UT releases self-reported minor NCAA rules violations

2 by football are related to recruiting

Neyland Stadium sits empty three hours before kickoff of the game between the Tennessee Volunteers and the Florida Gators Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Adam Brimer

Neyland Stadium sits empty three hours before kickoff of the game between the Tennessee Volunteers and the Florida Gators Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

Two minor football recruiting violations were among seven secondary NCAA rules violations reported by Tennessee to the SEC offices in the past six months.

The documents were released to the News Sentinel on Tuesday in response to a request made under Tennessee’s open-records law.

Universities routinely self-report secondary violations to their conference offices and the NCAA. In most cases, the SEC and NCAA accept the university’s self-imposed punishments and take no further action. The News Sentinel periodically requests documents related to NCAA violations, and UT also posts summaries of the violations on its website.

Related: Documents from the University of Tennessee reporting secondary violations from March 2013 through May 2, 2013

Days before National Signing Day in February, Tennessee football staff members hosting recruits at Calhoun’s on the River committed a secondary violation by making contact with an unnamed prospect, who had unexpectedly accompanied another recruit to the restaurant. Schools are limited to six off-campus contacts with a prospect; the restaurant bump was the seventh.

Coaches went through additional rules education, but UT said the mistake was inadvertent and no recruiting advantage was gained.

In March, a junior college prospect visited campus on an unofficial visit. Later, UT discovered that the prospect had not yet completed one full year at his school, meaning he was not allowed to participate in on-campus recruiting.

Tennessee said a mitigating factor was that the unnamed prospect visited several other schools, who were also apparently unaware of his status.

Two violations included associate swimming coach Tyler Fenwick, who impermissibly texted recruits he had coached at his previous job at a private club in California. UT wrote that Fenwick incorrectly believed that he could continue to communicate with the prospects and their families because he had a close prior relationship from his time as a club coach. Fenwick was barred from telephone contact with recruits for 14 days and UT was barred from contacting the recruits in question for 30 days.

Fenwick also was issued a letter of admonishment after UT’s compliance office reviewed a question-and-answer column he wrote for Swimming World magazine and determined that one of the questions came from a prospective student-athlete.

Some of the violations released in the reports can seem absurdly minor.

When women’s basketball director of operations Michael Beaumont handed out cash for meals during a trip to Arkansas, he used the per diem rate for Knoxville, not Fayetteville. That meant each player received $3 more than permissible for their lunch.

The solution? “Student-athletes donated ($3) to a charity of their choice,” the university wrote.

Men’s tennis coach Sam Winterbotham inadvertently paid for a breakfast that had been charged to the room of a visiting student-athlete. The $12.28 in question was paid to a charity.

Photos from a UT volleyball camp that included several prospects were posted on the team’s Facebook page last summer. UT said the photos constituted a violation.

Evan Woodbery covers Tennessee athletics. Follow him at www.Twitter.com/TennesseeBeat.

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Comments » 48

thevoice writes:

All I got from this was, "Some of the violations released in the reports can seem absurdly minor."

roobomb writes:

Nothing to see here, folks. Move along.

keepitreal4vols writes:

Once upon a time, the NCAA had a purpose.

claiborneh writes:

I'd like to donate $3 to the lack of common "cents" fund.

Henley-Street-Bridge writes:

Horse Feathers. What about Alabama's violation of invading Athens Tennessee for a fund raiser?? Holy (Mayfield) Cow!!

dvols writes:

Ha, the NCAA has no TV network, will not be around in 5 years....

dvhill100 writes:

NCAA = Death by directive

vol98champ writes:

I believe this nonsense should never see the light of day. It only serves to show how ridiculous the NCAA rules have become. Lean backward.

volfan2002 writes:

Are NCAA rules a little weird yes they are.

SummittsCourt writes:

The NCAA is such a joke and these "violations" are proof.

xanga writes:

not as bad as the girl who washed her car with college water. ncaa is idiotic. theres no way one can learn all of the petty * rules they make up

MetroplexMojo writes:

In the NCAA Universe....

