MIAMI (CBS4/AP) – Miami has finally received its notice of allegations from the NCAA, marking the end of just one step in what’s already been a two-year probe of the athletic department.
The allegations arrived on Tuesday, according to a person familiar with the matter and who spoke with The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because neither the NCAA nor Miamiauthorized releasing any information publicly. The NCAA did not respond to a request for comment, and a Miami athletics spokesman said he had no knowledge of the letter’s arrival.
Next up: The sanctions phase, where Miami’s penalties will be decided. The Hurricanes have already self-imposed several sanctions, including sitting out two bowl games and a conference football championship game. Miami President Donna Shalala said Monday she believes those punishments should be enough.
Miami wants to get through the sanctions portion of the process as quickly as possible. But typically, it takes about three months for a hearing, and then can take several weeks — if not months — more for the penalties to be handed down. The sides coming to a settlement beforehand is another possibility.
Miami and the NCAA have gone back and forth on the wording of the notice of allegations for several weeks, and the long-awaited letter was nearly delivered last month. That’s when the NCAA acknowledged that some mistakes were made by its own enforcement department. And that resulted in some allegations coming out of the letter.
The news of the notice comes one day after the NCAA announced that 20 percent of the case against the University of Miami has been excluded from the investigation after the collegiate governing body had outside counsel review the enforcement staff’s investigation.
According to the law firm that conducted the review, “As a result of the lines drawn, 13 interviews were extracted, then another 12 interviews were stricken from the record. Twenty percent of information and assertions that had been a part of the investigative process was taken out.”
The NCAA said the staff, “acted contrary to internal protocols, legal counsel, and the membership’s understanding about the limits of its investigative powers in the University of Miami case.”
“With the completion of the external enforcement review, we recognize that certain investigative tactics used in portions of the University of Miami case failed our membership,” said NCAA president Mark Emmert.
After the notice was sent to the school, President Shalala released this statement to the media:
“The University of Miami deeply regrets and takes full responsibility for those NCAA violations that are based on fact and are corroborated by multiple individuals and/or documentation. We have already self-imposed a bowl ban for an unprecedented two-year period, forfeited the opportunity to participate in an ACC championship game, and withheld student-athletes from competition.
Over the two and a half years since the University of Miami first contacted the NCAA enforcement staff about allegations of rules violations, the NCAA interviewed dozens of witnesses, including current and former Miami employees and student-athletes, and received thousands of requested documents and emails from the University. Yet despite our efforts to aid the investigation, the NCAA acknowledged on February 18, 2013 that it violated its own policies and procedures in an attempt to validate the allegations made by a convicted felon. Many of the allegations included in the Notice of Allegations remain unsubstantiated.”
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