Baylor Basketball Commits “Major Violations” of NCAA Rules
A recruiting scandal dating back to Brittney Griner's courtship takes the air out of the glorious seasons posted by the women's and men's teams.
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Go ahead and put an asterisk by the Lady Bears’ unprecedented 40-0 national title run.
A week ago today, Associated Press Coach of the Year Kim Mulkey and Naismith Award-winning player Brittney Griner were snipping down the nets and talking about doing it again next season. Now they are talking about the “major violations” of NCAA rules Jason King of ESPN reported they have committed–in particular, an impermissible amount of phone calls and texts to high school recruits going back to the initial wooing of Griner in 2007–that have dulled the neon yellow uniforms they wore to victory.
While you’re at it, put an asterisk by the men’s team’s 30-win season, too. Maybe even a double-asterisk.
That’s because coach Scott Drew is responsible for the majority of the infractions committed by both programs, through his “failure to monitor” the activities of his assistant coaches, one of whom, former coach Mark Morefield, tried to falsify the context of his texts to recruits. Thayer Evans of Fox Sports reckons it’s about time someone caught on to Drew’s wolf-in-sheep’s-clothing act.
“Instead of being a basketball coach, he should have been a televangelist,” Evans wrote. “Because with his holier-than-thou shtick about his Christian faith, he fooled the masses for years into believing that he did not violate NCAA rules.”
Evans goes on to say Drew badmouths other coaches, Drew committed a past infraction in trying to lure NBA point guard John Wall to Baylor instead of Kentucky, and Drew’s current infractions occurred when his program was still on probation for NCAA violations stemming from the murder of former player Patrick Dennehy.
Despite ESPN‘s claim that Drew has the support of athletic director Ian McCaw and university president Kenneth Starr, the heat on him has Glenn Guilbeau speculating in the Shreveport Times that Drew could move on to LSU.
For its part, Baylor is copping to its rule-breaking. The university has already imposed its own penalties, including the loss of some scholarships and less time on the recruitment trail for Mulkey and Drew. Additional penalties from the NCAA could dictate whether Griner enters the draft, like her men’s counterpart, Perry Jones III. But Pete Thamel of the New York Times doesn’t seem to think Baylor should worry too much:
The NCAA expects to release the formal Baylor punishment sometime this week. Don’t expect any significant additional penalties.
— Pete Thamel(@PeteThamelNYT) April 9, 2012