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NCAA Ruling for Baylor Bears: No Bowl Ban, No Scholarship Cuts; Probation and Vacating 2011 Wins; Big 12 Titles Remain for 2013 and 2014

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Baylor comes out without significant penalties

NCAA Football: Abilene Christian at Baylor Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The NCAA released its findings today and Baylor will not face any major penalty or vacate its conference titles. The findings are from 2011-2016.

The NCAA levied:

  • Four years of probation.
  • A $5,000 fine.
  • A reduction to 30 football official visits during the 2021-22 academic year.
  • A three-week ban on unofficial visits in football during the 2021-22 academic year.
  • A two-week ban on football recruiting communication during the 2021-22 academic year.
  • A reduction of football evaluation days by three during fall 2021 and by 10 during spring 2022.
  • A five-year show-cause order for the former assistant director of football operations. During that period, any NCAA member school employing him must restrict him from any athletically related duties unless it shows cause why the restrictions should not apply.
  • A vacation of all records in which student-athletes competed while ineligible. The university must provide a written report containing the contests impacted to the NCAA media coordination and statistics staff within 14 days of the public release of the decision.

The vacating of wins isn’t clear yet. That’s based on:

The panel found one NCAA violation occurred within the student conduct process. A student-athlete was suspended due to a plagiarism concern. He submitted an appeal to the president, who overturned the student-athlete’s suspension but required as a condition of relief that the student-athlete be subjected to an academic performance plan requiring 100% academic honesty.

A couple of months later, an academic advisor notified football and academic staff members that the student-athlete had cheated on an in-class quiz. However, the incident was not reported to the president as a failure to meet the terms of the student-athlete’s reinstatement. As a result, the panel found that Baylor committed a Level II violation when the student-athlete was provided with an impermissible benefit. Due to the nonreporting of this incident, the student-athlete was able to remain enrolled and went on to compete in seven contests while ineligible.

The NCAA ruled Baylor was not guilty of lack of institutional control. They also did not levy that finding against Art Briles. The panel agreed that Baylor did not have a Title IX Office and the problems were campus wide. As they noted:

However, the panel could not conclude violations occurred in three of those instances, because the record shows that the general student body received the same treatment. As a result, the panel also could not find that the former football head coach failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance or that Baylor lacked intuitional control, largely because those allegations were specifically tied to the underlying allegations that ultimately did not result in violations.

So the NCAA found violations for the student athlete and for the Baylor Bruins program. Although the program was open to men, the NCAA found it was an impermissible recruiting strategy.

The student athlete played in 2011. That means the Big 12 titles in 2013 and 2014 remain. Baylor’s statement on that, “A vacation of all records in which student-athletes competed while ineligible in the 2011 season. The University must provide a written report containing the contests impacted to the NCAA media coordination and statistics staff within 14 days of the public release of the decision.”

We’ll have more as we have time way later in the day to read through the 50 page document.