Wednesday , Jun , 09 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Rhode Island avoids further NCAA sanctions

Kingston, RI (Sports Network) – The NCAA’s Committee on Infractions
Wednesday ruled that violations by the University of Rhode Island’s men’s
basketball programs were secondary in nature and accepted the school’s self-
imposed penalties.

Rhode Island agreed to reduce its men’s basketball scholarships by one each
year during the 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08 seasons as well as cut the
program’s number of off-campus evaluation days during the school year. No
further action will be taken by the NCAA.

“The university undertook a thorough inquiry concerning possible violations
reported to it and made a good-faith effort in its determination of whether
the available information supported findings of NCAA violations,” said URI
president Robert L. Carothers. “The university also imposed appropriate
corrective and punitive actions. We are grateful that the NCAA staff agreed
with those assessments.”

In January, Rhode Island reported six violations of NCAA regulations that
occurred in its men’s basketball program from 1997-2000. The infractions came
under the reigns of former head coaches Jim Harrick and Jerry DeGregorio.

The school came to this conclusion after proceeding with an internal inquiry
sparked by charges made from a former secretary in the basketball program. The
former secretary filed charges against the school in April 2002 for alleged
sexual harassment and alleged violations of the Rhode Island Unfair
Employment Practices Act and the Rhode Island Whistle Blower’s Protection Act.

Rhode Island explained the following violations in its self-report:

(a) Several men’s basketball student-athletes used telephones or computers in
the men’s basketball office without authorization; (b) A coaching staff member
provided transportation to a student-athlete; (c) A coaching staff member
provided approximately $250 cash to a student-athlete; (d) A former men’s
basketball secretary typed a few papers for course assignments for a few
student-athletes; (e) A prospective student-athlete received several
recruiting inducements in the Kingston and Providence areas; and (f) The
institution should have undertaken more effective monitoring of the athletes’
use of the telephones and computers and of the activities of the prospective