Tennessee basketball coach Bruce Pearl’s admission that he made “mistakes” during an investigation into his program include Pearl providing “incorrect and misleading information” to the NCAA about illegally hosting recruits at his home during the fall of 2008, CBSsports.com reported Tuesday night.
Writer Gary Parrish’s sources told him that current Kansas University freshman Josh Selby and current Ohio State freshman Aaron Craft visited Pearl’s home during unofficial recruiting visits.
High school juniors are not allowed to have dealings with college coaches away from campus on unofficial visits.
Parrish reports that Pearl denied that Craft and Selby had been to his home when he was asked about it by the NCAA’s assistant director of enforcement. Sources told Parrish that the NCAA already had a copy of a picture of Pearl and Craft that had been snapped inside the coach’s home during the visit.
Craft is at the center of the NCAA’s investigation into UT basketball, CBSsports.com reports. The point guard from Ohio committed to Tennessee in September 2008, i.e., at the beginning of his junior year. Selby also committed to Tennessee his junior year of high school, but reopened his recruitment, ultimately choosing KU last April.
Tennessee announced Friday that Pearl will lose $1.5 million in salary over the next five years and be banned from off-campus recruiting from Sept. 24, 2010, to Sept. 23, 2011, as part of self-imposed penalties. Still, the NCAA has yet to file a notice of allegations against UT. So it's unclear if Pearl or his staff will receive further punishment at a later date.
Selby and Craft would not be facing any NCAA punishment at their new schools for attending a function at Pearl’s house. The coach and UT program, however, could face discipline by the NCAA.