Ole Miss meeting NCAA Committee on Infractions - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Ole Miss meeting NCAA Committee on Infractions

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Ole Miss begins their meeting with the NCAA Committee on Infractions. The 2-3 day hearing will take place in Covington, Kentucky, a suburb of Cincinnati.

The COI requests several coaches and officials to appear at the case, including:

  • Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter
  • Athletic Director Ross Bjork
  • Assistant Coach Derrick Nix
  • Assistant Coach Maurice Harris
  • Interim head coach Matt Luke
  • Former head coach Hugh Freeze

Mississippi State LB Leo Lewis is also attending the hearing. The NCAA gave him immunity for his testimony on Rebel recruiting as long as he told the truth.

The NCAA charges the Rebel football program with 21 violations ranging from personalized recruiting videos (Level 3) to cash payments to recruits and players (Level 1). Ole Miss accepts that 14 of the 21 violations happened but will contest the other seven.

Some of the infractions that the University will contest includes head coach responsibility and lack of institutional control.

The hearing process works similar to a court case. The NCAA enforcement staff acts as the prosecution, presenting their evidence. Ole Miss is like the  defendant, presenting evidence and documents of their own. The Committee on Infractions gets to ask questions to both sides of the case.

READ MORE: Ole Miss responds to NCAA violations

A concise version of the allegations are below. The charges that Ole Miss has previously said they will contest are in bold.

NCAA Allegations against Ole Miss

You can read the NCAA COI appearance letter here.

You can read the 2017 NCAA notice of allegations here.

You can read Ole Miss' response to the NOA here.

1. May & June 2010: Former assistants David Saunders and Chris Vaughn involved in misconduct with fraudulent ACT exams (Level 1)

2. Summer 2010: Saunders & Vaughn arranged for Darel Thigpen (booster) to provide impermissible benefits (Level 1)

3. August 2013: Vaughn provided false/misleading info to NCAA investigators (Level 1)

4. December 2013 & February 2014: Saunders provided false/misleading info to NCAA investigators. (Level 1)

5. 2012 & 2013: Walter Hughes (booster) made impermissible contact with 4 recruits, assistant coach Maurice Harris knew of contact, arranged for free lodging. (Level 1)

6. January, February 2013 - Assistant director of sports video created personalized recruiting videos with Hugh Freeze's knowledge (Level 3)

7. January 2013 - Impermissible recruiting - free access to hunting land owned by Robert Dunlap (booster) (Level 3)

8. January 2013 - Former assistant Chris Kiffin arranged for free lodging & meals during a recruits official visit. The Inn at Ole Miss was one of the businesses involved (Level 2)

9. January 2013, March 2014-January 2016 - Former assistant Chris Kiffin and former assistant athletic director for high school and junior college relations Barney Farrar arranged for free merchandise at Rebel Rags for 2 recruits (Level 1)

10. Summer 2013 - Chris Kiffin arranged for free lodging at his residence (Level 3)

11. June 2013-May 2014: Chan Patel (booster) provided 12 nights free lodging at Hampton Inn in Oxford (Level 1)

12. December 2013: Head coach Hugh Freeze made an impermissible in-person off-campus recruiting visit (5-10 minutes) with a recruit that was a junior (Level 3)

13. May 2014: Chris Kiffin made a impermissible in-person off-campus recruiting visit (10 minutes) with a 2 recruits that were juniors (Level 3)

14. March 2014 - January 2015: Barney Farrar arranged for free meals, transportation, lodging. Arranged for Arya Keyes to provide transportation for a recruit to a camp/unofficial visit (Level 1)

15. March 2014 - January 2015: Lee Harris (booster) provided between $200-$600 of cash payments, free food, free drinks to recruit and recruit's family (Level 1)

16. April 2014 - February 2015: Booster #14 provided between $13,000-$15,600 of cash payments to a recruit, Barney Farrar facilitated and initiated impermissible contact between Booster #12, Booster #14 and recruit (Level 1)

17. March 2014 - February 2015: Barney Farrar arranged free transportation, free lodging
      December 2016: Barney Farrar provided misleading info to NCAA investigators (Level 1)

18. August 2014 - Michael Strojny (booster) gave $800 cash to stepfather of a former player (Level 1)

19. August 2014, August 2015 - Cannon Motors loaned complimentary vehicles to 2 players when their personal cars needed repairs. Cannon also provided a loan to a player (Level 1)

20. Head coach responsibility - Hugh Freeze responsible for violations that occurred with assistants and staff members. (Level 1)

21. Lack of institutional control - Ole Miss failed to monitor conduct of athletic program.

Ole Miss has already self-imposed a postseason/bowl ban for the 2017 season. Along with contesting 7 violations, the university has disassociated with the boosters involved in the allegations. The boosters will be banned from attending Rebel home games and restricted from entering athletic facilities (Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, The Pavilion, etc.)

There's also a self-imposed recruiting penalty for the football program. There will be a 15% scholarship reduction over the next 4 years. There will be no unofficial visits by recruits for the first 3 home games of the 2017 season.

READ MORE: Ole Miss football announces one-year postseason ban following new NCAA violations

READ MORE: Ole Miss releases booster names involved in 2016 & 2017 NCAA notice of allegations

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