Going $3 over per diem = violation

Failing multiple drug tests, questioned in 2 shootings, busting out an eardrum and underage drinking = No Violation

CrankE writes:

I'm actually glad to see stuff like this.

Seriously.

Self-reporting is what UT used to do often. Someone correct me if I'm wrong here, but if you self-report, then the NCAA can't include it later when they begin a witch hunt investigation on your campus.

If UT is self-reporting down to the minutae, then perhaps they're getting everything else right.

CrankE writes:

in response to MetroplexMojo:

In the NCAA Universe....

Going $3 over per diem = violation

Failing multiple drug tests, questioned in 2 shootings, busting out an eardrum and underage drinking = No Violation

Similar to the old tree falling in the forest question:

If no one presses charges then there must be nothing to see. Right? ;)

southernbelle79 writes:

in response to CrankE:

I'm actually glad to see stuff like this.

Seriously.

Self-reporting is what UT used to do often. Someone correct me if I'm wrong here, but if you self-report, then the NCAA can't include it later when they begin a witch hunt investigation on your campus.

If UT is self-reporting down to the minutae, then perhaps they're getting everything else right.

I agree. I have friends on faculty at UT and the rules they have to follow are equally rigid. They can't go over the per diem rates of the cities they travel to by even a penny, why should students, athletes or otherwise, be allowed to bend the rules?

I have two extended family members who played NCAA sports. As high schoolers, their lives were innundated with college coaches contacting them legally. And they weren't even major sports. I can't imagine what it would be like for hot football prospects if the rules limiting contact weren't in place.

Sir_Spanky writes:

Reading this silliness begs the question; are these clowns over at the NCAA finished with their Auburn investigation?

FanNotSheep writes:

That's the problem with the NCAA. If some rules are so nit-picky they're impossible not to break, how can anyone have respect for the major rules? You had the 10 commandments -- not the 10,000 suggestions -- for a reason.

I will forever believe the NCAA does this for a very good reason: They can go after any program they choose, knowing they can dig up or make up something on anyone at anytime.

I will be happy when the day arrives where 64 major college football programs form a new league, consisting of four 16-team superconferences, their own 10 commandments, a built-in 8-team playoff of division champs, and let the NCAA manage the unfortunate schools that don't make the cut.

notorange writes:

3 dollars is half a gallon of gas....big whoop!!

RollTideJoe writes:

in response to Henley-Street-Bridge:

Horse Feathers. What about Alabama's violation of invading Athens Tennessee for a fund raiser?? Holy (Mayfield) Cow!!

Wow, horse feathers alright. Check who the fundraiser was for!

BigBadVol writes:

in response to Sir_Spanky:

Reading this silliness begs the question; are these clowns over at the NCAA finished with their Auburn investigation?

Good point!

snowpeapod#263184 writes:

I'm sure if you asked one of our competitors they would have one of two responses, "Hang em" or "Give them the death penalty"

Vol43 writes:

in response to RollTideJoe:

Wow, horse feathers alright. Check who the fundraiser was for!

There's rolltidejoe right on queue. Joe wears orange pajamas. I have a photo.

drwut70 writes:

FNS -- you hit the nail on the head.

"I will be happy when the day arrives where 64 major college football programs form a new league, consisting of four 16-team superconferences, their own 10 commandments, a built-in 8-team playoff of division champs, and let the NCAA manage the unfortunate schools that don't make the cut."

Those 64 ADs need to form a super committee and define what the league would look like and get the 64 head coaches to buy in and sign off. Don't you know the major sports media would go crazy in support as well as major contributors to the schools -- would probably fund the effort. It needs to start now, not 5 years from now.

antonio14313 writes:

minor. yup, nothing to see here...

go vols.

t

voloffaith writes:

in response to Vol43:

There's rolltidejoe right on queue. Joe wears orange pajamas. I have a photo.

