Clarion women’s soccer program violated financial aid rules
The former Clarion women’s soccer head coach provided impermissible financial aid agreements to 19 prospective and current student-athletes, according to a decision released by the Division II Committee on Infractions.
According to the decision, the former head coach signed and issued scholarship agreements to 10 current and incoming women’s soccer student-athletes without obtaining the required signature of Clarion’s director of financial aid or Clarion’s official designee. He also distributed nine letters to prospects promising multiple-year scholarships, which violated NCAA rules limiting scholarship offers to one-year terms. The former head coach’s direct involvement in the violations demonstrated that he failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance and violated head coach responsibility rules, according to the committee.
“(The coach’s) actions disregarded fundamental membership requirements surrounding the administration of financial aid and violated the trust of his student-athletes,” the committee said in its decision.
The case was resolved by using a cooperative summary disposition, a process in which involved parties collectively submit the case to the committee in written form. All participating parties must agree to the facts of the case for this process to be used instead of a formal hearing.
The committee prescribed the following penalties and corrective measures:
- Two years of probation.
- A $1,000 fine.
- A Compliance Blueprint Review, in which the school’s athletics policies and procedures will be reviewed. The school must implement all recommendations made by the reviewer.
- A comprehensive review of the school’s certification and eligibility by a qualified outside entity.
- Attendance by the associate director of compliance at two NCAA Regional Rules Seminars in 2021 and 2022.
- A three-year show-cause order for the former coach. During that period, any NCAA member school employing him must show cause why he should not have restrictions on athletically related activity.
Members of the Committee on Infractions are drawn from the NCAA membership and members of the public. The members who reviewed this case are John David Lackey, attorney in private practice; Richard Loosbrock, faculty athletics representative at Adams State; Melissa Reilly, associate commissioner and senior woman administrator at the East Coast Conference; Leslie Schuemann, senior associate commissioner and senior woman administrator at the Great Midwest Athletic Conference; Jason Sobolik, assistant athletics director for compliance at Minnesota State University Moorhead; Jane Teixeira, athletics director at Humboldt State and chair of the committee; and Christie Ward, associate athletics director and senior woman administrator at Georgia Southwestern.