Countdown begins for KU’s response to NCAA allegations of recruiting violations

photo by: Associated Press

In this March 20, 2010, file photo, a ball flicks through the net in front of the NCAA logo on the marquis during an NCAA college basketball practice in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

Story updated at 3:59 p.m. Thursday

The University of Kansas now has until mid-February to respond to the NCAA’s accusations of recruiting violations by its men’s basketball program, along with other alleged infractions.

The university on Thursday said that the NCAA set a deadline of Feb. 19, 2020, or 90 days from Thursday, for KU to respond to an NCAA Notice of Allegations that it received on Sept. 23.

The NCAA had previously suspended its usual 90-day deadlines for schools to respond to charges, the Associated Press reported.

The NOA — the NCAA’s equivalent of an indictment — charged the KU program with lack of institutional control, charged the men’s basketball program with three Level 1 violations and charged basketball coach Bill Self with a “responsibility charge.” Level 1 violations are deemed the most serious and can include penalties such as scholarship reductions and postseason bans.

Additionally, the KU football program was charged with Level 2 violations, which included allowing an extra coach to work during practice under former head coach David Beaty.

The allegations against the KU basketball program center around three former Adidas representatives who have been convicted of federal fraud charges related to a scheme to pay the families of recruits to attend certain schools, including KU.

A key contention by the NCAA is that former Adidas consultant T.J. Gassnola was acting as a booster of KU when he paid $90,000 to the mother of former KU team member Billy Preston and $2,500 to the guardian of current player Silvio De Sousa. Gassnola admitted in federal court to those payments.

William H. Brooks, an Alabama attorney who has represented universities facing NCAA infractions, told the Journal-World in June that it’s not uncommon for a university to receive an extension on the response deadline. When the NCAA suspended its deadlines in September, an NCAA infractions committee official said it was part of an effort to better manage a number of complex cases — including one filed against North Carolina State — following a federal corruption investigation into the sport.

With the new deadline, it appears unlikely that the case will affect KU’s current basketball season.

Brooks previously told the Journal-World that once the NCAA enforcement staff receives KU’s response, it has 60 days to file a reply and a “statement of the case,” which outlines the overall summary of the case. The NCAA Committee on Infractions, which is made up of attorneys and current and former university officials from across the country, will then schedule a hearing date, which gives the university and the enforcement staff a chance to make their cases. The committee will then issue a ruling, which often comes several months later, Brooks said.

When the Committee on Infractions makes its ruling, the university will for the first time see which penalties it is facing. If penalties are sanctioned, the university then has the opportunity to appeal the decision and the penalties. A ruling on an appeal does not have any specific timeline, Brooks said.

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