Thomas Ashworth, Sports Editor
On Thursday, Oct. 7, the NCAA announced the Jacksonville State Gamecocks football team committed recruiting violations and will face penalties as a result of these violations.
A report by the NCAA outlines that, “A Jacksonville State football assistant coach committed recruiting violations when he had recruiting contacts with a potential transfer without obtaining written permission from the prospect’s prior school or being authorized to contact that prospect through the notification of transfer process, according to an agreement released by the Division I Committee on Infractions.”
The NCAA, Jacksonville State and the unnamed coach agreed that from January 2019 through November 2020, 450 impermissible text messages and at least 10 impermissible phone calls were exchanged between the coach and the player, who was still enrolled at his previous school at the time.
According to the NCAA’s report, these text messages included scripture, encouragement and motivational quotes. The report went on to add that “Regardless of the content of the communications, however, once the prospect enrolled at another school, the coach’s continued contact with him violated NCAA rules, which require a coach to obtain permission to contact a student-athlete at another school or to obtain authorization through the notification of transfer process.”
The assistant coach, who remains unnamed, still remains on Jacksonville State’s football staff.
Penalties as a result of this investigation include one year of probation from October 7, 2021 through October 6, 2022, a $5,000 fine to the NCAA and restrictions on recruitment.
These restrictions on recruitment include a three-week ban on all recruiting communications for the assistant coach during fall 2021 and a ban from off-campus for the assistant coach for three days in fall 2021 and six days in spring 2022.
The negotiated resolution, published alongside the NCAA’s press release, outlines additional items Jacksonville State must complete. These items include the development and implementation of an educational program on NCAA legislation for JSU’s coaches. JSU must also inform prospects that the program is on probation for one year and must detail the violations.