 contests and received actual and necessary expenses while ineligible.


From April 26 to August 21, 2017, Booster 1, a representative of the Institution's athletics interests, provided the student-athlete all-expense paid trips, use of an automobile and automobile insurance totaling at least $10,262 as set forth below:


(1) In April and May 2017, Booster 1 paid expenses for the student-athlete and his then-wife to travel to New York and Frankfurt and Munich, Germany. The expenses included airfare, hotel lodging, cash, car rental, transportation to and from Salt Lake City airport, Broadway theatre tickets and use of a corporate credit card to pay for miscellaneous expenses. The total value of impermissible benefits was approximately $7,156. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaws 16.11.2.1 and 16.11.2.2-(d) (2016-17).


(2) In May and June 2017, Booster 1 paid expenses for the student-athlete to travel to Los Angeles; Austin, Texas; and Toronto, Canada. The expenses included airfare, hotel lodging, concert tickets, amusement park tickets and transportation to and from airports. The total value of the impermissible benefits was at least $1,154. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaws 16.11.2.1 and 16.11.2.2-(d) (2016-17).


(3) From May 22 through August 21, 2017, Booster 1 provided the student-athlete with the use of a new 2017 Volkswagen Jetta and paid for the automobile insurance. The total value of the impermissible benefits was approximately $1,952. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaws 16.11.2.1 and 16.11.2.2-(c) (2016-17 and 2017-18).


Between approximately August 2015 and May 2017, Booster 2, a representative of the Institution's athletics interests, provided the student-athlete golf fees, a meal and cash totaling at least $440 as set forth below.


(1) On at least three occasions between August 2015 and August 2017, Booster 2 invited the student-athlete to play golf with him at a local country club in Provo, Utah. Booster 2 paid for the student-athlete's golf fees and a meal using his country club account. The total value of the impermissible benefits was at least $240. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaw 16.11.2.1 (2015-16 and 2016-17).


(2) On one occasion around October 2016, Booster 2 left $200 cash in the student athlete's locker while he was at a men's basketball practice. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaw 16.11.2.1 (2016-17).


In December 2016, Booster 3, a representative of the Institution's athletics interests, arranged for the student-athlete and his then-wife to stay two nights (December 23 through 25, 2016) at a lodge in Park City, Utah. Neither the student-athlete nor his then-wife paid for the lodging valued at $360 per night. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaw 16.11.2.1 (2016-17).


On at least 10 occasions between approximately August 2015 and August 2017, Booster 4, a representative of the Institution's athletics interests, invited the student-athlete to golf with him at a local country club in Provo, Utah. Booster 4 paid for the student-athlete's golf fees and meals using his country club account. The total value of the impermissible benefits was at least $800. NCAA Division I Manual Bylaw 16.11.2.1 (2015-16 through 2017-18).


Aggravating and Mitigating Factors in accordance with NCAA Bylaws 19.9.3 and 19.9.4


Aggravating Factors for the Institution


(a) A history of major violations at the institution. NCAA Bylaw 19.9.3-(b).


(b) One or more violations caused significant ineligibility to student-athlete. NCAA Bylaw 19.9.3-(i).


Mitigating Factors for the Institution


(a) Prompt acknowledgement, acceptance of responsibility and imposition of meaningful corrective measures and/or penalties. NCAA Bylaw 19.9.4-(b).


(b) Affirmative steps to expedite final resolution of the matter. NCAA Bylaw 19.9.4-(c).


(c) An established history of self-reporting Level III or secondary violations. NCAA Bylaw 19.9.4-(d).


As a result of the foregoing, the Committee penalized BYU as follows:


1. Public reprimand and censure.


2. Probation: Two years of probation from November 9, 2018, through November 8, 2020.


3. Financial penalty: The Institution shall pay a fine of $5,000.00 to the NCAA.


4. Scholarship reductions: The men's basketball program shall reduce by one the total number of permissible grants-in-aid. (Self-imposed.) This reduction shall be served during the earliest possible academic year. If BYU has already executed the maximum number of grant-in-aid agreements to prospective student-athletes for the 2018-19 academic year that would prevent BYU from complying with this penalty, BYU may serve the penalty during the 2019-20 academic year.


5. Recruiting restrictions: (a) BYU's men's basketball program shall be limited to a total of 14 official visits over the 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20 academic years. Further, the men's basketball program shall not be permitted to exceed more than seven official visits in any given year; (b) BYU's men's basketball program prohibited unofficial visits for a three-week period during the 2017-18 academic year. (Self-imposed.) Additionally, the men's basketball program shall be prohibited from any unofficial visits during a two-week period between September 1, 2018, and November 30, 2018; (c) BYU's men's basketball program prohibited recruiting communications for a two-week period during the 2017-18 academic year. Additionally, the men's basketball program shall be prohibited from all recruiting communication for a two-week period during the 2018-19 academic year; and (d) BYU's men's basketball program reduced the number of recruiting person days by 10 days in the 2017-18 academic year and shall reduce the number of recruiting person days by 10 in the 2018-19 academic year.


6. BYU disassociated Booster 1. As part of the disassociation, BYU will not: (a) Accept any assistance that will aid in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes or the support of enrolled student-athletes; (b) Accept financial contributions for BYU's athletics program; (c) Permit prospective or enrolled student-athletes to interact with the booster during any BYU or athletic department sponsored events or activities; (d) Provide the booster with, or permit to be provided to the booster any athletics benefit or privilege that is not normally available to the general public, including complimentary tickets from student-athletes or staff members, access to student-athletes and/or coaches, etc.; and (e) Additionally, BYU will prohibit all athletics department staff members from communicating with the booster regarding any athletics matter.


7. Vacation of Records: BYU acknowledged that the student-athlete participated in the 2015-16 and 2016-17 men's basketball seasons while ineligible. Therefore, pursuant to NCAA Bylaws 19.9.7-(g) and 31.2.2.3, BYU shall vacate all regular season and conference tournament records and participation in which the ineligible student-athlete detailed above competed from the time he became ineligible through the time he was reinstated as eligible for competition.

Featured Posts
Check back soon
Once posts are published, you’ll see them here.
Recent Posts
Archive
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page