NCAA approves changes in enforcement
by Nicole Auerbach, USA TODAY Sports
The NCAA has approved a new enforcement structure that will dramatically change the way it punishes rules-breakers in college athletics.
The changes — which take effect Aug. 1, 2013 — mean coaches will be held more accountable for infractions that happen under their watch. It will change the infractions system — making it four levels of violations now (ranging from “incidental issues” to “severe breach of conduct”) — and also speed up the process for NCAA investigations.
The overhaul is a result of a year-long effort from a 13-member group of presidents, athletics directors, commissioners and others to get tougher on rules-breakers and restore some integrity to college athletics administration. The group had been working since NCAA President Mark Emmert called for sweeping reform in August 2011 amid some of the worst scandals in college athletics history.
“We have sought all along to remove the ‘risk-reward’ analysis that has tempted people — often because of the financial pressures to win at all costs — to break the rules in the hopes that either they won’t be caught or that the consequences won’t be very harsh if they do get caught,” Emmert said in an NCAA statement released Tuesday. “The new system the Board adopted today is the result of a lot of hard work and membership input devoted to protecting the collegiate model.”
The NCAA said conduct breaches that occurred before Oct. 30, 2012, and are processed before Aug. 1, 2013, will be subject to the current process and penalties.