TUCSON, AZ (KOLD News 13) - The NCAA announced on Wednesday, Jan. 30, that it is punishing the University of Arizona swimming and diving program for recruiting violations committed by a former diving coach. It also determined that the head coach at the time failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance and monitor the diving coach.
According to information from the NCAA, the program will be on probation for two years until Jan. 29, 2021. The program will also lose one scholarship in the 2020-21 academic year. Self-imposed penalties include a $5,000 fine and recruiting restrictions.
The violations happened in connection with the recruitment of an international prospect and spanned from January to September 2017. The coach arranged for the recruit to stay with boosters while completing a program at the university’s Center for English as a Second Language in an attempt to meet NCAA requirements for academic qualification.
The boosters did not charge rent and the NCAA said that the coach acknowledged that he did not ask about the financial arrangement, because “as the coach, it’s better sometimes not to ask.”
The vice president and director of Arizona Athletics, Dave Heeke, said the former coaches involved failed to uphold the values and expectations that the university has for all staff members.
“The university self-reported that rules violations occurred within the swimming and diving program,” Heeke said. “It is clear that the two former coaches did not uphold the values and expectations that the University of Arizona, President Robert Robbins and I have for all staff members. We have taken decisive steps in recent years to enhance our compliance culture, improve oversight and increase accountability. “
The committee’s report recognized the university’s prompt acknowledgement and investigation, self-reporting of the matter and taking affirmative steps to expedite a final resolution. Arizona’s established history of self-reporting violations also was noted as a mitigating factor.