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NCAA: Notre Dame must vacate wins after academic misconduct

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Notre Dame NCAA college football coach Brian Kelly spoke during an Aug. 24 news conference in South Bend, Ind. The NCAA is calling for Notre Dame to vacate victories from 2012 and 2013 football seasons because a former student athletic trainer committed academic misconduct for two players and provided six others with impermissible academic extra benefits.

SOUTH BEND, Ind. » The NCAA announced today that it has ordered Notre Dame to vacate all 21 victories from the 2012-13 seasons, including the 12-0 run that vaulted the Fighting Irish into the national title game against Alabama, because a former student athletic trainer committed academic misconduct by doing substantial course work for two players and impermissibly helped six others.

The school ripped the NCAA for its decision to strip the wins, which included the best season of coach Brian Kelly’s tenure in charge of the storied program. The school said it would appeal and The Rev. John Jenkins, the university president, said the NCAA has never before vacated the records of a school that had no involvement in the underlying academic misconduct. He also noted the NCAA has since voted to change the rule that brought this case under NCAA jurisdiction rather than leaving it individual schools.

The Division I Committee on Infractions panel put Notre Dame on probation for a year and ordered a $5,000 fine, penalties the school agreed with. There were no bowl or scholarship punishments.

Kelly said he knew the vacated wins were a possibility since he and other Notre Dame officials met with the NCAA several months ago. He said he doesn’t believe he has any culpability in the case and has no reason to believe he won’t be back as Notre Dame’s coach next season.

“I think you guys are confusing this statement with the win-loss record,” said Kelly, who is in the midst of his worst season at Notre Dame with a 4-7 record ahead of Saturday’s game at No. 12 USC. “A win-loss record is always under scrutiny at Notre Dame, and it should be. That’s part of it.”

The report doesn’t name the players involved, but stems from an investigation that began in August 2014 , when the university suspended defensive lineman Ishaq Williams, receiver DaVaris Daniels, linebacker Kendall Moore and cornerback KeiVarae Russell, who weren’t allowed to play that season. The school later benched safety Eilar Hardy, who was allowed to return in midseason. Russell returned and played for the Irish last season.

According to the NCAA, the former trainer “partially or wholly completed numerous academic assignments for football student-athletes in numerous courses” from 2011 into 2013. For the six players who got extra help, the former trainer aided them in a total of 18 courses over two academic years.

In all three, the NCAA said, three players would up playing while ineligible, one during the 2012-13 season that ended with a blowout loss to the Crimson Tide in the national championship game and the other two the following season, when the Irish went 9-4.

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    • The pressure to win at any cost is seducing even name brand universities. Sad to see it. Football is not part of the mission of any university. This crippling and dangerous game needs to get off our campuses. Let us preserve the integrity of our universities!

      • Allie, what is the mission? Our society needs it’s people to be well-rounded, knowledgeable, hard working, competitive, realistic, and cognitive of what drives the human race.
        As much education as you’ve gained while attending our university, one would think you should have learned that education is more than books, labs, teachers and students. It is a cumulative total of all aspects of learning to include sports, extra curricular activities that build and mold our young people into leaders and responsible people that our society is reliant upon.
        Someday, with enough years spent at our university-you’ll eventually learn this aspect.

  • NCAA has too much arbitary powers. There needs to be a new, unbought, organization to monitor this! The future players all suffer because of the past players actions!

  • Who ratted out? The former trainer who did the schoolwork? The players who got help? For the millions ND makes from football, cheaper to just have “cleaners” pay off the trainer or former players and if they ask for more money than have the cleaners give em the business.

  • Notre Dame is Christian in name only. How this school conducts itself is downright shameful. From snatching a coach from another school right before their big bowl game to picking on weaker teams such as Army and then making it out to be some kind of big series by calling it the Shamrock Series and having favored treatment in the form of a national broadcasting company to promote their games. The fact that they do not even have to win a conference title to get in a national title ga e shows how much favored treatment they get. Then there is the student athlete they promised a scholarship to only to rescind it after he became injured right before admission. Instead of keeping their promise and giving him encouragement and through prayer help him spiritually they told him to not show up on campus as he was no longer wanted there. By the way, that student athlete went on to defeat Notre Dame as a player for Virginia Tech.

  • The NCAA is a biased and corrupt organization. They punish ND for academic fraud but allow UNC to escape any punishment for years of academic fraud. Their Committee on Infractions has no clue on how to issue equitable punishment.

  • Who wrote this article? I don’t know the win-loss record and I don’t recognize the coach’s name. If I didn’t read the caption below the photo, it would take me until the 6th paragraph to even know what sport they were talking about? Doesn’t anyone proofread anymore?

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