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Southern Mississippi Men's Tennis Scandal: Cash, Cars, Academic Fraud, Lying to NCAA Investigators

The NCAA uncovered a major, balatant corruption scandal at Southern Mississippi, in men’s tennis. The coaching staff offered a player thousands in cash and a car. They sprinkled in a bit of academic fraud and topped it off by lying to NCAA investigators. They hit for the NCAA violation cycle.

According to the facts in the case, the former coaches offered a former student-athlete $5,000 and a car to encourage the student-athlete to remain at Southern Mississippi. Additionally, when the student-athlete was losing a specific match, the former head coach offered to pay the same student-athlete $200 if he won.

The former coaches also initiated plagiarism and academic misconduct during the fall of 2009. Specifically, the former head coach paid a second former student-athlete $150 to write a paper for the previously mentioned student-athlete. The former assistant coach continued the academic misconduct by providing the student-athlete with essays that the student-athlete submitted as his own work.

Compounding the unethical conduct, the former coaches refused to participate in the enforcement staff interviews. The former head coach withheld true and complete information during Southern Mississippi’s investigation. In addition, the former assistant coach instructed the former student-athlete to “deny everything” during his interviews.

The program received a one-year postseason ban and four years of probation. Both coaches received lengthy show-cause sanctions. This is a non-revenue sport at a small university. What the hell is going on in major college football?

[Photo via USA Today Sports]

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