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Wyoming Worries Volleyball Violations May Be Major

The University of Wyoming plans to vacate three seasons of volleyball victories along with other corrective actions in an effort to have that program’s extra benefits violations classified as secondary. In addition, the university suspended three members of the coaching staff and was going to require them to attend the NCAA Regional Rules Seminar in Denver before their resignations were request and received in early May.

How Wyoming discovered the violations reveals either a poor attempt by the coaches to cover their tracks or just how genuinely they believed they were within NCAA rules:

The report alleges that Yerty paid $300 of a security deposit in 2009 for a players’ apartment at Shilo Park Apartments. It was the return of that $300 to the volleyball office in the summer of 2012 that raised questions within the athletic apartment of a questionable cash-handling issue.

That was followed with two coaching staff members quitting right before last season, followed by those individuals describing more violations involving second-hand items provided to players and the impermissible use of managers.

Wyoming is contending that the case is secondary, but acknowledges that it could be major:

“The University understands that the characterization of these violations as secondary is complicated in that the aggregate nature of the impermissible benefit violations do not appear to be isolated when examined in the collective,” the report stated.

But what should not matter is Wyoming’s corrective actions. No where in the definition of major or secondary violations are corrective actions even addressed. A violation that does not meet the definition of a secondary violation is major, and what the university does after the violation occurs should not change that. Wyoming’s actions are relevant to questions about any potential charges of failure to monitor or lack of institutional control and whether the university met and/or exceeded its obligation to cooperate with the NCAA.

The NCAA enforcement staff will be in Laramie to investigate on campus in July. They will determine whether to accept the Wyoming’s case as secondary or to process the violations as a major infractions case. Sometimes in close cases like this, the violations are sent to the Committee on Infractions for a determination regarding whether they are secondary or major.

If the enforcement staff goes the major infractions case route, Wyoming’s next big decision will be whether to accept that the violations are major. Doing so would mean a fairly quick and quiet resolution via summary disposition. Alternatively, Wyoming could go to a Committee on Infractions hearing where the university can agree the violations occurred, but argue that they were secondary rather than major infractions.

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