NCAA penalizes Arizona State for ‘impermissible in-person recruiting contacts’

The NCAA and its Committee on Infractions panel announced Friday that it found Arizona State’s football program committed recruiting violations.

According to a release, Arizona State and four individuals who worked for the football team reached an agreement with NCAA enforcement staff on violations that “included impermissible in-person recruiting contacts during the COVID-19 dead period, recruiting inducements, impermissible tryouts and tampering.”

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Among the agreed-upon penalties “include four years of probation for the school, a fine, a self-imposed postseason ban for the 2023 football season, vacation of records for contests in which ineligible student-athletes competed, scholarship reductions and recruiting restrictions in alignment with the Level I-mitigated classification for the school,” according to a release. Arizona State will also dissociate from a booster for five years.

The Sun Devils imposed a postseason ban on the program last season. They will be eligible for a bowl game in 2024.

“Arizona State’s cooperation throughout the investigation and processing of this case was exemplary, and the cooperation began with the leadership shown by the university president,” Executive Director of Athletics Compliance at Oklahoma and Chief Hearing Officer for the Committee on Infractions panel Jason Leonard stated in a release. “The school’s acceptance of responsibility and decision to self-impose meaningful core penalties is a  model for all schools to follow and is consistent with the expectations of the NCAA’s infractions program.”

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According to Kyle Bonagura of ESPN, the recruiting violations took place under former head coach Herm Edwards, who was fired after Arizona State began the 2022 season 1-2.

The NCAA stated it found “the underlying violations demonstrated unethical conduct by involved individuals and a head coach responsibility violation.”

Two of the individuals “are contesting portions of their respective cases via written record hearing” after which the Committee on Infractions panel “will release its full decision,” according to the NCAA.

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The Division I Committee on Infractions will permit Arizona State and the other parties involved “to immediately begin serving their penalties while awaiting the committee’s final decision on the remaining contested portions of the case,” according to the NCAA.

According to the NCAA, it’s the fifth case “where the committee has used multiple resolution paths.”