In April 2004, Auburn University’s Men’s Basketball program was placed on a two-year probation and hit with scholarship reductions, after the NCAA Committee on Infractions found that two basketball players—Chadd Moore and Jackie Butler—had received improper benefits from a representative of the school, including cash and a car.
Though the program was cleared of the most serious charges, the program was nonetheless placed on probation and, according to the NCAA’ public report:
As required by NCAA legislation for any institution involved in a major infractions case, Auburn University is subject to the provisions of NCAA Bylaw 18.104.22.168, concerning repeat violators for a five-year period beginning on the effective date of the penalties in this case, April 27, 2004.
If the Committee on Infractions determines that a major violation has occurred within five years of the starting date of this window, the institution guilty of such conduct “shall be deemed a repeat violator and may be subject to increased penalties.”
Troy Reddick played at Auburn from 2002 through 2004. Stanley McClover played there from 2003 through 2005. Chaz Ramsey played in 2007 and 2008, with his career ended by a severe back injury. Raven Gray entered the program in 2008 but never saw playing time.
If any of these former players received improper benefits as defined by NCAA bylaws after the April 27, 2004 date cited above, then they would have done so during the period that the NCAA defines as the “repeat violator window,” and any sanctions the league imposes could be increased as a result.
While the statute of limitations has run on the McClover and Riddick allegations, the normal four year statute window includes the allegations made by Ramsey and Gray. However, here is the NCAA rule on the much-talked about statue of limitations:
32.6.3 statute of Limitations. Allegations included in a notice of allegations shall be limited to possible violations occurring not earlier than four years before the date the notice of inquiry is forwarded to the institution or the date the institution notifies (or, if earlier, should have notified) the enforcement staff of its inquiries into the matter. However, the following shall not be subject to the four-year limitation: (Revised: 10/12/94, 4/24/03)
(a) Allegations involving violations affecting the eligibility of a current student-athlete;
(b) Allegations in a case in which information is developed to indicate a pattern of willful violations on the part of the institution or individual involved, which began before but continued into the four-year period; and
(c) Allegations that indicate a blatant disregard for the Association’s fundamental recruiting, extra-benefit, academic or ethical-conduct regulations or that involve an effort to conceal the occurrence of the violation. In such cases, the enforcement staff shall have a one-year period after the date information concerning the matter becomes available to the NCAA to investigate and submit to the institution a notice of allegations concerning the matter.
As noted in this blog post, the academic improprieties alleged by Troy Reddick also occurred during a time in which AU was on academic probation by SACS, and which the school either “knew or should have known” about and should have provided during the NCAA’s investigation into the Sociology Dept Scandal in 2006.
Exit Question: Bringing back the Death Penalty?