You know your admitting having a picture of such is going to raise a few questions about how you secured the picture in question...................On topic, the violations are so miniscule that it is almost laughable.....then we are talking about the nC2a.

LiveFaith writes:

in response to xanga:

not as bad as the girl who washed her car with college water. ncaa is idiotic. theres no way one can learn all of the petty * rules they make up

I've heard it said that a citizen of the USA would have to spend more than one entire lifetime without sleep to actually READ (no memorize) all the laws that they live under. Yet, we continue to elect people to go legislate even more.
The NCAA may appear petty, but nobody seems to offer a more realistic solution to the widespread chaos that would ensue without them.

FanNotSheep writes:

in response to drwut70:

FNS -- you hit the nail on the head.

"I will be happy when the day arrives where 64 major college football programs form a new league, consisting of four 16-team superconferences, their own 10 commandments, a built-in 8-team playoff of division champs, and let the NCAA manage the unfortunate schools that don't make the cut."

Those 64 ADs need to form a super committee and define what the league would look like and get the 64 head coaches to buy in and sign off. Don't you know the major sports media would go crazy in support as well as major contributors to the schools -- would probably fund the effort. It needs to start now, not 5 years from now.

I'm ready.

Apparently the NCAA thinks it's the IRS. Rules that even lawyers can't understand and lots and lots of axes to grind.

FanNotSheep writes:

in response to LiveFaith:

I've heard it said that a citizen of the USA would have to spend more than one entire lifetime without sleep to actually READ (no memorize) all the laws that they live under. Yet, we continue to elect people to go legislate even more.
The NCAA may appear petty, but nobody seems to offer a more realistic solution to the widespread chaos that would ensue without them.

I'm not suggesting that college athletics doesn't need rules. But limit them to no more than 25. Obviously it is wrong to pay high school players (Alabama). Obviously it is wrong to falsify academic test scores (Calipari).

But instead of hazy rules about accidentally bumping into one recruit when you visit another one, or a rule that says it's OK for a high school senior to be somewhere but not a junior, just limit the overall contacts per player per year. Better get your sales pitch across in, say, six contacts -- whether by phone, text or whatever, plus one in-home visit by coaches and one on-campus visit by player and family -- and let the kid have a life.

kevininaugustageorgia writes:

in response to FanNotSheep:

I'm not suggesting that college athletics doesn't need rules. But limit them to no more than 25. Obviously it is wrong to pay high school players (Alabama). Obviously it is wrong to falsify academic test scores (Calipari).

But instead of hazy rules about accidentally bumping into one recruit when you visit another one, or a rule that says it's OK for a high school senior to be somewhere but not a junior, just limit the overall contacts per player per year. Better get your sales pitch across in, say, six contacts -- whether by phone, text or whatever, plus one in-home visit by coaches and one on-campus visit by player and family -- and let the kid have a life.

The reason there are so many rules is people continually find ways to skirt around them as they are written.

So, a new rule is written to avoid that again, and on and on and on.

If you are looking for a better way, you wont find it for one simple reason:

Though it has been proven a million times you can't legislate morality, our society continually tries to do so.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to Vol43:

There's rolltidejoe right on queue. Joe wears orange pajamas. I have a photo.

Yep, with the button fly open..

Vol43 writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

Yep, with the button fly open..

He he, he's our boy!

FanNotSheep writes:

in response to kevininaugustageorgia:

The reason there are so many rules is people continually find ways to skirt around them as they are written.

So, a new rule is written to avoid that again, and on and on and on.

If you are looking for a better way, you wont find it for one simple reason:

Though it has been proven a million times you can't legislate morality, our society continually tries to do so.

You are right that competition breeds deception. The rules can be written in broad and simple language however. No one can possibly defend the ridiculous lengths the NCAA goes to define what is and isn't acceptable. It is not necessary to cover every possible situation if you make it clear that trying to gain a competitive advantage will be governed simply by what is right and what is wrong.

volinlouisvilleky writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

Yep, with the button fly open..

Showing his Big Orange panties!

