The Oregon Ducks have received their official sanction from the NCAA Committee on Infractions, which includes a show-cause and reduction in scholarships, but no ban of post-season eligibility.
The core of the sanctions is due to Oregon’s relationship with several recruiting services and violations which stemmed from these relationships, the most notable being that with Texas-based recruiting service owner Willie Lyles.
According to the official report from the NCAA, Oregon will be sanctioned as follows:
* Three years of probation effective June 26, 2013 through June 25, 2016.
* A loss of one scholarship per season for academic years 2012-2013, 2013-2014 and 2014-2015. In essence, this reduces their total number of scholarships available for dispersal from 85 to 84.
* Paid visits are reduced to 37 per year for each of the next three academic years and unused visits from one year cannot be carried over to the next.
* A full ban on the use of recruiting services during the probation period.
As an ancillary, former head coach Chip Kelly was slapped with a show-cause penalty in effect through December 25, 2014 which would require any NCAA Division I institution to clear his hire through the Infractions Committee before it could be completed.
This, obviously, won’t be an issue in the short-term given Kelly saw the writing on the wall and accepted a head coaching job with the NFL Philadelphia Eagles for the upcoming 2013 season.
The show-cause given to Kelly is minor given other similar penalties issued to coaches accused of similar improper recruiting practices – one example being former Tennessee Volunteers basketball coach Bruce Pearl who was given a three-year show-cause penalty for holding events on his own property to entertain potential recruits.
In essence, Oregon was issued a slightly more severe penalty than that they suggested to the NCAA based on their own internal investigation, again supporting the theory schools which self-report, and do so with due diligence and humility, come out on top of these types of sanctions more often than not.
It’s a signal which shouldn’t be ignored by institutions finding themselves in similar turbulent waters, that’s for sure.