(NCAA) – Norfolk State University failed to monitor its eligibility certification process, which resulted in improper certifications for student-athletes, according to a decision issued by a Division I Committee on Infractions panel. The university incorrectly applied NCAA progress-toward-degree requirements over the course of four years, resulting in 48 student-athletes competing and receiving travel expenses while ineligible.

This case was resolved through the summary disposition process, a cooperative effort where the involved parties collectively submit the case to the Committee on Infractions in written form. The NCAA enforcement staff and the university must agree to the facts and overall level of the case in order to use this process instead of a formal hearing.

The panel found the university did not monitor its eligibility certification process when it did not establish the proper systems and safeguards to ensure that student-athlete certification met NCAA eligibility standards.

The violations involved student-athletes in the following programs: football, men’s basketball, women’s volleyball, women’s tennis, women’s basketball, men’s track, women’s track, softball, bowling, men’s tennis and baseball.

Penalties and corrective measures include the following:

  • Public reprimand and censure for the university.
  • Two years of probation for the university from June 16, 2016, to June, 15, 2018.
  • A vacation of records in which student-athletes participated while ineligible. After the release of the public report, the university will identify the games affected.
  • Scholarship reductions during the 2014-15 academic year, self-imposed by the university:
    • Three scholarships for the football program.
    • One scholarship for each of the men’s basketball, women’s volleyball, women’s tennis and women’s basketball programs.
    • Half a scholarship for each of the men’s track, women’s track, softball, bowling, men’s tennis and baseball programs.
  • A $5,000 fine (self-imposed by the university).

Members of the Committee on Infractions are drawn from NCAA membership and members of the public. The members of the panel who reviewed this case are Michael F. Adams, chancellor, Pepperdine University; Carol Cartwright, president emeritus at Kent State University; Gregory Christopher, athletics director at Xavier University; Jack Ford, legal analyst for CBS News; Joseph Novak, former head football coach at Northern Illinois University; Larry Parkinson, director of enforcement for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission; and Gregory Sankey, chief hearing officer, chair of the Committee on Infractions and commissioner of the Southeastern Conference.


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