SevenT writes:

Tennessee continues their long standing tradition of cheating at every opportunity. And the Athletic Department refuses to clean up the mess.

Pathetic

VOLfromVA writes:

in response to southernbelle79:

I agree. I have friends on faculty at UT and the rules they have to follow are equally rigid. They can't go over the per diem rates of the cities they travel to by even a penny, why should students, athletes or otherwise, be allowed to bend the rules?

I have two extended family members who played NCAA sports. As high schoolers, their lives were innundated with college coaches contacting them legally. And they weren't even major sports. I can't imagine what it would be like for hot football prospects if the rules limiting contact weren't in place.

I agree with southernbelle79. As a faculty member at an ACC school, I can tell you the per diem issue is a standard part of university life - athlete or not. Also agree with CrankE - report the minutiae. It keeps your head in the game with regard to bigger problems. If you are aware enough to worry about the little things, the larger things are harder to miss.

Colliervol writes:

The NCAA is a toothless joke now and everybody knows it. I agree with an earlier poster. Probably won't be around in 5 years in its current form.

Colliervol writes:

in response to SevenT:

Tennessee continues their long standing tradition of cheating at every opportunity. And the Athletic Department refuses to clean up the mess.

Pathetic

Worldwide Wes ring any bells for you? It should

SevenT writes:

in response to Colliervol:

Worldwide Wes ring any bells for you? It should

Don't believe all the junk you think you heard about the business relationship between Wes and Cal.

texasvolunteer1973 writes:

You have got to be kidding about $3.00!?!! Good grief the NCAA is a flat out JOKE!

drwut70 writes:

in response to Colliervol:

Worldwide Wes ring any bells for you? It should

Boom! Pot and Kettle.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to texasvolunteer1973:

You have got to be kidding about $3.00!?!! Good grief the NCAA is a flat out JOKE!

That's really just proof that UT's compliance officers are that darn thorough to find even the smallest of infractions and report them so the NCAA has no reason to investigate the program. Once these minor infractions hit the desk of NCAA investigators that will be the end of it. Standard protocol and a job well done by UT admin.

OwensboroVol writes:

Bruce Pearl would have gotten fired and received 3 years of show cause for any of these violations. The major infraction he got the 3 year show cause penalty for isn't even a rule anymore! This phooey is crazy!

abnerPeabody writes:

in response to RollTideJoe:

Wow, horse feathers alright. Check who the fundraiser was for!

Try again. Saban was there for a price and nothing more.Without cash in his pocket, he would not have been there.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

Bruce Pearl would have gotten fired and received 3 years of show cause for any of these violations. The major infraction he got the 3 year show cause penalty for isn't even a rule anymore! This phooey is crazy!

Guess who started the events in the Middle East?? You guessed it, Bruce Pearl.

Orange_Beach writes:

in response to abnerPeabody:

Try again. Saban was there for a price and nothing more.Without cash in his pocket, he would not have been there.

Saban donates all of his speaking engagement fees to charity, most of it going to his foundation Nick's Kids. But I understand you hating on him because I did it when he was at LSU.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to Orange_Beach:

Saban donates all of his speaking engagement fees to charity, most of it going to his foundation Nick's Kids. But I understand you hating on him because I did it when he was at LSU.

As any millionaire should, nothing special there, OBGYN.

voloffaith writes:

in response to SevenT:

Tennessee continues their long standing tradition of cheating at every opportunity. And the Athletic Department refuses to clean up the mess.

Pathetic

How many times did God's word say I have to forgive for your infractions if they were against me? Seventy times Seven......Of course , if the individual doesn't want or sense the need it doesn't matter. Anyway I forgive you for incessantly trying to stir the pot as Katsucky fan whose paw has lost its way............

volsxsnos writes:

........and so it goes. This is exactly why the NCAA, which could be a great positive for collegiate sports, can't get anything done. But, imagining life without them, Big Religious U. and Enormous State U. would get all of the athletes and everyone else would get the crumbs. Sound exciting??

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